Opportunity. Responsibility. Impact. Those are just a few of the words that Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella invoked in his opening day keynote at the Microsoft Build 2017 developers conference to describe the developer ecosystem of today.

His words were not hollow, just watch the video below and try not to cry. Developers have a responsibility to make an impact to better our world. Maybe you think that sounds preachy or unrealistic but I think it sounds just right.

Sure, I could list the numerous things released and demoed at the first day of Build 2017 (in fact, you’ll find my favorites below), or discuss the three focuses of IoT Edge, developer tooling, and artificial intelligence, but that coverage is widely available elsewhere. So first, I wanted to spend some cycles on something that I find a bit deeper and more meaningful than a list of features: social responsibility.

This is something that we have seen Microsoft embrace more fully in the months since Nadella assumed his new post in 2014, and it’s a mantel that I have seen others— including Scott Hanselman, Scott Guthrie, Scott Hunter, David Fowler, Troy Hunt and Damian Edwards—also pick up frequently.

I am talking about the act of choosing to make a positive impact on society, whether or not there’s any potential for personal gain. Microsoft is clearly an effective business, which means making money, pleasing investors and other stakeholders, and creating incredible products and service are all important. It seems clear to me, however, that the company’s vision is also driven by the desire to make the world better.

Highlights of the day

Of course, there were plenty of product announcements as well. Here are some of the ones I found most interesting:

Visual Studio 2017 for Mac is out of preview and now generally available!

Cortana Skills kit is now in public preview.

Azure IoT Edge was announced. This seems designed to enable cloud capabilities such as analytics, algorithm execution, and cognitive services to run on IoT devices! Imagine not having to deal with latency and bandwidth challenges on your IoT devices but still get the benefits of all that Azure cloud computing provides.

Microsoft Cognitive Services have been expanded.

Azure Batch Artificial Intelligence training deep neural networks, was announced as a private preview.

Azure Cosmos DB was announced. Azure Cosmos DB is Microsoft’s globally distributed, multi-model database.

For more on Microsoft Build17, check out my post on the event’s Developer Day—Microsoft Build 2017 Developer Day Offers ‘Speed Dating for Developers’—and stay tuned to the New Relic blog for more coverage.

Nick Floyd is a lead software engineer at New Relic. He works on the .NET Agent, Nuget packages, Azure solutions, and cloud-based services. He and his seven kids are often found contributing to open source, soldering boards, and building backyard ballistics all in the name of "nerd life." Author of Nerd Life Balance. View posts by .

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