I spoke at the 2014 DevIntersection conference, which ran from Sunday, November 9 through Thursday, November 13. The conference was at the MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas. The event is for software developers who use the Microsoft technology stack, and for SQL Server people. My talk was “ML Studio: Microsoft’s New Machine Learning Tool for Developers”.
My talk had two main parts. In the first half, I explained exactly what neural networks are and why they’re one of the two or three primary machine learning tools. In the second half of my talk, I showed how to create a neural network using ML Studio, a drag and drop tool that doesn’t require coding.
I had a good time at DevIntersection and all of the attendees I talked to seemed to be having a good time too. I estimate there were about 1600 people there. In addition to the approximately 175 talks, there was an Expo where about 30 or 40 tech companies set up booths. Microsoft had three Code Heroes. Interesting. In the picture below, you should be able to figure out who are the Code Heroes and which person is me . . .
Every time I go to speak at a conference, I ask myself about the value. These tech conferences are pretty pricey, but in my opinion, they’re well worth the money. The benefit will vary from person to person. For most attendees, the main value is in practical techniques they learn. For me, the value of tech conferences comes mostly from getting re-energized and getting new ideas. I’m looking forward to next year’s event.