I want to talk about why I am loving Microsoft Teams right now in this post. Because it has evolved a lot as of late.
Due to the COVID-19 situation a lot of companies have relied on it more. In addition, a lot of conferences have started using it as well.
In fact, it was used for Data Platform Community Weekender Europe which is now known as just DataWeekender. One of the largest virtual Data Platform events to date, which I was one of the organizers of.
It made sense for us to use it because it’s a Microsoft application and we were hosting a Microsoft Data Platform event. Some of us had used it previously and we made sure it all worked well on the day.
As I mentioned in my last post here I’m due to speak at the LightUp virtual conference on July 14th. Where I will be co-presenting with Sander Stad again about using Azure DevOps with SQL Server.
LightUp will also be using Microsoft Teams. Which is great for me because I used it for DataWeekender, and I also use it on a daily basis for work.
For those who have yet to read that post, LightUp is a virtual conference about Microsoft technologies for charity. All the money collected during the fundraiser will be going to UNICEF towards their COVID-19 relief fund.
So, it makes sense for the event to be hosted in Microsoft Teams.
You can read more about the event in detail or donate here. If you scroll down on that page you will notice an impressive list of keynote speakers as well. Including both Bob Ward and Buck Woody.
Personally, I like how easy Microsoft Teams is to use. As well as the fact that new features are being constantly added based on feedback. In fact, as of late I have been taking advantage of the translate feature in the chat area.
In fact, just last week Microsoft announced a whole load of new features. Which you can read in detail here.
Of course, other applications can be used to host conferences. In fact, I have been to a couple of conferences that use other applications.
One thing I noticed with some applications was that people did not seem to be aware of how to use them properly. Due to the fact they were using workarounds for things instead of doing things like dragging additional windows to the correct size.
Personally, I like to make sure that speakers know how to use their conferencing tool before the event. We did that for the last DataWeekender event, and I can guarantee you we will do it again for the next one later this year.
I happen to know the LightUp organization team also done this. Because I did my check with them during one of the hottest days over the last couple of weeks here in the Netherlands.
Another issue with some other applications is security. Some of the issues have been well publicized during the COVID-19 situation, and from what I can gather issues are being addressed.
I hope you enjoyed reading about why I am loving Microsoft Teams right now.
It’s a bit different from my usual posts about SQL Server or Azure DevOps. However, it is about an application I use to present a session about them both so I’m okay with it.
I would love to know what other people prefer to use for conferences. Either for hosting or presenting at. With this in mind, feel free to leave a comment.