LinuxWorld 2008 features cloud, virtualization topics

This year's LinuxWorld Conference & Expo and Next Generation Data Center show will start Aug. 4 in San Francisco with 200 exhibitors.

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Ten thousand conference goers are expected to converge on San Francisco shortly for the 11th annual LinuxWorld Conference & Expo and the second annual Next Generation Data Center (NGDC) conferences. The concurrent and overlapping three-day events will kick off Monday, Aug. 4, at the Moscone Center.

For the first time, the conferences will include an alternative one-day Executive Summit, giving IT professionals an opportunity to discuss case studies on disruptive technologies such as virtualization and cloud computing and to network with one another, while breaking for the regular keynote sessions. The Summit takes place on Tuesday.

LinuxWorld and NGDC also include seven keynote addresses by top industry leaders and a combined total of more than 200 workshops, according to Melinda Kendall, the vice president and general manager of IDG, the conference organizer. The two conferences include the same keynotes but offer different workshops, with LinuxWorld sessions addressing the traditional core audience of developers and smaller companies and the NGDC workshops targeting large data centers and sometimes a broader technology focus, she said. Both events will address power and efficiency issues, she added.

The keynote addresses include Jeffrey Birnbaum, the managing director and chief technology architect at New York -based Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc., who will discuss stateless computing; Randall Spratt, the executive vice president and chief information officer at San Francisco-based McKesson Corp., who will focus on IT and health care; Rajiv Ramaswami, the vice president and general manager at San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco Systems Inc., who will discuss data center networking; Redwood Shores, Calif.-based Oracle Corp. executives Edward Screven, a chief corporate architect, and Mark Sunday, the CIO and senior vice president, who will focus on delivering business value; Bob Sutor, vice president of open source and standards at Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM Corp., who will give an overview of IBM's next decade; Simon Crosby, the chief technology officer at Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.-based Citrix Systems Inc., who will discuss technology change in data centers, and Kevin Clark, the director of IT operations with San Francisco-based Lucasfilm Ltd., who will discuss the use of Linux in filmmaking.

"We're continuing to feature CIO keynotes, with two this year, because data center professionals want to know what's cool today," Kendall said.

In addition, the conference will include four special presentations, including those from Sebastian Thrun, the director of the Stanford Artificial Intelligence Lab, on robotics and cars; a Golden Penguin Bowl competition; a green computing panel discussion moderated by Dan Tennant of Computerworld, and a panel discussion moderated by Jim Zemlin, the executive director of the Linux Foundation, on Linux contributions to servers, desktops and mobile computing.

The conferences also will include its first Installfest, in which volunteers will tune up used computers for donation to California schools; the LinuxGarage, featuring new and future products with embedded Linux, and the Dice Technology & Engineering Career Fair.

Community Days have been scheduled for PostgreSQL on Tuesday, openSUSE on Wednesday and Ubuntu on Thursday.

Finally, there will be more than 200 exhibitors, with special activities such as the Linux Desktop Shootout sponsored by Canonical Ltd., the Open Solutions Alliance Showcase, which will demonstrate how vendors collaborate to improve interoperability, an AppZone focusing on applications, a ".org Pavilion" for trying free software and a blade pavilion with six different vendors.

Let us know what you think about the story; email  Pam Derringer, News Writer.

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