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Cynthia Beath

Professor at University of Texas at Austin and Co-Author of Designed for Digital: How to Architect Your Business for Sustained Success 

Designed for Digital: How to Architect Your Business for Sustained Success 

Data center professionals are always on the forefront of technology advancement. Knowing how technology can transform a company and its customers is their strength. However, there’s a universal frustration among this group that stems from an inability to fully exploit digital capabilities to achieve business strategy. The problem is that most business leaders expect their existing organizational structure to implement strategy, unaware that structure inhibits, rather than enables, agility.

In this keynote based on the book “Designed for Digital: How to Architect Your Business for Sustained Success” – a Forbes Top 10 Tech Book for 2019 – co-author Cynthia Beath notes that many established companies have deployed such digital technologies as the cloud, mobile apps, the internet of things, and artificial intelligence. But few established companies are truly designed for digital.  That is, they cannot repeatedly and successfully offer new digital value propositions to their customers. Beath provides an essential guide for retooling organizations for digital success, and explains how effective business design enables a company to quickly pivot in response to new competitive threats and opportunities. Digital design, not strategy, is what separates winners from losers in the digital economy.

Latane Garetson

Head of Datacenter Physical Infrastructure at Dropbox

How Dropbox Reduced Costs Significantly by Optimizing its Data Center Footprint

In a bold move, Dropbox has migrated its data center operations from the cloud to its own custom infrastructure in colocation data centers, resulting in significant cost savings year over year. Latane Garetson, Head of Datacenter Physical Infrastructure at Dropbox, will discuss the strategy behind the shift in the data center footprint and how the company designed custom hardware and the software that ties it together in a single, highly distributed computing platform. He’ll explain how Dropbox optimized its West Coast strategy to align with these goals, share details around execution of the plan on a tight schedule, and discuss some of the challenges the company faced along the way.

Bill Kleyman

EVP of Digital Solutions at Switch

The State of the Data Center Report – 2020 Vision

At Data Center World 2020, we’ll be releasing our annual AFCOM State of the Data Center Report, and this year there will be some game-changing forecasts and data points that will be critical to the success of data center professionals. In addition to trending information on topics such as cloud computing, edge computing, and data center management, report author and Data Center World keynoter Bill Kleyman will discuss new issues such as the next generation workforce, the impact of co-location on operational expenses, and facilities needs for keeping up with workload demands.

Frank O'Brien

Historian at NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory

Apollo 11 Computing – Lessons for Today’s Data Centers

The first voyages to the moon stretched technology to the limits of the possible. In particular, the computer on-board the Apollo spacecraft was revolutionary and incorporated capabilities that are advanced even by today’s standards. NASA historian and author Frank O’Brien will present an overview of the computer and what made it able to navigate a spacecraft and its precious human cargo on a voyage from the Earth to the moon. With that background, he will review the critical lessons learned from Apollo, and how they apply to today’s data centers and computing infrastructure.

Duncan Wardle

Former Head of Innovation and Creativity at Disney and Founder of iD8 & innov8

Theory of Creativity: Embedding Innovation Into Everyone’s DNA

Too often, data center professionals rely on hard data to make decisions. Crunching numbers to support an outcome. But truly creative and innovative people learn when and how to trust their instinct. Duncan Wardle, former Head of Innovation & Creativity at the Walt Disney Company, believes that everyone is creative. And that the ability to think creatively is the one core human truth that will remain relevant in the brave new world of Artificial Intelligence.

But haven’t we all been told we’re not creative? So many times, in fact, that we end up believing it. But weren’t we all kids once?

Indeed, it is that childlike curiosity that led Einstein and Edison to discover major new theories and Disney and Jobs to create major new industries. But hasn’t our education and corporate structure – and our data – taught us that there is only one right answer? So much so, that we all stopped looking for the next one?

Now combine our lack of creativity and curiosity with the real world around us. Drones will most likely make fireworks irrelevant in less than a decade. 3D printing will most likely make the traditional tool industry obsolete in the next few years too.

So how will we survive if we keep doing "business as usual,” iterating to achieve quarterly results vs. innovating to survive? How can we embed a sustainable culture of innovation and creativity throughout our organizations, rather than leaving it to the few?

Leaning on 25 years with the Walt Disney Company, Wardle is now on a mission to prove that everyone is creative, by designing a tangible innovation tool kit that normal people can use to “Think Different;” to solve real challenges back in the marketplace.