June 13, 2009 Leave a comment
I spent this week in Vancouver, BC, attending and speaking at the DevTeach/SQLTeach Conference. For those of you who haven’t attended one of these conferences put on by the community and spear-headed by Jean-Rene Roy, you’re really missing out on a wonderful learning and networking experience.
The conference, which rotates year to year among Canada’s largest cities (Montreal, Toronto, and Vancouver), typically draws a large contingent of .NET developers. However it contains tracks of interest for those in the SQL Server, Agile, and Silverlight spaces as well. The number of attendees usually is less than 500 so it has a nice, close, and intimate feel. You don’t feel like you’re one of the herd. You feel like you have chance to sit down and have a good conversation with other attendees and speakers.
This year, I wasn’t able to attend as many sessions as I would have liked. This was primarily due to outside reasons – like work committments back home that required my attention. But the sessions I did get to sit in on where great. A couple quickly come to mind. Bill Graziano gave a session on “Understanding the SQL Server’s Procedure Cache” and Brad McGehee’s session on “How and When to Implement Indexed Views” were both very well done and extremely informative.
There were many other sessions that I would have liked to attend – Kevin Kline, Jessica Moss, Peter DeBetta, and Roman Rehak all had very compelling presentations listed. But alas I didn’t make it to any of them. I certainly plan to download their PowerPoint presentations to see what I can gather from those.
For me though, the highlights of the week came from social outings. Dinner with friends, the speaker’s dinner, and impromptu conversations in the lobby are the keys to a good conference for me. And this year’s DevTeach/SQLTeach had no shortage of those.
I’m already getting excited about the next couple of conferences I’m planning to attend. In August, I’m going to present a couple of sessions at the DevLink conference right here in Nashville, Tennessee. And yesterday I received my acceptance notification for a couple of sessions for the PASS Community Summit in Seattle in November.
More on those later. For now though, I’d love to hear your experiences with conferences. Got any that are well worth your while? Let me know.