This year will be my tenth year attending the annual PASS Summit. It's in Seattle again this year, which to me is important because of the proximity to the Microsoft offices and the people on the SQL Server dev team, as well as the CX (formerly CAT) teams that help so many people get the most out of SQL Server.
The conference is the biggest event in the world specifically focused on SQL Server. As a result, it's an opportunity to meet many people who are directly focused on the SQL Server platform, and those individuals have created a unique community around PASS and the PASS Summit. It's within that community where the relationships develop that help you solve the problems you encounter every day when working with SQL Server. The key word here is relationships. Technology is always changing, but those relationships will help you navigate that changing technology, because those people are going through the same things you are.
It's not just attendees that benefit from those relationships, though. I've been fortunate to have been selected to speak at the Summit each year since 2006. As I've gotten to know the other speakers those acquaintances have become friendships, and some of those friendships have flourished, becoming personal friendships, which go far beyond SQL Server. I look forward to the big events because I get to see my friends again, and we all get to hang together and do some crazy things like Karaoke.
More importantly, though, is that I get the opportunity to learn from others. No one person knows it all. It's not possible; SQL Server is just too big. Even with topics that I know really well, I’ve discovered that there's always some new aspect that I have never encountered, that I learn from others. For example, when I was at SQL Rally in Dallas I attended a basic SQL Server backup session given by Sean McCown. I've been doing SQL Server backups for 20 years, but I learned something in that session. No matter who you are, and how much you know, you can learn something from others.
For those reasons it's important for you to be there. You'll learn something from the people who are there. We'll learn something from you. We'll get to spend some time together, and maybe get to know each other a little better. We're all better off for it, and this is how we build our community.
So no matter if you're a brand, spanking new DBA, or the person who wrote the query processor, please make a point to come to the PASS Summit. Let's spend some time together, have a little fun, learn something, and mostly, make the community a little bit stronger.
I look forward to seeing you there.