The Expovest location in Timisoara hosted between May 13th and 14th the seventh edition of the most important event in the information technology and communication domain, IT Congress 2015. It was an absolute success that has easily entered in the hall of fame of the other events organized by ETA2U so far. The company from Timisoara has lived up to its name on this occasion as well. The over 1000 participants enjoyed two full days with no less than 56 presentations, workshops and seminars, all supported with practical demos.
The Expovest site in Timisoara hosted between May 13th and 14th the seventh edition of the most important event in the information technology and communication domain, IT Congress 2015. It was an absolute success that has easily entered the hall of fame of the other events organized by ETA2U so far. The company from Timisoara has lived up to its name on this occasion as well. The over 1000 participants enjoyed two full days with no less than 56 presentations, workshops and seminars, all supported with practical demos. The event was designed as a meeting opportunity for ETA2U collaborators and the representatives of the main players in the IT industry, by means of conferences, workshops, live demos but also „business to business talks”. And the success was guaranteed!
„This edition of IT Congress is larger and better than the previous ones. One can feel a comeback of the business life, it is clear that things are moving”, said Mr. Stelian Câmpianu, ETA2U executive manager. In the stands of the exhibit area, in conference rooms, one could fully feel the effervescence of the event, talks were appreciated by everyone present. Indeed, it was a normal thing, since the list of the partners of the company from Timisoara has been a premium one and included: Dell, Microsoft, Oracle, NetApp, Cisco, Fortinet, Orange, Samsung, Veeam, Xerox, Advantech, Lenovo, Emerson, VMware, Asus, Euroweb, Hikvision and Ysoft.
What were the most discussed topics?
The world we live in is in a permanent change, IT gets deeper and deeper in our lives. This was seen also at IT Congress. Mr. Stelian Câmpianu, ETA2U executive manager, has spoken about these trends. Two of these directions are quite clearly defined: the ideas of Internet of Things and working in cloud respectively.
Internet of Things.
The Internet of Things is a general concept for the ability of network sensors and devices to collect data from the world around us and to share them afterwards of the Internet and this data can be processed and used for different interesting purposes. Some are also using industrial internet to describe IoT. This refers firstly to commercial applications of IoT technology in manufacturing. Nevertheless, the Internet of Things is not limited to industrial applications. We've been talking for some time about the Internet of all Things (IoT) as a future trend, but we can discuss even today about real solutions – about products and architectures integrated in intelligent cities and parking places, factories with automation over IP. During IT Congress, Cisco has presented validated solutions for Connected Manufacturing, and the participants were able to test industrial switches and routers at the Cisco stand. Here are the conclusions of Mr. Dorin Pena, Cisco Romania General Manager : “IT Congress was a special, dynamic event where we have met customers interested in what is new, about how IT becomes an integrating part of every business. We have discussed topics from connecting things, processes and people to modern data centers, up to security solutions for the currently developing world. Such an event is the ideal moment to understand how technology changes the environment where we conduct our business and to find solutions for current challenges”.
Cloud computing is being discussed by every business person today, whether we are talking about SMB's or large companies. Moreover, the European Union is positioning cloud as a priority in the Digital Agenda 2020 strategy, with numerous benefits for public and private institutions alike. In September 2012, the European Commission has adopted the strategy “Unleashing the Potential of Cloud Computing in Europe”, aimed to accelerate the use of cloud services in all the areas of the economy and to generate 2.5 million new jobs in Europe, as well as an yearly increase of over 160 million euro of the EU GDP until 2020. “Romania is aligned at the Digital Agenda of the European Union through its national strategy Digital Agenda 2020, and Microsoft continues to contribute actively on important topics of the public agenda. The company's strategy oriented towards cloud and mobility is aimed to support local companies to benefit from the newest technologies and solutions that increase the productivity of employees and the business competitiveness of companies. The open-mindedness of the Romanians to the integration of mobile technologies in their working environment is in close connection with the productivity of employees in the economy. According to a study conducted by Ipsos Mori for Microsoft, Romania has the lowest productivity rate in the EU – 6 times smaller than the European average (according to Eurostat). Moreover, 81% of the employees must be present in the office, physically, in order to fulfill their tasks. There is a considerable potential for cloud and mobility among the companies from Romania and Microsoft, together with its partner ecosistem, aims to support Romanian companies in their efforts to modernize their business and make their organizational processes efficient. All these concepts – starting from mobility, productivity, up to Business Intelligence and Internet of Things, have been presented by the Microsoft team at the IT Congress 2015 event in front of an audience consisting from over 1000 IT specialists and top managers” said Ms. Mădălina Grinzeanu – Partner Sales Organization Lead – Microsoft Romania.
Similarly, for the cloud area, at IT Congress 2015 Oracle has presented solutions for the area they call “Digital Disruption” – a digital revolution that makes traditional business models reassess themselves and change themselves. In the vision of Oracle, there are 5 factors that contribute to this radical change:
● The increasingly wider access to internet,
● The explosion of collected data and new ways that derive from this huge data quantity (e.g. social media),
● The mobility that facilitates data access in real time and increases speed but also the possibilities to access information and to do business,
● Cloud by facilitating access to resources, either Hardware or Software, with the opportunity to reduces initial investment costs and to increase flexibility and, last but not least,
● The necessity of modernizing business models from all sectors.In this context of radical changing, business follows innovation as a success factor and a differentiating element and regards cloud as a facilitator for accessing the resources necessary for the accomplishment of this innovation. At the same time, application developers want to have the possibility to have access to the latest technologies so that they may deliver applications more efficiently, applications that need to be both more agile and to have an excellent quality. From the many Oracle presentations that have addressed these challenge we notice a demo where Oracle presented its cloud service designed for data analysis - Oracle Business Intelligence Cloud Service. This service stands out through its data processing power, its ability to use multiple sources with different formats, the agility to adapt very quickly at new analysis models although probably the most attractive ability of the service is the self-service that provides the user with a working environment that is easy to learn and very versatile.
