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“I don’t get no respect!”

ken-adams

HP Discover June 2-4By Steven Fleischman

 

As Discover approaches, I started to think of how HP continues to innovate and bring new ideas and solutions to market. HP is the engine helping our partners and customers attain new levels and I’m glad I’m here for the journey!

 

When’s the last time you booked, checked-in, or got on a flight? Did you ever stop to think about the airplane’s GE Aviation, Pratt & Whitney, or Rolls Royce engines? Did you question whether they would have enough power to get the plane off the ground, or last long enough to get you to your destination? No, you just looked at the dates, airline, and ticket price, checked-in, and got on the plane. You don’t care about the engines. You probably don’t even know who makes them. You just know, that whatever they are, they’ll get you to where you want to go.

 

“Wow! You must be so smart” vs. “Nice”

Then one day you meet a guy who works for Rolls Royce. You ask: “What do you do there? Make the luxury car?” “No,” he says, “I design and build the Rolls Royce Trent 900 engines that power the world’s largest superjumbo jet.” Your response? “Wow! You must be so smart. I could never do anything like that! Wow! That’s amazing. I’m so glad I met you. I’m going to tell my friends. Keep up the great work.”

 

I wish I got that response. Lots of people ask me what I do. I tell them that I work for HP. Their response? “Oh, the printer guys. Nice.” Then they change the subject. It takes all of my self-control not to kick them in the shins and shout “No, you dolt! HP is one of the largest information technology companies in the world. In fact, together with our partners we run the world! Just about everything you buy, every service you use, depends on us to make it work.”

 

How come “I don’t get no respect?”

 

“I don’t get no respect”

Rodney Dangerfield – remembered for his comic roles in the 1980s movies Easy Money, Caddyshack, and Back to School - coined that catchphrase in the 60s and he rode his career on the back of it. During the 1950s he took up show business but quit to support his wife and family. He later said: “at the time I quit, I was the only one who knew I quit!” Sometimes, I know how he felt. And I understand why.

 

People care about what they can see. You choose one airline over another – not just on price – but because of the services they provide: their website; their mobile application; the ease with which you can book and check-in; the comfort of the seats and amount of legroom; their frequent flyer program; the baggage allowance, preferred seating, lounge availability, safety and of course, the chance of getting an upgrade. That’s why you prefer to fly with one airline compared to another.

 

And that’s why people talk about applications rather than the hardware upon which the application depends. Think about your mobile device. What do you like about it the most? The chip inside? The particular brand of memory? Or the ease of use? The applications that give you what you want and make your life easier? But does the operating system design or applications make the hardware any less important? No, not at all. But you never give them a second thought because you just expect them to work. The same holds true irrespective of whether it’s your mobile device or a server running business-critical applications for a multi-billion dollar corporation.

 

But that’s not the way it should be. We should never fail to give recognition to the men and women who build those engines for GE Aviation, Pratt & Whitney, or Rolls Royce. If it wasn’t for them, we would never get off the ground. We would never be able to travel the world, experience different cultures, or create the memories we treasure. You might not think about the engines, but I guarantee that you would never describe them as a simple commodity, “a mass-produced unspecialized product.”

 

Birthplace of Silicon Valley

HP Garage
So why are computers and servers often referred to as “commodity hardware?” They may be mass produced because of world demand, but are they “unspecialized?” When Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard started off in a garage in Palo Alto in 1939, few would have foreseen the impact those humble beginning would have on the world as HP grew and evolved to be one of the world’s leading technology companies. And today that tiny garage located at 367 Addison Avenue in Palo Alto is considered to be the “Birthplace of Silicon Valley,” home to many of the world’s largest high-tech corporations, as well as thousands of tech startup companies – the power house of American innovation.

 

While we may be splitting into two separate companies HP,Inc and soon to be Hewlett Packard Enterprise will continue to build on the legacy that Bill and Dave left us. We’re taking the lead in pushing the boundaries with innovative technologies that rethink basic computing, drive increased efficiencies, and redefine compute economics. You may not see it, but what we do affects almost everything that you do – in one way or another.
So come on, don’t we deserve a little respect?

 

Over the next few months I’ll be telling you more about what HP is doing with Microsoft and SAP and how it affects your life, both from a business and from a personal perspective. Follow me at @Fleishmantweet to stay tuned.
For more information on what HP is doing to change the future of compute, visit HP Labs to find out more about “The Machine: A new kind of computer.”

 

Check out these resources on HP Discover 2015

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 Steven Fleischman is a member of the HP Corporate Strategic Alliances team as a Microsoft and SAP Evangelist. He has been at HP for 10 years in various marketing, business development, and channel program roles working with Microsoft, Oracle, and SAP. Steven attended Syracuse University and St. John’s University and has a BS in Marketing with a focus on International Marketing.

 

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1 Merriam-Webster Dictionary

 

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About the Author

ken-adams

I thoroughly enjoy writing about HP and the synergies with our Alliance Partners.