Day 1 Wrap PASS BA Conference - Excelerator BI

Day 1 Wrap PASS BA Conference


It is late on day 1 of the PASS BA Conference – quite late actually.  I really enjoyed the first day and wanted to share some of the highlights with those that couldn’t make it.

Keynote Speaker: Carlo Ratti.

This man is living the dream!  Carlo is an MIT Professor working in the Senseble City Lab.  Carlo shared lots of examples of the ground breaking research being done to “invent the future”.  From autonomous vehicles that wont need traffic lights and yet can become “orders of magnitude” more efficient to the point where we could serve current demand for point to point transportation with just 20% of the fleet.  He also spoke of how MIT analysed Flicker photo metadata –  like date/time of photo, country of origin of the photographer to understand how tourists move through cities, where they visit etc.  And also how MIT analysed the colour (specifically how “green”) Flicker photos were as a proxy measure for “drought” in Spain – fascinating stuff!.

Just a few highlights for the sessions I attended

I attended many sessions during the day, but the highlights for me were as follows:

  • I attended a session by Avi Singh on Power View. I have not been a fan of Power View to date, however Avi really made me think again about how I could use this product to add value.
  • I went to a great session by Marco Russo on budgeting in Power Pivot.  For those of you that know of Marco (and Alberto), you will know these guys are “off the planet” when it comes to DAX understanding.  This was a great session about how to take last year’s sales (or some other base line) and then using a range of tools like Power Query and DAX you can come up with a budget apportioned at various levels of granularity. Excellent stuff.   I also then had the privilege of chatting to Marco about the Mastering DAX and also Optimising DAX training sessions in Europe in the middle of this year, both of which I hope to fit into my work schedule.  I have no doubt these will be mega learning opportunities for me (or anyone else that wants to be a DAX Ninja).
  • I sat through a great presentation on Power Query (my number 2 most loved piece of software after Power Pivot).  Miguel shared some of the up coming features including the ability to record Power Query using the VBA Macro Recorder (amongst other things).  I can already see how I will add a macro in my personal.xlsb to instantly and automatically add a Power Query calendar to my workbooks.  I also learnt (and now understand) why Power Query is so flaky with Power Pivot, And I also know how to manage this in the short term thanks to this blog post by Chris Webb.
  • I got to chat with Per Solli from Power ON, and realised I need to learn a lot more about the capability of Power Planner – I’m sure that will be the topic of a future post.
  • Oh, and I bumped into Mr Excel (Bill Jelen) and had a chance to chat.

These are just a few of the awesome things I did today as I invested some “sharpen the saw” time in myself and my company

Looking forward to tomorrow!.

2 thoughts on “Day 1 Wrap PASS BA Conference”

  1. Hi Matt
    Sounds like you are having an excellent time. I am very jealous!
    Good luck for your presentation.

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