SQLBits – The 7 Wonders of SQL – Why you should attend

If you’re in the U.K. and work with SQL Server chances are you have heard for this and may have even registered, for those of you who aren’t subscribed to the #SQLBits twitter tag, here’s a brief overview of what SQLBits is and why you should attend.

SQLBits is a not for profit organisation created by members of the SQL community for the SQL community. The first ever SQLBits was held back in October 2007, since then a further 5 have been held in various venues around the country. The idea behind this is to try and involve as many people as geographically possible by simple moving it to people who would not otherwise attend events in other UK towns and cities.

To give an idea of the frequency and locations of the events I’ve listed below all the previous incarnations of SQLBits:

  1. October 2007 – Reading.
  2. The SQL – March 2008 – Birmingham. 
  3. Cubed – September 2008 – Hatfield.
  4. Goes Fourth – March 2009 – Manchester – This was my first SQLBits experience.
  5. Goes West – November 2009 – Newport – You can read my review of Goes West here.
  6. The 6th Sets – April 2010 – London – I had breakfast with Christian Bolton and Connor Cunningham at this one!

The current incumbent  promises to be the biggest event ever and is considered by many to be the premier SQL Server event in Europe with many Europeans and even Americans flying in to attend.

Why would so many people want to attend from so far away? The reason is this, the sessions that are available have actually been voted for by the people who want to attend from an open session submission process. This means that you could submit a session to SQLBits and actually end up presenting and almost certainly guarantees a diverse and high quality programme.

But I’m not a DBA, would I really benefit from going to this?
Yes, there are normally three or four different tracks available. At the last SQLBits the tracks were:

  • Business Intelligence
  • DBA
  • Dev
  • SQL2008

So there’s enough diversity to cater for everyone!

OK, I’m sold. How do I go about attending? Is it going to cost much?
The event itself is going to be held over 3 days from September 30th to October 2nd. If you wish to attend the first two days then there will be a cost, but the Saturday event is totally free – they’ll even provide refreshments:

All prices are exclusive of VAT
7 Wonders of SQL
Full Conference
Thursday & Friday
Community Day
Early Bird 3 Sep 2010 £250.00 £125.00 £350.00 FREE
Standard 24 Sep 2010 £300.00 £175.00 £450.00
Last Minute   £350.00 £225.00 £550.00

Discounts available from local usergroups. Contact your usergroup organiser for

Extra Discount – 20% off when 6 or more people book for the whole conference.

For more information on travel and accommodation for the conference click here. One quick tip if you’re going by train and have a change to make look at buying a ticket for each change rather than one to the final destination, sometimes it works out cheaper and you’ll end up on the same train anyway! My wife has saved up to £30 by using this method in the past.

All this is only possible sue to the dedication of the founders of SQLBits and the continued support of the sponsors, I urge you to take a look at the sponsor stands if you go as not only do they sell some cool stuff that will make your jobs easier, but there are also competitions to win things like Xbox’s!

Finally, to register for SQLBits 7 click here

P.S. If anyone can tell me what the “7 wonders of SQL” are I’d love to know!