Data Center World: AFCOM News Snackables

Attendance was down significantly at Data Center World in Las Vegas, but last week's DataCenterDynamics show in New York had record attendance. What's up with that?

We'll have lots of coverage recapping Data Center World in coming days. But here are some DCW news "snackables" - easily-digested infonuggets from the show that may not merit entire stories, but I found interesting nonetheless.

Attendance is Down: There are between 700 and 800 attendees at this year's conference, according to AFCOM. That's a significant drop from last year's record attendance of more than 1,300 at the spring event (which typically draws a larger crowd than the fall DCW show). Both events were in Las Vegas. The lower turnout was not surprising, as AFCOM's research showed that many companies are slashing travel and training budgets as part of broader cost-cutting initiatives. Still, it was an interesting contrast to last week's DataCenterDynamics conference in New York, which drew more than 950 attendees, a slight increase from the 2008 DCD event in New York. The different format - DataCenterDynamics holds one-day shows in major data center markets - suggests that data center managers are willing to attend conferences that are close to home. Given the country's somber economic mood, Las Vegas may be a particularly hard sell for corporate travel approvals.

Cities and States Are Still Chasing Data Centers: This week I saw more economic development agencies with booths than I've ever seen at an industry expo, and many were from the Midwest, which is hungry for data centers. State-level economic development agencies from Iowa, Nebraska, Wyoming, North Dakota and Virginia all had booths, as did local development groups representing Omaha, southern Virginia and Temple, Texas. If you have a large project looking for a home, you have many friends in state capitols.

The InterCloud is Coming: Buzz alert: watch for the phrase "InterCloud" to grow in adoption. The phrase has been widely used by Cisco in describing its view of cloud computing, and was invoked in Tuesday's keynote by Sun Microsystems CTO Greg Papadopoulos. "There's not going to be a single network, but we will have this global network of clouds, segmented into subclouds and intraclouds," he said to accompany an "InterCloud" slide.

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