Thoughts on the 2016 PASS Summit

Andy Warren, 2016-11-07

I’ll have several more posts this week on specific activities at the Summit, but wanted to start with how the trip went personally:

  • I flew out Monday instead of Sunday. Whether it just that or my pacing for the week, I wasn’t wiped out on Friday afternoon
  • I didn’t take the direct flight to Seattle because it leaves at a kinda-too-early 5 am. I had a 2 hour stop in Houston, had coffee and a bagel and all was good. A side story to that, when I got to Houston there was an earlier flight to Houston but I couldn’t get a seat because it was leaving in less than an hour, not enough time for them to move my checked bag. I took my scheduled flight and waited on my bag, now show – it was put on the earlier flight!
  • I stayed at Motif year on 5th. Ok to good, annoyed about an auto included $12.99 per day convenience fee for wifi and bottled water.
  • Monday night networking dinner went fine and was good start to week
  • I attended the SQLSaturday meeting and the pre-con on Tuesday both went well, had lunch with friends off site, was nice to have that break
  • Wish I had gone to the Chapter meeting, but wanted to attend a pre-con, first time I made time for that!
  • I watched parts of both keynotes remote and felt better for it. Better watching when you can have a table, coffee, and scone, and less annoying when they not to my particular interest.
  • I didnt blog during the week, deliberately, and didn’t pay much attention to Twitter either. Nothing wrong with either and I might change next year, but it was nice to just….be there and do the things I wanted to do
  • Logistics were fine, lunch was ok to good, maybe not quite as good as some years, a very subjective judgement
  • I’m not thrilled about the continued expansion of content to the building across the street. I don’t know if that is just to add more tracks or due to capacity issues. It works, but it adds time.
  • Our Thursday night SQL dinner meetup and game night went well – more on that separately
  • We designed our Thursday events for introverts and as I watched through the week I feel like there is an enormous opportunity there to serve attendees that is being missed. We have the First-Timers thing, but that doesn’t go far enough or address introverts (first timers or not).
  • It was a week of interesting conversations. Had someone recommend that I do some learning in an area I hadn’t considered, got to see an old friend who is very sick, do some diplomacy and strategy, and a lot more.
  • Committed to submitting a presentation as co-presenter with my friend Mitch for next year (and thinking I might do that with one or two others – a different way to participate)
  • Took the train back to the airport on Friday still wearing my attendee badge and that led to a great conversation that lasted right up to the airport.
  • I attended with two colleagues this year that were both first timers, plus a former colleague that was also a first timer. I’m interested to follow up with all three to hear what they thought worked and what didn’t.
  • Took the redeye home, never a fun experience, but I had to be home in time to get some rest before taking my kids to see Lindsey Stirling perform Saturday night!

A good week overall. Learned a lot, technically and otherwise.

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