The Call for Presentations for TechMentor Redmond 2015 is now OPEN

Proposals are due: Friday, January 9, 2015 5:00pm PST

Submit your proposal here:

TechMentor Redmond 2015
August 3 - 7, 2015
Microsoft Headquarters
Redmond, WA

Call For Presentations Overview
Join us at Microsoft Headquarters in Redmond, Washington for TechMentor 2015. Our 2014 conference at Microsoft Headquarters was so successful, we are bringing back the Datacenter Edition in 2015, continuing our focus on making the datacenter more modern, more capable, and more manageable. We're not necessarily asking attendees to upgrade all of their machines to the latest versions of Microsoft's products - we plan to include plenty of modernization tips for the solutions and operating systems they have right now, as well as helping them prepare - and make a case for - the next generation of Microsoft technologies.

We'll be focusing heavily on the entire Microsoft System Center family as a basis for better availability, responsiveness, and automation. We're tossing in a record-breaking amount of PowerShell coverage centered around building reusable automation units. We're even stretching the envelope to include other key technologies in attendee datacenters, including virtualization, core networking, ethical hacking, and more. There is also content designed to help round out our attendees' IT resumes , including the administration of foundation technologies that their organization likely already uses. Our goal is to help them become a more valuable asset within their current organization, and to help prepare them for bigger and better roles in the future!

We're offering a balance of 75-minute breakout sessions and intense 3-hour deep dives to bring attendees truly detailed information that's accurate, timely, and immediately usable back in the office. We're even offering a selection of bring-your-own-laptop hands-on sessions to help them instantly cement new skills. There's no technical conference like TechMentor — and you should be a part of it!

Core Topic Areas Include:

  • Infrastructure Foundations
  • Monitoring and Availability
  • Runbook Automation
  • Configuration and Service Management
  • Datacenter Provisioning and Deployment
  • PowerShell
  • Ethical Hacking
  • DirectAccess
  • Troubleshooting
  • Crash Dump Analysis
  • Performance

Session Length
Most sessions will be scheduled for 3 hours; depending on submission we may have a small number of 75-minute slots for overview-level or shorter sessions.

Hands-On Sessions
We are planning to offer a number of hands-on sessions, in which attendees will use their own laptops. If you submit a session that could be hands-on, please clearly indicate this ("HOL") in your proposal. Be prepared to provide a PDF lab guide for students to use in class, as part of your session materials.

We may also offer a small number of hands-on sessions in which students use virtual machines hosted in Microsoft Azure. If you would like to propose such a session, indicate this ("Azure HOL") in your proposal. Be prepared to provide a PDF lab guide for students to use, and to take responsibility for building the Azure VM images. We will contact you regarding logistics.

Not Just Bleeding Edge
Note that we are asking speakers to, as much as possible, focus on the products attendees already have. While we obviously need to help them prepare for the newest versions, we also need to help them do better with what they already have. This is a key differentiator for TechMentor, setting us apart from the latest-version-only coverage at first party shows, like the new Microsoft conference, Ignite (formerly TechEd). Please try to be very specific in your session titles and abstracts as to what you'll cover, so that we can make an appropriate mix of selections for our agenda.

Session Ideas
We've had feedback from past attendees suggesting that the following might be interesting topics - this isn't an all-inclusive list by any means, but take it as inspiration for where attendees want to see us go:

  • SQL Server Reporting Services - building reports from a database
  • Packaging MSIs and repackaging apps into MSIs
  • App-V packaging/sequencing
  • Desired State Configuration
  • PowerShell Toolmaking and controller scripting
  • Using SCCM, SCSM, and SCO together - e.g., self-service approval-required software requests
  • Creating provisioning and deployments with SCVMM
  • Service-service in System Center
  • Runbook Automation with System Center Orchestrator including technologies like System Center Orchestrator and Service Management Automation
  • Using ADFS to connect your AD to cloud services
  • "Big Data" in IT Operations (e.g., the Splunk world)
  • Using cross-platform tools (e.g., Puppet, etc) to manage configuration

Our overall themes focus on System Center, automation, and manageability, so use those themes — and this "idea list" — to help craft your proposals.

Other evergreen themes — performance, troubleshooting, and more — are always welcome. We're also open to workshops around core infrastructure, such as storage, provided it's very modern and very datacenter-focused.

Submission Guidelines
Please include the following information with your submission (Failure to supply all requested information may limit opportunities for selection):

  • Speaker's Name
  • Speaker's Title
  • Speaker's Company
  • Title of Presentation
  • 100-word Description of Presentation
  • 3-5 Bullets, explaining what the attendee will learn from presentation
  • Speaker's Color Photo (hi-resolution)
  • Speaker's Bio, including previous conference speaking/presentation experience

Presenter Expenses
Speakers chosen to present at TechMentor Redmond 2015 will receive a stipend for each session they present. TechMentor Conferences will also cover hotel accommodations (room and tax only) for a pre-determined number of nights at the host hotel as outlined in the speaker agreement. Speakers are responsible for their own travel costs and incidentals.

For Questions Regarding the CFP or Submissions:

Danielle Potts
Sr. Event Manager
(925) 207-0468