Why is it so exciting? Well this is what I liked so much last time.
This is a SQL Server conference, but it is not run by Microsoft and SQL Server (and Data in all it's varied forms) is the ONLY topic. This means that the party line was not always followed and DB folk were not playing second fiddle to Developers or Server Admins.
The presenters were all top-notch. Not just good presenters but some of the best SQL Server presenters from across the country (world?) are here. They are experts in their arena, not only specific parts of SQL Server but on the broader topics of data modeling, data integration, data warehousing or enterprise data architecture. There were discussions that continued long after the sessions were over and private dialogues sometimes continued past the conference over email.
The people, not just the presenters were great too. There is something special about being surrounded by a totally new group of peers with different and exciting experiences. Everyone was having fun sharing war stories about the weird corner-cases that were encountered.
I learned more from that week at PASS Summit 2009 than I ever expected.
This week is gonna be great.