The session was hosted by Greg Yelas, regional leader, Mist AI, with talks and audience questions interspersed by a series of gin tastings that Juniper had previously shipped to attendees.
Yelas explained Mist AI was a network evolution and revolution, drawing upon the familiar topic of navigation to help frame it.
Long gone are the days where people drove with a Gregory's directory in their glove box, trying to route from page to page. Satellite navigation changed the game, with the introduction of devices by Gamin, TomTom, and others.
Similarly, Yelas said, it was the same with mobility. People had to plug cables into computers all the time and then came Wi-Fi. You no longer had to be cabled into a wall to connect to the Internet.
Yet, as geography changed the built-in maps in SatNav devices had to be updated. Typically this meant unplugging the device from the car, bringing it inside and cabling it to a computer or removing a memory card, then updating maps, then plugging it all back in again. Here again, Google Maps changed the game.
Back in the networking world Yelas compared this with Cisco Aeronet - "a great product, but only worked with Cisco," he said. And like Google Maps took us to the next level, so did Meraki for networking with the simplicity and connectivity it provided.
Then came Waze, an app that provided users with real-world updates like police incidents, accidents, potential hazards, all in real-time and providing extra detail to maps that Gregory's could never have dreamed of.
Yelas said this is what Mist is like for Wi-Fi; it works with static Wi-Fi hardware, makes it simple, and is self-learning.
Yet, that's not the end of the line. Just as Tesla and other electric car manufacturers are working on taking navigation to the next level of self-driving, so too Yelas says Marvis - the Mist AI assistant - is there, 24x7x365 - to provide your network with automation, insights, and relevance.
These are big and important things, Yelas said. "Machines should configure machines," getting Marvis to manage your devices for you. "'Up' is not the same as 'good' when it comes to network health," and Marvis enables personalised experiences based on locations and integrating with Internet of Things devices. For example, Marvis could be used to track people and things in your workplace to help ensure safety for all.
More information on Mist AI is available online.