IDC Saudi Arabia CIO Summit 2022; World’s 1st “Human Cyborg” leaves guests in awe

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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IDC CIO Summit Advisory Council Members Image
IDC Advisory Council members on stage at IDC Saudi Arabia CIO Summit 2022 | Image Courtesy: Supplied

The 12th annual edition of International Data Corporation’s Saudi Arabia CIO Summit 2022 attracted more than 400 of the Kingdom’s most influential business and technology leaders to Riyadh on 19 – 20 September. 

Hosted by Fairmont Riyadh under the theme “Accelerating the Journey to a Digital-First World”, the event witnessed a jaw-dropping opening with the presence of the contemporary artist, Neil Harbisson, the first officially acknowledged human cyborg.

Mr. Harbisson stunned the audience with a demonstration of how he is able to “hear” color through audible vibrations in his skull. Mr. Harbisson is capable of seeing in UV thanks to an antenna-like implant in his head that amplifies his perception of light and gives him super senses.

The IDC Saudi Arabia CIO Summit offered an unmatched forum for stimulating, in-depth discussions about cutting-edge tech solutions, emerging use cases, and tried-and-true strategies for achieving success in the Kingdom’s quickly evolving digital economy. This was accomplished by combining expert-led presentations, interactive panel discussions, and individual technology tracks.

Hamza Naqshbandi IDC Image
Hamza Naqshbandi
Associate VP – IDC
Saudi Arabia

“For 12 years, the IDC Saudi Arabia CIO Summit has served as a trusted platform that connects leading ICT executives from both the private and public sectors to exchange ideas that contribute towards the growth of the Kingdom’s technology sector.”

Mr. Steven Frantzen, Senior Vice President and Managing Director for Europe, the Middle East, and Africa at IDC, gave the opening remarks at the summit.

During his keynote address, “Reimagining Tech Strategies for a Digital-First World”, Mr. Frantzenchallenged enterprises to respond to the unprecedented volatility of the last few years by embracing a digital-first strategy to incorporating resilience into their operations.

“The journey to the future digital enterprise has accelerated, driven by significant investments in new customer experiences, new digital ecosystem business models, digital supply chains, and Future of Work initiatives. All of this must be supported by resilient cloud-enabled digital infrastructure and applications, rapid app development, digital platforms, data-driven and AI-enabled intelligence, and security and trust. Strong leadership, an appetite for innovation, and a sound strategy for addressing regulations will all be key to driving the future digital agenda.” Mr. Frantzen highlighted.

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