I’m sitting in a car on the way to San Francisco airport to catch a plane back home to Cincinnati. For the past several days I’ve had the pleasure of being a part Storage Field Day 7. SFD is an independent event bringing community influences together with vendors to discuss technology solutions and provide open and honest feedback. It’s a great even to connect with other community members, discuss challenges and solutions, and create content for the community benefit – all of which I’m a supporter of.
Since this was my first time going I was surprised at how different it is from watching the feeds and video, especially for someone who doesn’t do a lot of public presentations. I didn’t anticipate how difficult it would be to find time to ask a question. Growing up in my house it was a huge “no no” to interrupt someone while speaking, but the limited amount of time at SFD means that is all but impossible. Every time I wanted to interrupt the image of my mom ready to smack me popped into my head! The next challenge is just how long the days are. When watching the live steam you can take a break between presenters. That isn’t possible as a delegate. As soon as the session ends we rush to pack, hop in transportation, and get ready to do it all over again. It makes for a very long and rushed day.
Speaking of a long day it‘s important to understand the mental fatigue felt by the time the event has concluded. During the presentations you’ll see us delegates on out laptops. You may thing we aren’t paying attention, but it is the exact opposite. We are researching, fact checking, tweeting, and thinking. It’s a huge amount of content during the presentations, not all from the vendor either. After the day’s events wrap up we come together as a group for some social time. Being the storage geeks that we are we end up talking about, you guessed it, storage! So when we should be relaxing, we are adding to our mental fatigue. With all this mental fatigue I wouldn’t change it for a moment. The bonding, learning, and networking prove to be invaluable.
I can’t express how much I’ve enjoyed my SFD7 experience. I wouldn’t trade the long days, hard work, and mental fatigue for anything. I just want to take a moment to say a huge thank you to everyone who works very hard to make this event happen. What you do for our community cannot be measured. I’m honored to have been a part of it. I’d also like to thank all of the presenters and delegates for making to time to connect with me. I know we are all very busy, but taking the time out to connect face to face is amazing. It is sad to think I won’t be able to throw things at Dave, blame random things on Ray, to make Howard want to hit me, or annoy Steven by ordering his drink. I’m glad to be going home, but I’ll miss the face time with all the new friends I’ve met.
Disclaimer: I attended Storage Field Day 7 as a delegate. My travel, accommodations, and most meals were paid for. There is no requirement to blog or tweet about my experiences and I am not compensates in any way