The 5th annual DatacenterDynamics (DCD>Dallas) conference was recently held in Dallas, TX,  on October 21-22, 2019. The Dallas-Fort Worth area is strategically chosen as the site of this event for its tech-enabled sectors, including defense, financial services, information technology, and transportation. As a widely-recognized industry event, this conference attracts senior-level decision-makers from colocation, cloud, and data center sectors to discuss how next-generation technologies and Infrastructure-as-a-Service will be designed, built and interconnected moving forward in this rapidly growing industry. 

This year’s event attracted over 500 attendees worldwide, with upwards of 50 speakers and 40 sponsors, delivering more than nine hours of dedicated networking time with industry peers. Attendees were also able to attend their pick of over 20 panel discussions, which covered topics such as 5G, AI (Artificial Intelligence), the edge, data centers and colocation. 

Each panel offered unique and astute insight from industry leaders across a variety of companies, including Microsoft, Schneider Electric, Uptime Institute, DC BLOX, JP Morgan Chase and Digital Realty. Here are a few key takeaways: 

  • Redundancy, 24/7 monitoring, expert staff and security are all key features needed for a successful data center operation. Redundancy is especially critical for avoiding costly periods of downtime.
  • In 2020, it is reported that there will be an estimated 21 billion connected devices.
  • Utilizing prefabricated data centers enables easier edge deployment, although wait time for a prefabricated data center deployment still takes roughly 14-16 weeks. 
  • AI (Artificial Intelligence) was the buzzword on several different panels:
    • AI was defined by Ben Stewart of Cyxtera as a “goal-based adaptive behavior.” He states, “People and computers must work together to act intelligently.”
    • With Machine Learning, as it relates to operations in the future, it’s key to start with the end in mind and ensure adequate time for process integration and training.
    • With AI, there will need to be 3 important positions created: Trainers – those who learn everything they can about AI as it stands currently; Explainers – those that tell other people how to use it effectively; and Sustainers – those who research the next big thing.
  • “If there’s one thing for certain in the industry we serve, it’s that there’s always the next thing to adjust to.” – Russell Lindsay, JP Morgan Chase

DCD>Dallas offered thought leadership, introduced cutting-edge ideas and delivered opportunities to gain new business prospects. The organizers, as usual, did an outstanding job of hosting an event that had the right people in the right place discussing the right topics. We look forward to attending future DatacenterDynamics events and furthering the digital transformation discussion.