Global pandemic hit in the early 2020 and that of course canceled all in person events, conferences etc. Remote working and remote events started to be the new normal as people couldn’t go to office and work from there. This, of course, made it possible to attend wherever and Finland Azure User Group for example made this awesome Virtual Tips’n’Tricks series where there was plenty of virtual presentations about various topics. But in the other hand remote sessions took away part of meeting new people, seeing new places and sharing your thoughts with others. Some highlights during pandemic for me at least has been the ability to participate for example Microsoft Build and Ignite from home without the need to travel anywhere.
Now it seems that we are moving towards the old times when people were participating in person. Azure & Friends organised a meetup in November but back then people were still a bit unsure to attend. Next meetup took place in April and there were more attendees so it seems that people are waiting for social interaction more and more again. Finland Azure User Group’s Azure Security Blast! had plenty of people participating in listening things about Azure security at Microsoft’s conference room.
It seems that live events are coming back slowly but surely this year. IglooConf is taking place in Helsinki week before midsummer and there is also Global Azure meetup as well as one Azure & Friends meetup up and coming before summer holidays. I hope that we get the community going and that there will be even more things happening after the summer. Of course there is still a place for remote events and I think that the hybrid model might be the way to go. This could be achieved for example by directly streaming or recording the event and publishing it afterwards as a whole or session by session. This of course will be more work (and spending) for the organisers but in the other hand it would make content even more accessible for even widely audience and help speakers to get their presentations saved and shared.
I highly recommend everyone to join live events yet again to meet new people, catch up with old friends and help to make our Azure community better! Also, if you are interested in planning and organising these kind of events feel free to join Finland Azure User Group and Azure & Friends!
You can find all events in which I’m either organiser or speaker at Activities page.