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Three Big Takeaways from 2019’s Virtual Discovery Expo

Cloud | Posted on October 9, 2019 by Liz Teodorini

Virtual Discovery Expo, or VDX—a free, online-only tech conference—just wrapped and the community is still abuzz about it. VDX featured more than 25 disruptive vendors, along with breakout sessions, networking opportunities and downloadable takeaway content. We love tech conferences, and so we were excited to deliver this one right to our customers’ desks. Enough exciting content came out of VDX for several articles but we’ve narrowed it down to three big vendor takeaways. Read on to see what attendees are still talking about.

#1 Google’s Cloud Secrets, Revealed

Google became a pioneer in cloud out of pure necessity. A handful of their services have over a billion users. Some are on their way to two billion. This means an unprecedented – and perhaps intimidating – demand for growth. It also means a network unlike any other. With this in mind, Google has developed a cloud development philosophy that allows them to stay agile throughout its rapid expansion. Neil Bunn, manager of customer engineering at Google Cloud Canada, shared that philosophy with us in his keynote address. He broke down the following elements of Google’s approach to maintaining agility:

  • When possible, use open-source solutions to ensure maximum portability.
  • Rely on abstracted infrastructure to avoid hardware procurement limitations.
  • Take a software-defined approach to avoid vendor lock-in.

These principles can make any cloud infrastructure more scalable, says Bunn. Moreover, Google Anthos, a new cloud platform he showcased during the address, provides this kind of agile infrastructure as a managed service.

#2 How the Cloud Can Secure Itself with Microsoft

Security in the age of the cloud is difficult, according to Microsoft’s Jon Wojan. It’s hard to guarantee that mobile devices are secure. Yet more workers are demanding mobile access. Organizations expand their attack surface all the time, but there remains a serious skills shortage in security. As Wojan pointed out, we’ve entered a world wherein security is no longer about stopping breaches – it’s about damage control.

From Wojan’s perspective, the cloud complicates security while also revolutionizing it. For example, inputting records of attack into machine learning systems—pooling data—allows them to learn how malicious actors behave and then stop them on the spot. Cloud systems can also compile and profile typical user behavior and block or grant conditional access for users acting outside the norm.

Implementing these tools requires a shift away from the siloed approach—one firewall and one encryption solution—and towards integrated systems like those offered by major cloud providers like Microsoft.

#3 The Collaborative Future Is Almost Here, Thanks to Jabra

We are living in the age of the collaborative, mobile workplace. More than ever, a new class of employee is contributing to the enterprise: the “remote office professional.” This development is another step toward a more flexible future, where employees have a choice over where and when they do their jobs.

While some are skeptical about this direction, research on the issue yields some hard truths.

  • Open-plan offices—used by 70% of organizations today—are terrible for productivity with 81% of workers complaining that noise and interruptions are their biggest issues in the workplace.
  • Once distracted, it takes the average worker 23 minutes to refocus.
  • Employees in open-plan offices take 61% more sick days.

Until recently, the problem was the technology.

  • Sixty-three per cent of surveyed workers report that technical glitches—which take up a reported 10% of every 45-minute meeting—negatively impact their performance.
  • On average, dealing with such glitches takes up 10% of the duration of a 45-minute meeting.

Enter Jabra, a new generation of audio endpoint devices that provide seamless unified communication with the most advanced noise cancellation capabilities available. Jabra devices are designed to handle remote workers—and those in the office whose jobs don’t allow them to roam.

With these advances, it should come as no surprise that by 2020, 72% of workers will be working remotely.

More to Discover

This is just a sampling of the business concerns VDX vendors addressed. If there was something you missed, worry not! You can still log in and access recorded breakout sessions, keynotes and downloadable content from our 25+ participating vendors. Experience VDX on demand

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