Click here to monitor SSC
SQLServerCentral is supported by Red Gate Software Ltd.
 
Log in  ::  Register  ::  Not logged in
 
 
 
        
Home       Members    Calendar    Who's On


Add to briefcase

Devil's Advocate Expand / Collapse
Author
Message
Posted Saturday, August 20, 2011 12:07 PM


Grasshopper

GrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopper

Group: General Forum Members
Last Login: Thursday, August 14, 2014 9:10 AM
Points: 14, Visits: 388
Comments posted to this topic are about the item Devil's Advocate

Veni Vidi Velcro
I came, I saw, I stuck around
Post #1162902
Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 6:12 AM
SSCertifiable

SSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiableSSCertifiable

Group: Moderators
Last Login: Tuesday, August 12, 2014 10:53 AM
Points: 6,783, Visits: 1,876
Chris, I don't think large events are in any danger of extinction. In my view they aren't all that large if you look a the number of attendees from each county/city, we're getting a very very small subset of the possible attendees (which is normal). But back to your point, I think people go for the immersion, the combination of a break from work, the deep variety of content, the fancier sponsor displays, the greater chance of meeting someone they want to meet, and more.

The first time "problem" really has nothing to do with volume and everything to do with teaching survival skills, a newbie can feel just as new and lost at a 500 person event. Over time it should increase the number of repeat attendees slightly, but I'd bet in pratice the decision to attend is based more on money than on any other consideration.

I feel like it's a topic worthy of pages, with no easy answers. In the end I think that the free events serve a useful niche and pose no threat to the super large paid events. Trying to do an in between model is not easy, it's what SQLRally is designed to be and it will be a year or two before we can know for sure if that model works.


Andy
SQLAndy - My Blog!
Connect with me on LinkedIn
Follow me on Twitter
Post #1163234
Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 7:11 AM


SSChampion

SSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampion

Group: General Forum Members
Last Login: Yesterday @ 2:24 PM
Points: 11,235, Visits: 12,988
It's funny that the only comment is from Andy and the next one is from me, another of the inaugural SQLRally planners.

I think my take is a little different from Andy's. I think the larger, more expensive events, will be around for awhile longer, but mainly because of perceived benefit. It really comes down to the old "you get what you pay for" argument. Free is always consider inferior to paid for, so even though many SQLSaturday presenters have also presented at the major conferences the perception that you get better content if you pay for it is there. The second reason is that there are still enough people out there who don't want to use their own time for professional development that they will pay or get their employers to pay for a conference. Third, the major conferences are where you get the biggest vendor presence, specifically Microsoft. While I don't see this as a huge benefit, I know many who do, and it IS a selling point to the ones spending the money and granting the time away from the office. Finally, for people who are involved in the community, it is the opportunity to see ALL your SQL Server friends at one place. Yes, you can see some at SQLSaturday's and SQLRally's, but almost all the "major" players in the community are at the Summit. That opportunity is, in my opinion, priceless.




Jack Corbett

Applications Developer

Don't let the good be the enemy of the best. -- Paul Fleming

Check out these links on how to get faster and more accurate answers:
Forum Etiquette: How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help
Need an Answer? Actually, No ... You Need a Question
How to Post Performance Problems
Crosstabs and Pivots or How to turn rows into columns Part 1
Crosstabs and Pivots or How to turn rows into columns Part 2
Post #1163263
Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 7:13 AM


SSC Veteran

SSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC VeteranSSC Veteran

Group: General Forum Members
Last Login: 2 days ago @ 1:15 PM
Points: 292, Visits: 767
I am a big fan of the annual PASS event, not only for the reasons you mentioned, but for a perhaps less-obvious one as well: the focus and isolation. Even more than the content and knowledge, I find that time is the most valuable commodity, and the week away (out of the office - waaaaaay out of the office) spent focusing solely on SQL Server is invaluable to me.

