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HPE RUGs – June Update

NonStop Insider


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N2TUG, Grapevine Texas

When it comes to Regional User Group (RUG) meetings in the U.S. none seems to put on a show that comes anywhere close to equaling what the N2TUG committee manages to do – and as a community we owe a huge debt of gratitude to HPE’s Diane Funkhouser and XID’s Bill Honaker. Together they work tirelessly each year to pull together an opportunity for the NonStop community to hear a series of presentations build around a common theme and this year, it was DevOps. When it came time to present most vendors in one way or the other found opportunities to work into their presentations some reference to DevOps.

As for opportunities to network, the venue, Gaylord Texan Resort & Convention Center,  provided more than enough space for many attendees to retreat for those private one-on-one conversations for which this event is well known.

It was reassuring for many to hear from OmniPayments about the successful modernization project they completed at JCPenney while JCPenney were in the audience! As for the keynote presentation the N2TUG attendees were treated to an update from ATC engineer, Meg Watson, who kicked off her presentation by noting how the renewed emphasis on NonStop applications and developing them quickly, is being driven by “NonStop on the backend of (the pace) of change (that) we see on the front-end driven by (our) smart phones!”

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One of the highlights just had to be Master Technologist at HPE, Justin Simonds’ presentation on AI and the impact AI was having on projects within HPE. Walking the audience through all the different tests that have been performed of late that have involved AI and Deep Learning – from playing chess, to GO to performing in Jeopardy on through to playing the most difficult game of all, Texas Hold ‘em – Simonds gave everyone insights into where HPE and supercomputing was headed.

Why is Texas Hold ‘em difficult? It introduces AI to the concepts of bluffing and after losing badly first time up when it came to a repeat performance, the AI software from Carnegie Mellon University won easily! Yes, they apparently taught the computer how to bluff! On the subject of DevOps, Simonds had earlier said in an email exchange that not only is DevOps part of the larger Agile trend in development, “If you add DevOps to your LinkedIn profile – how many additional ‘looks’ will you get?”

This left many of us wondering whether the next challenge for AI and supercomputers / robots would be DevOps and whether they too would figure out that their prospects improved greatly if they created LinkedIn profiles featuring DevOps skills!

HPE Discover 2019

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The biggest event of the year for HPE is most definitely its major big-tent marketing event, HPE Discover,  held each year in Las Vegas. At this time of year, it’s hot outside so spending three days in an air-conditioned venue isn’t hard to take. Having witness many HPE Discover events for nearly a decade, this one pulled a bigger audience than I can recall seeing since the split between HP Inc. and HPE. When it came time for HPE CEO Antonio Neri to give his keynote presentation, ushers at the entrance to the auditorium were turning away HPE staff in order to ensure there were enough seats for the rest of the community. It was a packed house.

Highlights? Starting off his two hour presentation Neri set a new tone for HPE by kicking off with an update on the culture of HPE. This was all about the people working for HPE – their individual jobs but also what they do outside the office with respect to their participation and help within the respective communities. Diversity was celebrated as was geographical spread – all at a time when IT in general is being put under the microscope as parties look at how well big IT vendors reflect society as a whole. And this was just the first fifteen minutes, but it set the tone for all that followed – it’s not so much about the boxes as it is about the people. Yes, Neri was firmly behind the message: We advance the way people live and work (with his emphasis clearly on the way we live).

All of which to say that HPE today is a completely different company than it was say two or three years ago and there was a palpable buzz (of excitement) evident everywhere you turned. Does this mean HPE is completely out of the woods and that its product portfolio is set to dominate IT spending for years to come? Well not so fast – there are headwinds as it moves away from high volume / low margin sales to focus solely on products and services for enterprises in need of addressing complexity. But at least, for the NonStop community, this was a big step in the right direction and augurs well for the future of not only HPE but NonStop as well!

For all other upcoming events, take a look at the following and yes, yet again, if you have an event planned that isn’t included in the list below, make sure you let us know in time for the next issue of NonStop Insider –



KNUG NonStop Technology Day, Seoul   7/16

TNUG NonStop Technology Day, Taipei  7/19



Partner Symposium                                      9/9 – 9/11

ATUG (Atlanta)                                             9/18

CTUG (Toronto)                                            9/25 – 9/26



DUST                                                              10/8



NonStop TBC (San Francisco)                       11/3 – 11/6



BITUG (Barclays Bank offices in London)          12/3