Microsoft Ignite Conference - Day 1 "The Vision"

Morning

It was an interesting day today. I attended two long keynotes. The first was led by Sataya Nadela and others where they announced a number of upcoming releases of mission and business critical software. The production of the presentations was very “slick” and for the most part the presenters were quite good.

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I was mightily impressed at how efficiently they could move 23,000 attendees in and out of the hall and feed them too. I was oppositely depressed by how few women I saw. Clearly IT has a long way to go to embrace and incent the fairer sex to a more equitable representation. This is something that needs to get fixed.

There were quite a few take away items but by in large, I was already aware of most of them because they were already leaked or announced.

I left the morning session feeling like Microsoft is going to beat Apple and Google, but that they didn’t have the confidence to say so. I’ve known for a while that Windows 10 was going to run on everything from the most powerful PC all the way down to a $35 Raspberry Pi2. This is huge. 

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An operating system that runs across so many device types will facilitate a vision. Sataya eloquently pointed out the devices aren’t mobile, but people are… and that the experience across devices needs to be mobile (portable) for the user regardless of the device that he or she uses.

Writing an app once and being able to deploy it across all devices is very exciting and will be a game changer. Apple has two distinct operation systems for mobile and desktop. Google is the same, Android and Chrome OS. You can’t write natively for Android or Apple and have your app run on both desktop and mobile. Windows 10 will let you do so. Google and Apple will be playing catch up on this.

Afternoon

I attended a couple of seminars.

First, I stopped in on a talk about MSFT Outlook and Dynamix integration. This was really weak and shows that MSFT still hasn’t fulfilled a more organic experience within Outlook for CRM.

The second was around Microsoft’s vision for IoT. This is a space that Sherpa already plays in. Having successfully delivered in the IoT space already, I can confidently say that MSFT is bang-on with its thinking. I won’t get into the gory details, but once the Azure full platform is launched, Sherpa will investigate the adoption of this platform. 

IoT remains as a solid contender – if not a lock for the “next big thing.”  

It’s clear that Sherpa fully understands the three pillars of IoT and can be quite successful in its implementation.

Early Evening

That last session was another long keynote. This one was more focused on the next 20-50 years and how MSFT is investing in solutions today to deliver in the future.  As the speaker said, they are playing the “long game”.

The future that was outlined confirms that Sherpa is on the right path and developing its capabilities in a way that will benefit our customers.

First, as data becomes “bigger” it will be up to people and companies like Sherpa to deliver meaningful analysis of the data along with insights. The ability to take raw data and build visualizations that are easily understood is going to be highly useful thanks to the proliferation of useful data from internet connected devices and sensors.

Second, we were told that Moore’s law is no longer possible. The next shift has to come from quantum computing and MSFT is investing heavily in how to figure this out.

Lastly, MSFT believes that Artificial Intelligence is something that needs to be fully realized. The speaker assuaged the naysayers by articulating very clearly that AI will be an incredible way to augment our human brains inasmuch as it will be able to accurately assess much more data accurately in a shorter timeframe.

Overall, it was a great start and I look forward to learning more tomorrow.

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