IBM Think 2018: The Data + AI Inflection Point

IBM has consolidated its many customer/partner conferences (, …) into a single , now called “Think” – a once yearly, one-stop-shop for details on IBM products and strategies, customer/user strategies and implementation, product demonstrations, strategic planning (with access to industry/product experts) and hands-on laboratories. Now customers and partners need only take one trip each year to get access to IBM executives, product experts, deployment advisors, support personnel, planning personnel and more.

Further, a rich ecosystem of third party hardware and software suppliers, VARs, systems integrators and partners also attend Think, ready to share product information, strategic insights and implementation suggestions. Finally, the Think agenda is rich in educational opportunities, including dozens upon dozens of customer and vendor presentations designed to share real world experiences with interested attendees.

I approached Think with a goal of understanding “who” IBM really is. The opening keynote; a closer look at some of the technologies that I follow as well as some that I don’t regularly follow; my attendance at IBM’s 5 in 5 session; and off-the-record candid discussions with IBM customers and business partners all contributed to my new view. My view? That IBM is an ethical, forward thinking technology leader with a desire to have a strong positive moral impact on business and society.

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NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT Review.

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