Back home from the PASS Data Community Summit

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What a week it was. While it wasn’t my first in person conference this year, it felt different. For the past 20+ years, the Summit has been one of the standard parts of my year. It was always marked on my calendar as where I would be, and for years I would make hotel reservations just as soon as the data was announced.

This year was special for so many reasons. Here are a few of my favorite moments, mostly in pictures.

I finally made it to SQL Saturday Portland.

Great event, all around. From the walk to the location through the leaves.

To the great sessions. What a time!

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SQL Train was as much fun as expected

It was my first time on a passenger train, and in a working train station.

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I couldn’t have shared that experience with a better group!

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I probably could have eaten better!

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Thankfully my friend Erland had an extra sandwich so I did eat something that wasn’t donut shaped!

The views were amazing (the train windows are not your friend when taking pictures!)

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Summit Time

This year was really different when arriving at the Summit because I didn’t really have that much involvement in the day-to-day operations, or choosing sessions. (I help a little bit, but only in an advisory manner).

They changed the entry to the Convention Center. I don’t like change 😊.

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Walking up to the escalators was a great feeling. It all came rushing back. Whether or not this conference is in this building again is something I don’t know. But I am glad to have seen this site one more time at least.

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Registration was in the same place, so I instantly felt that nostalgia rush!

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One big difference? Not only do I know a lot of people in the SQL Community, but I also knew a lot of people who work for Redgate (since I work there too 😊).

Carly, Cara, Anika, and Dave (the people you can see their faces) were all there to work tirelessly to make the conference great. And it was!

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Everyone I have met since starting at Redgate has been awesome.

The Regular Week Starts

After some offsite meetings, the week started. I basically did two things. Liveblog the Keynotes, and work the hallway track saying hello to friends, and finding new writers for Simple-Talk (Interested? Email and you can find more detail here);


I liveblogged the keynotes, (as did Chris Yates on his website). You can find those blogs here on the Simple-Talk website tagged as PassDataSummitKeynote2023. This was quite an experience, as you just must keep it going no matter how fast people talked!

There were high notes in all three keynotes. Microsoft announced some new interesting things in theirs, and of course the Conor and Bob show didn’t disappoint.

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Redgate announced that the Test Data Manager tool is generally available in their keynote:

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The team from Redgate did a great job!

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Tushita Gupta, Ryan Booz, Stephanie Herr, David Gummer, and Carly Miechen! They all rocked it!

During the community keynote, the wonderful Kimberly Tripp was celebrated after she announced the speakers. She is retiring from working in the SQL Area. Our loss, but she has some fun/awesome/amazing/useful to the world, stuff coming up in her life!

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And of course, Ben Weismann and Melody were great…

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My good friend T Jay Belt hung out with me for the community keynote, and took a few pictures of me furiously clicking away:

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Finally, the Hallway and Vendor area Tracks

Like most every year, the best track was the hallway track. Sessions were recorded in rooms, but they were not recording the small sessions taking place in the community zone, nor were they recording all the conversations we were having!

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Tony Davis, Tonie Huizer and myself also did a session on technical writing, but I didn’t take pictures of that session!

The trade show floor was buzzing all the time!

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Sad and Glad it is Over

Sad is probably obvious. It was great seeing all the people I haven’t seen for a while, and connecting with quite a few hopeful writers for Simple-Talk in the future. The views from the community zone area didn’t disappoint. I could have looked out the window for a very long time.

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Glad it is over; may be a bit confusing. I am glad that it is over because I am exhausted. I was at 6 days of conferences, walked nearly 30 miles, and did not always sleep great (because I wanted to be up early for the conference!)

So right now (even 3 days after getting home), I am beat.

But like every conference and every vacation I take, by the next time it happents, I will have long forgotten this feeling of tiredness and be ready to do it all again!