Speakers 2020


Adam Israel

National Director of Delivery

Fulcrum

TypeScript with React – Roadmap for better collaboration, productivity and maintainability.

BIO
Adam Israel is the National Director of Delivery for Fulcrum's On Shore and Near Shore software development teams. In this role, Adam oversees and empowers amazing teams of Agile Development professionals both in the United States and in South America. In addition to his internal responsibilities, Adam operates as a senior quality and relationship manager with Fulcrum clients across the United States.

DESCRIPTION

Our discussion will include a presentation on how TypeScript with React JS is trending, adopted, scalable, and challenging to learn. Specific areas of discussion will be focused on:
- Include adoption statistics
- Pros and Cons
- Current experience of Typescript Implementation at TCF Bank
- Getting Past the Learning Curve
- Partnering synergies between TCF and Fulcrum engineering teams

The goal is to enlighten the audience to typical challenges of implementing TypeScript with React as well as the benefit to an organization once the learning curve is over. Our presentation will outline the roadmap to a successful adoption, highlight why companies adopt it, pros and cons, and the keys to utilizing the right types of partnerships to execute on the technical difficulty.


Alex Thomas

Principal Data Scientist

C.H. Robinson

Delivering Enterprise-Scale Data Science at C.H. Robinson

BIO
Alex loves being at the bleeding edge of disruptive innovation, whether using next-generation sequencing to revolutionize healthcare, or artificial intelligence to transform a 115 year old, Fortune 500 logistics powerhouse. Today, Alex works on a team that has been tasked to use machine learning coupled to a cutting edge technology stack built on top of troves of (messy) supply chain data to provide retrospective and real-time insights for internal stakeholders and customers. Alex enjoys applying gradient boosted trees to most data science problems, wrangling Big Data, and coding fast-ish applications in Python.

DESCRIPTION

C.H. Robinson is a 115 year-old company undergoing a transformation. Its thousands of customers desire new technology products to execute complex logistics and supply chain needs. Therefore, C.H. Robinson is tasked with evolving existing relationships while transforming internal and external business processes. Here, we present an overview of how data science is being leveraged to uplift the underlying logistics and supply chain technology and highlight a case study on how this has been executed at an enterprise-scale to provide better real-time visibility to our customer's supply chain at C.H. Robinson.


Casie Siekman

Software Engineer & Instructor

Prime Digital Academy

“I work better alone”, and other lies you tell yourself

BIO
I'm a software developer based in Minneapolis|Saint Paul, and am passionate about making the Twin Cities and Midwest tech community more diverse and accessible to all. Along with that, I am also interested in communication, the meanings and motivations behind what we say, and how all that can bring us together (or, push us apart).

DESCRIPTION

Gone are the days of the stereotypical developer; one single person, typing furiously in a dark room, drinking copious amounts of caffeine. The caffeine part hasn't changed, but the rest of the experience has. No matter what role we take on in the tech industry, we are dependent on the help, knowledge and experience of others. Our output is the product of several minds coming together. This talk will focus not only on WHY it's so important to work together, but also HOW to work together.


Edan Schwartz

Senior Software Engineer

Optum

DCE: AWS Sandboxes Made Quick and Easy

BIO
Edan Schwartz is a Senior Software Engineer at Optum in Eden Prairie. He has spent the last two years trying to make life easier for other teams at Optum who are migrating to the cloud. In his free time, he intends to run and practice his harmonica, but usually ends up eating a bowl of ice cream and going to bed early. This is his second time speaking at Open Source North.

DESCRIPTION

How do you enable tens of thousands of engineers to explore the public cloud in a safe and cost-effective way? Disposable Cloud Environment (DCE) is an open-source account management tool used to facilitate public cloud learning and experimentation in isolated sandbox environments. In this session, we'll show how your organization can use DCE to provision and recycle public cloud accounts while implementing access and financial controls. Join us to learn about Optum’s success with DCE, how to get started, and how to contribute back.


Erica Prairie

Tech Talent Learning & Development Consultant

Target

All who wander in their career are not lost

BIO
Erica Prairie defines herself in the words of Albert Einstein, “I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.” Most recently, while embracing that curiosity, Erica has had the opportunity to onboard hundreds of engineers and help them navigate the corporate world in her role as a Learning & Development Consultant for Target Corp. Erica has also spent the past three years researching the work of Carol Dweck, the study of Growth Mindset and trying to help others learn their way forward to their best self. Erica received her MBA from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, Minnesota).

