Why Lee Technologies on Tap event works, a declaration of independence from typical data center events

Anyone who has gone to three or more data center events finds the repetition of content numbing and boring.  Your first event is exciting as you learn new things, but when you go to the next you look for what you missed, then your third you look for what is new and you realize over 90% of what is presented is regurgitated content.

Why?  Because most of the content is being presented by speakers and vendors as their standard slides as they go from one data center event to the next.

The vendors pay money for the event, you pay money to go to the event, but do these people get good value for the taxes and time they pay?  No, but what choice do they have?

In the end you go to meet the other people there. 

As today is the 4th of July, a declaration of independence theme made sense.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.


Above is the infamous presentation of the declaration of independence.  Thomas Jefferson gets much of the credit of the work along with John Adams and Benjamin Franklin.  The five prominent figures depicted are, from left to right, John Adams, Roger Sherman, Robert Livingston, Thomas Jefferson, and Benjamin Franklin.

As there were a bunch of radical thinkers challenging the rule of British Empire.  There a few rethinking how data center executives meet and discuss ideas.  What happens if you focus on freedom of discussion and remove the taxes paid by vendors and attendees? 

What happens if you attended an event where the main reason you go is to meet the people there and talk about anything you want?  You have independence to talk to anyone you want about anything you want.

Steve Manos has been doing this with Lee Technologies on Tap.  He has been growing attendance month to month by 58% and has some of top data center executives in the Chicago area attending.

When people say this.

Other favorite comments by participants that night:

“This is insane”

“Thank God you brought name tags”

“Who ISN’T here?”

“If this gets any bigger, you are going to have to rent our Wrigley Field”

And Steve adds this.

..but the most self gratifying was hearing that everyone thought it brought an incredible amount of value to them and that they were very appreciate to be invited to participate.

And you see this.






You see that focusing on end users freedom to discuss ideas unleashes energy that is constrained by the current data center event model.  The social mixers at typical data center events are hosted in the exhibit area.  That isn't free form thinking, it is traffic management that justifies the booth fees paid.

Atlanta Lee Technologies on Tap had its first event  on June 17 as well.

I was talking to Lee Kirby who is on the left in the last picture above and we are thinking how Lee Technologies on Tap should be hosted in the SF bay area.

The idea of data center information exchange independent from the data center events is growing.  And, the ideas being exchanged and connections being made have huge value to the attendees.

The 4th of July is celebrated as a day of independence once a year.  Lee Technologies on Tap provides a venue where the lucky few who get to attend will be able to celebrate independent data center thinking once a month.

This makes so much more sense than another specification or data center standard.

Breaking down the silos. getting people discussing ideas. 

Happy 4th of July.  Celebrate Independence Day!

BTW, look at these pictures again when is the last time you saw this many data center people smiling. :-)