Last August, four Tier10 creatives had the opportunity to attend Dreamforce 2011 in San Francisco. Below is the perspective of Senior Web Designer Tommy Welti, describing his experience and the lessons he learned from the conference.
Day 1 – August 30, 2011:
I was excited about the trip and couldn’t really sleep much the night before. I’d never been to the west coast before, let alone a technology conference of this magnitude. I met up with Sara and Darren at the airport for our 7:00am flight out of Dulles International Airport. Several hours later, we landed at San Francisco to a surprisingly sunny day, which I’ve been told doesn’t happen too often in the bay area. Once we arrived at Dreamforce ’11, we met quickly met up with Joe.
While Sara and Darren went to their Administrators break out session, Joe and I attended two sessions, “Building Websites in the Cloud” and “Getting Started with Visualforce,” before heading to the Cloud Expo, which featured 275 Salesforce partners all demoing the latest and greatest must-have products that integrate seamlessly with the Salesforce Platform. Joe and I did a sweep of the entire expo floor to get a feel for what type of vendors were there and what they had to offer.
Day 2 – August 31, 2011:
Today started out with a bang as we all converged for the “Welcome to the Social Enterprise Keynote” presented by Saleforce.com’s chairman and CEO, Marc Benioff, who explained the fundamental changes in the way we work and connect with customers, prospects and employees today. He then discussed the new capabilities of Salesforce, including the integration of the social media links for clients on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn directly on the Client Profile page and new Touch capabilities using HTML 5 for the mobile apps for Salesforce.
Throughout the day, we attended the break out session “Force.com on the Cutting Edge,” visited the Developer Zone to dive deeper into what capabilities Salesforce has to offer, and learned more about the vendors at the Cloud Expo that we had scanned the day before.
After a long day, the great people who put on Dreamforce ’11 had an amazing lineup for the Global Gala, featuring none other than Metallica, with an after-party featuring will.i.am.
Day 3 – September 1, 2011:
At the week’s second keynote, Building the Social Enterprise, Marc Benioff explained how companies are reinventing themselves with social media apps built on Force.com, Heroku and Databased.com. Tim Campos, Facebook CIO, and Bryon Sebastian, SVP, Force.com Platform, spoke about their efforts to utilize these core technologies to bring them into the next era of the internet – the Social Era.
Afterwards, we headed back over to the cloud expo for another day of research, and then attended Google’s presentation, Collaboration, Innovation and Business Transformation, which emphasized the social, mobile and local aspects of the way we communicate today.
At the third and final keynote, Marc Benioff and Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman at Google, discussed the topic of social transformation as a whole, Google’s own internal transformation, and the external transformation and creation of Google Plus.
Day 4 – September 2, 2011:
On our final day at Dreamforce ’11, we were determined to squeeze out every last resource the Cloud Expo had to offer. We talked with a few companies, but one in particular stood out. After lunch, we were walking past an area of the expo when a presenter wearing a tall chef’s hat and apron caught our attention. At a theater-like setup arranged against the wall, he demonstrated their email campaign service, whose intuitive user experience made them one of the best vendors for email campaigns we’d seen the whole week.
We had utilized the Cloud Expo to it’s fullest, and were ready to depart from the conference. In the short period of time we spent at Dreamforce, we learned much about who Salesforce is and what they offer to their consumers.
For a rundown of the various sessions we attended and demonstrations we watched, please read our Top 6 Highlights of Dreamforce.