DESCRIPTION

How can breadth and range give you an advantage in an industry that often demands specialization? This session is for anyone who has felt inferior, hasn’t found a true passion yet, recently made a career move (at any age), or engineers with vast interests that lead to experiences often unrelated to a day job. In this talk we’ll focus on why breadth and range are an advantage for technologists, what these traits look like in leadership and in successful, yet non-linear career paths, and how you intentionally create more range to your skills, experience and perspectives.

Along with leaving this session with insights into your individual dimensions of difference, you’ll learn why the tech industry is the ideal place to merge or exit from any career path and how to build breadth and broad experience while working in an often hyper-specialized field. David Epstein, author of Range, says “As technology spins the world into vaster webs of interconnected systems in which each individual only sees a small part—we also need more… people who start broad and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives while they progress. People with range.”


Isaac Johnson

Principal Software Engineer

Medtronic

Full Stack CICD of Kubernetes Microservices using DevOps and IaC

BIO
Isaac has managed DevOps teams from Applied Biosystems, Vital Images and Ahead. As a Principal SW Engineer at Medtronic he's a key member of the DevOps group working the CRHF Organization on future cloud based versions of Carelink. He's passionate about process, DevOps, tooling, and Kubernetes and maintains a large blog of tooling guides at freshbrewed.science.

DESCRIPTION

Developing Kubernetes Microservices on the cloud or on-prem can be rapidly accelerated using Infrastructure as Code principals and proper CI/CD. We will look how we developed a future Carelink at Medtronic leveraging Azure Key Vault, Azure Kubernetes Service and Azure DevOps as well as illustrate Azure DevOps creating IaC with Terraform for a variety of clouds (including LKE, GKE and on-prem K3S). We'll cover traceability (via WI tracking and branch policies) through to full CI/CD pipelines to various downstream environments. [feel free to trim the rest of this]: this will include a demo of an IaC pipeline that creates an RBAC enabled AKS cluster that is then leveraged by a dotnet and java based microservice pipeline to deploy to a k8s namespace. We'll go over how we use Azure Key Vault as a key store between our IaC and Development Pipelines and lastly we will go over what Azure DevOps does well and where it has shortcomings. Demo will be scoped to the duration.


Jenna Pederson

founder & principal engineer

612 Software Foundry

Setting yourself up for failure: cultivating a culture where failure is celebrated

BIO
Jenna Pederson is a business owner, community builder, and technical entrepreneur with a passion for community and equity-building.\r\n\r\nAs founder and owner of 612 Software Foundry, Jenna helps entrepreneurs make their product ideas a reality — from starting with an idea and seeing the big picture, to aligning the technical strategy with the business strategy and positioning it for growth.\r\n\r\nJenna is a community builder at heart and is passionate about making space for more women in tech and entrepreneurship. She is a proud co-founder of Hack The Gap, led the Twin Cities Geekettes for a number of years, served on The Iron Yard Board of Advisors for Minneapolis, and served on the City of Saint Paul's Innovation Cabinet to develop a strategy for job and business growth around technology and innovation in Saint Paul. She currently serves on the Minnestar Board of Directors and is a founding member of WE*.\r\n\r\nJenna also holds a B.S. in Computer Science from the University of Minnesota Duluth and a M.S. in Software Engineering from the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

DESCRIPTION

I'm a failure. And though the word 'failure' has never really been a part of my vocabulary, I've been successful at it my whole life. From failed businesses to taking down an entire datacenter with a single SQL statement, I'll lay it all out there. I'll share my failures, the lessons I've learned, how to set yourself up for failure, and how to have fun doing it.


Justin Grammens

Co-Founder

Lab651

Deep Learning with TensorFlow

BIO
Justin leads our team of mobile & web applications and data science engineers. Justin lives at the intersection of emerging technology and leading communities on the Internet of Things. He has been building mobile applications and cloud-based software solutions for more than 20 years with clients ranging from startups to Fortune 100 companies. Justin is a Co-founder of IoT Fuse, a 501(c)(3) non-profit with the mission to position Minnesota as a leader in connected products and is an adjunct professor at the University of St. Thomas teaching a graduate-level course on the Internet of Things.

