Here at Extreme Networks we are fortunate to be in Silicon Valley, a part of the world blessed not only by tremendous technology and cultural diversity, but also blessed by nature with stunning mountains and redwood forests ringing the valley. These mountains also make for good times on motorcycles, one of the “extreme” pursuits I enjoy outside of Extreme Networks.
A while back I had a flash of insight, which is rare as I am not normally prone to such things. A friend was relatively new to motorcycles and was spending a great deal of time with books and videos and other such instructional aids. Despite this, he was still having trouble with tight uphill turns. We got together and I watched what he was doing and as it turned out some relatively minor changes in form were all he needed and suddenly he had a night and day type of transformation in his confidence when facing the bugbear of tight uphill turns.
That flash of insight is that regardless of the internet and other resources you might have at your command, there is no substitute for face time with folks who have been there and done that.
That is why I was excited to hear from our guys in the field about their America’s Channel Bootcamp in Greenville, South Carolina, out on the East Coast. Instead of just emailing PowerPoints and PDFs or having webinars, Rob Karnbach got together with one of our distributors, Catalyst Telecom, and put together a five day TOI session for about 20 different solution providers.
The session broke down to four days of classroom instruction covering the latest and greatest. The industry moves quickly and we have introduced a number of new products and features over the past few years (BlackDiamond X8, Summit X670, Summit X440 & X430, SDN Support, AVB, Enhanced Physec Support and so on), so it was an excellent opportunity to get everyone up to speed on the new stuff as well as review traditional best practices.
Just like the new rider up in the hills, the folks in the class room and in the hands-on lab got more than just watching internet videos and staring at *.pptx decks, they also got to talk to peers from other solution providers as well as some of our more experienced SEs. It is amazing how sometimes just a couple minutes of Q&A can be worth weeks of email and solo study, particularly when you need to clear up some things that just are not clicking.
Anyway, it was great to get together with the solution providers who are the face of Extreme Networks in the field and it was great to see the positive reactions to the latest versions of ExtremeXOS and some of the new switches like the Summit X430.
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