Ben Kepes and I had a load of fun last year, helping the team at VentureBeat put on their inaugural cloud computing event, CloudBeat. Clearly we did something right whilst having fun, as they’ve invited us back to reprise our content advising/ programme shaping role again this year. Right at the end of November, we’ll once again be doing what we can to assemble a stellar cast of cloud companies and their customers at the Sofitel in Redwood City, just south of San Francisco.

As the blurb states,

Unlike other cloud conferences, CloudBeat brings IT executives who use cloud technologies onto the same stage as the companies making those technologies. It’s a rare chance to learn what really works, who’s buying what, and where the industry is going.

Ben and I both feel that there’s a real need to ensure that the stories of customer success (and failure) get heard, instead of just having the cloud companies tell us how wonderful they’re going to make the future. How do the adopters of cloud solutions have to change? What can they do that they couldn’t achieve with other approaches? Is it about saving money, or going green, or being agile, or outsourcing by another name, or simply selling the data centre?

Last year’s event worked well, I think, although I am biased. It seemed to fill a gap left by other (excellent) events like GigaOM’s Structure, and to complement far more than it competed. That’s something I hope we can continue to do.

If you want to attend, early-bird registration is now open. If you think you’ve got a great story to share, then there’s a call for papers.

I look forward to seeing some of you there!

Image of the Oxford town crier by Flickr user ‘Biker Jun