As the Social Media Manager for ISS, it’s my responsibility to facilitate discussions surrounding our latest products and services, often times with independent bloggers. But what exactly is an “independent” blogger anyway? (Yes, I get asked this a lot.) Many assume they are press and write articles for a media outlet for a living, but that’s not the case at all.
An independent blogger is a person that writes about a topic they are passionate about and they do it on their own, personal time. Contrary to what you might have thought, they don’t get paid to write. Instead, they typically have a regular day job, which means that when HP invites them to attend an event; they have to take time off of work to do so. Now I don’t know about you, but between work deadlines, sick days, and an occasional day off here and there to stretch out a holiday break, I find it pretty hard to take time off to accomplish much else. That’s why I think these folks are so amazing. Somehow, in between living busy lives, these folks make time to travel, attend, and write about the technical events they attend on their own time! Amazing!
Something else pretty amazing about independent bloggers – they often collaborate and share the information they’ve learned. Unlike a reporter whose job it is to “get the inside scoop”, most of the independent bloggers I’ve worked with have shared what they have learned with each other to help spread awareness. They talk openly with each other during sessions and have colorful discussions and debates about wide ranging topics. It’s probably worth mentioning that these folks are super-smart, technical whizzes as well, so when you’re in a room with all of them, the camaraderie (and brain wave functionality) is hard not to notice.
So now that you know what an independent blogger is, below are the bios for each of the gents who joined us at the event. (To find out what was covered at the HP Gen8 Blogger event, check out my other post here.)
From left to right: Kevin Whelan (HP), Bob Stein, Shari Cravens (HP), Brian Knudtson, Hector Russo, Mike Letschin, Phillip Jaenke, Scott Lowe, Frank Owen, Jeffrey Powers, Matt Vogt, Tom Augenthaler (Ivy Worldwide), Hans Vredevoort, Jill Sweeney (HP), Kristen Reyes (HP)
Twitter handle: @rootwyrm
Phillip has been working in IT for over 16 years, primarily in Unix, Storage and Virtualization, but he has also done extensive work in Networking, RF plant, and the regulated telecom space. He spends a lot of his time diving into architectural nuances or figuring out how to make the next generation of data centers more efficient and reliable.
Twitter handle: @bknudtson
Brian has over a decade of experience in working with customers to define their requirements, determine the best technological solution, implementing those solutions and ensuring customer acceptance. He has been published on Forbes.com, SearchVMware.com, and TrainSignal video training series.
Twitter handle: @mletschin
Michael has been working in the IT industry since 1995. After multiple years as a systems and network administrator, he moved into IT management. Much of his time was spent working for Value Added Resellers or VARs. In the last few years he has moved into the realm of pre-sales and solutions architecture.
Twitter handle: @otherscottlowe
Scott Lowe has worked in the technology field since 1994 and is currently the Chief Information Officer at Westminster College in Fulton, MO, where he provides primary support for the virtualization environment.
Frank Owen III
Twitter handle: @fowen
Frank is an IT operations manager for a customer support center and provides news and opinion from the world of Microsoft, Google, Apple and all the other movers and shakers in the IT world. He is experienced in Windows server and client management.
Twitter handle: @geekazine
With over 6 years in podcasting, and 5 years in videocasting, Jeffrey interviews industry professionals and leaders and posts the results on his web site for his followers to read.
Twitter handle: @geeksroom
Hector Russo is the Founder and Editor in Chief of the GeeksRoom, a Spanish-language tech blog. Hector reaches a large Latin American audience in the USA, Latin America and Spain.
Twitter handle: @ActiveWin
Bob Stein is an IT Consultant for the University of Pittsburgh and has been awarded Windows Server MVP for several consecutive years. His goal is to provide the latest Microsoft company news, information, downloads, reviews, drivers, tips, support, software/hardware news, and FAQs.
Twitter handle: @mattvogt
Matt Vogt acts as the Senior Systems Administrator for virtualization and storage at the Fuller Theological Seminary. He is responsible for administration and operation of the campus storage, virtualization and Windows infrastructure. He also assists IT to secure and cost effective use of various IT related products and software.
Twitter handle: @ hvredevoort
Hans works as a consultant & MVP specializing in Hyper-V Private Cloud and Microsoft System Center. This Hyper-V Community was founded in 2008.
I want to thank each of these guys for attending. I also look forward to the opportunity to work with these and other independent bloggers on future events. They are truly a special group of folks whom make my job a whole lot more fun than should be allowed.
For information about our next upcoming event, HP Discover (June 4th – 7th), click here.