You are currently viewing PASS Data Community Summit 2023, Day 1

This is my first PASS Summit. I’ve been to, and spoken at, SQL Saturdays, attended other regional data conferences, but nothing else on this scale. However, this event feels familiar. Like a SQL Saturday just x100!

Part of my choice to attend this year is wanting to connect with other data experts around Microsoft Fabric. Get beyond the curated Microsoft demos and presentations and talk to folks who have gotten hands on. People who aren’t afraid to expose the warts. I also want to better understand components of Fabric, like delta lakes, Azure Data Factory, etc. to see if Fabric may be a good choice for my company in the future.

Biggest Takeaway from Day 1

My biggest takeaway thus far is the focus on community and connection. It’s obvious to say that anyone attending the summit is here to learn. My company sent me here to learn, and I want to return their big investment in me with new and actionable knowledge that I’m attaining during the sessions. But I really appreciate the push to step out of our nerdy, introverted comfort zones and connect with others over lunch, in the hallways between sessions. on the walk to the convention center, or waiting for an elevator at the hotel. I strongly believe in community. People sharing with each other makes all of us better. God did not create us to live alone in isolation, but we are to help one another, learn from one another.

Hearing from others in the trenches has brought as much value to me so far as the sessions. Hearing from others who have tinkered with Microsoft Fabric has been of particular value so far. Learning about comparisons to their experience in Synapse or Databricks Workspaces has been of tremendous value.

Technical Talk

From a technical perspective, Michael Johnson’s session on Diving into Delta Lake was really helpful. He did a really nice job of showing a Spark SQL statement, what parquet files would be created in a data lake, and how executing those statements would affect the Delta Lake logs. Just deep enough to be a dive but not so deep that it went over my beginner’s head.

Heini Ilmarinen’s session on boosting skills for an Azure Data Architect was surprising! Not that I expected the session to be bad, but I expected it to be above my level of expertise. Often I leave talks like this one feeling overwhelmed but today I left this session feeling empowered and equipped, like I could go architect a solution!

The Power Hour was a blast. Go to this session. Expect to laugh. A lot. But don’t expect to learn anything.

Bring on day 2!

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