The experience of MVP Gregor Suttie @ Ignite

Gregor Suttie tells about his experience of Ignite 2022 in the VS.

Published: 31 October 2022

The last time I attended this conference was in 2019 in Orlando Florida where there were thirty thousand attendees and it ran for five days, this year’s event due to Covid was 2 days long and limited to around three and a half thousand people.

The trip to the VS  

I flew from Amsterdam to Frankfurt and then Frankfurt to Seattle, which meant the best part of Monday was traveling, I left Amsterdam at 10 am CET and arrived in Seattle around 3 PM Pacific time. The weather for the week of the conference was amazing, very sunny and beautiful each day. The days not at the conference were spent sightseeing and visiting the tourist attractions, which were all awesome and great fun to see, you can see the sights in a day fairly easily, public transport and Uber are your friend.


Ignite: the event  

Ignite itself started on Wednesday at 8 am and after having picked up my badge the previous day I was ready to rock, I grabbed my breakfast and then walked around and got a feel for the venue. The venue itself was cool looking, with different colored pod areas which were used for different areas and technical sessions. The main area was known as the Hub, and this is where they had all of the cameras pointing at a cool stage ready to begin the day with the Keynote. The Keynote from Satya Nadella (Chairman and CEO at Microsoft) is always pretty cool, he talked about a number of different areas such as Infrastructure, Data, AI, Microsoft Teams, and finally, Microsoft Viva. If you like, you can watch the Keynote.

This year’s theme was to do more with less.


The sessions

After the Keynote, I attended a few in-person sessions, including the Fireside chat with Scott Guthrie and Alysa Taylor and they were talking about How Customers Build Agility and Drive innovation with the Microsoft Cloud/

The next session I attended was called Deep dive into and Cloud Native Architectures with Donovan Brown - The Distributed Application Runtime (Dapr) provides APIs that simplify microservice connectivity and make your K8s and AKS applications better and smarter. Whether your communication pattern is a service-to-service invocation or pub/sub messaging, Dapr helps you write resilient and secured microservices. Donovan Brown lead this session and explained how Dapr works and how its sidecar architecture enables your cloud-native apps.

For lunch, everyone is given a brown bag with their sauces and utensils and then you make your way into an enormous hall where you sit at tables and have your food and drinks for an hour. This is one of my favorite parts of conferences – I ended up chatting to a Japanese lady who had worked at Microsoft for 24 years and started with Exchange and is now working alongside Thomas Maurer with Azure Arc technologies at Microsoft – we spoke about a lot of things and she was so nice to just sit and ask questions too.

After lunch on Day 1 I went to a session called Making cloud native easier: Architecting the next-gen Azure PaaS. this talk was about -> how Cloud Native computing is containerized, orchestrated, and often microservices-oriented. This is a boon for large systems in production but can be challenging for developers to understand and put together. In this session, we will take you on our journey of building a developer productivity-oriented application platform based on open-source components in Azure.



After this, I went and networked and found some people I had chatted to on Twitter, I was sitting at a table chatting with a lady from Russia, a lady from Argentina, and a guy from Cuba, can’t say that I have ever managed to do this before, this is why I network as much as possible, and love meeting new people around the globe, the passion and energy from the people at the conferences like this make it so much fun to attend.

At night I managed to get into the MVP event organized for the Americas part of the world, where we went to Seattle Spin, which is a bar with multiple table tennis tables, that was a lot of fun, and got to play table tennis and meet lots of new MVP’s which was awesome.

Day 2 was more of the same, I only attended a couple of sessions on the second day as I was fairly tired and wanted to connect with more people, which I did quite a lot. The best session of day 2 I saw was Inside Azure Innovations with Mark Russinovich – in this talk you got to join Mark Russinovich, CTO and Technical Fellow of Microsoft Azure, to learn how Azure enables intelligent, modern, and innovative applications at scale in the cloud, on-premises, and on the edge. Mark will take you on a tour of the latest innovations in Azure architecture. This talk is always incredible, as most people don’t understand his in-depth content, but it’s fascinating.


Overall experience

To summarize Microsoft Ignite 2022 was a hybrid event meaning people were there in person at the event, and you could also watch from home, it was an interesting mix and had some room for improvement, but overall being in person and meeting the people there is always amazing. I look forward to attending it again next year.