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Microsoft Build 2017 Recap: Day 1 (Part 1)

Day 1 of the Microsoft Build 2017 Conference revolved around pushing the envelope for cloud apps and technology through corporate level solutions, workplace safety, Cortana functionality, and new functions for Microsoft Azure. 

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The annual Microsoft Build 2017 conference took place this past week, revealing many new updates and features they hope will not only launch the Washington-based company beyond superstardom among the software development industry but also become the shining example of what is possible with personal computing and multimedia devices we use every day.

Instead of trying to reinvent the wheel in an already overly-saturated industry of technology, Microsoft has decided to take a much more holistic approach to software and hardware development. For example, instead of pursuing their own path in mobile (at least for the time being), Microsoft will be concentrating its efforts on developing apps and software that is compatible across ALL devices, which includes Apple and Android products as well.

The executives that spoke during the Microsft Build 2017 conference believe that the reality of the ecosystem is that people are going to use different devices for different lifestyles, and so the most sensible approach is one that strives to put Microsoft on every device in a person’s arsenal rather than restricting to Windows-only products.

On Day 1, CEO Satya Nadella and other executives focused on utilizing the Intelligent Cloud and the Intelligent Edge concepts to take Microsoft computing technology to new heights. The conference covered many new things coming for the software giant and lasted for three days. Below is a brief recap of the highlights of each day that will impact Windows and non-Windows users alike by the end of the year:

Cloud Apps for Industry

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Azure Cloud IoT apps can be used as an automated solution to help monitor machinery and make AI decisions about maintenance or even emergency shutdown to avoid costly accidents. Swedish manufacturer Sandvik Coromant developed an application to track the maintenance of some of their large industrial equipment as part of the Microsoft Build 2017 presentation.

In the wake of this industrial use of Azure cloud services, Microsoft unveiled Azure IoT Edge, a cross-platform runtime that enables cloud functionality to be exported, run, and managed directly from IoT devices remotely; this new system is compatible with both Windows and Linux systems.

Workplace Safety with AI

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Using sophisticated commodity cameras and Azure cloud technology, Microsoft can implement an advanced tracking system that can identify people, objects, actions, and workplace hazards in real time. The system notifies the right personnel via their smartphones of safety alerts, the needs of other employees, employees through facial recognition, and the location of important objects such as tools and safety equipment. Through this system, Microsoft predicts that it can eliminate most if not all workplace accidents through data gathering and prevention.

Cortana, Teams Meetings, and the Microsoft Graph

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Cortana, Microsoft’s digital assistant, can be programmed with developed skills to interact with Microsoft’s other systems such as setting schedules, notifying you of important upcoming events, and even giving you traffic conditions on the way to your important meeting. If you are running late, Cortana can connect you via Teams to your colleagues so you can still contribute remotely (if your vehicle has smart technology compatible with Cortana). All your data can be sent to any of your connected devices, so you are always up-to-date in the office, at home, or on the go.

Teams Meetings is also all-new with additional features that allow team members to bring data sheets, graphs, and other useful information on their screens as well as view team member profiles in real time to help with assigning tasks. Once the meeting has concluded, a summary of the relevant meeting information can be packaged into an email including videos, documents, images, and more.  

Stay tuned for part 2 of the Microsoft Build 2017 Day 1 recap, featuring all-new developments for Microsft Azure.

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