If there's a silver lining to social distancing, it's the fact that it gives us a chance to catch up on content we otherwise might have missed. There are always too many sessions to attend at cloud conferences -- from service introductions and updates to best practices and use cases -- that could change the way you use cloud technologies. The global health crisis has made it unlikely any of us will gather for a conference in 2020. Given the dangers of COVID-19, it seems unwise for thousands of professionals from around the world to gather in a crowded convention center. While the in-person conference experience is off the table for the near future, there are plenty of resources still available to review from cloud conferences over the past year.
Data storage, processing and management are critical now as most activities worldwide move online during coronavirus lockdowns. Migration to the cloud was happening even before this crisis but now, organizations are depending on cloud services more than ever. Whether it is working from home or streaming videos from Netflix, these services are underpinned by software and hardware on the cloud. Although there may be a reduction of cloud usage as airlines and others see business dwindle, the dominant theme in these times is digitalization. The best-known cloud infrastructure providers are Amazon, Google and Microsoft.
SAPPHIRE NOW took place on June 5-7 in Orlando with impressive numbers: more than 21,000 attendees from 102 different countries and 1,275 lectures, which was the SAP's main global event at the year. It was 3 days of much learning, where I had an opportunity to attend lectures, several demonstrations of products and applications, and meet interesting people. At the opening keynote of the event, called "The Next Move", SAP CEO Bill McDermott made the main announcements: the launch of SAP C/4 Hana and the SAP HANA Data Management Suite, the importance of SAP Leonardo, and also defined and listed what he considered the 10 main characteristics of an intelligent enterprise. McDermott commented on the importance of artificial intelligence to drive economic growth through the use of machines and the judgment of humans. "Great moments are born from great opportunities."