Saturday, August 30, 2008

4th Annual Event Processing Symposium

The schedule for the 4th Annual Event Processing Symposium has been posted.

Opher was kind enough to invite me to participate on the various panels in order to give the perspective from a financial services end-user. Unfortunately, I had to decline, as I can not really miss an entire week of work at this point (the first two days of the week will be spent at the Gartner Event Processing Summit, where unfortunately, I will not have the pleasure of ogling Tim Bass's beautiful wife).

I am disappointed to see that the customer rep from Financial services is Ian Koenig, formerly of Thomson Financial. There are a few factors that contribute to this disappointment:

1) Thomson is a vendor. It's not really a customer. It supplies products to trading firms like mine.

2) If I remember last year's Gartner Summit, Ian's forte was streaming news, not trading. (I hope that Brian Theodore might be able to clarify this a bit). Streaming news, while possibly useful in automated trader, is not something that is truly representative of the needs of a trading firm.

3) As it states on the programme, Ian is now an independent consultant. This means that, to me, he is not a true employee of the financial services industry. I would feel the same way if someone from Accenture or Sunguard Consulting marketed themselves as being an employee of the financial services industry .... but this is certainly my own feeling ... your mileage may vary.

(As an aside: When my old boss was dismissed from my firm last year, he continued to speak at conferences under the guise of still being a member of my company. I notice that this is a trend amongst people who have been recently dismissed from their financial services firms ... even on LinkedIn, people's profile still indicate that they are a member of a firm that they have been separated from.)

I get a lot of calls, asking me to speak at conferences, be on panels, be quoted for interviews, etc. I am happy to do so under various conditions. First, the appearance has to be approved by the senior communications people at my firm ... something that they have graciously granted so far. Second, I cannot reveal any of our "secret sauce".

I have a feeling that one of the reasons that Opher had to "fall back" on Ian is because most financial services firms are not as permissive as mine. I know most of the people involved in CEP on Wall Street, and I am sure that most of their firms would be dead set against them speaking at a public conference and blogging. We are a fairly secretive group, although in reality, all of us know what the others are currently working on. There are usually only two degrees of separation between any two people on Wall Street. That's why I am a bit puzzled as to why I seem to be the only customer from financial services who is willing to talk openly about CEP, and how excited we are to embrace the technology in our company.

On another note about the EPTS conference, the panel discussion titled "Is event processing a hype or the best invention since sliced bread ? Event processing market from business perspective" is chocked full of vendors. What is the blazes are vendors doing on this panel? Tim Bass ... where are you when we need you !

On a positive slant, there is a presentation by a Venture Capitalist on why he decided to stake some $$$ into a CEP company. That talk looks like it is worth the price of admission.

©2008 Marc Adler - All Rights Reserved.
All opinions here are personal, and have no relation to my employer.


Anonymous said...

Presentation by a venture capitalist on why he invested in a CEP company? Are you referring to the Australian VC who invested in EventZero? According to the press release, this is the VC firm's website:

They have a 1-page website with just contact information. Are you really sure it's worth the price of admission?!?

Opher Etzion said...

Hi Marc. Thanks for the publicity for the event processing symposium - it is nearly fully booked, and will be well attended by all parts of the community.

Admission is free, however it is by invitation only, with limited number of slots, and priority to EPTS members (although we'll have also some guests).

I indeed asked you to participate in the customers panel, and you provided a negative answer. I'll not go into reasons why a certain person is invited, but IMHO the people on the panels are qualified to do it.

some explanation to the structure -

The panel about "event processing - is it hype or the best thing..."
is a panel whose participants consist of two populations - observers (analysts) and those who invest money in event processing products (VC, business people from vendors), it is interesting to see their perspective about - why the invest money in it ? what is their expectations about the market from business perspective ?
the customers perspective will follow later at the day, with a customer keynote and a panel.

For you, and others who will not be able to participate, we'll summarize the discussions (may be even record it if it will be possible from logistics point of view).