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Microsoft Build 2022 recap

Scott Hermes
Microsoft build 2022

What does the world need us to build?

There are always so many things to talk about after Microsoft's annual developer conference. Each year, the Microsoft Build conference is packed full of new announcements, and this year was no exception. There were over 50 sessions, which included announcements about Azure, Power Platform, Windows 365, and everyone’s favorite browser, Edge.

“What Does the World Need Us to Build?” was the theme for Build 2022 and it was a good one. Not, "What Microsoft Products Can We Sell the World”, which is tells me that Microsoft is really focused on problem-solving and making the world work better for everyone. 

Satya Nadella’s keynote focused on ten areas where he sees Microsoft growing: 

1. Developer Flow
2. Cloud Ubiquity
3. App Ubiquity
4. Cloud-Native
5. Unified Data
6. Models as Platforms
7. Hybrid AI
8. Low Code/No Code
9. Collaborative Apps
10. Metaverse

Let’s take a quick look at each area, shall we?


Developer Flow

Basically, how can we make developers’ lives easier? The big announcement here was Dev Box. Basically, a beefy VM that has been designed for devs. I am sure CIOs and CISOs will love this. Let’s see how good it is before the devs get excited.

Cloud Ubiquity

Super excited to see someone use the word ubiquity because it reminded me of the movie Everything Everywhere All at Once. Also, it allowed Satya to talk about Azure Orbital (that allows you to integrate Azure with your satellites (because we all totally have satellites) and show a cool demo of using object recognition at the edge to check for damages to your space suit before going out on a spacewalk. Finally!

App Ubiquity

Again, ubiquity for the win. MAUI has gone into General Availability meaning you can use this in Production. MAUI is the latest attempt to be able to write once and run everywhere. Well almost everywhere. It is not supported on Linux but you can run it on Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS which will satisfy 99%of your business cases until we finally get that Linux desktop that everyone wants to use. You design your UI once and it can generate the native code equivalent for the target operating system.


The big announcement here is that Azure Container Apps went into General Availability. Azure Container Apps is a wrapper on top of Azure Kubernetes Service, DAPR, and KEDA. It is an attempt to reduce the complexity of working with Kubernetes (or as the cool kids say, k8s). Kubernetes is very powerful and can give you the option to run your apps on-prem or in different clouds but it has a steep learning curve and it can be difficult to find people who know how to work with it and more importantly, scale, secure, and maintain it. It looks like you can access the underlying Kubernetes cluster after it is built so you do have the freedom to extend it if you know what you are doing. This holds a lot of promise and I look forward to working with it.

Unified Data

Microsoft continues to mature its data platform. The latest incarnation is the Intelligent Data Platform. It is basically a re-branding of a set of tools that they already have such as Synapse, AzureML, SQL Purview, and Power BI and highlighting the value of using an integrated end-to-end platform for your analytics needs. We have clients who prefer best of breed approach using different vendors for each of the functional areas of Big Data but then struggle with integration, cost and governance. There is a huge benefit to being able to quickly spin up a data platform and start getting results with a unified end-to-end approach that already sits in Azure.

They also announced a lot of new features for those underlying services that are worth checking out such as Purview Data Policy, which allows data owners to provide access to their data, and the general availability of ledger in SQL 2022, which uses cryptographic tech similar to blockchain allowing you to prove to 3rd parties that your data has not been tampered with.

Models as Platforms

New AI models such as Dall-E which allows the generation of realistic images from a text description are getting incorporated into Azure Cognitive Services and Azure Applied AI services.

Hybrid AI

SuperComputers! NPUs! And Project Volterra!
I don’t know what I am going to do with Project Volterra, but I want it.
Microsoft build 2022

Ok. It turns out that it can’t really blow up rocks or fly but it can be used to develop AI workloads on an ARM chip. All of your tools, such as Full Visual Studio 2022 & VSCode, Visual C++, Modern .NET 6, and Java and Classic .NET Framework come pre-installed. So still pretty cool.

Low Code/No Code

There is continued interest in the marketplace, especially for line-of-business applications, on how to build quality software more quickly and at a lower cost.

One way that Microsoft hopes to allow non-developers and non-designers to be able to develop and design applications is through AI. The latest tool is Express Design which uses Azure Cognitive Services under the hood. Simply upload a screenshot of a form, a PDF of a form, or even a sketch and it will analyze and generate the corresponding screen in Power Apps as well as the underlying data model in Dataverse.

The latest entry for Microsoft is Power Pages now in Preview. It used to be called Power App Portal. It has been renamed and enhanced. It allows non-technical people to rapidly create websites via a simplified UI. And yes, for those of us who remember it, it does sound more than a little like Microsoft Front Page. However, with Power Pages, they are using more modern and open tech stacks such as Bootstrap, React, and YAML. They also have an integration into Visual Code that will allow your pro developers to work with the same codebase. It is worth taking a look at.

Collaborative Apps

OK - the cool thing here is Live Share inside of Teams allowing everyone to collaborate in real-time on the same document inside of Teams meeting.

Microsoft build


Last and certainly least, the Metaverse. Please stop trying to make the Metaverse happen. OK, there are some amazing things you can do with Hololens and the Mesh network allowing you to collaborate across the world while manipulating the same object or be able to view the schematics for a robot on an assembly line while someone helps you repair it but can we please wait until we get legs for our avatars before integrating it into Teams?

Teams meeting with no legs? No.
beer production msft build
Track and visualize beer production at ABinBev - yes

Microsoft, I kid because I love.

It is really exciting to see Microsoft continue to evolve and innovate. Their work in data and AI continues to impress. It is hard to accept change sometimes as seen from this chat message during Satya’s keynote shortly after someone else asked, “Does anyone know all of the things that Satya is talking about?”
Microsoft tech ed
I feel you, John S.

This really only scratches the surface of all of the announcements. Do yourself a favor and take a deeper, less snarky look at the latest innovations from Microsoft.

You can find out about all of the announcements by reading the Microsoft Build Book of News and you can see most of the sessions here. As always, start out with Satya Nadella’s keynote to get a sense of what Microsoft is focusing on in the upcoming year.

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