EMC Opens Their Eyes and Has a Vision


Went to the EMC Federal Forum yesterday here in Washington, DC.  I enjoy this event, if for no other reason than it is one of the few times a year that EMC people actually come to my town.  They’ve realized that it is easier to just talk to me than to try and avoid me, so it is now a truly fun and informative event.

The value of the breakouts were a mixed bag.  Many were similar to sessions from EMC World, which is perfect for this event as many users in the Federal Government could not make the trip to Orlando.  I did attend EMC World, so a lot of things weren’t exactly new.  I did Tweet some updates, and you can search #emcff for more tweets.  I decided to blog the keynote as it was focused on the EMC Strategy and Vision.

As you may recall, Vision was a problem at EMC World this year.  No Vision was really presented.  It was a nice description of things now, but Vision was lacking.  Rick Devenuti, the Sr. VP and COO of the CMA Division, has been tasked with sharing the “Vision” at this event.

I’m typed some notes as Rick talked and I have provided those at the bottom of the post.  Due to the content of the keynote, I’m providing a summary as well.  Keep in mind that this was a U.S. Federal Forum, so that market was the focus.

The Bottom Line

To be honest, not much was new to start.  The slides and content weren’t that different, but Rick is a pretty good speaker and has better timing with his jokes than Mark.  A lot of the content was presented in a little more detail than before.  It appears that they have refined the thoughts into something more like a Vision.  In fact, Rick had a few slides that built up into this picture, which was an actual Vision!!!

EMC's Vision of the Cloud

Let me break down the highlights.  In the context of managing all content and information everywhere, Master Content Management (aka SkyNet), there are two alternatives for your infrastructure…

  1. Data Centers: Trusted, Controlled, Reliable, and Secure.
  2. Cloud Computing: Dynamic, Efficient, On-Demand, and Flexible

Now Virtualize your Data Center and you can build an internal cloud that has many of the benefits of traditional cloud computing with the security of having things in-house and under your control. Then deploy applications in a Private Cloud that interacts with information and systems residing on either internal or external clouds.  The clients for the applications interact and use everything, completely ignorant of where things are located.  Sensitive information may reside on the Internal system while other information and content may reside externally.  It is up to the organization on where it should be place.

The key is that the users are just working and oblivious to all of this.  Meanwhile IT is more responsive as they have greater flexibility on deploying and managing applications and information.

Now extends this to ECM.  I have a repository with HR and financial data stored on the internal cloud.  I also have repositories with client workspaces on the external cloud, sharing access with my partners and clients.  To me, I’m just going to one place to access all of my data.  The front-end application is a federated application that coordinates my interactions with the appropriate content.

The best part is that I, as a user, no longer know, or care, where that content is located or what system is holding it.  I have one starting point for all my content.  Underneath it may be Documentum or Open Text.  It doesn’t matter.  I’m getting my work done.

CMIS makes this even easier because it eliminates the need for all the different adapters to the different repositories.  The application, possibly a CEVA, just focuses on solving the business problem.

The Bottom Line….

I just talked about one of the biggest buzz words around, Cloud Computing.  The difference yesterday was that Cloud Computing was a means to an end.  It wasn’t the end unto itself.  Master Content Management seems to be the end.

This was a great presentation and I look forward to hearing more on it later.  I’m hoping to see more on this Vision in a White Paper and in some EMC blogs.  I’d love to hear Chuck Hollis’ thoughts on this as he seems to have very well thought-out opinions on using the Cloud.

The Raw Notes

  • EMC is trying to provide Efficiency, Choice, Control, and Value
  • There strategy is around Information Infrastructure and Virtual Infrastructure
  • Information Architecture consists of four components: Storage, Protect (RSA), Virtualize & Automate (VMWare), and Intelligence (CMA/Documentum/SourceOne)
  • Just dived into the slides from Mark Lewis’s keynote from EMC World.  The difference is that it is definitely 5 and not 6.  They are, to recap:
    • Information Governance (Compliance – SourceOne)
    • Information Centric Applications (Composition – xCP)
    • Information Connectivity (Customer Centricity)
    • Information Access (Collaboration)
    • Information and Infrastructure (Cloud)
  • Master Content Management appears again, but with a few more words.  They are talking about centrally managing content throughout the Enterprise, even if it isn’t in the same repository.
  • The convergence of Virtualization and Federation in the Cloud, be it private, external, or both.
  • Four cloud layers, Applications, Environments, Services, and Infrastructure.  You can use the cloud for some or all four.