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A little more than 3 wees ago, I was at the PASS conference in Seattle. For me, it was the very first PASS I ever attended and also it was the first conference for me since COVID-19.
If you never heard of the PASS, it’s the worldwide biggest conference about data platform, with nearly 400 sessions and also nearly the same amount of speakers.
For about one week, many data platform professionals gather in Seattle. This year this happened from November 14-18. The first two days, Monday and Tuesday, are the pre-conference sessions. These are full day workshops, where you can educate yourself on a specific topic with a world-class expert. For example, you could start learning DAX with Alberto Ferrari from SQLBI or learn how to adopt Power BI in your organization from Melissa Coates and Matthew Roche.
I didn’t attend these pre-conference sessions this year, as it just didn’t fit my schedule.
The next 3 days, the real conference happens. The keynote starts every day at 8:00 in the morning and then there are sessions the whole day until 17:00 in the evening. Tuesday and Wednesday there was also a small party.
The plan of this article was to give an impression of the PASS with a blog post, but to be honest I find it now very difficult to summarize these three days. I’ve seen so many great sessions and got to know so many great people.
To still summarize it, my highlights were:
- the release of SQL Server 2022
- meeting so many people in person, I know from their books, blog articles and YouTube videos
- meeting people I only knew virtually by having them as a guest in the Power BI User Group Switzerland and eventually meeting them in person
- the presentation of the new scale out functionality for PBI datasets
- meeting many great people I didn’t know before the conference and now I’m wondering how I could not know them before
But there are many more highlights through all the days. To be honest, I could tell stories for an entire evening and most likely I would still forget half of it. But these stories have to be told and not written on a blog post.
What surprised me the most is the vibe of the entire event. I’ve seen the hashtag #SQLFamily before, but I didn’t really understand it until I’ve been at the PASS. At the end the event is all about community and the data community really is a family. I am very happy that I could meet a few more family members in person! And I’m even more motivated to participate in this amazing community!
At the end, I can only recommend to anyone who is working with data to attend a conference like the PASS in person. I imagined it nice, but I was really overwhelmed by the event and I experienced so much more than I imagined!
Also, I really want to say thank you to my employer b.telligent and especially to Caspar, Klaus, Sandro, and Sebastian (in alphabetical order) for giving me the opportunity to go to this event! I know you didn’t have to let me go and I really appreciate that you did and the trust give me every single day! So thank you again, you all created a really amazing company with great people!
And last but not least to give you an impression, I want to show you the wrap-up of the PASS conference. If you look carefully I made it to the wrap up video twice 😉