I just came back from the East Coast Oracle User Group conference. Good conference. Lots of solid, technical knowledge being shared. Being there got me to thinking...
Over the past few years, a big concern for people attending conferences is the need to justify their attendance. It's a big deal. And, in my own mine, the only real justification is what you bring back, share and apply post-conference. Let me tell you a story (can you hear all of my children groaning in the background?).
All the penguins in my neighborhood get together for a little meeting every month. They talk about the happenings around the neighborhood, complain about the weather, catch up with each other, share info on where the fish are, and all sorts of things. It's just a little social gathering. At least, it was until last month.
Last month, a new penguin stopped by. He was on his way north, looking for better penguin weather. And he was flying! The local penguin crew was stunned because, as everybody knows, penguins can't fly. But the new bird promised to teach them all to fly. And, after about four hours of instruction and practice, all those penguins were flying. Soaring. Barrel rolls. Loops. Bomber dives. Spins. What a bunch of happy penguins, high-fiving each other and laughing about the new knowledge and skills they acquired.
After another four hours, those penguins were exhausted. Huffing and puffing. Soreness from muscles they didn't even know they had. But they were exhilarated. They all agreed it was a spectacular day.
And then they all walked home...
You want to justify your attendance at a conference? Be smarter than my local penguins.