Each year when I make my case for budgeting for PASS (and I'm lucky to have progressive-minded bosses), I include the value of the time spent in isolation, away from the stresses/distractions of day-to-day routines where I can do nothing except learn, code, discuss, and question SQL Server issues.

My fiancee chuckles at me ("most people go to conferences and spend time OUTSIDE of their hotel room"), but it's true that when I'm done my conference sessions, I retire to my room (with room service, mind you) to apply the things that I've learned throughout the day. I always bring along copies of our production databases and other projects we're working on, to see if I can apply new techniques, etc. I guess it doesn't hurt that most days it's rainy outside in Seattle, and so I can get at least a few hours of work in.

My guess is that if I didn't take advantage of the focused and isolated time away from the office, PASS would be half as valuable. I fear that with local 1-day events, I wouldn't get the chance to replicate what, for me, has become the annual staple of my career training/development.
Post #1163267
Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 7:32 AM


SSChampion

SSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampionSSChampion

Group: General Forum Members
Last Login: Yesterday @ 2:24 PM
Points: 11,235, Visits: 12,988
Simon D (8/22/2011)
I am a big fan of the annual PASS event, not only for the reasons you mentioned, but for a perhaps less-obvious one as well: the focus and isolation. Even more than the content and knowledge, I find that time is the most valuable commodity, and the week away (out of the office - waaaaaay out of the office) spent focusing solely on SQL Server is invaluable to me.

Each year when I make my case for budgeting for PASS (and I'm lucky to have progressive-minded bosses), I include the value of the time spent in isolation, away from the stresses/distractions of day-to-day routines where I can do nothing except learn, code, discuss, and question SQL Server issues.

My fiancee chuckles at me ("most people go to conferences and spend time OUTSIDE of their hotel room"), but it's true that when I'm done my conference sessions, I retire to my room (with room service, mind you) to apply the things that I've learned throughout the day. I always bring along copies of our production databases and other projects we're working on, to see if I can apply new techniques, etc. I guess it doesn't hurt that most days it's rainy outside in Seattle, and so I can get at least a few hours of work in.

My guess is that if I didn't take advantage of the focused and isolated time away from the office, PASS would be half as valuable. I fear that with local 1-day events, I wouldn't get the chance to replicate what, for me, has become the annual staple of my career training/development.


That's an interesting take because I argue often that the biggest benefit to PASS is the networking that takes place outside of sessions. I do see your point though because actually applying the information provided the same day will certainly cement the concepts and practices. I'd argue that I could do that by getting the DVD's and applying them on my own time away from the conference, but the reality is, most of us, including me, are not going to do that.

This is one of the things I like about these types of editorials, I get to hear from people like you and what you value in a conference.




Jack Corbett

Applications Developer

Don't let the good be the enemy of the best. -- Paul Fleming

Check out these links on how to get faster and more accurate answers:
Forum Etiquette: How to post data/code on a forum to get the best help
Need an Answer? Actually, No ... You Need a Question
How to Post Performance Problems
Crosstabs and Pivots or How to turn rows into columns Part 1
Crosstabs and Pivots or How to turn rows into columns Part 2
Post #1163281
Posted Monday, August 22, 2011 11:34 AM
Grasshopper

GrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopperGrasshopper

Group: General Forum Members
Last Login: Wednesday, July 30, 2014 3:33 PM
Points: 10, Visits: 98
If anything I see the smaller events “fueling” the larger events. In my experience with SQL Saturdays, each year comments are made on the event evals that they wish it was more than a day and that it provided longer, deep dive type sessions. I don’t think pay for events such as the PASS Summit is in any danger, as it brings not just the content that meets all manner of SQL Server user needs, but also (as Jack mentions) provides a myriad of networking opportunities over the course of several days. Keep in mind that PASS Summit helps fund the smaller, regional free or low-cost events.


Karla Landrum
Community Evangelist
PASS HQ


SQL Babe
Post #1163521
« Prev Topic | Next Topic »

Add to briefcase

Permissions Expand / Collapse