Thursday, September 22, 2011

Free Beer..... Today at Arrowfest!

I just got back from my yearly trek up to Minneapolis, MN USA to attend Arrowfest. For those of you not familiar with Arrowfest, Arrow is one of the top 3 Electronic Component Distributors in the world and once a year they put on a large event called Arrowfest. The event consists of 24 different technical seminars during the day (you pick 4 you are interested in) and a tent exhibition with vendor booths, free swag giveaways, drawings for prizes, free food, and yes free beer (And a handy Arrowfest Glass Mug to put it in.)

My wife gives me a bit a grief for continuing to fill our kitchen cabinets with Arrowfest mugs (I think I am up to 10 or 11 now). They make great beer & coffee mugs though!
I am a pretty firm believer in you get what you pay for when it comes to technical training seminars. If you attend a 2-day seminar and it costs you $1,500 to attend it is probably going to be a lot more in depth and worth wild than a free 1.5 hour seminar.... that being said, I do enjoy the Arrowfest technical seminars, and appreciate that they hand out the slides (on a CD) so I can check out the other 20 classes that I had to miss.

The Exhibition Tent is worth wild as well; there were booths from more than 85 different electronic component manufacturers and sales representatives all showing off there latest and greatest products. The big guys Texas Instruments, National Semiconductor (aka Texas Instruments), Linear Tech, Analog Devices, Altera, Freescale, Atmel were there along with many other manufactures. They were also handing out a ton of SWAG!

My Daughters love it when I go to these things, because it is like Christmas when I get home. My favorite swag had to be the Analog Devices Tape Measure, the Atmel pocket knife, and the Kemet Vertical Phone holder (that blue and white thing on the right). I also collected 3 or 4 aluminum tins of mints.... more project hacks coming up I guess :)

I don't make it up to too many training seminars  nowadays, but I always try and make it up to Arrowfest. It is great getting all the reps and manufacturers under one roof and I always run into old coworkers or friends in the industry. Plus a few years ago I got to meet Bob Pease at my local Arrowfest (Very Cool!) ...... I met Dave Van Ess at Texas Instruments Tech Days a few years ago too (a very close second, Very Cool!)

And just in case my Boss is reading this blog post... Yes I did find some cool stuff we could use on future products and I got a few pending questions answered... Thanks for paying for my gas :) 

1 comment:

  1. Great event - did you see the beer keg dashboard that Exosite put online - "Kegs in the Cloud"? End result: Bud Light consumption lapped Budweiser in terms of kegs swapped.