Interop is the last large-scale technology conference that isn't explicitly tied to a single vendor. And that's significant; in the last two years, we've seen new tech conferences pop up that are hyper-focused on specific software. VeeamOn is a good example (I expect Veeam fanboys to furrow their brow with this example). We've seen events like Cisco Live and VMworld balloon into the chaotic frenzies they are. And we've seen independent conferences like Interop dwindle in participation in spite of the many wonderful opportunities to learn and network with great engineers from all over the IT spectrum.
Tech Field Day invited me (along with much more knowledgeable folks: Howard Marks, John Herbert, Tony Matke, Jason Edelman, and our indefatigable minder and moderator Tom Hollingsworth) to attend Interop and hear about innovations from Cisco, Glue Networks, Akamai, and HP Networking. The roundtable discussion is a bonus, and in my opinion it's what makes a TFD event unique.
Yes, yes: TFD paid my travel and lodging and meal expenses while in NYC.