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From AI to air racing: the netforum 2023

November 2023

At the end of September, the time had finally come: the netforum entered its 12th round. We take a look back and examine the two-day event in all its facets.

Just a moment ago, Dietmar Dahmen was talking about artificial intelligence and the metaverse, Jan Moll was giving an insight into the technological visions of the dtm group and Sigmar Gabriel was taking a close look at current world events; then the visitors were already streaming out of the Festspielhaus, taking their seats on the seating shells of the lake stage and looking upwards. Shortly afterwards, a loud roar announces the approaching spectacle. Less than a minute later, Matthias Dolderer shoots over the heads of the spectators in his air-race machine and draws almost unbelievable flight maneuvers in the blue sky above Lake Constance.

It was a successful start to netforum 2023.

Welcome back

Four years had passed since the last event. But the patience had paid off. The dtm group welcomed more than 300 participants to the two-day IT and strategy congress at the Festspielhaus Bregenz at the end of September. The organizers had put together an impressive program with meticulous attention to detail. In numbers: 3 stages, 33 speakers, 18 exhibitors, 2 panel discussions, 1 aerobatics show, 2 live concerts and endless opportunities for personal exchange and networking.

But first things first.

Strategic insights

In the Seestudio - moderated by journalist and TV presenter Yve Fehring - the major strategic topics were examined: Which technologies, business models and political developments will shape everyday business life in the coming years? How can Germany as a business location keep pace with technological developments in the USA and China? What will the world of work look like in 2035 and what about the green transformation?

The organizers hit a nerve with these and similar topics. The lively discussions following the presentations, most of which had to be stopped by Yve Fehring - with a strict eye on the time - also bore witness to this. Of course, the speakers played a major role in this, as their presentations were sure to have shaken up some of the participants. Among the renowned speakers at the Strategy Stage were: Sven Gábor Jánszky (futurologist), Simone Menne (member of the supervisory board at Deutsche Post AG), Aya Jaff (programmer), Christian Stöcker (cognitive psychologist), Christoph Keese (CEO Axel Springer hy) and Horst von Buttlar (editor-in-chief of WirtschaftsWoche).

Technical deep dives

The Technology Stage in the Seefoyer was also prominently staffed, where the who's who of the IT and data center industry were in attendance. These included Staffan Reveman (Reveman Energy Academy), Eberhard Knödler (BM Green Cooling), Yvan Engels (consultant for IT cabling), Manfred Patzke (freelance expert), Artur Faust (greenDCision) and Fjodor Lamm (Kerpen Datacom).

It was the concentrated expertise that had gathered here and reported first-hand on the latest trends, findings and applications from the IT world. The topics ranged from WLAN infrastructures and AIM systems, PoE network infrastructures and fiber optic systems to fiber optic solutions and the new Energy Efficiency Act. And in the end, the picture was similar to that of the Strategy Stage: here and there, lively discussions often continued in small groups into the breaks.

Palm trees, sand and blockchain

A completely different picture - at least visually - could be seen on the third stage: the Next Gen Stage. This was not set up in the Festspielhaus, but in the open air in the BeachBar just a few steps away. In a Mediterranean atmosphere, surrounded by palm trees, sand and deckchairs, Sven Wagenknecht (BTC Echo), Axel Koester (IBM), Maks Giordano (Juuman`okudo), Hartwig Bazzanella (VIRZ e.V.) and others spoke about tokenized sneakers, Web3, quantum computing and hyperconverged infrastructure. Without a doubt an extraordinary experience.

Networking, rock 'n' roll and electro beats

If there wasn't a presentation taking place or Matthias Dolderer wasn't flying over the heads of the audience, the foyer - fortified by coffee and cake - provided the perfect opportunity to talk to various manufacturers and associations and find out about new products. Industry giants such as R&M, Commscope, GHMT, Kentix, the BdNI, Bachmann, Vertiv and Metz Connect were also in attendance.

A special highlight awaited the participants on the evening of the first day: a live performance by the rock 'n' roll band The Monroes. Where Jan Moll and his guests had just been passionately discussing the technological megatrends of our time, they were now partying and dancing. And anyone who still had energy and desire after all that could simply go back to the BeachBar. The world-famous musician DJ Antoine was now on stage there, delighting the audience with his energetic electro beats. Relaxing comfortably on a deckchair was no longer an option.

Save the date

PS: After the event is before the event. The date for the next netforum has already been set. On September 24 and 25, 2025, it's time again: Welcome back! And until then, it's worth taking a look at our website. There you will find impressions, press reviews and videos from the netforum 2023. Or even better: sign up for our Newsletter and stay up to date.