Staying Up to Date Is Key for Those in IT: Here are Top Events to Attend

people attending conference

When you’re in the information technology or another tech-based field, it’s important to continually stay up to date on the latest tech tips and trends if you want to grow your venture and build a good reputation. This is where attending key events comes in handy. Read on for the rundown on some top conferences you should try to get to over the coming year.


One of the events that’s top of the list for many new graduates of undergraduate online degrees in technology and business fields is SXSW. The festival goes for about nine days and is held in Austin, Texas each March.

This renowned annual event, which has helped many ventures to get off the ground over the years, is popular mainly because of its variety: The event brings together all sorts of people from all sorts of backgrounds, business areas and specialties and enables attendees to see how interesting discoveries can be made when genres and diverse expertise is blended.

At the conference, 24 different programming tracks are covered, across fields like technology, design, VR and AR, social impact, health, style, music, government, culture, sports, film and news and journalism.

VR World

Virtual reality is one of the top growing fields in tech, so you should definitely consider making your way to a VR event. One of the best is VR World. While only fairly new — it recently ran for its third year — this is the event of its kind in Europe.

Held over two days in London, U.K. each May, the conference and exhibition is focused on the impact of virtual, augmented and mixed reality beyond gaming applications. The event boasts over 100 different speakers talking across four fields, and it attracts thousands of attendees. At VR World there is plenty of case study–led content to take in, and networking opportunities abound.

Machine Intelligence Summit

Another booming area right now is artificial intelligence and machine learning. If you’re keen to learn more about these fields and all their various applications, make your way to Hong Kong in June. The annual Machine Intelligence Summit is in its fifth year in 2018 and attracts big-name speakers from some of the world’s largest organizations. For example, you may get the chance to listen to representatives from firms like Alibaba, NASA, DHL, DBS Bank, HSBC and GogoVan, to name a few. During the summit you can also hear talks on a variety of topics, including education, automation, business, healthcare and finance.

Microsoft Build

Microsoft is the biggest and most well-established name in tech, so you need to get to one of their big events. If possible, attend the firm’s annual developer event, Microsoft Build, which runs for three days and has been operating since 2011.

Here you can hear some of the most innovative and respected people in technology discuss what’s to come in the future, perform demos and participate in panel discussions. There are also numerous hands-on labs to attend. Microsoft Build is held in Seattle, Washington and is attended by over 15,000 people each year.

Open Source Summit North America

Another great event for developers is the Open Source Summit North America. Hosted in Vancouver, Canada, this is one of the largest open-source technical conferences on the continent and attracts 2,000-plus developers as well as operators and community leadership professionals from all over.

The event goes for three days and is held in August. Attend, and you’ll get the chance to convene with other people in the field to share ideas, research and opinions, and to collaborate and learn about the newest developments in the area of open-source tech. The summit particularly covers Linux, cloud computing and various specialist fields.

Gartner Security and Risk Management Summit

When you’re in the IT business, security and risk management is always a consideration. As such, it’s worth putting a trip to the Gartner Security and Risk Management Summit on your bucket list. Another U.S. event, it’s held in National Harbor each June for four days.

Attend the summit (one of the world’s top events for risk-management and cybersecurity leaders) to hear all the latest thoughts on emerging technologies and new threats in areas such as AI, machine learning, analytics and blockchain.

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