Aruba atmosphere was my first conference and was a great experience over all, Best part being I was able to see lot of the Wi-Fi guys in person. Now I can add face behind a lot of twitter handles. I still missed meeting few of them as this place was huge and could not track all of them down.
The Facility -Gaylord Opryland Resort & Convention Center was huge on the first day I ended up walking almost 17,000 steps (this is without me hitting the gym) felt like one of those long site survey days.
Key note: Cloud based solution (Aruba Central), AI, Machine learning and intelligence at the end.
I would encourage you to tune in to the Recording below
I could not get into any training but there were bunch of great session to choose from, most of them Aruba products related and few of them about Wi-Fi in general.
- 802.11ax – this is a great new technology that lot of people have be looking into it, as goal of 802.11ax is to increase the aggregate throughput, it has borrowed some of the features from 802.11 ah and few of the main features that have been added are
- MU-MIMO (Uplink and downlink both)
- 8 Streams
- BSS coloring
Same content was delivered during WLPC conference a week before for which recording is available. Thanks to Keith Parsons
2. Painting the Spectrum – If Bob Ross was a RF Architect – This was a great session where Blake uses analogy of a Bob Ross on how he uses different colors and brushes to get the perfect picture same way a WLAN engineer uses a his channels, power and antennas to get a perfect design.
Same content was delivered during WLPC conference a week before for which recording is available.
3. Compensation – Does not matter which field you are in everyone likes to see compensation numbers, Keith and his team did a great job collecting over 1000 surveys around the world WLAN engineers and come up with a compensation excel sheet, which tell you based on your experience how much money you should be making.
Most staggering fact was when you stay in a hotel 15 days a month your salary increases by 44% .It’s a choice you can make if you are single or have grownup kids. People with young families this would be tough to do.
If you really want to see what other are making as per the Survey Keith did a great job putting this together and kudos to all the other guys who participated in the survey.
4. Tech field day @ ATM17 this was a great session where the 8 gurus of the Wi-Fi industry discussed the impact of Reliable Networks , Securing Wireless and Machine learning that was announced during the key note.
Machine learning was the most interesting topic for me as lot of people were seeing it as a threat to their jobs, does it really means this technology can replace the wireless engineer, I see it as a tool to help engineers and not replace them but its vendors responsibility to market it properly. So i hope to see it come out as here is a feature that will help you optimize network and not here is Wi-Fi with a engineer in a box.
- Few Aruba specific Sessions – Introducing Aruba 8.0
- The innovation center had whole bunch of demos from Aruba in various industries and some other partners like Ekahau, CWNP, Ventev and few more.
Over all it was a great conference to be part of as there was so many Wi-Fi discussions all around. Food was great , the hotel was great and we had great weather. If I really had to be picky I can say was little over whelming as was my first time and I did not know many people. But next time this won’t be an issue as I made few friends this time.
I highly recommend attending WLPC if you can as there are limited seats and its vendor neutral. I am still waiting for my chance to be part of this great conference.