Hello! Some of you may remember my last post about the Web Hosting Day conference in Germany, which a few people from our team (including myself) attended last week. The Web Hosting Day (WHD for short), although organized only for a second time, turned out to be a big event so I would like to make a quick overview of what happened there.
The topic of the event was “cloud computing”** and “software as a service”. So initially, our team expected that we were going to learn about the latest developments of such platforms and that the information flow would be significant as the topic is quite hot in the industry. Unfortunately, most of the people who spoke at the conference were too busy selling their products (products that were not necessarily new), instead of trying to educate the public. Selling is of course a normal part of such events, but it shouldn’t really be the only focus of a web hosting cloud computing conference.
For us, going to the WHD was important for getting first-hand information on what’s new. As we try to be one of the leaders in the web hosting market in terms of technology, we have to make sure we know what the hottest things out there are. Well, in the end of the day, we were quite happy to find out that we are indeed keeping up the pace quite well. Most of the solutions that seemed suitable for our business and our customers were things that we already have developed in-house or were using quite actively. From what I saw, I should say “Thanks” to our technical people for being so well tuned
The other part of going to a conference is networking and meeting current and potential partners that will help your business grow. Although the organizers from Intergenia have tried to include such networking events in the schedule, these didn’t really encourage much networking. A stylish, seated dinner is a great way to entertain executives, but does not create opportunities for talking to new people outside your close circle.
By now, you probably realize that we were not quite satisfied with some organizational details of the WHD. However, I really wish to point out some of the positives and share the fun side of the event as well.
No one will deny that the organizers have made a lot of effort to entertain their guests. First of all, they chose an excellent location for that. The conference was held in an amusement park called Phantasialand near Cologne. Although the park was closed for the public, the organizers opened some of the fun facilities for their guests. Marian (our head system administrator) took quite a few rides on the roller coasters and couldn’t really eat anything for hours afterwards.
The hotels in Phantasialand themselves were a real source of entertainment as well. The hotel in which we stayed was designed in a Chinese style and you could see elements of the Chinese culture all over. Well, not all of the elements were authentic – such as the Chinese hieroglyphs on the walls of our bedroom that were anything else but Chinese – but still the atmosphere was quite entertaining.
And of course, being in Germany, drinking beer is part of the entertainment. After the long day at the conference, it was really great to have a drink with nice people. Some people from our team stayed until 3 a.m. on the first night having fun.
To see how it all looks, check out our photos.
**It was really hard to get a decent definition of cloud computing although everyone was talking about that. Cloud computing is a style of computing in which scalable and virtualized resources are provided as a service over the Internet.