Thomas Desmond Headshot
Thomas Desmond
Sitecore Developer Advocate

What I am excited about after attending Visual Studio Live 2018

Visual Studio Live Conference logo

Visual Studio Live 2018 in Las Vegas just passed. With my organization's support, I was able to attend and have a great time learning about all things .Net, Microsoft, and More!

I wanted to share my personal highlights from my trip and what has me most excited.

What has me excited:

Azure Bot ServiceAzure Bot Service

The first session I attended at Visual Studio Live was an all-day workshop called "Add Intelligence to Your Solutions with AI, Bots, and More". This workshop led by Brian Randall had topic points around Azure's bot services, various cognitive services, as well as their DevOps techniques.

I was already familiar with the Azure cognitive services but never heard of the bot service. This talk was eye-opening. It has gotten me even more enthusiastic about using bots and cognitive services together.

My favorite part of the talk was using bots. It showed how setting up a simple bot could be done in minutes. I have a bot I'm working on now and plan to add in text analysis for even more Azure power.

With the following tutorial Create a bot with bot service, you can have your very own chatbot set up in minutes. This simple tutorial opens many possibilities for automation of customer interactions, providing better support, and overall better online experiences.

I encourage you to make your own bot, a lot is possible even with the free payment tiers on Azure. And I will share my further exploration of bots and cognitive services.

Azure Machine Learning StudioAzure Machine Learning Studio

Machine learning has become a popular topic. It has been something that I have always wanted to learn more about. I was excited to attend this session and learned a lot from James McCaffrey.

This session was an introduction to using Azure Machine Learning Studio but nothing on the technicalities of machine learning. We used the platform to analyze Iris flower data. By using various measurements of the Iris flowers, we could predict the species variety.

Unfortunately, all the technical aspects were glossed over but the power of the engine was shown. With existing data, and knowledge of machine learning settings, one can start doing analysis in less than an hour.

I hope to, in the coming months get a better understanding of the machine learning details. Get to understand and use the true power of Azure Machine Learning Studio.

There was plenty of other great content provided at Visual Studio Live 2018 in Las Vegas. I am bringing back knowledge to my team and my students. Visual Studio Live is a conference I want to attend again.

If you liked this check out my post about exciting notes after attending Microsoft Build 2017