techIT Sessions

Hacking Wi-Fi: What You Don’t Know WILL Hurt You

Wi-Fi threats are literally all around us. In fact, the threats are so simple to deploy, virtually every single person that carries a mobile device has probably been hacked. This talk is designed to not only create awareness of the threats, but also keep those that already know the risk an update on the latest ones.

Jim Steinbacher, Technical Evangelist, Wireless of WatchGuard Technologies

 Jim Steinbacher’s experience with Wi-Fi began when he deployed his first wireless network (an 802.11b network with a whopping 11/Mbs max throughput) in 2001. Since that time, he has rolled out networks with each progressive IEEE standard, from distributed deployments across hundreds of sites, to ultra-high density designs in NFL stadiums. Through it all, security always seemed like an after-thought to network owners. Not anymore. Jim’s current mission is to educate those responsible for Wi-Fi networks to the risks that they face from the ever-increasing barrage of Wi-Fi threat vectors. Jim is currently the Technical Evangelist for Wireless at WatchGuard Technologies and holds a BSEE from Portland State University (and a Ph.D. from the School of Hard Knocks).

Metamorphic Transformation with Enterprise-wide Artificial Intelligence Systems

A summary of findings spanning over two decades of research and development in enterprise-wide AI systems. This presentation will discuss critical functions that require organization and network-wide AI systems, including prevention of crises, autonomous cybersecurity, and enhanced productivity. Mark will also cover KYield’s Genesis project, which is designed to rapidly transform the organization upon adoption of the KYield OS, and how to achieve a continuously adaptive learning organization (CALO) with advanced AI systems.

Mark Montgomery, Founder & CEO of KYield, Inc.

Mark Montgomery is the Founder & CEO of KYield, Inc. He is originator of the theorem ‘yield management of knowledge’, and inventor of the patented AI system that serves as the foundation for KYield. 

Mark began training in software development in 1996 and network engineering in 1997, becoming proficient in object-oriented programming and several languages, then progressed to more advanced analytics, search, and artificial intelligence. He designed, built, and operated a data center, knowledge systems (KS) lab, and multiple networks from scratch, operating 24x7x365 for several years. Mark first conceived KYield in his KS/AI lab in 1997 where he tested Google’s search algorithm and argued for their investment, among many others. 

Mr. Montgomery was formerly an entrepreneur-turned business consultant who founded an early-stage venture firm. Among many companies he was an early stage booster to include Microsoft, Starbucks, Skype, and Google (not as VC). He has worked with many leading scholars and universities, including as invited panelist in national tech transfer conferences, Stanford venture conferences, ASU entrepreneur association, and Thunderbird School of Global Management where he attended a 12 week international MBA program, received certification as a global business leader and served as business plan judge for multiple years.  

Mark was a frequent visitor and invited guest at the Santa Fe Institute from 2009-2016. His chapters and articles have been featured in books, academic journals, Wired, and Computerworld. 

What Is Blockchain Platform Service and Why Is It Important to You?

Blockchain technology is built based on 3 principles:

1. It is distributed in nature hence a distributed ledger technology (DLT)

2. It is a peer-to-peer based community so there is no central authority

3. It is the most secure system that allows parties to transact valuable items directly without any intermediaries. 

A blockchain platform service provides a low barrier entrance service for everyone, individual users and business and other organizations alike to design, develop, certify, manage, search, verify and trade any valuable items on blockchain. Maryville University is leveraging blockchain platform services to build the nation’s first blockchain university.
Feng Hou, Chief Digital Transformation Evangelist at the Maryville University

Currently serving as the Chief Digital Transformation Evangelist at Maryville University in St. Louis, Feng Hou is a Harvard educated senior executive with more than 20 years leadership and digital transformation experience. Hou leads digital transformation with strategic development to improve customer digital experience, enhance operational efficiency and cut operational spending.

As an award winning CIO, Hou has led the blockchain initiative to successfully implement a student owned digital certificate and degree diploma solution at Central New Mexico Community College (CNM), which made CNM the first higher education institution in the nation to use blockchain technology to provide its students with digital credentials. Building upon the successful experience, Hou has been working on a number of blockchain use cases from creating a universal student ID, using smart contract to create a blockchain ERP solution, as well as building a stackable micro-credentialing solution to certify student soft skills.

