Amazon Web Services Summit - Introduction

by Annelies Guisset

This post is the first in the series of reports on our trip to and attendance of the AWS summit in May 2016.

About Annelies

Besides a love for movies and editing, Annelies extends the XAOP horizon with skills in communication and design. Most of her life she spent abroad, but we're happy she decided to settle down in Belgium and join our team. She's a very calm person but just don't confuse her for a Trekkie any time soon.

The rhythmic swaying of the windshield wipers is almost mesmerising as we’re driving along the highway to Utrecht, Netherlands on Monday May 23rd. We’re on our way to attend one of the AWS (Amazon Web Services) summits happening this year.

The summit is an opportunity for AWS consumers and partners alike to learn about AWS’ cloud offerings. Talks range from introductory overviews to in-depth guides on how to apply the tools offered in a secure and cost-efficient manner.

The drive there only takes about two hours and it’s an easy road until we get to Utrecht itself; the roads there are narrow with frequent dead-ends and even narrower bridges over city canals. We find a parking spot fairly close to the Mary K hotel, only to have the hotel owner tell us later that there is a parking lot 800 meters away. Yet Nicolas still manages to make a 12 kilometer detour to get there. Go figure.

It’s a cozy hotel, with lots of personal touches and flairs of art. In Stijn’s room, there’s an easel in the corner with paper and drawing utensils, inviting guests to contribute to the artwork already present. After we’re all settled in, the hotel manager is kind enough to point out a few culinary places for us to explore. With a modest amount of difficulty navigating, we finally stumble upon the Argentinian restaurant Gauchos the hotel manager told us about.

The smell of smoked peppers meets us at the door when we enter. We feast on tapas and main courses rich with all kinds of meat. Consequently, we all develop a mighty big thirst after our meal so we head on out in search for a bar and find Beers and Barrels. The sound of laughter and clinking glass rises up as we descend down the stairs into the cellar. The low wavy ceiling, wooden tables and dim lighting provide for a pleasant, Medieval kind of atmosphere - perfect for lavishing beer. Even Joeri has a beer or two. Satisfied, we lumber on back to our hotel. Tomorrow will be filled with talks and new knowledge to be learned.

To be continued…