I often get asked, "Why does InfernoRed send their entire team to Microsoft Build?" That's usually followed by a comment about the expense or the time away from client work. For those wondering, here's why we go and what is important while we are there.
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE TEAM
For InfernoRed the mission and purpose for attending Build is team building. We invite everyone from InfernoRed to Build so we can spend time together in person, learn more about each other, and geek out on new tech. With tools like Slack, Skype, and Trello we work collaboratively all the time. The tools are so good, its easy to forget that we are not all physically in the same location while we are working. That's all fine and good but you can't replace the bonding that takes place when everyone is physically together. What's more is that our team loves the InfernoRed culture, so its pretty cool to see everyone together wearing IRT gear. There is a true sense of camaraderie and team that is easily seen when we finally pose for that iconic and traditional "Picture by the //build/ sign" outside of Moscone Center. If you see an InfernoRed team member wearing IRT gear, stop and say hello!
Although InfernoRed works closely with Microsoft and we often have the opportunity to work with tools and platforms early, there is always something new at Build. This year we we are hoping to hear more about Xbox, Visual Studio, and HoloLens, to name a few. Last year the iOS and Android bridge technology seemed to come out of nowhere. Unfortunately, not everything announced last year will survive. According to Microsoft, only a few of the bridges are moving forward. However as Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, alluded to in a tweet earlier this year, we expect to hear a lot more on building UWP applications for the XBox One during Build.
One of the most important things that we do at Build is network with amazing developers, product teams, and customers. It's not often that you get so many people who are focused on building cool software together in the same place. Our team loves the opportunity to talk to other developers about their craft. It's fun to hear the true geek come out of the team when they are talking about how they would architect a piece of code or how they would use a newly announced platform tool or feature. It really gets interesting when you add things like HoloLens and Xbox, for example the relatively new debate on whether or not we should be building consumer-focused holographic applications or focus on industry; Or questioning what's going to happen to app ecosystem once building apps for Xbox will be as easy as it is for Windows 10 and Windows Phone. Better yet - what's the future of Windows Phone in general? All of this conversation is better when we are together as a team at Build.
Very often our clients look to us to help them understand the news and announcements that come out of an event like Build. "Why should we care about Xbox and UWP?" "What is really going on with HoloLens and what is Microsoft talking about?" "What's the future of Windows and what should we be doing today and thinking about for tomorrow?" Many of our clients attend Build and it's the perfect opportunity to walk through their scenarios and talk to the Microsoft product teams about how Microsoft technology can be better used to add business value to our customers' products and projects. This year is no different. At least three of our clients will be at Build. A former colleague once told me that "you should never pass up an opportunity to spend time with the client."
Microsoft Build is a great place to do just that.
About the Author
Scott Lock is an 20 year software development professional with a passion for mobile software development and a Co-Founder of InfernoRed. Awarded a Microsoft MVP in C# for 5 years and as President of the Capital Area .Net Users Group for the last 14 years, Scott is a recognized influencer in the Washington D.C. information technology community. Scott was also a Software Developer manager at the American Red Cross and was responsible for the technical development of the Online Donation System for the Red Cross during some of the largest disasters ever responded to by ARC. Scott resides in Ashburn, Virginia with his wife and 2 children.