I'm in London tonight and will be travelling back to the States in the morning after a very quick trip to Lisbon and London. I went to Lisbon for the beginning of a three day "executive summit" on SOA, a follow-up to a similar event we held in Toronto in May. Attendance was wonderful - well over 200 technical customer executives. The keynote on SOA and IBM's technical strategy was given by Danny Sabbah, the CTO and VP of Software Group Strategy and Technology. Customers gave talks, we gave talks, we had industry breakouts, there was a lot of networking, and generally a lot of information sharing.
I moved on from Lisbon to London last night to participate in an all-day analyst event today with other IBM execs. I really like these because I can throw away the PowerPoint pitches and just talk about whatever interests the analysts and me. We discussed WebSphere App Server V6, open source, SOA, web services, standards, the ESB idea, competitors, and probably a few other things. I was asked a few questions whose answers I had no clue to, and admitted the same, not always to positive response. I'm still working on my answer to "Why not?" after I say "I don't know" to a question, but that's ok. If you know all the answers, it's time to move on to something new.