An inside look at what to expect at VMworld 2013

VMware's CMO talks to InfoWorld about the 10th anniversary of the world's largest virtualization trade show

It's hard to believe that in less than one week, nearly 22,000 fellow virtualization enthusiasts will descend upon the streets of San Francisco and prepare to storm the Moscone Center in anticipation of the world's largest virtualization trade show: VMworld 2013, which also happens to be in its 10th year.

VMworld officially kicks off on Aug. 25, and the virtualization party continues all the way through until Aug. 29. I can tell you in advance there will be no rest for the wicked. VMworld officials plan on going all out this year to celebrate the show's 10th anniversary, and they've already stated they will do their part to make this year's event a memorable one for all attendees who are able to make the journey.

[ Also on InfoWorld: 5 new vendors to watch at VMworld 2013 | SwiftStack announces software-defined storage for OpenStack | Track the latest trends in virtualization in InfoWorld's Virtualization Report newsletter. ]

What's known about the show already is that VMworld 2013 will feature more than 300 unique breakout sessions from VMware, as well as its community of partners and customers, and more than 250 sponsors and exhibitors in attendance will show off their latest wares in the expo hall.

In an attempt to dig a little deeper and find out more information about this year's show, InfoWorld's Virtualization Report asked Robin Matlock, VMware's acting chief marketing officer, to provide some additional insight and advice to attendees ahead of the show.

InfoWorld: VMworld 2013 has a tagline of "Defy Convention," what exactly do you mean by this? What are you going for?

Robin Matlock: This year, VMworld is all about encouraging the greater industry to think differently and drive, yet again, another massive wave of innovation. Innovation and challenging the status quo is part of VMware's heritage, and a big part of what IT needs to stay ahead of business demands. Ultimately, it's an opportunity for the industry to come together and defy convention by leaving the pitfalls of legacy computing behind us.

InfoWorld: VMworld is celebrating its 10th anniversary as a leading, global virtualization event. Are you planning anything special for this show?

Matlock: With this being our 10th anniversary of VMworld, we have set the bar pretty high to ensure this year's conference is special. In addition to the fantastic educational and networking opportunities that our attendees have come to expect, this year we will also be celebrating this milestone with a look back at some of the great moments from past VMworlds.

The event has evolved to be a more targeted, productive experience for attendees. This year we are working hard to connect the activities at VMworld to help people find content that is tailored to their specific needs. For example, if someone is interested in Network Virtualization we want to help them find the right session, lab and booth demos to get the tools and the information they need to go home and start having a real impact on their IT organizations. We make a strong effort to guide our attendees to the right areas so they can learn and become educated on what they came to see.

Virtualization has evolved considerably over those 10 years and is continuing to transform to include all parts of the data center like storage and networking. From the mass adoption of VMware's first server virtualization product to the evolution of machine-level virtualization products and finally the reality of the software-defined data center, the industry has come a long way. The journey has just started. We're excited to be such an integral part of the history of virtualization, and we're equally thrilled to be a leading voice on where the technology is headed.

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