Microsoft in Orlando Florida
It all started at 7:00am when I got on the bus from the Cabana Bay resort. It was still dark outside and I was confronted with a huge line of like minded techies. After about a 20 minute bus ride I was at the Orange County Convention Center. The facilities was huge as you can see in the pictures. I am not sure I could capture the enormity of the event but think of seven (7) football field sized halls, all connected together.
So the first session was a keynote from the CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella. It was the first time I have heard him speak and I do have to say that he is a breath of fresh air for Microsoft. Satya appears to be steering the company towards being more Open Source friendly and strategically moving towards, Azure, Machine Learning, and positioning for new technologies. That being said I still feel that the Microsoft eco-system is rich but often confusing and backwards in areas.
It seems to me that AWS wants you to go to them for cloud. Azure seems to give you the option of having hybrid cloud (to be honest it seems more like Internet of Cloud Things IoCT) and then GCP seems to have some very cool things such as SpannerDB, Tensorflow, and I believe native support for Kubernetes. In the way of Hybrid Cloud I think Microsoft might have the lead they showed a number of use cases for Azure Stack where Internet could be spotty but whenever connectivity came back online it could provide sense data back to Azure proper. (They used a shipping company and a mining company as their examples).
A couple of sessions I found interesting were:
The last one on the list was fantastic! So basically Chris Van Wesep talked about Project Honolulu, which is a project that provides HTTP access and maybe REST capabilities for Windows Server. I have often wondered why servers even need a GUI and hopefully this is the start of something more Linux like for Windows. In addition he talked about having a smaller footprint for the Windows Nano server that would allow it to work better in Docker which Microsoft says is their strategic direction.
Finally, I must say the conference was big, they had a large army to feed attendees, some sessions felt more like marketing, and there was a huge crowd, there were so many people in fact that at times the sessions were completely full. Luckily you could stream the content to you mobile devices. Also I noticed there were a huge disproportion of guys versus girls and you can see this reversal with the bathroom situation.