My ramblings on the stuff that holds it all together
Well, it starts a bit later today in the US, I went last year and it was a very useful and educational week, my only gripe was about scale – there were too many people and the place was too small, crazy queues for every session.
It seems they’ve moved to somewhere much bigger this year and I hear the attendance is up on 14k people from 10k last year.
I couldn’t make it this year, but I am going to Microsoft Tech-Ed – I’ve been to both of these a couple of times in the last few years and in my opinion they’re brilliant value for money. It costs about £1.5k GBP +expenses to go for a week.
Yes, it’s away from home and there plenty of opportunities to jolly it up after work hours but, to put it in context a normal 1 week technical training course on VMWare or Microsoft stuff in the UK costs upwards of £2-3k. I find most courses frustratingly slow and plodding and they focus in a narrow set of a products functionality and only ever at a high level, never really drilling down into the intimate details of a product as courses are delivered by trainers who are divorced from the technology and delivering a training package.
Whereas with VMWorld or Tech-Ed you can drive your own schedule; you can pick from various deep technical or high-level sessions across a wide range of products and tech.
There is always a good attendance from technical members of the product and engineering teams and partners, over the years I’ve had lots of in-depth discussions with the people who wrote the code and have gained far more understanding than I could ever get from a training course.
Tech-Ed, VMWorld are the only way to get up to speed with their current products, if I were to put it into numbers I’d say a training course could give you maybe 5% of what you would get out of Tech-Ed/VMWorld – unless your day job has a very narrow focus to one task and one product which has been around for a while. If you’re a consultant or Architect tasked with making and implementing technology decisions there is no argument – best money you (or your employer) will ever spend.
So, for those of us that couldn’t be here tonight 🙂 here are my round up of links to the best “virtual event” coverage
Eric Sloof http://www.ntpro.nl/blog/
Scott Lowe http://blog.scottlowe.org/
VMWorld site http://vmworld.com/vmworld/index.jspa
Edited for appalling spelling!