StartupHPC16 Speakers … Oh My!

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StartupHPC16 Speakers, part 1

Gustafson, Grider, Goldfarb, Gilpin – Sanyal, Lawrence, Lyons and more … oh my!

Every year StartupHPC reminds me to never take anything – really anyone – for granted. Entering our third year, and as with each year before, our third meeting is another line-up of amazing, accomplished industry legends (and some on their way to becoming one). All of them giving us their time and genius who will as readily reveal their foibles and follies as the inspiration and successes. That is the reality of being a self-starter, entrepreneur, start-up or upstart or some ‘mash-up’ of all of the above that makes these individuals the “who” they are and that brought them to where they are today … that they bring to the Grand America on Monday, November 14th in Salt Lake City.

Spend the day with us … with our amazing StartupHPC16 speakers. If you’re looking for inspiration to get that idea off the ground, to do something completely different, start something new, freefall or just learn for its sake … join us … let’s StartupHPC together.

I am going to have to split this to a few blogs since we have such an incredible roster. You’ll love every one of them. We’re pretty proud they have honored us by supporting this program. StartupHPC16 speakers rock!

You’ll want to meet John Gustafson. He has his own Wikipedia page … so there’s that. Oh and there’s HIS law. And five decades of awards and honors not just of the highest order but multipliers for his multitude of contributions and breakthroughs. He is diverse. He’s worn about every hat imaginable from PI to CTO to CIO. Traversed academia, labs and industry with as much brand wear with the majors as created of his own design. And more to come … but that hardly brushes the surface! I’ve had the privilege of John’s time and talks before, the last was “The Tale of Two SIMDs” … beyond brilliant! And he’s John … enchanting, witty, dear … one of the most dynamic humans you might ever encounter … oh and genius there’s that too. You’ll see.

Then there’s the epitome of what a ‘role model’ is, for me anyway. Powerhouse Debra Goldfarb is an extraordinarily polished and accomplished professional and yet makes you feel at ease. She’s wonderfully ‘scary smart’ and makes you believe you are too. Her breakthrough role put IDC and HPC on the map – taking HPC beyond the borders of research and bringing IDC to the forefront of the other ‘research’ (eg. analyst community). Since then and to this day she’s held big roles leading the strategies of major brands. She just gets “it”. It’s her own accessibility that gives her access to top thinkers combined with her influence, perspective, intuition and a finger on the pulse of everything. If you want to get some deep insight into where we’re headed … when she talks, listen.

Gary Grider is of course known across the research labs from his own and multi-agency works and expertise in systems, networks, and storage. But what you want to know about this former Big Blue crossover is what he’s going to share around ‘emerging disruption’. Gary’s passion is conducting and sponsoring R&D, providing solutions to problems from guiding the US government in computer science investments to mentoring undergrads during the summer institute. If anyone might know about ‘disruptive” opportunities it’s Gary. And that’s the kind of insight that’s ‘gold’ for identifying new opportunities to put your own IP into action.

Andy Lawrence will share his founder journey. A programmer for nearly three decades the BYU alumnus is now CTO at xStream Technology. Andy is applying his expertise and IP toward the development of Didgets (short for Data Widgets) a new data management system to challenge the traditional hierarchical file systems, structures, metadata and index database models. Andy reveals experiences over the last five years after leaving Adaptive Computing and getting his own Utah-based company off the ground.

You’ll also be introduced to Sumit Sanyal one of the co-founders and CEO of Silicon Valley based (pronounced minds eye). I’ll admit I’m absolutely enchanted as much by the company as the souls that make the company. We met them earlier this year during the HPC Advisory Council’s Stanford Conference. have been on the leading edge of deep learning developing a deep neural network-training platform. They’ve been featured in Fortune, MIT Technology Review and then some. Not only will you hear from Sumit but I hope to solve a mystery akin to “A Miracle on 34th Street” – whether Kris Kringle sleeps with his beard over or under the covers … over of course, it’s the fresh air! Can’t wait!

Our seriously serielpreneur is DriveScale’s Tom Lyon. Tom got his start summer interning at Bell Labs … did a stint at Amdahl and hired on as employee number EIGHT at Sun Microsystems. I liken Sun to “the best corporate university I’ve ever had the privilege of working for”. Give a genius like Tom an inventor’s sandbox like Sun (was) and amazing things happen. From there he took the reigns as CTO for several large companies then Chief Scientist for a small company Cisco consumes for Tom’s IP their UCS server architecture. His talk, his journey, his wit … brilliant … as one would anticipate from Angelpreneur and Principal of Lyon-about LLC what I mean!

I am also eager to gain wisdom from Versity co-founder Bruce Gilpin on what it takes to get to the next level after spending his entire career taking companies there! He’s held every “C” title imaginable … Chairman and CEO … Chief of … finance, operations, strategy and corporate development as well as Founder, President and principal. His range of experience is extensive and impressive from mergers and acquisitions, developing new business services, advising and accelerating growth at venture capital firms, and public and private companies in technology, manufacturing and engineering services alike. Another can’t miss moment!

We’ve also invited Ubercloud for a return engagement. At the first meeting in NOLA we heard from Herr Gentsch who shared his journey as a serielpreneur, the dance that ultimately brought he and fellow co-founder Barrack Yenier together to launch Ubercloud. Fastforward two years later and the dynamic duo find themselves steeped in the rigor of VC funding … and all that entails … and they’re going to return to share the trials and triumphs as they themselves attempt to take it to the next level!

We’re also pleased to bring Meghan McClelland to the podium. She’s been with us from the start and has been a huge inspiration to this year’s sessions. How do we show our gratitude we bring her to the front of the room in her capacity as an Angel – ours for sure – perhaps others as well. Meghan will be revealing funding sources for HPC startups. Meghan is an investor with the Oregon Angel Fund (OAF) a community supported, investor-driven venture fund investing in promising startups and early-stage growth companies. While OAF focuses on Oregon and SW Washington, Meghan’s focus and influence extends across the most promising HPC startups. We’re very excited to have her time and to welcome her to the StartupHPC stage!

This journey of ours is ‘interesting’. For months we’ll brainstorm on potential topics to cover and experts to invite and every year somehow, magically, the result are a day long session with the industry’s most influential individuals who sacrifice their own busy SC schedules to spend their time with us before they make their way to the exhibitor floor for the gala opening of an SCyy and whatever heavy schedule their week entails from Monday onward.

StartupHPC has taught me a great deal of things about taking an idea and making it happen. Taking a company to the next level. But mostly what I keep learning and taking away is how fortunate we and our attendees really are. Any given week of SCyy is busy – with briefings, technical sessions and workshops – either attending or giving, the exhibit and all that entails and yet for each Monday of the last three years, even with all of that and more not even mentioned these astounding, accomplished individuals give us what is very precious and limited time to come share … not just their journey but reveal their humanity.

That is a gift not to be taken for granted! Join us!



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