Last week I attended my first in-person event in over two years. SQLBits, the largest data platform conference in Europe, was a hybrid event and marked the first time many of us met in person in ages. It was a huge success as folks from around the world gathered to learn...and celebrate! I heard several people say, while it seemed like more than two years, it also felt like they were apart from their data community friends for just a few days when seeing them again.
The community’s favorite Microsoft speakers were there in full force giving us the latest news about SQL Server 2022, database migrations to Azure, Power BI, and more. I was especially interested in hearing about features of SQL Server 2022 that make queries run faster – without changing code. This set of features is called Intelligent Query Processing (IQP). You may have heard me talk about the IQP features available with SQL Server 2017, 2019, and Azure SQL Database at many virtual events the past two years. I’m most looking forward to the IQP feature called Parameter Sensitive Plan Optimization. This feature allows more than one plan to be saved in cache so that the plan can be switched based on the number of rows!
There were many Microsoft sessions, but the community speakers were also on hand or speaking virtually. Sessions ranged from beginner to advanced and covered everything from query tuning to data science. There was really something for everyone. (By the way, the PASS Data Community Summit call for speakers is open now!)
While there was a lot of learning at SQL Bits, there were also many fun activities, including game and trivia nights. SQL Bits would not be complete without the theme-based costume party. This year, the theme was eighties video games, and the party featured life-sized games and dancing.
Overall, SQL Bits was just what many of us needed after the past two years. I look forward to many more chances to present sessions in person, networking, and meeting up with old friends.