Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Tuesday at Innovate
It was worth getting up early Tuesday morning to “stay ahead” at Innovate 2013: The IBM Technical Summit, where innovation and entrepreneurship took center stage. IBM Senior Vice President Robert LeBlanc opened the General Session by reviewing yesterday’s discussion of the importance of DevOps as an enterprise capability, necessary to seize customer opportunity and reduce time to feedback.
Next up, Eric Ries, author of the Lean Startup and the blog Startup Lessons Learned, outlined his approach to put entrepreneurship on the same rigorous footing as engineering. Citing examples from the movie Ghostbusters (which--who knew?-- is the true entrepreneurial movie) Eric described how successful innovators convert the right ideas into products. The key to doing so is to establish a baseline, get feedback based on real metrics, and adjust, or "pivot," based on this feedback.
Former Rational CTO, Martin Nally hosted a panel of CTOs discussing their experiences with both incremental and disruptive innovation within the constraints of an enterprise. General Motors Technical Fellow Bill Bolander and Madge Meyer, author of "The Innovator's Path“ and former CTO at State Street Bank, joined IBM CTO and GM of Next Generation Platform Danny Sabbah and IBM Fellow, VP and WebSphere Chief Technology Officer Jerry Cuomo. They discussed the merits of sustaining vs. disruptive innovation, shared stories from the early days of WebSphere, examples from the product development of complex systems involved in cars, differences in approaches between research and development, and how to foster innovation and entrepreneurship within a company.
Alan Brown, Professor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, University of Surrey, then introduced the man of the hour, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. Steve shared a wide variety of stories about his early days with Steve Jobs, the 50 pounds of gadgets he carries in a backpack wherever he goes (the most useful? A $4 alarm that helps him identify his luggage in the airport), his preference for OpenSource and his passion for education.
Of particular note was when Steve talked about the significance of mobile devices as client interfaces. Calling your cell phone your personal teacher, he noted that the device, while it feels personal and significant, does very little actual processing and is merely your interface to the servers and data centers that make up the Internet.
Robert LeBlanc then wrapped up by outlining ways that you can stay ahead:
Develop an end-to-end DevOps strategy
Adopt mobile-first design thinking and cloud-centric architectures
Start incrementally on business-critical projects
Measure and reduce overhead, rework and duplication
After his General Session keynote, Woz took time to talk tech with the next generation of technology leaders, Lake Brantley high school students who made an impressive showing again this year in the Master the Mainframe contest.
Breakout sessions and technical workshops continued to deliver on outstanding content. For example, it was standing room only in DOPS2617 where UrbanCode co-founder Maciej Zawadzki discussed manageable first steps to pave the way for DevOps implementation in traditional organizations. Between sessions, crowds lined up for book signings by Eric Ries and Steve Woz. They also joined in on informal dialog with developers over one more day of birds-of-a-feather lunches.
Between sessions, JazzHub live was full of those ready to learn and experiment with this collaborative software development in the cloud. If you haven't had a chance yet, stop by Wednesday, and sit in on a quick session about Getting Started with JazzHub, Coding Inside Your Browser with Orion, and Source Code with Eclipse. Don’t forget to pick up a free t-shirt. Here at Innovate, IBM Rational Business Partner ClearBlade is developing a mobile app for JazzHub using JazzHub in real-time.
Clients continued to pop in for meetings in the Clients Connections Lounge and collaborative conversation in the consulting and support cafés in the ISD zone.
Tuesday evening, women at Innovate packed the room to hear Judith Hurwitz of Hurwitz and Associates lead a panel of six women executives from Deloitte, Cisco and IBM. Each executive shared some of her own experiences taking intelligent risks and her insights for success in this industry. Then audience members asked questions such as what types of opportunities the execs looked for and how they transitioned to managing larger teams. During a lively interaction, audience members shared their own insights as well. The panel concluded with each executive offering the one takeaway tip that they felt would make the biggest immediate impact. The enthusiastic crowd then moved on to the Super Women’s Group reception to continue the discussion and share their own experiences with each other.
It was a night for networking receptions as the Systems community joined together for drinks and talk. Many also enjoyed the last of socializing and exploring solutions in the Expo, the integration center, design studio and tech talks in dW Live!
Read more about Innovate:
What's Coming on Wednesday
Another day of technology insight and technical training offered with Innovate’s 30 tracks worth of sessions, the last opportunity to enjoy the Expo, and more. Take special note of the following: