In which Jill reminisces about one of her favorite events in one of her favorite cities with some of her favorite people.
The Data Warehousing Institute always draws a respectable crowd, both in terms of numbers and in terms of quality of the attendees. But the Vegas event is always more fun. Vendors debut new releases, faculty members deliver their workshops with a little more flourish, and the hospitality suites are extra-extravagant. A few of last weekâ€™s highlights:
1: Well, this might be considered a low-light, but it took me an hour and a half to get from the airport to the hotel. Thankfully I was â€śstuckâ€ť in the shuttle bus with Phil Russom, Research Director from TDWI, and Geoff McDonald from Hyperion, both of whom had some words of wisdom that I wouldnâ€™t have caught in the usual 10-minute cab ride. Talk about a silver lining!
2: Tracy Austin, former CIO of Mandalay Resort Group and current IT Governance expert, did her usual disarming and informed job representing the trials and travails of governanceâ€”and, by extension, IT-business alignment. Tracy is a smart and engaging presenter, and her material made it clear that sheâ€™d walked the governance walk, both at Mandalay and at her former company, Harrahâ€™s Entertainment. Tracy was enviably fresh, her commute to the conference involving the usual Strip traffic from her home near Red Rock.
3: Mark Madsenâ€™s ETL bake-off was well-done. There was an obvious shift in the audience, who came to see not what the vendors thought about ETL, but what theyâ€™d done. The bake-off reflected the Zeitgeist of the conference: more people are engaged in what works in the real world.
4: The TDWI Executive Summit was a hit. Attendees of the Executive Summit, sometimes an impatient bunch awaiting the punch line, were this time engaged in healthy discussion and debate. For a primarily data warehousing crowd, the understanding of Master Data Management and CDI was robust and fresh. The questions, during my presentation and at the subsequent luncheon, were legitimately business-focused. This group of managers clamored for the â€śhowsâ€ť as well as the â€śwhatsâ€ťâ€”clearly invested in propelling their companies forward. Wayne Eckerson did his usual stellar job of chairing the summit.
Baseline had 12 people at the Vegas conference andâ€”between the Sunday night welcome reception, the sessions, and the, uh, cocktails, we were moving around faster than a bunch of long-tailed cats in a rocking chair factory. (Sorry.) The R&R came on Wednesday night, when we accompanied some good friends to the Cirque du Soleil show, Ka. Usually at TDWI Vegas, youâ€™ll find the vendors twirling and spinning, but last week, the circus was elsewhere. Congrats again to TDWI for a first-rate event!
Posted February 27, 2007 12:01 AM
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