Microsoft Ignite 2015
Two months ago I was on Microsoft Ignite Conference in Chicago, IL. Microsoft (HOL Systems) asked me, If I would like to make there TLG Proctoring for Hands-On Labs and Instructor Lead Sessions during the conference. It was a really nice time in there, everyday meetings with new people / attendees (and colleagues of mine – mostly MVPs) and talking about their everyday experience and troubles with infrastructure and software (in my case almost SharePoint/Project Server/BI/Cloud and Azure areas).
First day, there were registration process, city walkthrough and hotel check-in. In the evening hours the first TLG session was presented to all the TLGs with many instructions about the labs, which runs by-the way in Microsoft Azure for whole the conference and one month after for all the attendees (about 20k attendees). So from my point of view, huge investment from Microsoft side – each lab has 5 – 6 VMs, so many, many computing power needs to be used. When I first meet architects of this solution I asked them about the price of this solution, and it was something about 5-10 million dollars. But anyway…In one sentence – Chicago is a weird city with great burgers, hotdogs, beach even the city is not at the shore (big lakes …), really friendly people and all the different parts and neighborhoods like China Town, Indian Town and Pilsen Town (Pilsen like memories about Pilsen City in Czech Republic). This is a funny story, because one emigrant from Pilsen, CZ was a financial guy acting for Al Capone in the 40s :-)
My areas on the Ignite event were SharePoint Server, O365, Hybrid Cloud Computing and Business Intelligence. So I received an orange hat and made a consultant guy for all the attendees in the HAL section and with red hats on the-ask- the-expert-sessions. I tested many labs as well and made so many new experiences. The thing is, that most of TLGs are MVPs or MCTs, so many new contacts with best IT professionals from the whole World (TLGs were from almost 80 countries) and many new troubleshooting tips for new projects, which I will be working on.
The conference was full of companies from areas of portal solutions or infrastructure. I have had many interesting conversations, but most interesting were with companies like PluralSight (learning videos in all areas of IT), NINTEX, K2, Sharegate, FluentPro, AvePoint, DataDog, Savision etc. From the first look, there is evolution in business direction of these companies. First of all, they realized, that today’s main areas are monitoring (SharePoint, infrastructure), cloud, hybrid clouds, security, new products for workflows and forms (especially NINTEX, who is in these areas for a long time, but also other companies). FluentPro for example is a company from Ukraine, which is providing unbelievable add-ons for Project Server. There were 3 guys on the Ignite – Founder, main architect and developer. Really great people with major ideas as good as for example SharePoint MVP Guru from Sharegate – Benjamin.
After many hours of conferencing, I realized one important thing. Many of these companies don’t have partners in EMEA at all. They have some potential opportunities in our region, but haven’t someone, who is able to execute those projects. Some of them are working on a web of partners, but many of them with great ideas don’t. This is definitely an area for collaboration with these companies (from Israel, from Ukraine, from UK, from Sweden, Norway etc.). Second thing is that many of these companies would like to cooperate under resource sharing vision. Another great opportunity I think.
From a Microsoft point of view, the most discussed products are Microsoft Delve and Sway and what these products will mean in the next few months (their roadmaps). Another big thing is Windows 10 with almost every topic – IoT, BYOD, Security, User experience, Single platform between Windows Phone and Windows Desktop (and tablet of course), possibility of sharing desktop from phone on monitor – full featured desktop version of Windows 10 (full featured from tablet, lite from windows phone) etc.
Roman Nedzelský is a passionate technologist with 5+ years of proven experience in IT. Currently Roman is working for redtoo s.r.o. as a Principal Architect & CCD Team Lead in Prague, Czech Republic. He is specialized in Microsoft platform implementations and integrations (mainly SharePoint and Project Server Solutions) with a focus on process modeling, methodologies and cooperative innovations. Besides of IT Consulting Roman also works as a member of the academic staff at University of Economics, Prague and teaches in Information Systems Analysis and Design.