By now you've probably seen that Citrix has canceled their Synergy event for Europe for 2013. (It was going to be in London this year.) In a blog post announcing their new strategy, they described how they're going back to having many smaller, one-day regional events inside of a huge multi-day conference in London.
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That post drew over 100 comments, many of them critical of the decision. One common theme in the comments was that big events are better than small events because the big events pull all the big name experts and presenters. A single massive pan-European conference gets everybody who's anybody... but with all these little regional events, unless you happen to live there, which experts and community members are really going to show up?
So if you were considering attending Synergy and you're now without a conference on London, I'd like invite you to attend BriForum instead, in London, from 16-17 May 2013. BriForum is a highly technical, vendor neutral technical conference where all of the speakers are members of the community. BriForum covers the entire modern end user computing (EUC) space, which includes desktop virtualization, the consumerization of IT, and enterprise mobility management.
I started BriForum myself back in 2005. (Check out the blog post announcing it back in 2004.) In fact the name "BriForum" comes from the Citrix conference that ultimately became Synergy. Back then Citrix's conference was called iForum. I had been attending iForum for several years, and while it was a decent conference, I always had complaints that (1) the so-called "technical" sessions weren't actually that technical, and (2) since it was a vendor conference, all of the sessions were pro-Citrix and not too real world. (I spoke at iForum in 2003. In those days Citrix had to pre-approve all the slides. I remember getting into an argument with them over whether printing was broken in MetaFrame XP.)
So we created BriForum in 2005 to address this, and it's been going strong ever since. We hold BriForum in the US each summer in Chicago, and for the past few years we've also been hosting it in London in May. This year's London event is super solid. 2 days, 40 sessions, 28 speakers from around the world, hundreds of attendees, dozens of vendors in our DEMO Lab, and our Geek Out game show.. this is one awesome event!
Here's a brief look at some of the breakout sessions from BriForum 2013 London. Remember that we video record all of them, so attendees get online access to all the videos after the show. (Actually attendees of either BriForum—London or Chicago—get access to all the videos from both conferences of 2013.) The detailed agenda (with breakout rooms and the schedule) can be found here.
- Jeroen van de Kamp & Ruben Spruijt - An insider's guide to virtualization best practices and performance with Windows 8 and Server 2012, including VDI vs. SBC. Virtual Reality Check, 2013 Edition
- Jim Moyle & Aaron Parker - The future of desktop deployment, what's happening with MCS and PVS, plus an alternative
- Tim Mangan, et. al. - What's New in Microsoft App-V
- Rick Dehlinger - Going Deep: RDP8 & RemoteFX Session Connectivity
- Ruben Spruijt - VDI Smackdown 2013 Edition
- Thorsten Rood - Demystifying the Citrix Mobility Stack: What's going on behind the scenes
- Ment van der Plas - Implementing App-V 5: Lessons learned from a production rollout
- Jack Madden - Understanding enterprise mobility management for 2013: MAM, MDM, MIM, & why BYOD doesn't matter
- Adnan Hendricks - Smoothing the kinks! A seamless user experience with UE-V
- Benny Tritsch& Nico Luedemann - An expert guide to delivering seamless remote applications through Citrix and Microsoft technologies
- Vincent Branger & Pierre Jean - Building a private DaaS solution for 5000 users based on Citrix Excalibur
- Carl Walker - Automated migration of a user from physical to virtual, including data, using Microsoft System Center 2012 Configuration Manager
- Carl Webster - More things in Active Directory that can hurt your applications and desktop virtualization efforts…and how to fix them
- Carl Webster - Show and Tell: Webster's adventures into documenting with PowerShell
- Claudio Rodrigues - What still holds up as a Citrix best practice 12 years after MetaFrame tuning tips was released?
- Claudio Rodrigues - From zero to RDS 2012 hero: Learn about all the new features
- David Stafford - What got us here won't get us there: Today's IT needs to get with the times
- Jason Conger - Mobile Enterprise Applications: FUIT or ITFTW (IT For The Win)
- Jason Conger - Customize all the things! How to brand web and Windows UI
- Jeff Wouters - How to manage your environment with CIM and PowerShell instead of WMI
- Jim Moyle - How do the new storage improvements in vSphere 5.1 help your desktop virtualization project?
- Mike Nelson - A crash course in Hyper-V for VMware administrators
- Mike Nelson - Clash of the client-side hypervisors: Windows 8 Hyper-V, VMware Workstation, and Parallels Desktop
- Nicki Wruck - Licensing your Pandora's Box of mobile devices
- Pierre Marmignon & Shawn Bass - Best Practices in SBC/VDI Environments, Part 2: OS streaming and optimizations
- Ruben Spruijt & Peter Sterk - The bento box bliss of enterprise mobility: An MDM/MAM Smackdown
Finally, here's what past attendees have written on their evaluation forms about BriForum. We are 100% committed to BriForum and committed to London, so I hope to see you there!
"This is by far the best conference. There is really a sense of community cooperation and involvement... and we do not always need to agree. I love being in a session and the presenter is talking about a particular technology and the person next to me is the person wholly or partially responsible for creating the technology."
"BriForum is an awesome event, the content alone is worth going for even if I had to sleep in a tent outside."
"I like the community feel. It’s rare that you attend a conference where you have all access to the presenters during and after the conference hours to discuss information."
"Most enjoyable conference I've participated in. I'll definitely be back next year."
'"his was my first time and I must say it was the best technical conference I've ever attended in 15+ years of IT. I will be back even if my boss doesn't pay."
"So many good presentations full of great information covering an excellent range of topics. Wish I could attend again and see the ones I missed."
"I enjoyed bouncing ideas off of vendors and Brian Madden himself. It is nice to interact with other people who are dealing with the same potential problems we are."