DESCRIPTION

TensorFlow is arguably the best and most deployed open-source machine learning platform today. Since being released in 2017 by Google, it's quickly become the go-to choice for creating neural networks and applying Artificial Intelligence in production applications. In this talk, we'll start from the beginning on how we got to where are today with Deep Learning and Convolutional Neural Networks, how it's different from traditional programming paradigms and dive into a few examples using TensorFlow and an open-source web application called Jupyter Notebooks. You will leave this session having hands-on experience training a model with a public image data set, learn the configuration pitfalls and limitations of AI and being able to test and validate the accuracy of the model using a validation data set. If you've ever wanted a quick dive into Machine Learning and using open source tools like TensorFlow and Jupyter Notebooks, this is the session for you.


Kevin Truckenmiller

Lead DevOps Engineer

3M

Why is it taking so long?

BIO
Kevin Truckenmiller is a DevOps engineer at 3M. His passions are containers, microservices, and test-driven development. He is the creator of IndieTools, a website for helping musicians calculate their royalty streams.

DESCRIPTION

Speed of developer iteration is the single most important factor of how fast a technology company can move. How do you improve your speed to market by a factor of 10x? How can you improve onboarding new software engineers by 440x? These numbers sound fake, but they are metrics we've gathered by starting with the user - the developer. Join 3M in discussing how we are enabling time to market with open source CI/CD software at scale.


Kristin Schneider

Early Tech Talent Program Manager

Target

All who wander in their career are not lost

BIO
Kristin Schneider is passionate about supporting young professionals as they bridge from college to career and brings experience from both sides of that exciting journey. She’s currently leading Target’s Technology Leadership Program, a unique rotational program for new engineers starting at Target that onboards over 100 recent graduates every year. Previously a tech and STEM education administrative leader, Kristin spent over eight years in higher education leadership roles. First, as an Assistant Professor of Marketing & Management and most recently working as a Director and Career Coach for Masters in Technology and Business Analytics students at the University of Minnesota. Kristin received her MBA from the University of St. Thomas (St. Paul, Minnesota).

DESCRIPTION

How can breadth and range give you an advantage in an industry that often demands specialization? This session is for anyone who has felt inferior, hasn’t found a true passion yet, recently made a career move (at any age), or engineers with vast interests that lead to experiences often unrelated to a day job. In this talk we’ll focus on why breadth and range are an advantage for technologists, what these traits look like in leadership and in successful, yet non-linear career paths, and how you intentionally create more range to your skills, experience and perspectives.

Along with leaving this session with insights into your individual dimensions of difference, you’ll learn why the tech industry is the ideal place to merge or exit from any career path and how to build breadth and broad experience while working in an often hyper-specialized field. David Epstein, author of Range, says “As technology spins the world into vaster webs of interconnected systems in which each individual only sees a small part—we also need more… people who start broad and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives while they progress. People with range.”


Marissa Crosby

Product Manager

Optum

DCE: AWS Sandboxes Made Quick and Easy

BIO
Marissa Crosby is a Product Manager at Optum working to accelerate cloud adoption through innovative developer-facing products. Prior to joining the product world, she was a developer on various initiatives - anything from traditional portals to GIS applications. She is passionate about crafting an excellent developer experience through empowered DevOps teams, that operate in harmony with the business. Marissa holds a bachelor’s degree in Information Systems from St. Cloud State University. In her free time, she loves spending time outdoors - kayaking and camping.

DESCRIPTION

How do you enable tens of thousands of engineers to explore the public cloud in a safe and cost-effective way? Disposable Cloud Environment (DCE) is an open-source account management tool used to facilitate public cloud learning and experimentation in isolated sandbox environments. In this session, we'll show how your organization can use DCE to provision and recycle public cloud accounts while implementing access and financial controls. Join us to learn about Optum’s success with DCE, how to get started, and how to contribute back.


Matt Meyers

Lead Cloud Engineer

Optum

DCE: AWS Sandboxes Made Quick and Easy

BIO
Matt Meyers is a Lead Cloud Engineer at Optum working to drive public cloud adoption across his organization. He joined the company in 2019 to lead development on Disposable Cloud Environment - an open-source tool for managing developer sandbox accounts in Amazon Web Services. Matt considers himself a generalist when it comes to software engineering and enjoys working in any language across all parts of the stack. Outside of work, he is an avid gamer, rock climber, and outdoorsperson.