Dell also presented several interesting products for cloud, by bringing at IT Congress 2015 its Dell Cloud Manager solution, designed for the integration and management of multiple cloud heterogeneous environment by providing a unique overview on multiple interconnected systems. For the same trend, Dell introduced solutiosn for the next step in virtualization – End-to-End desktop virtualization.
Storage now also in cloud.
In NetApp's view, “enjoy IT!” can happen when two conditions are simultaneously met: 1. fast access to information, 2. maximum data safety. The presentations of NetApp at IT Congress 2015 have focused on these two elements. The performance of the storage equipment was proven through the presentation of its top line – FAS8000 combined with the SSD usage: All-Flash devices, hybrid devices, server acceleration. The High Availability solutions in different Metro Cluster locations were also mentioned, as well as the innovations delivered by the new software platform Clustered Data OnTAP for this type of scenario. The portfolio of data protection solutions has been increased with the acquisition of the SteelStore division from the leader of application acceleration solutions provider, Riverbed. By integrating this technology, NetApp can now provide an open, efficient and safe cloud backup solution. NetApp SteelStore can reduce with 90% the size of archived data and can reduce the time for cloud transport by 75%. This technology enables users to select easily their provider for cloud backup solutions, as it is interated with the 25 Cloud Service Providers, among which there are Amazon (Glacier and S3), Google Cloud, Rackspace, Verizon Terremark, IBM Softlayer, and even OpenStack platforms. It provides total flexibility, as user can migrate their data between cloud providers at any moment, in order to benefit lower storage costs. Data security has not been ignored, as NetApp SteelStore is FIPS 140-2 certified and data is encrypted by using the AES 2560-bit protocol.
Due to the explosion of the Internet of Things, the multitude of terminals connected to the network increases exponentially every year and security is an important aspect that must not be neglected. The implementation of the security policies is already a considerable challenge for IT administrators. As technologies advance the attacks increase in number and become more and more complex. We are talking about security as a continuous process and not as a single implementation of some rules at a certain moment in time. In the presentation dedicated to these technologies during the IT Congress, Cisco has spoken about the requirement for visibility, context and correlation of network intrusion events, so that we know what to defend. Moreover, the retrospective analysis is an essential factor in identifying new attacks and repairing affected terminals by a "zero day" attack. Besides, during IT Congress, there have been presentations of several interesting solutions for security such as the Dell Sonic-Wall solutions, the hardware solution for wireless communication security and for end-to-end protection of enterprise networks provided by Fortinet, or Veeam Availability Suit, a product that combines the production capabilities of data protection and virtualization from Veeam Backup & Replication and Veeam ON, presented by Veeam.
At the official opening session of IT Congress 2015, ETA2U announced the launching of a Business to Business (B2B) platform that stands out through its wide range of available products and services for the company's corporate customers. Through this portal, ETA2U aims to improve customer experience, visibility and interaction with different products and services acquired. In the same category of absolute news there is also the product of the collaboration between ETA2U and Veeam: online backup. The user, based on a monthly fee, receives backup for the most important information from the company. „Data is stored on the cloud infrastructure provided by ETA2U, encrypted with an access key available only for the customer. The service is structured on 3 levels, starting from the basic level where the customer is 100% in charge and ETA2U only provides capacity. On the 3rd level we also guarantee restore and we provide the customer, on site, with a previously agreed HW infrastructure, for a duration of 60 days from disaster occurence. It is, if you wish, a Casco insurance with a spare car.”, highlighted Mr. Stelian Câmpianu, ETA2U executive manager. ETA2U news came in a full pack at IT Congress 2015 if we also consider ZAX Solution. ZAX Solution is a complete management solution for production, stocks, supplying and sales, in real time. The core of ZAX solution is an MES type application – a control and monitoring system for the work in progress in a production unit. The application tracks all information related to production, receives current data from processing machines, sensors and employees, guides production, responds and reports necessary information in real time. By including the necessary SCM, SSM and ERP elements , ZAX Solution eliminates compatibility and communication problems that may occur. On the other hand, ZAX Solution works in as per standards established through ANSI/ISA 95, placing itself at the 4th level. This workflow integration demonstrates efficiency in the production planning and coordination manner, where you can trace both the required raw material and availability and delivery, including transit times and distribution time of the end product, all these movements being recorded. As a conclusion, ZAX Solution provides extended traceability and a module for production, cost and sales analysis that is both powerful and intuitive.
In conclusion, the seventh edition of IT Congress was a success. The participants have left with a better learned lesson. But maybe the most important aspect was the fact that the economy has started again to move, that the activity of the IT&C domain is on the right track. We are looking forward to the 2016 edition of IT Congress and the fulfillment of all the forecasts launched.