What a weekend! EnergizeIT is the most upbeat, motivational, energetic event Microsoft Canada puts on all year long and it marks the end of my team's "season" of events and tours across Canada.
However, EnergizeIT is different from other events we put on, in that there are several different tracks on several different topics, the majority of speakers are not employed by Microsoft, it's a Saturday event and although there is great technical information, the main objective is to motivate and inspire the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) community. From the feedback I've received so far and just from the vibes I got from the event, I believe we succeeded.
I mean, let's face it, ICT workers are often thought to be the grunt workers and, while technically savvy, not necessarily able to make the leap to align what they know about technology with business goals to add to the business bottom line. But, imho, that thinking is faulty. Sure, there are still people working in the ICT field that only want to do what they've always done but there is a growing number of professionals who love technology, love what they do and are inspired to grow themselves and their skills to the next level. These are the people who will be the stars in their companies and the trusted resources for their clients. These are the people who freely give back to the IT community, and in turn, engage and inspire others to reach beyond what they thought they were capable of. I myself was inspired and encouraged as I had the opportunity to talk with several such people over the past few days.
I firmly believe that this it's these type of individuals that will shape and build the future of ICT in Canada. Well, actually, I firmly believe that it's these type of individuals that *must* shape and build the future of ICT in Canada if we're going to compete internationally, be a technology leader and attract more young people to this industry.
Kudos to everyone that made this year's EnergizeIT event what it was - the organizers, the speakers, and most of all, the attendees.
For post event resources, including speaker powerpoint presentations and links to labs, go to www.energizeit.ca.
For more information about what the event was like, check out this blog post from Miguel Carrasco, a software developer from Winnipeg (which includes a video of the opening welcome) and this video montage from Gheorghe Curelet-Balan from the Waterloo region in Ontario. Oh - one thing you probably should know - there was an Anime conference going on at the same time as our event, hence the wild costumes!