Citrix Synergy last month was a great place for me to mingle with some of the brightest minds in virtualization. I posted my recap of the event last week, but I felt the inspiration, based on my trip to Barcelona, to put together a list of my top 10 thought leaders in virtualization. In an effort to be impartial, I’ve kept this list free of Matrix42 employees (though we certainly have our share of great thinkers and influencers). I’ve split the list into two blog posts; we’ll run Part Two next week. Here are five thought leaders you should know:
Brian Madden – Brian is probably the most well-known desktop virtualization expert in the world. He is extremely smart, technical, and opinionated – all of which are great attributes for a blogger/thought leader. BrianMadden.com receives millions of visitors per year and is a leading source for conversation, debate and discourse about the application and desktop virtualization industry. Brian also has written several books and more than 1,000 articles about desktop and application virtualization, and his BriForum conference brings together world’s leading virtualization experts and vendors.
Gabe Knuth – While Gabe is mostly known in the industry for being Brian Madden’s right-hand man, he has more than a decade of hands-on, application delivery experience. Like Madden, he’s earned much industry respect for his thoughtful, independent analysis of real-world technologies in corporate settings. For expert insight on Microsoft and Citrix-based solutions, Gabe is your man. He’s worked in both in-house and consulting roles, and is a great person to know if you want to present at Briforum.
Harry Labana – Harry is CTO and vice president of AppSense, and formerly was the Citrix CTO and vice president desktop and application virtualization. Harry is an interesting story. He came over from the UK in the mid-90s and worked first in infrastructure, architecture, project management and software development roles at financial services firms such as Deutsche Bank, Barclays Capital and Lehman Brothers. Before moving onto Citrix, Harry was a technology vice president with Goldman Sachs, where, with Citrix, he helped build what they called a “virtual desktop infrastructure.” He has worked with many leading established vendors and emerging startups in the application and desktop virtualization industry, and has a great entrepreneurial attitude for solving tech problems.
Simon Bramfitt – A former Gartner analyst turned independent researcher, Simon is a leading influencer of application delivery and desktop vitalization in the enterprise. In addition to his day job as principal analyst at Entelechy Associates (which he founded last year), he maintains a well-read blog that provides key insights into the technologies and business ideas surrounding virtualization. Simon recently was recognized by Citrix as a CTP (Citrix Technology Professional), and has more than 20 years of experience in designing high-availability application delivery and virtualization environments.
Simon Crosby – Recently referred to as the “Godfather of Xen,” Simon Crosby was Citrix’s CTO of the Data Center and Cloud prior to founding Bromium, which is looking to use Xen features to boost security. Simon, of course, was founder and CTO of XenSource prior its acquisition by Citrix. He is the author of more than 35 research papers and patents on a number of datacenter and networking topics including security, network and server virtualization, resource optimization and performance. In 2007, Simon was recognized as one of InfoWorld's Top 25 CTOs.
Coming next week: Part Two of our virtualization thought leader list.
Image via BrianMadden.com (L-R: Gabe Knuth and Brian Madden)