February 24, 2017

Scanning for AI Developers and Data Scientists at DeveloperWeek

Hey there! The Bonsai team recently got back from DeveloperWeek in San Francisco and I wanted to give a bit of a recap in case you missed us at the event. DeveloperWeek boasts an 8,000 person convention, 50+ events, and a hackathon, but we were most keen to see who the AI Dev, Robotics Dev, and Data Dev tracks would bring our way. It was my first time being in front of a general audience since joining Bonsai a few months ago and I had a fantastic time with the rest of the team staffing the booth! Our smiling faces are shown below from day one, before the expo opened.

‍Our booth staff from left to right: Keen Browne, Katherine McAuliffe, Kelsi Cooke, and James Carrington

Keen Browne, Head of Product and Co-Founder of Bonsai gave a talk on Monday about A Fundamentally Different Approach to Building Intelligent Systems that had a great turnout. If you missed the talk, fortunately it was similar to one Mark Hammond gave at O’Reilly AI that has previously been recorded.

‍AI developers weren’t the only people with cool use cases!

One of the best things about DeveloperWeek was the wide array of people we talked to, from students just getting started with CS to CEOs, and everyone in between! We spoke to a variety of people with interesting use cases for our product, and many of them were things I never would have thought you could use Bonsai for!

I spoke to one guy who managed movie theaters throughout India and Singapore who had a great optimization problem on his hands for which movies to show, for how long, and what staff should be placed where/when. AI could help him understand what the data trends show regardless of assumptions. For example, it might seem obvious to show more romantic comedies on Valentine's Day, but the data would surprise us and show that horror movies are actually more popular.

Even small companies have a lot to gain from an AI product like ours. Take for example a local bay area flower shop. I spoke to one of a handful of their employees about how they only have one developer, but they are interested in using machine learning to optimize their flower route delivery and flower sourcing! They were really excited to try out a platform that would get them up and running with AI quickly, without having to hire a data scientist.

If optimization problems intrigue you, come check out our Use Cases page.

‍At the end of each day, we gathered up a bunch of attendees, and raffled off Amazon Echos! Congratulations again to Keirra (left) and Taylor (right)!

“So what does Bonsai do, exactly?”

We heard this a lot. The text-version of what I repeated probably hundreds of times is succinctly written on our products page. When we talk to developers familiar with databases, it’s easy for us to say that Bonsai is to AI as SQL is to databases. We’re abstracting away the lower level aspects of AI and bringing intelligent systems to a broader audience of developers than just AI developers. But with so many students coming by the booth and developers unfamiliar with AI or machine learning, we also had a great time teaching folks what AI is trying to achieve.

Do you like like us?

The other biggest thing people asked about at DeveloperWeek was whether they could embark on AI journey with us! We actually just posted up a new job description for a Systems Engineer, and we’d love for you to check out our careers page and email us if you see something you like! Even if you don’t see a job description that perfectly lines up with your hopes and dreams, you can drop us an email with your resume and a bit about what you’d like to contribute to Bonsai.

Where to find Bonsai next!

Strata + Hadoop World, March 14-16 in San Jose, CA is our next event to share our love of AI and talk to the community! While we won’t be doing a speaking slot for this conference, we will have something extra special for anyone that comes by our booth!

‍Our newest hotness to be revealed at Strata + Hadoop World. Are you ready for Bonsai’s “Make it BRAIN” shirts?

Until next time, you can find me @KatMcCat on Twitter or Bonsai @BonsaiAI and over on the forums if you want to tell us what you thought of DeveloperWeek!

Always. Be. Learning.

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