Hou is a nationally sought after keynote speaker. In the past 6 months, Hou has keynoted at Blockchain in Education Conference in Washington DC about how to use blockchain technology to reform higher education; he gave another keynote speech at INTERFACE – New Mexico 2018 in Albuquerque, NM to discuss about using blockchain technology to enhance cybersecurity. He also gave a speech to the Board and senior staff at New Mexico Mutual about how blockchain can transform insurance business. Recently, Hou has collaborated with IBM to build the global blockchain education platform.

As the leading blockchain expert in US, Hou frequently speaks about the major impact of blockchain technology on education reform, cybersecurity enhancement as well as industry transformation. He has recently been invited to the White House to attend the STEM Summit; he also hosted a roundtable discussion with the university and college presidents at the Higher Education Congress Annual Meeting in Washington DC. Hou has developed the widely adopted 7 criteria for selecting the right blockchain solutions that has recently been published in Business Officer Magazine; Hou also has 2 US Patents pending.

Hou is the Co-founder of Albuquerque Blockchain Alliance (ABA), he currently serves on the National Reviewing Board for the Blockchain Certificate Exam and was a member of the National Government Blockchain Chamber Albuquerque Chapter. Hou also served on the Board of Directors for The New Mexico Council for Higher Education Computing/Communication Services (CHECS) and Board of Directors for New Mexico Technology Council. He was twice elected as the President of Florida Association of Educational Data Systems (FAEDS).

Pivoting CD Pipeline from Monolithic to Microservices

When you begin your journey into modern architecture you’ll quickly find that your current Jenkins CI/CD pipeline is not going to make the grade. Kubernetes is finally moving us away from a monolithic approach to software development towards a service-based approach. This means each microservice will have its own life cycle and be independently deployable. This is a game-changer and full-on DevOps. This presentation will cover the modifications needed in your CI/CD process to support a service-based approach to software development.  It will include real-world examples and cover tools such as Jenkins, Tekton, DeployHub and Helm.  

Attendees of this presentation will learn the changes that are needed to convert a traditional continuous delivery pipeline to a Kubernetes Pipeline with a look at four big challenges: 

  • CI/CD Workflows
  • Dev, Test, Production Pipeline
  • Sharing and organization
  • Tracking the monolithic equivalent
Tracy Ragan, CEO and Co-Founder of DeployHub

DeployHub, Inc.

Tracy Ragan began her odyssey in the area of DevOps long before the term was coined. In the late 1980’s she consulted Wall Street firms on ways to improve the software build and deploy process through automation. Having begun her programming career as a mainframe developer, she quickly recognized how the new ‘distributed’ datacenter lacked the build and deploy processes that were standard on mainframe systems. In 1995, Ragan co-founded OpenMake Software, a private software company that specializes in the automation of cross platform, and accelerated software builds (compile/link standards). Her innovation in this area was recognized by IBM, leading her to a board position on the newly formed Eclipse Foundation where she served for five years. Tracy has also worked with CA technologies in designing ‘Application Lifecycle’ solutions and presenting at many break-out sessions at CA World since 1997.  

In 2014, Ragan recognized that there was a gap in open source tooling around Application Release Automation for performing continuous deployments. This led to the formation of DeployHub, a new product focused on bringing open source Application Release Automation to the agile project team.  DeployHub OSS was launched as an open source solution in the spring of 2017.  She followed up the open source offering with the creation of, a company that provides both support and professional upgrades to DeployHub OSS to meet the needs of the large enterprise.  Ragan currently leads the DeployHub team with a focus on the future of software deployments specific to the needs of microservices and Kubernetes. 

Ragan speaks at DevOps conferences 2 to 3 times per year and is a blog contributor at and She was recently recognized as a Women In Technology (WIT) Honoree for her work in the DevOps area. You may also find her as an expert panelist on Webinars along with some of her friends at GitHub and CloudBees, or quoted in SD Times articles around DevOps subjects.

