I spoke at the 2016 DevConnections Conference. See http://devconnections.com. The event was held in Las Vegas (at the Aria Hotel) from Oct. 10-14. The conference is all about software programming and IT engineering using Microsoft technologies.
I estimate there were about 1500 attendees. Most of the attendees I spoke to worked for State and Federal government agencies. For example, I chatted with guys who work at NASA, the FBI, and Medicare. Most had hybrid roles — they did a little bit of everything (database, Web, IT, applications).
I sat on an informal panel discussion where I talked about machine learning. I gave a talk titled “Introduction to R and Microsoft R Server”, and one titled “Introduction to Azure Machine Learning”.
The 2016 DevConnections Conference was excellent in every respect — the talks were very good (at least the ones I heard), and the logistics were great (venue, food, snacks, side events, registration). It’s hard to quantify value for conferences. For me, the time and money is very well spent. I get a ton of useful information from impromptu conversations, and I return to my work with fresh ideas and renewed energy and motivation.
The 2017 DevConnections Conference will be held in San Francisco; I prefer Las Vegas for conferences (Vegas is much less expensive, and is much better place for walking around) but San Francisco is a good city too. I highly recommend the DevConnections Conference.