Our Top 10 Picks for Must-Attend Big Data & eTail Events in 2015

At Umbel, we love to travel, meet new people and stay up-to-date on the most innovative trends in big data — which is why conferences and events are so important to us. Events provide the perfect forum for the best minds in the industry to unite and exchange ideas. They’re also where the exciting announcements are made and the newest technologies are unveiled.

We’re gearing up for an action-packed 2015, so here’s a list of 10 big data, e-tail and digital innovation conferences and events that we’re looking forward to this year.

January 25-30, 2015
Austin TX

Big data and artificial intelligence go hand-in-hand which is why we’re thrilled to attend the Twenty-Ninth AAAI Conference on Artificial Intelligence in our hometown this month.  The conference is hosted by The Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), a nonprofit, scientific society that promotes research in and responsible use of artificial intelligence.  The conference considers itself a “scientific exchange among AI researchers, practitioners, scientists, students and engineers in AI and all affiliated disciples.”  We’re looking forward to hearing about the latest and greatest ways that AI will contribute to data growth.  And also, robots are cool.  

eTail West
February 17-20, 2015
Palm Springs, CA

Access to extensive customer data is changing the way retailers market and sell their products, and we can’t wait to see what the world’s biggest brands have been up to at eTail West 2015 next month. eTail’s events have become the preeminent place for multi-channel retailers to discuss the hottest topics and industry trends, and we’re most looking forward to the sessions titled “Controlling, Collecting and Managing Customer Data to Add Flexibility to your Business” and  “Moving from Big Data to Actionable Customer Analytics.” Plus, eTail provides a great excuse to escape the cold weather and catch some sun in Palm Springs. If you’ll be there, come say hi to the Umbel team at our booth!

Strata + Hadoop World
February 17-20, 2015
San Jose, CA

The Strata + Hadoop World conference takes an in-depth look at emerging techniques and technologies in data and computing via case studies, tutorials and speaker sessions.  The four-day event is geared towards CTO’s, business analysts, data scientists and engineers, but it covers data issues that shape all aspects of business. Strata + Hadoop World has recently evolved to add tracks in security, machine data and building data teams.  We’re super excited about the new Big Data Training Courses that have been added for 2015!  

SXSW Interactive
March 13-17, 2015
Austin, TX

While SXSW Interactive may be best known for the official launch of Foursquare, the “unofficial” launch of Twitter and Grumpy Cat, it’s also an epicenter for discussions on big data, wearables, drones and privacy which makes it one of our must-attend events of the year. Plus, it’s in our own backyard. This year Umbel is excited to be hosting an entire day of panel sessions focused on big data and featuring stellar panelists from around the world. Data visualizations, big data jobs and artificial intelligence are just a few of the topics that we’ll be discussing. Oh, and there are typically some really awesome parties at Interactive (see the above photo of Umbel’s party last year at ACL Live.)

Brand Innovators Big Data Summit
April, Date TBD
New York, NY

Brand Innovators’ Big Data Summit focuses on big data’s impact on the decisions of the marketing departments of Fortune 500 companies. The intimate, one-day event provides these decision makers with tools to use big data effectively to market their products and services. The high-level speakers share success stories and best practices. In 2014, we enjoyed meeting Chief Brand Officers and VPs of Digital Strategy and learning about the challenges and opportunities related to gathering data and developing and testing strategies to take action on that data.

Big Data Innovation Summit
April 28-29, 2015
San Jose, CA

In April, 1,000 data leaders will converge in San Jose for the Innovation Enterprise’s Big Data Innovation Summit. Topics covered will include Big Data Innovation, Algorithms & Machine Learning, Hadoop & Open-Source Software and Data Driven Business Decisions. Attendees can participate in hands-on learning through interactive workshops and roundtables while hearing from prominent speakers including Moises Nasciemento, the Chief Data Architect for PayPal and Matthias Spycher, the Chief Engineer for eBay. The summit includes tracks that are focused on both the technical and business side of big data, so there’s sure to be something for everyone.

Chief Digital Officer Summit
April 29, 2015
New York, NY

According to the CDO Club, the number of Chief Digital Officers has grown from one in 2005 to 488 in 2013. This growth rate is predicted to continue with 1,000 CDOs expected by the end of last year. In response to this new and rapidly growing job field, the CDO Club hosted the inaugural Chief Digital Officer Summit in 2014. The event featured an all-star line-up of digital heavyweights including Rachel S. Hoat, the Chief Digital Officer for the State of New York and Sree Sreenivasan the Chief Digital Officer for the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The CDO Summit is quickly becoming the premiere event for CDO’s and high-level digital executives to exchange industry insights and navigate the uncharted territory of this new career path.

Fashion Digital NYC (e-commerce)
October 20-21, 2015
New York, NY

Fashion Digital has only been around since 2012, but it’s already becoming a must-attend event for fashion designers, retailers and brands to discover innovative e-commerce strategies.  In fact, the event has been so successful that Fashion Digital is expanding its platform to include a new m-commerce event in March focused on retailers and mobile commerce in response to the growing amount of transactions that are occurring on tablets and mobile devices.  We attended in 2014 and gained valuable insights into the challenges of collecting large amounts of data without the ability to quickly organize and understand that data. (Hint: Umbel can help!)  We can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store in October.  Plus, we love it when an event boasts cocktail parties as one of its selling factors.  Cheers!

Web Summit
2015 Date, TBD
Dublin, Ireland

The Web Summit has grown into one of the largest events in the technology industry in recent years with over 30,000 projected attendees in 2015. The event focuses on Internet technology with specialty tracks in marketing, enterprise, sports and music to name a few. Topics last year included Data of Media and Product Innovation in IoT and Wearables while attendees included entrepreneur and venture capitalist Peter Thiel, Dropbox Founder Drew Houston and even Bono. With attendees from over 100 countries, the Web Summit is global convergence of the brightest minds in Internet technology.

NeuLion Sports Media & Technology Conference
Date & Location TBD

Umbel works with several sports teams including the Washington Redskins and Indiana Pacers to help them take control of their fan data. In addition to hearing the fascinating behind-the-scenes news in the world of sports and media, we’re looking forward to the NeuLion Sports Media & Technology Conference to learn more about how sports properties are using their fan data to sell more tickets and create a personalized, top-tier customer experience. Last year, conference sessions offered insights into how teams and leagues create, distribute and monetize digital assets and how they can better understand and influence their fans.