As per the last two years that I had the privilege of being allowed to go to the Indian Development Center, it was so much fun. This year however felt different. More friendly. The people in the IDC seem to be much more comfortable than they ever were with us and that sparks some interesting discussions, and besides that it is the ground for social interaction as well, which to me personally is very important. The Sunday evening welcome reception is always a good precursor for the coming week and as usual the food and service in The Leela Palace was magnificent.
On Monday morning we were bombarded with Road Maps. We made it especially hard for the Product ánd Engineering Managers this time because we decided to give them 20 to 30 minutes to present on their roadmaps. This is not just under NDA, but the teams would prefer we not talk about it because of the volatile nature of the road maps, so I’m not going to talk about it more than what’s available on the website.
Monday afternoon we were in for a Big Treat. We got an exclusive insight in what the devs came up with at their most recent HackFests. A HackFest is where they lock up (voluntarily!!) a lot of the engineers together in a room and have them come up with crazy ideas and proof of concepts. I’m not at liberty to disclose anything we saw but I will tell you one thing: Alexa eat your heart out.
Tuesday was the day where most of the secure endpoint management & iPrint products got demoed. A really cool in house developed card reading solution that allows for walk-up printing! Now this is outside of my professional area of interest but I still really enjoyed seeing all the new developments. The new capabilities demonstrated for Mobile Device Management in particular were impressive.
On Wednesday we went on an outing; Visit silk shops, toy stores, temples and it ended with a visit to what we westerners would call a “Megachurch”; A Hare Krishna temple. It was an odd experience but I enjoyed it.
Thursday was about Files, Files, Files and how you access them. Key focus areas: Security and usability ánd how to cloudify your OES backend storage. We also got to voice our (I can speak for Johnnie Odom here) concern that to us, OES is the core of our entire infrastructure, just like Windows is for Windows-places. And we were relieved by the answers we got. After not getting for years what we asked for, also because of the gargantuan task of moving OES to the SLE12 codebase in combination with eDirectory 9, we have confidence that at least some of our main points of concern will be addressed in the very near future (NetStorage, DNS/DHCP are two main points but also iManager).
Friday was “my day”: Security, identity, access! We started off with what can only be described as a complete frenzy of presentations. Some presenters didn’t even get five minutes to show us what they are working on. eDirectory in the cloud? Spinning up IDM and spinning down IDM based on necessity? Incredible! We also got a taste of the new iManager interface, which looks amazing. There was also critique, as iManager has never been able to replace ConsoleOne in some respects (the object view), but I think we got that message across.
The entire week was exhilarating. I’m very much looking forward to seeing our IDC-friends again.