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ArticlesCommunity PerspectivesIT Transformation

HISTORY OF CI, PART 1: VBLOCK (2009 – 2011)

This article was originally published by Converged User Group. Read more.

You’re likely well-versed in the many technical and business benefits of converged infrastructure (CI) and hyper-converged infrastructure (HCI)—you work with it every day. Last year, CI hit its 10-year milestone, and some of our members have been around CI for the whole time, helping to transform their IT shops as well as drive the growth of CI and HCI; other members may have only recently dipped their toes in the CI/HCI waters.

ArticlesCommunity Perspectives

Storytelling + Tech = Creating Emotion

“The difficult is what takes a little time; the impossible is what takes a little longer.”

—Fridtjof Nansen, Polar Explorer, 1861-1930

My two favorite subjects in school were math and history, and it is no surprise both have impacted my lifestyle and career each and every day. Mathematics fascinated me and ultimately led me to look at most situations in life as equations—multitudes of constants and variables that lead to a final product. Then, there is the path to quantum theory and beyond, but that is another deeply wild journey.

I had a history teacher that introduced me to the early explorers of unchartered Earth, such as Fridtjof Nansen and Ernest Shackleton, known for their expeditions to Greenland and Antarctica, that resulted in unique exploration innovations and techniques that inspired many explorers decades and centuries later, myself included.

Exploring Turns to Stories

I became fascinated with exploration that quickly led to an obsession to explore the most remote areas of the planet through mountaineering, skiing, and humanitarian and conservation work. The majority of my adult life has been spent exploring our world on major expeditions. My obsession with this lifestyle has taken me on over 85 expeditions across more than 100 countries to some of the most remote areas of the world—from negative 70 degrees in Siberia and Antarctica to the deepest sweltering jungles in Borneo and Guyana to restricted areas in Afghanistan and Yemen, and everyone in-between.

The best part of this lifestyle is being out in the wild places of the planet, but the second best part, and the most important, is bringing the stories home and sharing my experiences through photos and video content. Each expedition is unique and my hope in documenting the smallest details to the largest landscapes is to bring awareness to our world, create emotion, and ultimately to get people to care more for our planet.

Answer to an Equation

Each of my expeditions are all simply mathematical equations to me. I have been working to solve the “first-person view” equation for some time: how can I bring people as close to coming with me without actually going and how can I help them feel the experience from home? I found the answer through technology: capturing and sharing my adventures with and through Virtual Reality. Now people can put on a VR headset and actually see, hear, and feel like they are with me.

Through VR, people can experience standing next to polar bears in the arctic, where many feel the same emotions I felt—awe, wonder, a little fear, excitement. Their emotions leads to caring for our planet and hopefully they will start (or continue) do their part to make the world a better place.

Of course, none of this would be possible without a team to help me capture multiple angles, locations, and making the technology work in the most remote areas. I wouldn’t be able to capture these stories and share them with the world without teamwork and technology. The two Ts that lead to a successful expedition.

Tech that Brings the Stories to Life

Out in the field, I am using the highest quality equipment and tech to capture the stories, as well as at home I am editing on the best technology possible. I use the Dell Rugged devices to view, capture, and download VR footage, 8K content, and we rely 100% on that tech to not only survive, but to perform at the highest level we demand. If there is one theme for all of my equipment it is that it absolutely cannot fail, which would result in losing our storytelling imagery or the expedition not succeeding. In addition, I am also using the Dell Rugged products for satellite communications, GPS, mapping, logistics etc. that not only helps us accurately capture the precise geographical landscapes we’re in, but helps keeps me and the team safe so that people back home know exactly where we are and what we’re doing at all times.

Then of course, once back home there is the editing and creative challenge and journey to put the experience into story. Dell has the technology to enable the type of  editing and creating I need so others can have next-level experiences with these stories. The fast and precise processing wizardry on my Dell Precision suite brings VR and 3D footage to 8K content. This product suite neglects no detail, even down to the monitors and precise color and clarity needed for the best possible final cut.


I owe huge gratitude to the entire Dell team that make all of this possible! I also owe a thank you to my teachers to inspiring my curiosity to explore—without them, my life’s purpose equation “how do I bring the world to a single person through story?” would still only be just a dream.

The time is now! It is not only life, but the quality of this life! Dream big and live those dreams! Why ration passion?

This article originally appeared at Dell Client Community. Learn more. 

ArticlesCommunity Perspectives

HCI + Hospitality: A Hospitality Story

When it comes to HCI management, there are few people who have a better sense of the decision-making implications than Chris Stanley. An IT manager for 11 years, Chris worked in a range of industries including macadamia nut farming and IT retail before arriving in hospitality at Celtic Manor Resort. “One thing I’ve learned in hospitality,” Chris says, “is that everything relies on IT. Each department has different needs and it’s our job as an IT department to manage and streamline them all.”

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