User Experience (UX): It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint

Companies will often try and front-load their User Experience design while trying to be Agile within their development groups. In this talk, we’ll take a look at best practices for integrating User Experience into the standard Sprint cycle, and techniques that can be used to keep a waterfall approach to design from crashing down on your developers. 

Joe Dallacqua, UX Practice Lead at RSI

Joe Dallacqua is the UX Practice Lead at RSI and has been working in User Experience design and development for the past 15 years. Over that time he has worked with companies ranging from small startups to Fortune 500 companies to help them bring the user to the forefront of their digital experiences. With a background in both design and development, Joe uses UX as the bridge between technology and the user – and as a tool to ensure that designers, developers, and stakeholders are all moving towards a single, unified, digital vision. 

3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing in New Mexico

Learn about the exciting field of 3 D Printing/ Additive Manufacturing (AM) from New Mexico companies. Panelists from Albuquerque companies engaging in the emerging industry will present their diverse business emphases in 3 D Printing and Metals AM, and address IT and software talent required to serve their existing business and their future 3D Print/AM workforce needs. 

Patricia Knighten, Moderator: Vice President of Business Development at Vibrant Corporation

Ms. Knighten presents a unique combination of strategy and management expertise with engineering and emerging technology know-how. Her work of over 25 years involves developing and implementing advancement strategies for government agencies, corporations and small businesses. Among her most recent accomplishments was the reinstatement of New Mexico’s (NM) Office of Science and Technology (2014 to 2016), where, she published, implemented and funded “Innovate NM- NM Science and Technology Plan”. The key emphasis of the plan, to commercialize federally funded research, was enabled by her effort to create the $40M Catalyst Fund for NM tech start-ups. Thereafter, she established and managed a Technology Accelerator Pilot Program for the City of Albuquerque, demonstrating the Lean Launchpad Entrepreneurship Methodology for hardware-based technology projects. She joined Vibrant Corporation in January of 2018 to transition emerging capabilities such as additive manufacturing and data analytics from research and development projects to aerospace and defense department users. She has just begun a new assignment supporting the Air Force Nuclear Weapons Center at Kirtland AFB as they plan and launch a technology and innovation program.

Ms. Knighten has served as a volunteer board member for several industry associations and the Albuquerque Hispano Chamber of Commerce and is on the board of directors for the New Mexico Veterans Integration Center She is proud to be a Kirtland AFB Wingman, and is active in the Lt. Gen. Leo Marquez Chapter of the Logistics Officers Association.. Education credentials include a Masters Certificate in Project Management, Villanova University; Bachelor of Science in Logistics Management, Weber State University, and numerous short courses.

Eric Miller, Co-Owner & Principal, PADT

Eric Miller is a co-owner of Tempe based PADT, Inc., a provider of tools and services to companies who design and manufacture physical products.  He holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the UC Berkeley and started his career focusing on the application Computer Aided Engineering to turbine engine components.  As a co-founder of PADT in 1994, Eric was able to also pursue his interests in IT, graphic design, 3D printing, database programming, and small business management.  Eric is often called upon to write and speak on simulation, design, and 3D Printing as well as on startups and the high-tech sector.  In addition, he is Vice Chairman of the Arizona Technology Council Board of Directors, the BioAccel Advisory Council and Board of Directors, the screening committee of Arizona Technology Investors, and he is an Entrepreneur in Residence at the Arizona Commerce Authority. He enjoys traveling, writing, history, cooking, and learning about new things. He also contributes regularly to the Phoenix Business Journal blog and hosts the All Things ANSYS podcast.

Steve Hull, President of Westwind

With 30 years of Federal IT sales Westwind’s president, Steve Hull, brings a wealth of experience and relationships to every project. Mr. Hull knows the efficiencies to be gained through marketing and partnerships, and understands Federal client needs and processes. His extensive experiences in large scale IT commodity roll-outs, high performance computing and federal joint-venture projects makes him an invaluable team member on projects. Mr. Hull has and continues to serve on a variety of IT industry advisory/executive boards. Mr. Hull’s experience with large scale IT roll-outs, high performance computing, and federal projects makes him an invaluable resource on any project

Leanne Jauriqui, Vice President of Technology, Vibrant Corporation