ODSC West is now a part of our history books, and we couldn’t be happier with how everything turned out. We had our first-ever Halloween party, more book signings, exciting keynotes, and plenty of sessions to fit everyone’s needs. You can see our photos from the event here, and be sure to follow our YouTube for virtual highlights from the conference as well.
With sessions both online and in-person in San Francisco, there was something for everyone. We had bigger sessions on getting started with machine learning or SQL, up to advanced topics in NLP, and of course, plenty related to large language models and generative AI.
Some of our most popular in-person sessions were:
- MLOps: Monitoring and Managing Drift: Oliver Zeigermann | Machine Learning Architect
- ODSC Keynote: Human-Centered AI: Peter Norvig, PhD | Engineering Director, Education Fellow | Google, Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI)
- The Cost of AI Compute and Why AI Clouds Will Look Different Than Traditional Clouds: Vipul Ved Prakash | CEO | Together AI
- Idiomatic Pandas: Matt Harrison | Python & Data Science Corporate Trainer, Consultant | MetaSnake
- Bridging the Gap: Light Code Solutions to Uniting Social Science and Modern Knowledge Graphs: Alison Cossette | Developer Advocate — Data Science | Neo4j
- Stable Diffusion: A New Frontier for Text-to-Image Paradigm: Sandeep Singh | Head of Applied AI/Computer Vision | Beans.ai
- Unlocking the Power of Generative AI for Digital Mental Health & Wellness: Enhancing Empathy, Measuring Outcomes, and Safeguarding Against Suicide Risk: Kirstin Aschbacher, PhD | CEO | Health and Wellness Consulting
- Running Data Quality Checks in Your Data Pipelines: Sandy Ryza | Lead Engineer on the Dagster Project | Dagster Labs
- Graphs: The Next Frontier of GenAI Explainability: Amy Hodler | Founder, Consultant | GraphGeeks.org and Michelle Yi | Board Member | Women in Data
- Evaluation Techniques for Large Language Models: Rajiv Shah, PhD | Machine Learning Engineer | Hugging Face
Popular virtual sessions:
- Deploying Trustworthy Generative AI : Krishnaram Kenthapadi | Chief AI Officer & Chief Scientist | Fiddler AI
- The AI Paradigm Shift: Under the Hood of a Large Language Models: Valentina Alto | Azure Specialist — Data and Artificial Intelligence | Microsoft
- Causal AI: from Data to Action: Dr. Andre Franca | CTO | connectedFlow
- From AI to GX: The Quantum Leap in Algorithmic Evolution: Jepson Taylor | Chief AI Strategist | Dataiku
- Generative AI, Autonomous AI Agents, and AGI — How new Advancements in AI will Improve the Products we Build: Martin Musiol | Co-Founder and Instructor, Principal Data Science Manager | Generative AI.net, Infosys Consulting
- Finetuning, Serving, and Evaluating LLMs in the Wild: Hao Zhang, PhD | Assistant Professor | VICUNA / UC San Diego
- Representation Learning on Graphs and Networks: Dr. Petar Veličković | Staff Research Scientist. Affiliated Lecturer | DeepMind, University of Cambridge
- A Semi-Supervised Anomaly Detection System Through Ensemble Stacking Algorithm: Chuying Ma | Senior Data Scientist | Walmart
- Missing Data: A Synthetic Data Approach for Missing Data Imputation: Fabiana Clemente | Co-founder and CDO | YData
- PyTorch 2.1 — New Developments: Supriya Rao | Engineering Manager | Meta
Both in-person and virtually, we had some amazing keynote speakers that told the audience about their research, expertise, use cases, or state-of-the-art developments.
On the virtual side of things, we had a number of amazing keynote speakers.
- Sarah Bird, PhD | Global Lead for Responsible AI Engineering | Microsoft — Read the recap here!
- Jepson Taylor | Chief AI Strategist | Dataiku
- Thomas Scialom, PhD | Research Scientist (LLMs) | Meta AI
- Nick Bostrom, PhD | Professor, Founding Director | Oxford University, Future of Humanity Institute — Read the recap here!
Over in San Francisco, we had a keynote for each day of the event. On Wednesday, Peter Norvig, PhD, Engineering Director at Google and Education Fellow at the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence (HAI) spoke about the human side of AI and how we can focus on using AI for the greater good, improving all stakeholders’ lives and the needs of all users. Later on, Yaron Haviv, Co-Founder and CTO of Iguazio discussed the growth of generative AI and how you can implement it in practice from a technical perspective, including guardrails, benefits, and issues to watch out for.
On Thursday, Chelsea Finn, PhD, Assistant Professor at Stanford University discussed how sometimes neural networks can hallucinate and be quite incorrect, the repercussions, and how can we address these issues. Afterwards, Raluca Ada Popa, PhD Computer Security Professor at UC Berkeley and| Co-Founder of Opaque Systems discussed confidential computing, a new method for improved cybersecurity.
Always a highlight and crowd-pleasure of ODSC conferences, the networking events Monday-Wednesday were well-deserved after long days of data science training sessions. We’re particularly proud of our first-ever Halloween event held on Halloween itself (we’re way behind on doing these, we know), and we even got some people in costumes — including ODSC staffers.
Aside from networking events and all of our sessions, we had a few other special events. On Tuesday, we had our annual hackathon that kept the teams busy all day. Each day we had at least one book signing where attendees could meet some of their favorite data science book authors and get their questions answered — and for those who showed up early enough, even getting their book signed.
A new event to ODSC West 2023 were the Lightning talks, which saw a small group of victims (speakers) describe slides picked at random. Prior to these talks, we gathered completely random slides from sessions during the week and shuffled them up, so all speakers didn’t know what slides they were going to have to talk about. To quote one attendee, “I felt so bad for the speakers — they didn’t seem like they knew their topics well. But then I found out that these slides were totally random and realized how fun this was!”
While we may be done with events for 2023, 2024 is looking to be packed full of conferences, meetups, and virtual events. On the horizon is ODSC East 2024, which is shaping up to be just as packed with content as ODSC West was, but with its own spin on things. Right now, tickets are 75% off for a limited time! That means tickets will only go up in price, so if you’re on the fence about going, let this be the decision-maker for you. Register now before ticket prices go up!
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