Microsoft Ignite 2017 – How The Keynote Was Actually The Key To Many Things!
Beginning on 25th September in Orlando, the Microsoft Ignite 2017 conference was an epic tech conference like it always is. Enthusiasts from all over the world would be getting the talk of their lives from Satya Nadella, the CEO of Microsoft, and many other members of the Modern Workplace Team.
The first brief hour itself was a kickstarter of many things in many ways. The techies, one after one, introduced to the world, a horde of new concepts that are going to drive businesses, regardless of its type.
The keynote of Microsoft Ignite was a show of the incredible progress of technology and how this whole process can be furthered.
Like Satya puts it, “this week is about bringing this group of change agents who are building the future. Because, while choosing to be in the technology, you serve as the change agent for your organizations.”
Let’s dive into the various key concepts one at a time:
The ability to achieve perfection in any business lies in the virtue of 3 things: Empower People, Inclusive Design, Build Trust. These three elements compositely form Timeless Values which acts like a fuel for the organizational growth.
Satya emphasized on it saying, “one of the other things that we in particular as technologies and decision makers will have to keep in mind are the timeless values that drive.”
Timeless values that drive what we do:
- Empower people – “Every piece of technology should help embellish the capability of human beings.” He went on to explain that we definitely want more productivity and efficiency, but we do not want to degrade humanity
- Inclusive design – “We want technology to provide new levels of inclusiveness so that we can bring more people and make sure that there is no bias built in technology”
- Build trust – “Trust in how we secure data, how we ensure privacy and the control and transparency that we build all around”
Satya emphasized on how Microsoft’s mission statement allows the company and its various resources to create such projections and work towards its achievement.
Intelligent Cloud and Intelligent Edge
The CEO-cum-speaker explained the integration of cloud and infrastructure application devices, which is soon going to be tomorrow’s reality.
“All the experiences that you are going to see that we are going to demo throughout the day and all the other keynotes are by nature going to be multi devices and multi sense. You may start in one device using speech and end in another device using ink”, in the words of Satya.
All experiences in all infrastructure applications devices are going to be infused with AI. Innovations like Natural language, Speech, Computer Vision, are all going to be a part of what we do and what we expect.
Companies need a rapid ecosystem, or in simpler terms, a modern workplace that promotes collaboration and provides area of scalability, without cutting down on the culture it follows. That can be achieved with the help of a digital transformation.
Four pillars of digital transformation
- Empower employees
- Engage customers
- Optimize operations
- Transform products
These digital outcomes can be achieved when you ask the following questions about your business:
- How are we using technology to improve the empowerment of our own employees?
- How are we connecting with customers?
- How are we optimizing operations end to end?
- How are we change the very nature of our products and their business models?
A Modern Workplace with Microsoft 365
The Microsoft 365 has become more powerful and capable than ever. It is supposedly about to bring a new culture to work, support technologists to endeavor and unlock the creativity in every element inside the organization.
Satya and team explained the new capabilities of Microsoft 365 with examples of Mixed Reality.
How collaboration can take an upper notch with the new mixed reality feature of Microsoft 365 was explained by taking an example from the Ford company.
By taking one of the car models, they would go on to explain how different teams of the car manufacturing company such as Marketing, Sales, Design, Research, etc.,can collaborate real time and suggest changes that can be seen as well as implemented simultaneously. Mixed reality can allow different teams to collaborate without having to be in the required location.
Such a technology can greatly help in achieving deadlines, minimizing costs, and do much more.
Hinting to its efficacy, Satya said, “it’s awesome for this new medium of mixed reality come to life. It’s not about any device or its capability. It’s really about this rich cloud service in Microsoft 365 that helps orchestrate a new level of collaboration inside of your organization.”
Satya Nadella stressed on the limited usage of Artificial Intelligence or Machine Learning and how it bounds us to explore deeply. “If we are to bring a change, then there must be a change in the culture inside the organization.”
Dynamic 365 – A new platform to build AI-First business applications!
Dynamic 365 is a platform to create the systems of intelligence, for sales field service, customer service, talent, operations, as well as spanning these multiple functions.
The architectural underpinning of the unique application development platform is build on top of Microsoft 365 and LinkedIn.
The unresolved challenges of the world, such as energy loss, global warming, food production, or medicine, etc., can be tackled if we could create a truly scalable quantum computer. Since such kind of computer does not exists currently, Satya talked on the plausibilities of creating one.
To contemplate the possibilities of building such a technology, he invited a small group of people that included stalwarts from areas like Maths, Fundamental Physics, and Computer Science. Together, they talked about the plausibility of creating a simulation of a quantum computer.
The keynote was an insight to the progress Microsoft brings every year in the arena of future technology. I will share the knowledge of many other important sessions in my next blog.