Tag Archives: Big Data

March 2019 Meeting – Tech’s Impact on Agriculture

Register for the March 14th meeting.

Join us on March 14 as ITKAN dives deeper into the Netflix techumentary series Liquid Science with Tech’s Growing Impact on Agriculture and the Built Environment. The Midwest is renowned for our soil, crop yields and feeding the world, but in the face of more unpredictable weather, increasing moisture, and rising global temperatures the agricultural industry as well as urban centers are turning to tech as an ally to adjust how farmers and city/suburb dwellers alike are adjusting to these dramatic shifts.

Microsoft and other tech giants have made increasingly significant investments in this critical global dynamic in areas of AI, Big Data and supporting the growing sophistication of farming methods to help feed the world. We’ll look at how their framework AI for Earth can optimize the use of arable land in the face of environmental change. Jim Angel, recently retired State Climatologist for IL and professor at UIUC, will join us to discuss the technology associated with gathering data for the recent Midwest section of an environmental impact report. Closer to home, Chicago’s Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) is helping to address the impact that more volatile, wet weather patterns have on Chicago and other large urban environments through programs like Rain Ready.

With spring around the corner this is a timely topic. Join us as ITKAN gets closer to the land we love, and the tech we love!

Jim Angel, Illinois State Climatologist, worked at the Illinois State Water Survey (ISWS) since 1997. As state climatologist, Angel conducted research projects on topics related to weather and climate, particularly drought, extreme rainfall events, Great Lakes storms, and weather impacts. He also maintained an extensive archive of historical climate data dating back to the mid-1800s.

March 14, 2019
5-7:00 p.m.

Aon Tower
Microsoft Technology Center
200 E Randolph Street, 2nd floor
Chicago, IL 60601


Megatrends & Education.

ITKAN kicked off our year of IT Megatrends in a big way at our January meeting!  We began exploring mobile computing principles, products, advantages and challenges. Jeff Seagard, a senior technology architect for Microsoft, led our January meeting to start ITKAN on the Megatrends path. He will be back to drill a bit deeper in the mobile sphere for our February 14th meeting.

ITKAN 2013 - Megatrends

ITKAN 2013 – Megatrends

First quarter 2013 – Jan, Feb, Mar – Mobile Technology, (Jeff Seagard, Microsoft)

Second quarter 2013 – Apr, May, Jun – Social Media and Business (Todd Nilson, Social Syntax)

Third quarter – July, Aug, Sept – Big Data (Jeff Seagard, Ross LaForte)

Fourth quarter – Oct, Nov, Dec – Cloud Computing – (Chris Kabat)

One of ITKAN’s charter members, Joe Blasi, feels that Megatrends is a framework that traditional IT education could learn from…

“Education needs to be better fitted into today’s fast paced IT, and needs to take a page from the traditional trades with some kind of apprenticeship system”, says Blasi. He also believes a more hands-on approach is more effective, especially for IT prospects and workers that have disabilities. “The older education system is left behind when it comes to offering more hands on work.”

Each topic will begin with a high-level overview, then drill down to more granular or applied knowledge, finally culminating (in the 3rd month of each quarter) with a more innovative, creative delivery for student attendees who have attended each of the previous 2 sessions on that topic. This could include an industry case study, an exercise that applies some of the knowledge delivered/gleaned from the earlier sessions, or some other innovative approach.

Join us in February at the Microsoft Technology Center at 5 Pm on every 2nd Thursday of each month. Click here to reserve your spot for our second Megatrends meeting!!