Friday, November 14, 2008

Intel SES 2008

I just got back from my 1st Intel conference. Software and Services Group (SSG) is where most of us “ISV focused” LRB software types live. SSG has a yearly conference for the top engineers, this year called Software Enabling Summit (SES) in recognition of our role in enabling the up-and-coming hardware platforms from Intel. It was held in downtown Portland this year, Nov 10-12. 3 days of "coolbits" at Intel.

Wow, was that intense! Where to start?

I had a cold and that limited my participation in the “after hours bonding sessions”, I mean the drinking at the bars (plural ). Don’t feel sorry for me, though. My limited participation meant I was both chipper in the morning and got to watch my fellow comrades come down in the am much the worse for wear. Some much more than others, J, you know who you are.

Ok, for real this time. :-) Renee James. She is the VP and General Manager who owns SSG. She gave a great keynote to open the conference, especially considering she had a cold and told us so. And her handling of the Q&A was to go right at the questions. Very refreshing.

The materials. My brain hurt each day from the upload of so much information. As well as the Intel tendency to start each day at 8:00am and end it at 6:00pm. Ouch. Don’t they have any respect for drinkers, I mean software engineers :-)? There was a lot of good LRB information. Much of it I already new, since my day job is LRB-focused. But there were some new bits (like how great LRB support for 64-bit will be). Offset continues to look great. And the Smoke demo looks good, with some excellent work combining L-system grammars, particle systems, and systematic exploitation of parallelism on the CPU, which means it will kick butt on LRB.

The people! I met execs that really get it, marketing people I can respect, and a set of engineers who are top, bar done. In terms of specific people, the opportunity to meet up again with Tom Forsyth and chat up Steve Junkins was great..It was excellent to meet Ian Lewis and Nat Duca. Mike Bunnell is amazing. And that’s before we get to the great hires Intel has made like Doug Binks and others on the extended team I am a part of. And I should mention the tool chain; I think Intel may surprise people there.

I get to work with this crew every day. I cannot imagine a better set of people to change the world with.