It’s T-SQL Tuesday!!
T-SQL Tuesday is the brainchild of Adam Machanic (Blog | Twitter). December 2009 was the first T-SQL Tuesday invitation that went out by Adam. It is a monthly blog party on the second Tuesday of each month. Currently, Steve Jones (Blog | Twitter) organises the event and maintains a website with all previous posts. Everyone is welcome to participate in this monthly blog post.
This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is hosted by Xavier Morera ( Blog | Twitter | LinkedIn ). Xavier says: “How much do you love meeting in person, where would you like for your next event to take place, and why Costa Rica?”
The original post is here.
1. Which is your favorite conference and why?
Over the years, I’ve attended a variety of events, ranging from really small ones (40 people) to fairly large ones (12.000 people). I’ve visited larger ones like PASS Summit and SQLBits, and thoroughly enjoyed them, but the whole experience felt a bit draining overall. There’s constantly new people popping for conversations, too many things happening at the same time, and way too many things I’d like to be doing at that same time. And, I’m notoriously bad at hiding in a crowd, as people always seem to find me quickly.
For me, I prefer the smaller events where you can have some good conversations, enjoy some quiet if you want to, and where there’s plenty of room for some friendly banter with other attendees, speakers, volunteers and sponsors. When I thought about this, there were two examples that first sprung to mind being DataGrillen and Power BI Next Step. Being completely transparent, I attend events for the ‘hallway track’ and have chats with people I otherwise wouldn’t run into. Smaller events are just easier to achieve this goal, with or without certain types of beverages 😊
You’ve probably noticed all the events I refer to are in-person events. I do not dislike online events, but they just don’t give me the same level of satisfaction as speakers, organiser, and attendee. I understand the place they have in our current zeitgeist, but there’s options I prefer better.
2. Which is the best venue that you have visited for a tech conference?
I’ll be very chauvinistic here. The venue we had for dataMinds Connect in 2017 and 2018 was pretty cool and got actual good feedback, despite the session rooms having some sound & tech issues. Back then, we visited the Ghelamco Arena in Ghent, which houses KAA Gent.
The view we had from the large rooms overviewing the soccer pitch was pretty cool, but I particularly liked the room we had in the actual Press Box of KAA Gent. This is where Klaas Vandenberghe ( twitter | linkedin) , Chrissy LeMaire ( twitter | linkedin ) and Rob Sewell ( twitter | linkedin ) held their dbatools precon session, but decided to turn it into a “press release”, because of obvious reasons. After 2 years, we ended up moving away from this venue, for multiple reasons, and going to the Lamot venue in Mechelen. But still, if you’re asking coolest venue, this one really springs to mind for me.
3. Who is the best presenter that you have ever listened to?
I’ll split this into two parts, being online and in-person sessions, because they are completely different experiences to me. These days, you’ll rarely see me attend online sessions where I’m not moderating or presenting myself. I have a notoriously bad attention span (Squirrel!), and I focus all my attention budget on the calls I do during my daytime occupation, whereas I find it very difficult to stay attentive after hours.
There’s a handful of online presenters I’ve witnessed so far that actually keep me zoned in to their entire session. To single out one, I’ll have to go with Alexander Arvidsson ( twitter | linkedin ). Alexander has a certain way of telling a story, and using his set of tools, that keeps me drawn in. For this, I can only tip my hat. If you’re not completely sure about what I mean, I suggest you take a look at his session called “The Untruthful Art – Five Ways of Misrepresenting Data” ( youtube ), which resonated particularly well with me.
For in-person sessions, I can only put forward one name, and be a bit chauvinistic again. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve seen this person present, and am completely amazed at the breadth and depth of topics he’s covered throughout the years. In the 10+ years I’ve attended sessions by Nico Jacobs ( twitter | linkedin ), I’ve never walked away without learning something new and interesting, even if it were a session on a topic I considered myself to be proficient at. Over years past, we’ve jokingly called Nico our ‘joker’, as we can always can call upon him to fill a gap for a specific topic we’re looking for. He’ll probably have some materials and demo’s good to go anyway..
4. Which location would you like for your next event to take place and why Costa Rica?
There’s plenty of places in the world I’ve yet to discover, and if events are reasons for me to go there, I’m all on board! Someday, I’d like to present at conferences in the US & Canada, as I’ve been told there’s pretty interesting differences in the complete experience. Costa Rica sounds like a very nice place to go to, but only if I can extend the stay by 2 weeks to visit the country, and go train with an old friend of mine at his local dojo.
For reasons outside of tech, I’m dreaming about doing a tour of Japan and visit the cities like Osaka, Kyoto, Nagasaki, Tokyo, .. Visit those cities, but also go train at the different Shinkyokushin Dojos spread throughout the country, and hopefully attend the World Cup of Shinkyokushin Karate one day. If an event in Japan would help me achieve those goals, I’ll grab the opportunity with both hands 😊.
All the reminiscing about times past is fun. But I’m about ready to start doing the real thing again. Here’s to hoping we can pursue those dreams in the near future, and keep it safe for everyone ..
It’s a quick write-up, as I looked over the invite. But still, I wanted to contribute to this one!
Stay safe, take care!