Wednesday, November 11, 2009

PDC guide for the busy guy

First check out last year’s PDC Guide post, “The Devil’s Field Guide to the PDC” – Eight tips toward a better PDC experience, and also the referenced The Spider King - The Devil’s Field Guide to the PDC. While it’s dated a bit (last year’s PDC was five days with pre-con, this year it’s four, etc) 99% of it is still valid.

Second here are some reminders, tips and thoughts;

A) If you’re local, i.e. live in the Greater LA monster-plex, only a sucker would make the drive (cough… unless you’re working a vendor booth, like Craig… cough… ;). Take the Metrolink to Union Station and Metrorail to the Convention Center. It’s not hard, only two transitions, Metrolink to Red Line to 7th & Metro get on the Blue Line and you get off at the first stop, Pico. Also your Metrolink ticket is a free transfer to the Metrorail. Come on, how often do you get to ride the subway in LA! (Yes, LA has a “real” subway… ;)

B) “Only suckers stand in line”. No swag is worth it, no session is worth it, no food is worth it. Most, if not all, sessions will be recorded. Vendors have tons of swag. There will be tons of food al over the place. Schedules are flexible. Don’t. Stand. In. Line.

C) PLEASE don’t be the stinky guy! I swear I get stuck behind the stinky guy at least once a show. In the US it’s customary to shower daily or so. We have this personal space thing and that includes your… um… scent. If I can smell you a row or two away, then… um… err… I hate to say it… but you’re the “Stinky Guy”

D) Swag day is the last day. The last day of the show, the last day that the partner pavilion will be be open is swag day. You might not get the best swag, but you’ll get allot as no one wants to take any of it home.

BUT keep your eyes open for the “cool” swag. Sometimes there’s swag items that are in limit supply (the Azure backpacks from PDC08 for example) and those will always run out. Get those early…

E) Don’t be afraid of the Microsoft’ies! There will be about 1.9 zillion Microsoft employees and MVP’s around. Wandering the floor, speaking, manning a booth, etc. THEY ARE THERE FOR YOU! Don’t afraid to spark up a conversation with them. No, your question is not stupid. Who cares if you think someone else might of asked it before, if you need to ask it, ASK IT! From personal experience, they love to help you, to answer your questions and to just chat with you. You will find some major names just hanging out and waiting to talk TO YOU. If nothing else, just say “hi”… :)

F) Overcrowded sessions, look for the overflow room (or catch the video). Some sessions will be so packed that people will be filling the rows and standing on top of each other. If massed crowds make you queasy, then look for the overflow  room or catch the session after the fact. The videos of the PDC sessions are outstanding, are free and will be available within about 24 hours of the session. The HQ ones are just as good as almost being there.

G) When walking between the South and West Halls, take the back route. There’s a very cool, outside and usually not crowded path between the West and South halls. It’s around the back, outside. This is my preferred route from one side of the show to the other. I think we’ve scheduled nice weather, so enjoy it with a short stroll outside… :)

H) Pace yourself. It’s going to be long couple days. Open your mind, let the information flow in and don’t stress if you miss something. Remember, there’s the video if you missed, skipped or spaced something.


Enough for now… See you there next week. :)


Related Past Post XRef:
PDC09 – See you there!
“The Devil’s Field Guide to the PDC” – Eight tips toward a better PDC experience

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