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Andra Somesan (she/her) for AWS Community Builders

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How to prepare for AWS re:Invent 2021

Photo: screenshot from re:Invent page

For the past few days I've been searching for ways to prepare for the AWS re:Invent 2021 in person conference and I started to feel a bit overwhelmed at first. I have started to search and read more about it and in this post I would like to share with you what helped me out so far in making a plan for the event.

This will be my first time ever attending the conference (hopefully in person), and as we get closer to the event and also to the reserved seating opening up (today!) I had to try and make up my mind quickly.
I will start by sharing a few links I found useful and at the end I will talk a bit about the tips and tricks.

Useful links to prepare for AWS re:Invent 2021

  • AWS re:Invent FAQs page - here we can find all we need about topics such as health and safety, registration, accessibility, and so on.

AWS FAQ page

  • AWS How to re:Invent page - this is an AMAZING page! Here Annie Hancock and Kelley Schultz from AWS are sharing everything we need to know about the conference and how to approach and plan it in order to make the most out of it. The first episode you'll see is the latest one, scroll down and start with episode 1. It will take you about 45 minutes to watch all 3 episodes published by now (October 18, 2021).
    The highlights for me here were:

    1. Getting an overview over the session types and which ones have reserved seating, which ones don't.
    2. Make a goal for what you want to achieve at this conference, something like: see a certain talk, get a certification, learn more about a topic or work to improve another. Arrange your calendar with this goal in mind, but always listen to your body and have a Plan B because this week is going to be a LOT to handle. The final goal will be to enjoy it nevertheless, don't forget that πŸ˜„
  • AWS Breakout Content page - here we can find the session names explained, more details about what a breakout session or a chalk talk is.

  • AWS Attendee Guides page - here I will try to follow the most relevant guides for me from the AWS Hero Guides part. It's nice that we can chose a domain, like Serverless and have a look at what Emrah Samdan will pick and chose for this event. Every guide has at the end the same few tips for the conference and explains how to reserve seats.

  • AWS re:Invent 2021 Agenda - as the name implies, here we can find a high-level agenda of the event.

Tips & tricks

There is so much to do in so little time, so my approach was to first see which kind of sessions will be available online after the event, this way I can go if I really want to see that session live, or I can skip if I really can't make it and see it online later on. I feel this takes a bit the stress of "I have to see them all" thought that crossed my mind πŸ˜… .

Breakout sessions, leadership sessions, and keynotes will be available online later on.

About the reserved seating, if you don't have the time to watch the session on How to re:Invent here are my takes:

  1. Reserve first seats for chalk talks and smaller session because they are usually filling up faster than others.
  2. Leadership sessions have reserved seating but the Keynotes don't, you have to be there sooner to get your spot. There are ways to see the Keynotes from outside of the room in places specially prepared for this.

Some tips I have received over LinkedIn and also found in this nice article:

  1. Wear comfy shoes
  2. Pack a bit of water and some snacks
  3. Have a backpack (keep it lightweight if possible)

Let me know if this was useful to you and please share other tips and tricks if you have some 🌟 .

Top comments (3)

shreythecray profile image

Love this overview! Really wanted to go this year but was unable to, would love to hear from you how it went.

bakin9 profile image

Good summary with helpful pointers. I'll be attending first time this year too. Hope you are able to attend in person

andrasomesan profile image
Andra Somesan (she/her)

Thank you, Bunmi! I am happy to hear you found it helpful πŸ™