DESCRIPTION

How do you enable tens of thousands of engineers to explore the public cloud in a safe and cost-effective way? Disposable Cloud Environment (DCE) is an open-source account management tool used to facilitate public cloud learning and experimentation in isolated sandbox environments. In this session, we'll show how your organization can use DCE to provision and recycle public cloud accounts while implementing access and financial controls. Join us to learn about Optum’s success with DCE, how to get started, and how to contribute back.


Paul DeLaria

Partner Solution Architect

AWS

Enterprise Transformation – Voice of Customer

BIO
Paul DeLaria is a Partner Solution Architect for AWS. Paul consults with clients and partners on enterprise-scale computing solutions using next-generation technologies. He works directly with clients to develop flexible and resilient cloud architectures that address customer business problems and accelerate the adoption of services. As a business-oriented technologist, Paul is uniquely able to communicate the value proposition of technical architecture by clearly connecting technology to measurable business outcomes for enterprises

DESCRIPTION

Executives introducing strategic initiatives (eg: building a new business, retiring data center) dependent on wide scale adoption of a new technology (eg: cloud) or practices (eg: agile), have encountered a number of challenges executing on these transformations (eg: Enterprise Transformation) . Business and technology teams undergoing these shifts face challenges changing governance models, developing new skills, and evolving established organizational structures and workflows. Customer executives have asked AWS for guidance on people and process transformation in addition to technology. (example: “How should I structure my organization?
- What kinds of roles will I need?
- Can you help me build a DevOps organization?
- I am bought into AWS, now how do I accelerate migrations to AWS aligned with my established enterprise standards.

This presentation will outline some best practices to help answer these transformation objectives and questions.


Scott Affeldt

VP Engineering TCF Digital Team

TCF Bank

TypeScript with React – Roadmap for better collaboration, productivity and maintainability.

BIO
Scott Affeldt is responsible for the development and engineering practice on TCF's Digital Banking Platform. This includes driving development efforts to allow TCF customers to bank where, how, and when they want in support of the product vision. Scott has been at TCF for over 4 years and precious spent over 16 years at Target in the Twin Cities.

DESCRIPTION

Our discussion will include a presentation on how TypeScript with React JS is trending, adopted, scalable, and challenging to learn. Specific areas of discussion will be focused on:
- Include adoption statistics
- Pros and Cons
- Current experience of Typescript Implementation at TCF Bank
- Getting Past the Learning Curve
- Partnering synergies between TCF and Fulcrum engineering teams

The goal is to enlighten the audience to typical challenges of implementing TypeScript with React as well as the benefit to an organization once the learning curve is over. Our presentation will outline the roadmap to a successful adoption, highlight why companies adopt it, pros and cons, and the keys to utilizing the right types of partnerships to execute on the technical difficulty.


Senthil Kumaran

CTO

virtuwell

ML Practice with MLOps Principles

BIO
Senthil Kumaran is currently serving as CTO for Virtuwell, a HealthPartners company. He is a pragmatic leader, architect, designer and developer in Web and Mobile technology in developing Internet, e-commerce, and multi-tier client-server applications including healthcare, highly secure financial applications, manufacturing, retail, and consumer websites. He is part of HealthPartners AI and Machine Learning and Enterprise architecture group and a key contributor to the HIPPA/HITEC security and a conference presenter on Predictive Data Analytics, Rules, and Web/Mobile initiatives. He is passionate about investing in both stocks and real estate and spends a lot of time analyzing cricket matches around the world. He received his MBA from St Thomas University, Minneapolis and Masters in Electronics Engineering from Bharathiar University, India.

DESCRIPTION

Machine learning (ML) has achieved considerable success in recent years and many companies have started using it in Production. Every company wants to get on this bandwagon to stay competitive and is challenged not only to choose the right technology but also to optimize the model by continuously deploying and observing. This talk will start with a strategic direction that we took at Virtuwell to increase operational efficiency and improve business outcomes. The biggest challenge is how to get your data analysts, data scientists, software engineers and DevOps engineers to work in an agile fashion to pre-process data, create models, modify key data sets and deploy them to production and continuously optimize it. We will cover how we leverage MLflow to manage the ML lifecycle, including experimentation, reproducibility, and deployment. We will share the key lessons that we learned on moving from DevOps to MLOps model. Lastly, we will dive into why monitoring and relearning is critical for model deployments. Virtuwell is a 24/7 online clinic that helps customers get treatment plans for everyday illnesses and has increased its user base multi-fold year after year, for the past 9+ years with a 98%+ customer satisfaction.