In the first installment of this pre-PDC blog post series, I published the list of the sessions I’ll likely attend and a list of sessions that would be cool to see, but that isn’t really target material (for me).
Microsoft has now published the time & location of each session, and I must say that I’m (at least at the moment) quite disappointed that www.microsoftpdc.com lacks two important features:
- Export to Outlook / ICS. Both for single sessions and the possibility to link the whole My Sessions view into Outlook.
- An Outlook-ish calendar view, that visualize conflicting sessions (Just like my normal Outlook calendar – when my coworkers book me for three different meetings at the same time ;-) ).
That said, I hope Microsoft hasn’t revealed all features of the PDC website yet.
Since I haven’t found the floor map for LACC on www.microsoftpdc.com (yet), I’ve scanned the floor plans from PDC ‘08. Click the picture to bring up a larger version. Note that the layout of stands/booths in the Expo area are probably different from what it will be this year.
Since it’s getting closer to my departure, I’ll put up a list of stuff I’m bringing both for the trip and stay – hopefully, there may be a trick or two for a first-timer travelling to a large conference.
- Be sure to bring your passport if you’re traveling in from another country. If you’re a resident of a country in the European Union, or another country that is covered by the ESTA Visa waiver “program”, you need to register yourself here before you travel.
- Business Cards – network, share and LinkedIn later.
- Money / credit cards – Mo’ money, mo’ problems? Tips: bring at least two major credit/debit cards (VISA, Eurocard, Amex) and leave one your hotel room’s safe.
- Sun glasses / Hat / Sunscreen. Here in Norway it’s mostly dark at this time of the year, but in LA, the sun is hot – protect yourself from those nasty UV rays.
- Pocket camera / phone: voice/txt/twitter et cetera.
- Computer(s): I’m bringing my Dell Precision M4400 and Latitude E4300. The latter is perfect to bring to the LACC at daytime – the first one is my portable workstation. I have a US power chord to my laptop’s power supplies – it’s always a hassle to bring an extra power converter to the conference center.
- Fiber, fiber, fiber. Well – how should I put it? The American (conference) diet SUCKS. No fiber – and a lot of sugar. I need my fiber, or I’ll turn up constipated and grumpy.
- Omega-3, Ginseng, vitamins: when traveling, remember to super charge on extra vitamins etc. An exhaustive week with jet lag and activities from 6 in the morning to late night does something to your body.
- Sleeping aids; I’ve found some prescription-free sleeping aids that are available in the drug stores (in the US). Be sure to buy some before you leave.
- NoDoz caffeine pills. Generally, I don’t like to pop these – but I bring them for emergency situations.
- A good carry-on laptop bag that you can’t stuff more than a tiny computer in is at least vital to me. I’m not sure if it is to you – YMMV.
Warning: coming up is an ugly formatted HTML table with some pictures to give you a mental note if some of the items you shouldn’t forget at home :-) Mouse-over will give you a description of each item.
A last note before I end this blog post; I love TripIt as a tool to organize my trips – it’s also great for sharing information with people you’re traveling with – or people that may be in the neighborhood during your stay.