Matthew Weinberger

September 7, 2011

2 Min Read
Dreamforce '11: Some Final Cloud Thoughts

Your humble correspondent is over his cold, sitting over a cup of coffee at home and trying to unwind after Salesforce.com‘s Dreamforce ’11. It was, without a doubt, the strangest cloud computing industry event I’ve ever covered. Here are some of my final stray observations from the Dreamforce ’11 show floor.

  • It’s not that Salesforce’s partners weren’t represented at Dreamforce ’11: In addition to the partner welcome keynote I attended on day one, there were multiple channel success workshops over the course of the event. But Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff’s keynotes and the overall focus of Dreamforce were squarely on customers and developers, not resellers and service providers. Rest assured, I’ll be attempting to track down Salesforce.com channel executives for more insights on the week’s big announcements.

  • There seemed to be a huge contingent of Japanese cloud pros and press present — Dreamforce was even offering interpretation services to its Japanese attendees, and Salesforce.com’s so-called campground on the show floor had an information desk just for that same contingent. It seems Salesforce.com is serious about expanding its market share in the Asia Pacific region, and systems integrators can potentially benefit greatly.

  • On the subject of the show floor, the Salesforce.com ISV solutions on display were impressive just in terms of the scope and scale. Just walking around, I saw solutions for a thousand different use cases. It speaks well for the company’s developer rapport that so many were showing off Salesforce.com-specific products.

  • As for why Dreamforce was so strange: We cover a lot of industry events. But this was the first time a company has prefaced a keynote with a man serenading the crowd with a ukelele. And the first time I’ve had the chance to take a picture with the company’s mascot, which is just its “No Software” logo with arms and logo. Also, I’m not used to having to navigate through a party involving Elvis impersonators on stilts, Marilyn Monroe and Jimi Hendrix look-alikes and Vegas showgirls just to get dinner.

All in all, Dreamforce ’11 was a worthy celebration of the cloud computing industry, with an obvious focus on Salesforce.com. But it would still have been nice to see some more partner engagement.

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