EnterConf Belfast- Day 1

Firstly, to the quote of the day “We all have to avoid software that epically sucks”.

Me at the Insight Stage!
Me at the Insight Stage!

Today I attended day one of the Enter Conf in Belfast, which for those who don’t know it, is a spin off conference from Web Summit focused at the Enterprise aspect of our tech world. On initial entry, I must admit I was really proud of the Enter Conf team for choosing the venue. It had lost of lot of history associated with it, being in the heart of the titanic quarter where the Titanic was built, and for its time, was an “Enterprise ship”! This created a chilled out atmosphere which was a nice differential from the Web Summit to be held again in November. It was full of detailed and focused meetups and conversations, and did a great job at giving a different experience of what a conference can provide. Kudos.
There were two stages, named Center and Insights, with startup exhibits, food and coffee stands to ensure everyone was nicely refreshed throughout the day. Whilst I wont cover all talks, I have picked out a few to cover to show the types of elements being discussed.

The first one Ill mention was by Lukas Biewald of Crowdflower, entitled “Processing Open Data”, who spoke extensively on their efforts to clean up the data, and also looking into elements of data moderation. It really resonated with me as I am interested and developing data cleanse frameworks over the past number of years, and always struggle with the data pollution that skews our insight. Quote from Lukas “If you want to improve your algorithm, just add more data”. Lukas is in action below.

Lukas Biewald of Crowdflower
Lukas Biewald of Crowdflower

Stephen McKeown from AnalyticsEngines and Amir Orad from Sisense were also in a panel on “Democratising Data”, which focused the talk on ensuring companies of all sizes speed up their analytics creates a more level playing field for startups competing with Enterprise. Quote from this section “Bring data into your companies DNA”

Stephen McKeown and Amir Orad
Stephen McKeown and Amir Orad

There were a few familiar faces present, with my former EMC colleague and mentor Steve Todd amongst the speakers, on “Economic Value of Data” (check out Steve’s blog here for more fascinating content in this topic. Steve spoke on the Center stage, and it was great to see this topic present, as it really stood out as a conversation we all should be having. Steve gave a similar talk in Cork for an it@Cork event we organised in February, and it was great to see the advancement in Steve’s research in this area. Steve spoke on “Valuation Business Processes” and categories within that being M&A, Asset Valuation, Data Monetisation, Data Sale and Data Insurance. I wont spoil the rest, as I am sure Steve will blog on this soon.

Steve Todd speaking on Economic Value of Data
Steve Todd speaking on Economic Value of Data

Also on Center Stage, in one of talks to close out the evening, Barak Regev, Head of Google Cloud Platform – EMEA spoke on “Architecting the Cloud”. It was great to get an update on their vision, and Barak showed Googles vision to “Build Whats Next”

IMG_1526 - Copy
Barack Regev from Google – Build Whats Next

And to end on a great quote from to James Petter VP EMEA for Pure Storage – “Security should be like an onion, it should be layered, and you cant reach the center without breaching a layer”

The day brought many epic conversations from over 10 different nationalities, including a walk back to the city with the visionary Teemu Arina. His talk on Biohacking was incredible insightful. It spoke to the challenge around humans tracking their life through Self Quantisation. Teemu took me though his idea for how humans can do a better job on hacking their bodies for information and using that to improve life quality. Teemu’s book is here!

So now, its off to the night dinner, drink a beer two and to build a few more contacts! In the morning, it looks like a few good talks on Machine Intelligence will start the trend for another awesome day!

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