High resolution image of brain

You may binge-watch “Mad Men,” but have you ever binge-watched presentations on graphical CAD, CAM, BIM or MRI applications? Well, today is your lucky day.

Whether you made it to San Jose for the NVIDIA Graphical Technology Conference or not, you may have missed some of the great sessions that were presented there. Fortunately for us, NVIDIA has posted the session recordings and slides for public consumption. So, take your phone off the hook, pour a glass of wine and start watching some serious vGPU content.

Georgia Tech

The first session recording I watched was by Didier Contis, Director of Technology Services at Georgia Tech University. In this recording, Didier outlined several challenges he faced at Georgia Tech. Challenges many of us also face, like shrinking budgets, BYOD, and what he called the “Nomadic Student”.

Since deploying a VDI environment with NVIDIA GRID vGPU, Citrix XenServer and XenApp, and NetApp storage his benefits have been quick and plentiful. Even his most graphics-demanding engineering students can work anywhere and on any device. Students are no longer restricted to “lab hours” and Georgia Tech can reclaim the fixed computer lab for other uses. And the few snow days that Georgia gets do not cause an interruption to academic studies.


Next, I watched Chip Charnley, Technical Expert at the Ford Motor Company. In Chip’s session, he covered how Ford had been investigating desktop virtualization for several years, but graphics had always been a barrier for them. Then Chip saw the keynote at Synergy 2013 and he quickly realized that GPU with XenDesktop would solve Ford’s end user performance issues at a price point the business would find acceptable.

Chip went on to say that the end user acceptance was key to their success with VDI. I found it most interesting that cost reduction was not the key driver, secure remote access was. Chip believes that XenApp and XenDesktop will become Ford’s solution of choice outside of their major hubs. If you also want some serious scale and performance numbers, this session is for you.


For my next viewing pleasure, I grabbed the XenApp and NVIDIA GRID session by CTP Thomas Poppelgaard. As a VDI, Citrix and Graphics expert Thomas spends quite a bit of time consulting for companies across industries. He presents a lot of great detail on measuring and assessing the apps and users in order to tailor the best VDI solution based on empirical evidence.

What I found most interesting, aside from his “crazy” demos, was his revelation that browsers, like Chrome, now consume a lot of GPU power. Browsers can even use more GPU than some CAD applications (like Aveva). And Thomas goes on to say that Microsoft office will also use more GPU power with DirectX 12. This means the vGPU in VDI will be critical for even task and office workers. And of course he ended with one of his famous demos showing him manipulating a 3D app while driving at 100 mph on a highway in Denmark. I suppose with self-driving cars this isn’t such a “crazy” demo.

Duke University

For example, the session on Duke University publishing medical image studies by G. Allen Johnson, PhD was simply brilliant. His biopic on the evolution and explosive growth of imaging in healthcare research was breathtaking.

Roger Williams University

George Thornton from Logical Front gave a great update on the progress and success RWI is seeing with vGPU on XenApp. And like all of the demos in these sessions this too was being run across the country. Nothing was local.

One more thing

While this last bit is not a session, Citrix announced that we are expanding our vGPU Hypervisor support to include the recently available VMware vSphere. Read the full blog post by Calvin Hsu here.

What will you watch first?

There are so many sessions I watched that I would love to go into here. But I dare say we will have to drill into these recordings in additional blogs.

Need to setup your own binge watching list of GTC sessions? It’s as easy as interpreting a Diffusion Tensor MRI with XenApp and vGPU. Simply go to the session catalog and use the search term “Citrix”. You should get 14 sessions in all.

Happy watching!