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Speaker Spotlight: Taylor Cowan (Recognize Shapes in the Cloud)

taylor-cowanTaylor Cowan loves to propose new applications, research specific areas of emerging technology (ex. Semantic Web, OWL), work with development teams to solve strategic problems, assist with developer communities, and co-ordinate research with vendors. Taylor is a research scientist, architect guru, and former music student. He has worked for many different companies and recently moved into a new role at Microsoft.

Session Talk: Recognizing the Shapes in the Cloud–Cloud Computing for Designers & Developers

Initially “cloud computing” met with some skepticism, but it’s here to stay and most major players in the web industry are offering products. Many are still wondering how they fit in, and what their areas of interest look like once deployed to the cloud. My talk will focus on how cloud computing can make our jobs easier, whether it’s quickly providing an online demo for clients or making it possible for everyday people to access large compute resources and only pay for the amount of time they use. Windows Azure places the power previously only in the hands of systems engineers within reach of any designer, developer, or hobbyist, furthermore, it allows us to ease customers into online deployments with very little upfront investment. Windows Azure is a complete cloud platform that includes storage of data and binary assets (images), ability to run worker processes, and deliver web technologies of various flavors (.net, Java, PHP to name a few). The uninitiated will leave this talk with a firm grasp of what cloud computing is all about and why is important for all us to know. They will see how familiar “shapes” in web development are applied to cloud computing. Experts will leave knowing enough about Windows Azure to deploy their first application…heck…it’s so easy some may even be deploying their first app during the talk provided we have good wifi.

Some Other Things About Taylor Cowan

Taylor’s wife, Lois, is extremely nice. I met her only once at a holiday party. Taylor and his bride danced, joked, and laughed with my wife, Sue, and I for several hours. Also, Taylor and I worked on several projects over the years. For me, Taylor personifies Big Design (a consistent learner and a humble person with loads of smarts).

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