The countdown to HostingCon Global 2016 in New Orleans is on with less than a week to go before the hosting and cloud industry touches down at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. Education is one of the defining aspects of the HostingCon conferences, and with so many excellent sessions and opportunities for learning we wanted to spend the next week offering a preview for our readers who are attending HostingCon.
In advance of the conference, The WHIR talked to several HostingCon speakers to give you a taste of some of the sessions and what you may want to mark on your schedules. To kick things off we talked to our colleague Cheryl Kemp, Director of Community and Conference Content for Penton Technology and HostingCon Chair, to give us a sense of what’s new this year at HostingCon.
HostingCon Global starts on Sunday with in-depth educational workshops starting at 1 p.m. and ending just in time for the second annual HostingCon Game Show from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. This year’s edition is hosted by cPanel chief business officer Aaron Phillips, and should be a fun way to start a busy week.
“I’m really excited about the program this year,” Cheryl says. “We’ve always had this big cloud ecosystem that includes a lot of infrastructure, and peripheral software providers, but this year we put a bigger focus on offering some education that was specific to them; we’re bringing in a lot of new speakers this year and people who are involved in different aspects of the industry.”
This year the educational sessions offer a lot more opportunities for networking, based on attendee feedback, Cheryl tells us.
“Past attendees gave us feedback that they loved the networking aspect of HostingCon, but that they wished there was some more structure around it,” she says.
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In order to deliver that this year HostingCon is offering speed roundtable sessions on Monday afternoon, something that was introduced last year. With the format, groups of attendees have 20 minutes of dedicated time with an expert in a small group setting before they move on to the next expert. The small group allows attendees to speak up and ask questions. “It’s a way to incorporate networking into the education sessions,” Cheryl says.
On Wednesday afternoon HostingCon will offer new industry workgroups that will allow attendees to work in small groups discussing industry trends or problems and present to the larger group at the end. These workshops will allow attendees to work through challenging topics together and get to know their peers in a productive format.
Asking Cheryl to pick her favorite HostingCon session is like asking a parent to pick their favorite child, but she did tell us that she is really looking forward to the session in the Exhibit Hall on Tuesday with Chris Tarbell, who prior to working as Managing Director of FTI Consulting Global Risk & Investigations Practice was an FBI special agent who took on Anonymous and Silk Road. It certainly sounds like a session that’s not-to-be-missed.
Don’t forget that you can add sessions to your schedule on the HostingCon website by selecting the star next to the session name.
What are some of the HostingCon sessions you are most looking foward to? Let us know in the comments and follow along this week as we offer more previews on educational sessions at HostingCon. Please email nicole.henderson [at] penton.com if you want to meet up with the WHIR at the conference. I love to connect with our readers!