SQLBits 2022 and what is next

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In this post I want to cover SQLBits 2022 and what is next. For reasons that I will explain in this post.

It is good to be blogging again after a short break. Whilst was mostly due to me sorting out things relating to SQLBits and Storm Eunice. Anyway, I have just returned from SQLBits 2022. Like others I flew over from the Netherlands to the UK so that I could attend in-person.

SQLBits

Before I left for the UK, I made sure I was well stocked up with FFP3 N99 face masks and Covid self-tests beforehand. So that I could get up early every morning and take a test before stepping into the event. As some of you probably noticed, I wore a facemask into all the sessions that I attended as well.

Great to be back

It was great to be back at an in-person event again and meet up with others. Even more so since it was in my home country. It was good to see people talking and networking in-person again.

Since it was my first visit back to the UK since February 2020 it gave me the opportunity to network and meet people in-person for the first time. Such as Richard Swinbank, whose Azure Data Factory book I mention in my post that showed an Azure Test Plans example for Azure Data Factory.

In fact, when I found out he was a helper during my training day one of the first things I told him was that I have been recommending his book to other professionals that I work with. It was also a nice surprise other helper in the room was Ian Pain. Who is a former work colleague from the southwest of the UK.

Of course, Richard and Ian were just two of the many amazing volunteers who did a great job during SQLBits.

Plus, I got to have a good laugh after finding out that two people I have known for a long time in very different ways know each other.

SQLBits 2022 Sessions

I was a bit busy with other things during SQLBits 2022. Due to the fact that as well as co-presenting a training day with Sander Stad, I also presented three other sessions during SQLBits 2022.

I must admit I did feel a bit guilty about presenting so many times. However, I was really pleased that I got to co-present with new speaker Kay Cordewener (@KayCordewener on Twitter) a couple of times. Which I covered in an earlier post.

Kay did an amazing job. Especially in his first ever session where we covered various Azure Data Engineering services. Such as Azure Stream Analytics, Azure Databricks and Azure Synapse Analytics.

I think that with his background he has the potential to introduce some great things to the Microsoft Data Platform community. For example, because he has a master’s degree in Cognitive Neuropsychology, he can introduce a fresh perspective to various BI & Analytics platforms.

To give you an example of how useful his background is, whilst we were preparing for SQLBits Kay was giving advice on the layout of some of the slides. He explained how the human brain would receive them better.

As well as presenting, I also found the time to attend sessions by new speakers and first time SQLBits speakers as well. One session which pleasantly surprised me was the ‘Brilliant Brains – Embracing Neurodiversity’ session by Sarah Francis. I found to be a really good session.

SQLBits 2022 surprise

It was great to catch-up with people I had known for years as well. Including a surprise that put a big smile on my face.

Because I walked into my training day and came face-to-face with somebody that I had studied with many years ago. Suffice to say that I have known them longer than anybody else at the event.

Anyway, a big thanks to everybody who attended my co-presented training day or any of the sessions that I was involved with.

As promised to the person who attended the Azure DevOps trio session with a campervan T-shirt, here is the photo that I was talking about.

Campervan photo

Which leads nicely to the topic about what is next.

What is next after SQLBits 2022

After this SQLBits I will be writing some blog posts relating to some of the questions that I got asked during the conference. Along with some other posts relating to the training day and the sessions. Including something I mentioned about Azure Synapse Analytics that I have yet to try.

Because I want to make sure I give back as much as I can to those who attended the conference.

I also have some new personal and professional projects to start right after SQLBits.

For example, I am going to be doing more coaching. Something I am really looking forward to doing. Mostly due to the fact that I enjoy giving advice to others in the community about certifications based on my experience. Now, I get to do it in a more official capacity.

In addition, I must help fix some damage that Storm Eunice caused right before SQLBits. Something that I am looking forward to doing a lot less than the other things.

Plus, now I have gone through the process of a trip to London I can finally look to do a return trip to the southwest of the UK as well. A trip which is long overdue since I have not seen my family in-person since 2019.

I must take a Covid test before I return to the Netherlands from the UK. With this in mind, I thought it would be a good idea to go to London first. Since there are a lot more test centres there than where my family lives.

Of course, I also have to do my part as one of the organizers of a virtual conference.

A few other new things are in the pipeline as well, a subtle clue to one of them is in this sentence.

Final words

Glad I am able to share my thoughts about SQLBits 2022 and what is next. It was great to be back at an in-person conference in my home country. I look forward to doing it again because SQLBits is an amazing conference.

In reality, I am still processing the whole event. However, I wanted to do this post sooner rather than later to show my commitment with the follow up posts. So that anybody with outstanding questions can reach out to me whilst the questions were still fresh in their heads.

Plus, I wanted to thank all involved with the event as soon as possible. Everybody involved in this years SQLBits should be pleased with themselves. Including the organizers, volunteers, sponsors and of course the attendees.

Kevin Chant

About

Lead BI & Analytics Architect originally from the UK and now living in the Netherlands. Currently Microsoft Data Platform MVP and Microsoft Certified Trainer Alumni. Many years experience in the IT sector, and has supported databases for companies in the top 10 of the fortune 500 list. In addition to a lot of Data Platform experience also has a fair few Microsoft Certifications, and was probably the last ever person in the world to gain the MCSD Azure Architect certification. Real life experience with Microsoft Data Platform and Azure Devops. Previously SQL Server Product Owner of around 1,900 instances. In addition, done various things for the Data Platform Community. With one of the last being one of the organizers of the online DataWeekender conference.

More on Kevin Chant.

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