IBM InterConnect: New Cloud Tech, Celebs Take the Stage

1 - IBM InterConnect: New Cloud Tech, Celebs Take the Stage
2 - Mario Armstrong
3 - Robert LeBlanc
4 - Airbus
5 - Hybrid Cloud Challenges
6 - Developer Productivity
7 - Citigroup
8 - Jerry Cuomo
9 - IBM, Citi Team for Developers
10 - Mike Rhodin
11 - Mayo Clinic
12 - Watson Zone on Bluemix
13 - IBM MobileFirst
14 - Hybrid Cloud Rankings
15 - Insight Economy
16 - IBM and Juniper Networks
17 - Shark Tank
18 - 'Dancing With the Stars'
19 - IBM's Most Prolific Woman Inventor
20 - Selfie Time
21 - Aerosmith
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IBM InterConnect: New Cloud Tech, Celebs Take the Stage

by Darryl K. Taft

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Mario Armstrong

IBM tapped Mario Armstrong, an Emmy Award-winning radio and television talk show host, focusing in the areas of technology and digital lifestyle. Armstrong appears as a digital lifestyle expert regularly on NBC's "TODAY" show.

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Robert LeBlanc

Robert LeBlanc kicked off the IBM InterConnect 2015 event with a discussion of the importance of hybrid cloud. He said IBM is working to "break down the barriers between clouds and on-premise IT systems, providing clients with control, visibility and security as they use the public clouds. Data location across an ever-growing number of clouds is an increasing concern for customers, and we are unveiling new application portability and developer services to make this easier to manage."

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LeBlanc talked with Pascal Eymery, vice president of strategy and business development at Airbus, about the aircraft maker's use of IBM's cloud technology. Eymery said Airbus uses IBM's cloud services for big data and analytics, including pulling information on more than 20,000 operational metrics for each flight.

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Hybrid Cloud Challenges

Although IBM is all about the cloud and sees hybrid cloud as where it's at, the company acknowledges challenges that need to be mastered, including handling business processes that span multiple environments.

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Developer Productivity

IBM introduced a number of new developer productivity tools and services, including a local flavor of its Bluemix PaaS, an API discovery solution known as API Harmony and a self-service security solution in the Secure Passport Gateway.

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Heather Cox, chief client experience, digital and marketing officer at Citi, came to the stage to shed light on the Citi Mobile Challenge, a global development competition where IBM will offer mentorship tutorials and access to Bluemix.

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Jerry Cuomo

Jerry Cuomo, IBM Fellow and vice president of WebSphere Strategy and WebSphere CTO, took the stage to give a futuristic look at what developers can do with tools like Bluemix and DevOps environments to create IoT apps, among other things.

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IBM, Citi Team for Developers

IBM's Cuomo and Citi's Cox discussed details of the Citi Mobile Challenge and IBM's involvement. Citi will host its Citi Mobile Challenge APIs on SoftLayer's global cloud infrastructure. And IBM will also award the "Most Innovative use of Bluemix" to entrepreneurs qualifying for the IBM Global Entrepreneur Cloud program.

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Mike Rhodin

Mike Rhodin, senior vice president of the IBM Watson Group, discussed how the Watson cognitive computing technology is helping transform industries and is gaining traction with developers, particularly Bluemix developers.

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Mayo Clinic

Dr. Steven Alberts, chairman of medical oncology at Mayo Clinic, talks about how Watson helps with clinical trials and matching patients to trials by extracting info from clinical records. Only about 5 percent of cancer patients ever enroll in a clinical trial, he said. Watson is helping to up those numbers.

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Watson Zone on Bluemix

At InterConnect 2015, IBM announced the launch of Watson Zone within Bluemix—a center of information and capabilities that brings together partners, customers, cognitive services from Watson, sample code and case studies to inspire and guide users.

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IBM MobileFirst

IBM touts leadership rankings for its MobileFirst platform. For instance, Gartner named IBM a leader in its 2014 Magic Quadrant for Mobile Application Development Platforms.

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Hybrid Cloud Rankings

IBM also touts leadership in the hybrid cloud space. The company reported revenue of $7 billion from cloud computing for 2014. IBM continues to build out its SoftLayer infrastructure. IBM execs said the cloud space is growing rapidly, up 60 percent last year.

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Insight Economy

Bob Picciano, senior vice president for IBM Analytics, discussed what he refers to as the "insight economy," where data is currency. "Data is the what, cloud is the how and engagement is the why" in this world, he said.

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IBM and Juniper Networks

IBM's Picciano and Ahmed Guetari, vice president of product management for Juniper Networks, discussed their companies' partnership to provide real-time network behavior insights to help customers dramatically improve mobile experiences.

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Shark Tank

The cast of "Shark Tank," sans Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, grilled entrepreneurs in IBM's entrepreneur program during a mini "Shark Tank" episode at InterConnect 2015.

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'Dancing With the Stars'

Shark Tanker Robert Herjavec, who will be a contestant on the next season of ABC's "Dancing With the Stars" competition starting next month, called his dance partner, Kym Johnson, to the stage to show off a bit of his dance skills.

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IBM's Most Prolific Woman Inventor

Lisa Seacat DeLuca, an IBM Master Inventor and IBM OmniChannel Mobile Technology Strategist, talks about her thirst for creating new things and how she made her first invention at the age of 8. In her relatively short time at IBM, DeLuca has delivered 375 inventions … and counting.

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Selfie Time

Hamming it up at the end of Day One of IBM InterConnect 2015, Mario Armstrong gets IBM cloud honcho Robert LeBlanc to let loose with a fun-loving selfie. Armstrong then proceeded on a selfie spree for the rest of the conference, including several Ellen-at-the-Oscars-like group selfies (complete with Selfie Stick in tow). Ellen's selfie broke Twitter records, but Armstrong's helped break a bit of IBM's stodgy, corporate image—if only for a minute or two.

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Aerosmith rocks out at IBM InterConnect 2015.

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