Some of us were first-time attendees and were blown away by the sheer amount of people and energy. 8 a.m. day one the realization hits: This is not a standard conference. It felt more like a massive festival with a focus on celebrating "the possible." We felt overwhelming positivity about the future of AI and how prepared and willing tech teams in Europe are accepting the challenge. A primary takeaway was how tech teams in Europe are extremely competent and willing to lead the world.
The energy from small, happy and agile teams building something world-class together was truly electrifying, something we feel daily and were truly happy to witness as a standard. Participants at Slush really own the future themselves — in comparison to mainstream businesses, who may not always see the challenges ahead and, subsequently, the necessary changes that need to be made. Slush is also a great place to network, with both other startups as well as with more experienced business leaders.
There were a lot of interesting talks and presentations on AI, and it’s made very clear that many organizations and leaders are looking at this area with great interest. However, it was apparent that there is still some confusion about what AI, machine learning and deep learning can and cannot do. Fortunately, attendees see opportunity in AI — which is very promising.