My Top 10 to Tune In To at Google Cloud Next 21

4 min read
Oct 11, 2021

Are you a developer wanting to integrate gamification for your colleagues’ reward strategy? Or a CEO focused on better protecting your e-commerce platforms? Maybe you’re simply interested in learning how leading organizations have approached digital transformation. If you’re like me, you like to keep up with technology trends that can best support your organization. Whatever your concerns or challenges, you won’t want to miss Google Cloud’s Next ’21 global digital event on October 12-14.

Google has assembled some of today’s top experts to discuss the industry’s next challenges and outlook. From security and infrastructure to databases and analytics, these sessions are jam-packed with news, insights, Q&As and live demos to answer your questions about all things digital. 

Here are my top 10 Next ’21 sessions, in no particular order, for this year’s event.

1. Opening keynote with Thomas Kurian, CEO Google Cloud

“TK” is a visionary leader with expertise in implementing cloud technologies across diverse and complex infrastructures. He’ll focus on how adding agility and scale can help organizations compete on the global stage. I’m particularly looking forward to seeing how he compares Google Cloud Platform (GCP) to other hyperscalers. Likewise, the importance of scale, global reach and technology in an increasingly commoditized marketplace will interest those wanting to leverage innovation as a differentiator.

2. 10 Billion games featuring

Speaking of scale, how do you scale your applications and data to handle millions of users and billions of games across the globe?  What innovative technologies are best? And how do you choose ecosystems and partners? and Google will share their take on solving these common challenges. I look forward to learning about creeping problems such as significant growth, performance ladders and security/stability holes and how to overcome them.  

3. Industry keynote with Renault

Imagine collecting data from every single vehicle on the road, in every weather condition, to create insights for the company, the vehicle and the driver. Add to this the impact on human safety and proactive maintenance. Suddenly, issues go from simple storage and security to how to mobilize, enrich and create insights with data. This session will help create strategies linked to the real world, affecting real people in dangerous and unforeseen situations.

4. Spotlight session on Papa John’s accelerated digital centre transformation

The pandemic significantly impacted the operating model of retail chains, especially in the food industry. Managers have had to use in-store safety procedures, make changes to product orders and delivery, and create engaging customer experiences to stay competitive. These digital changes required technology transformation. In this session, you’ll hear real stories from the frontlines. I look forward to hearing about their new ordering automation, preparation and delivery logistics and, of course, the impact to in-store slice sales!

5. All sessions relating to Vertex AI

Vertex artificial intelligence (AI) and associated tooling and technologies help build, deploy and scale machine learning (ML) models faster with pre-trained and custom tooling within a unified AI platform. While many organizations are implementing ML to create insights for specific use cases, the next step is caring for and feeding the models themselves. To do this, application development (AppDev) skills are applied on sample AppDev lifecycle processes and technologies to the ML algorithms themselves. This session will cover how data engineering and science organizations tackle this aspect of AI.

6. Pythian partner insights into trends and modernization

Wondering how 25 years of experience operating core application data stores attached to manufacturing, banking, retail and health care systems can revamp your business? Check out Pythian’s three digital transformation sessions: trends and best practices for turning your data into insights, unlocking that data value for SAP innovation and, finally, what you need to consider when migrating legacy databases to the cloud

7. Customer spotlight with Sanmina

Pythian’s very own Aric Bandy, EVP Cloud Operations, will hold a candid conversation with Manesh Patel, SVP & CIO of Samina about their digital transformation with Google Cloud. For Sanmina, a Fortune 500 company that designs and manufactures complex optical, electronic and mechanical products for some of the world’s most innovative companies, the “when” was “now.”  They’ll discuss the external factors affecting their shift to digital, their business and technological journey and partnerships they employed. Join this session for some tips, tricks and observations that can also guide you along your journey.

8. Google spotlight: The path to invisible security

Along with opportunities, the pandemic also revealed highly skilled bad actors that added new threats to infrastructures. The need to extend the protection of internal systems and employees—especially remote workers— customers and even customers’ customers is greater than ever.

Google Cloud’s Sunil Potti, Vice President and General Manager of Security and Phil Venables VP and Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) will discuss the state of the nation and how to embed frictionless security within applications and data to create an “invisible” implementation that doesn’t require complex integration of multiple third-party solutions. Considering the recent and considerable increase in cybersecurity spending, this session is a must-attend.

9. Google spotlight: Data cloud and the universal data platform

The data estate is evolving. Legacy environments, once uniform with a single vendor database sitting in a data center, now make up hundreds or thousands of applications across data centers, multiple clouds and third parties. 

The need to increase agility and reliability while lowering cost and risk continues to accelerate, yet data remains hard to access, manage and trust. How do we create insights with complex and fragmented data?

The answer is a universal data platform that includes technologies such as BigQuery, Spanner, Looker and Vertex AI. This will be an enlightening session detailing a new data strategy and roadmap. 

10. Accelerate SAP and Google Cloud innovation and value

I am hearing more and more about the depth and success of Google’s partnership with SAP. This is one session not to miss if you’re looking to unlock the value of SAP on GCP. I wonder if we’ll see some real brain-work on SAP data insights on BigQuery?

If you have extra time to squeeze them in, check out these bonus sessions:

Bonus: Google developer keynote and spotlight with Urs Hölzle

Meet Urs Hölzle, Google’s first VP of Engineering and currently VP of Technical Infrastructure of Google Cloud. Join this exciting session in which he’ll discuss application development and technology trends.

Pythian client highlights

We’re proud to share this special time with some of our clients who will be featured throughout the event: ATB, Zebra, OpenText, Papa John’s, CoreLogic, Sanmina and ANZ Bank.

There’s something for everyone at Google Cloud Next ’21. Register now to attend for free and connect with other like-minded professionals. We look forward to hearing about your experience and top picks.

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