TECHintersection-IoT Speaker Profile: Zach Supalla,

The TECHintersection event is coming up on September 14th through the 17th. I have been helping with the planning, specifically around the Internet of Things (IoT) content. As we lead up to the event I want to familiarize you with some of the great speakers we will have. This is going to be a great event and you definitely don’t want to miss it (you can register here).

Zach Supalla, Co-Founder & CEO,


I met Zach Supalla at CES in January – my good friend Stephen Forte invited me to breakfast with Zach and Dan Jamieson, mostly just for social time (for the record this is one of the things I love about Forte – he is constantly connecting the people he likes with no agenda of his own). Over breakfast Zach and Dan told me about Particle (called Spark back then) and how they had built up their company, participated in the HAXLR8R hardware accelerator, got funded and were growing like crazy. They gave me one of their Spark Core devices and in exchange I bought them some eggs.

After playing with the Spark Core a bit, and getting some of my friends hooked on it, I was sold. I love Particle – they make great, inventive products. I am really glad that we (Microsoft) are partnering with Particle the way we are (I smell some IoT Workshops with the Particle Photon in the future).

Here is the summary from Zach’s LinkedIn profile:

Zach Supalla is an entrepreneur, a Maker, and a designer. He is the founder and CEO of Spark (ed. note: now called Particle), a start-up that’s making it easier to build internet-connected hardware. Zach juggles hardware design, front-end software development, and leading his team through the trials and tribulations of a hardware start-up.

Zach is a graduate of HAXLR8R, the only incubator for hardware start-ups that will teach you to order bubble tea in perfect Mandarin. He also has an MBA from Kellogg School of Management and an MEM (Masters in Engineering Management) from McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern. Before Spark, Zach worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, advising Fortune 500 companies on strategy, operations, and product development.

Zach will be presenting two sessions at TECHintersection:

Ever wanted a button in your home or office that would call an Uber for you? Or text your wife to let her know that you’re coming home late for work? Or order you a pizza? Sit down with the team from Particle to build your own “Internet Button” that can be hooked up to any API to take action when the button is pressed.

While the world is being filled with great prototyping tools like Arduino, Raspberry Pi, and Particle’s Photon and Core, the road from a prototype to a product manufactured at scale is perilous, and while there are plenty of resources to help, they can be harder to find. Join Zach Supalla from Particle as he talks through the process his company went through to turn the Core from a prototype to a mass manufactured product and explains how others can follow the same steps.

Of course you can find Zach and Particle on social media:

Twitter: Particle | Zach

Facebook: Particle

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