After landing in Warsaw, I got into a car with the local sales leader for Poland and we drove to the event location. It was a 2 hour drive. First, the roads and the land in Poland reminded me very much of my home time in Maine. Very scenic and rural but beautiful and peaceful. We talked storage for 2 hours and I am always festinated at the thirst for knowledge there is when I travel. It was a great ride followed up by a customer reception and some local Polish brew.
Thursday I spent the day in Sterdyn, Poland for IBM Storage University. There were 30 customers at the event and it went very very well. The event was at Palac Ossolinski, today used as an event center but has a very rich history, in fact at one point it was used as a medical facility in WWII. The photo is of the building where we had the event. The topics we covered were:
- Storage Efficiency
- Real-time Compression
The customers were very interactive and provided a lot of insight to their environments. Interestingly enough I learned during our customer reception that IBM storage is #1 in Poland with HP second and EMC third. This is a true testament to the IBM sellers and the customers who use the IBM products every day to drive their business. I also learned that the data break down in Poland is 90% block, 10% file which I found interesting and would be interested to check back 12 months from today to see how it will be different.
I did learn something very interesting in Poland. The question was asked “Why XIV”? What is so special about XIV. The answer was awesome. The answer started with 2 questions:
1) How old is RAID?
2) How old is your iPhone?
The reality is data growth is out pacing what traditional RAID can handle and data profiles are changing as well. These combined have driven new technologies like Cleversafe, Cloud Computing, Hadoop and XIV. Just like the iPhone is a new approach to the smart phone based on new things we know about how these smart phones are being used, we know more about how data and storage is being used. New ways to deliver capacity and performance are needed in order to keep up with the changing times. I thought it was a very good answer in terms that make customers think.
Thursday evening I traveled back to Warsaw where I got in a bit late and just went to a local pub, Sketch. Grabbed a small bite and some local mead and then headed back to the hotel. I did get to see the local Palace of Culture and Science in the middle of Warsaw, very impressive, built as a gift from Russia to Poland.
I have an early flight to Prague. I am very excited about this part of the journey as I have always wanted to travel to Prague. Press meeting right when I land. Stay tuned.