IBM Connect 2014 Attendance

by Volker Weber


There is a German joke that says Europe's highest mountain used to be in socialist East Germany (Deutsche Demokratische Republik) because everything went uphill there for 40 years.

We get the same propaganda regarding IBM conference attendance. 6000 people, significantly (20%) up from last year. And we get it each and every year. It's somewhat true, because IBM plans for 6000 people, but never quite makes it. This year IBM started to sell day passes for $99 trying to get those on board who were just in Orlando to meet their friends, without paying for the conference itself.

You don't have to think very hard how to find out the real number; it's available to everyone registered for the conference. In the graph above, I count the attendance that isn't really there to fill up the 6000 as ghosts, it's the grey circle not covered by slices.

How did I get to the graph above? I do some research, combine snippets of information, set press/analyst, put in partners and customers, and reckon the rest is IBM. If you can make a better graph, let me see it.

What IBM needs to work on is to make that lower right slice bigger. Partners can't sell to partners or IBM. As a partner, I would ask IBM to see the real numbers instead of vowe's guesswork. But I am pretty sure, it won't look much different.


You left out one important group. Unicorns.

Andy Donaldson, 2014-02-06 18:15

Somebody told me, he had seen a Yeti. But that was probably a Wookie.

Volker Weber, 2014-02-06 18:19


What are the typical breakdowns of session attendance for other tech events like Connect-o-sphere?

Bruce Elgort, 2014-02-06 18:51

There is no typical. You would want vendor and customers trade places in this chart. But you have your own data from past ILUGs. Maybe Theo and others organizers want to chip in.

Volker Weber, 2014-02-06 18:59

As you know I have been spinning records in the past. My only benchmark was how many girls I had on the dance floor. Everything else happens automatically. For conferences that benchmark is customers.

Volker Weber, 2014-02-06 19:01


I have never ever seen you dance. It didn't happen without pics. :-)

Bruce Elgort, 2014-02-06 19:03

Volker looked much more relaxed this year... :)

Tom Duff, 2014-02-06 19:13

@Bruce He didn't dance. He only did spinning records. Nice metaphor :-)

Olaf Boerner, 2014-02-06 19:15

Bruce, you would have fallen for me. :-)

Volker Weber, 2014-02-06 20:11

At Dominopoint (italian LUG) conferences we have way less IBMers, and way more partners & customers, but I don't think it make sense to compare our own event with connect (for one, I do expect ant think is "natural" to see lots of IBMers at connect)...

Giuseppe Grasso, 2014-02-06 23:53

I remember Volker opening the dance floor regularly. Believe me, he can dance :-)

Sabine Weber, 2014-02-07 00:37

This thread is wonderful: Wookiees and vowe dancing. It doesn't get better than that...

Ben Poole, 2014-02-07 09:16

This presumably includes Kenexa. As a guide their 2012 conference at Orlando's Contemporary Resort apparently had "over 600 senior executives and Human Resource professionals"

Gilbert Short, 2014-02-07 17:09

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Ceci n'est pas un blog is a personal website published by Volker Weber a.k.a. vowe. I am an author, consultant and systems architect based in Darmstadt, Germany.

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