Mike Jelen
Mike Jelen

Re-cap of the Snowflake Summit Conference


Snowflake Summit was a fantastic event! The event was held in Las Vegas, June 13-26, 2022. Many exciting product announcements, learnings and connections were made throughout the week. 

Check out our Meetup video below to watch an overview of this event:

Other Meetups and Events to check out:

Transcript from the Meetup event:

Welcome to our Snowflake Summit recap webinar. We are super excited to share everything that we learned during Snowflake Summit out in Las Vegas. In case you guys don’t know, we are AICG, the makers of the creators of DataLakeHouse. 

We host a lot of Carolina Snowflake meetup group events on all things Snowflake related. All right, so we’ll just talk through a couple of the highlights here. 

All kinds of good stuff they covered at Snowflake Summit, one being the new transactional database, Unit Store. Do you guys want to throw out some of your favorites? I think the streamlit integration I think is pretty cool. 

Yeah, I really like the Apache iceberg support for that. We’ll talk a little bit more what that really entails in a bit. But that’s a pretty big direction shift for Snowflake to go that route. That sounds pretty cool. 

Yeah, we’ve got 5X, 6X compute instances, data clean rooms, all kinds of cool stuff. So some of our personal favorite highlights were meeting Felipe Hoffa and we got to have photo op with the Snowflake there. 

And all of our Snowpro got their cool Snowpro gear, hats and socks and all kinds of cool stuff and they do a little celebration there. So that was pretty fun. That is not me and the bear. Well, I don’t know. 

Prove it. Yeah, exactly. Went up on stage to announce Unit Store and Heather gave little teaser on the last slide relative to Snowflake now supporting transactional workloads. And don’t think of this as or is Snowflake really going to start to support ERP type applications?

No, not the core of their business, but really those kind of oneoff transactional type applications that you think you might be collecting survey data, you might have a light footprint that you typically would build in Mongo or Dynamo or Postgres.

Snowflake now gives you the option to do that all within Snowflake unit store and at the same time you don’t have to worry about replicating your data into Snowflake, it’s just automatically going to be in Snowflake.

So one less hop and this allows both of those universes or worlds of transactional and analytical coming together into a single location. So Unisor is initial name. We’ll see how that fits over the long haul and see what other sorts of transactional support is provided by Snowflake.

Obviously that’s a huge leap forward for Snowflake to go in that direction. So while we’re all getting started with Unison, we know that it’s going to evolve quite a bit in the coming quarters and years here.

Yeah, Unison is pretty exciting, right? A transactional database in Snowflake. We’ve actually seen some people try to use Snowflake like a transactional, but passing like the acid test and everything like that.

And I think, as I said, there’s so many other cloud databases out there what makes this Unisor different from a transactional perspective. So I think we’ll wait to see what happens. I think at the end of the day, it sounds like it’s so new, somebody’s going to be on the cutting edge.

Great use cases. Exciting stuff. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, that was a good one. And that came at the very last five minutes of the first keynote. Right. So that’s pretty exciting. They kind of threw that one at the last minute.

Next up is streamlin. I think Drew attended some sessions on that one. Yeah, streamlin was something that they kind of made a pretty big deal out of, almost like it was there the big picture item that they kind of saved near the end of the first keynote.

But the Streamlift, I guess, everybody who doesn’t know was acquired by Snowflake back in March of this year. And you’d previously been able to use STREAMLET to connect to Snowflake, just like a basic Python script, use the Snowflake connector module or library.

But ultimately, with this new partnership between Snowflake and Streamlit, they’re creating the ability for you to be able to write streamlike code and create streamlike apps within the Snowflake UI itself.

So it’s going to be natively integrated within Snowflake, which will make it very easy for users to be able to write data applications and all sorts of visualizations associated with machine learning models and everything that you’d be able to do within code.

But now within the Snowflake UI probably a huge plus for just the ease of technical developers and business users in a single organization being able to kind of do everything out of one place now. Yeah, and speaking of Streamlit for our. 

Next Carolina Snowflake meet up group event on the 27 at 06:00 p.m.. Eastern. We will be hosting a visualizing data with streamlit event, so I will make sure I share that in the chat. And also, it is up on our Meetup group if anyone’s interested in attending. 

Next, they discuss data clean rooms. So basically for data clean rooms, the concept is that two different organizations can share their data with each other without sharing specifics. So one use case would be for market research, where two different organizations can see the shared customers or specific demographic information on the shared customers that can help them with targeting anyone else. 

Remember any of the details on clean rooms or I mean, that’s pretty much the gist of it. But I remember data gravity. That was a big thing. Does data have gravity and does data have mass enough to create its own gravity where people are attracted and drawn to it?

And so the presenter went into great detail into that sort of perspective of data and how data begets data and ultimately different people’s data is more effective when joining with other people’s data.

So, yeah, it was a great session. Lots of great use cases for this one, especially the security and then not having access to the people’s data except for the data that you permission them to see. It’s a very exciting one, actually.

Yeah, that was a great presentation. I wish they had recorded that session. All right, let’s see. Next up, we have Patchy Iceberg. Yes, I think of. Support now by Snowflake, or within Snowflake of Apache Iceberg back in 2018, created by Netflix and Apple.

Ironically, just a year ago, Benji had trashed the whole an open source movement there for a bit. But they’ve come full circle with customers saying, hey, we have lots of open source flat files, think of parquet Avro, and we want better support for those files.

We don’t necessarily want to just have to take them out of let’s say we’ve landed them in AWS and then now we’ve got to ingest them into Snowflake for various architectural reasons. We want to keep them as is in the native format.

But now within Snowflake, you’re able to essentially call those create a table leveraging all of those files, but treat them as a table search across all those files. And that’s a very seamless end user experience, at least from within Snowflake.

So pretty exciting for those organizations that are especially coming from Hadoop World or maybe a hangover from the Hadoop World. Better way to put it here. You’re now more included within Snowflake than ever before.

Yeah, it’s kind of like a guiding light, right? For Hadoop users and the original big data concepts. This thing has really the ability Apache Iceberg parquet file format, but ultimately Agro plays a part in here somewhere.

Everybody’s moving their data into some sort of bucket, some sort of object oriented storage. So your S three and so forth, your GCP stores. So this is great for that. The one cool thing about this is they continually create new objects, right?

So we mentioned unistore. So for uni store, we’ve got the new file type that people need called hybrid tables, right? And then when we jump over to Iceberg, right, we’ve got this external volume storage locations, and now we have an iceberg table object, right?

So when you’re referencing that storage, you know, you’re saying and hey, create iceberg table table name, right? Mega, IoT, whatever that table is going to be. But it’s iceberg tables now the object name.

So it just keeps getting better and better. And yeah, this is an exciting one. Let’s see what we have. Oh, yeah, marketplace. Lots of new stuff in marketplace. For one, they have no longer, it’s called data marketplace.

It’s just marketplace. There are now going to be applications within marketplace. They discuss all kinds of different ways to monetize your marketplace listings. They’ve got a usage dashboard now built in.

What else, guys? So much aside from the name change. They’re adding a bunch of new capabilities and features for developers to add more types of content to the platform. They’ve added the ability to monetize functions, store procedures, some of the cool stuff. 

I think the key thing for developers is they’re creating that monetization platform, right? So you can basically push your ware, software, your functions into the marketplace, and then there’s already an embedded capability for you to give other Snowflake customers to be able to buy that function or store procedure or the data even still from you using their kind of Pay gateways, almost like the Apple Store. 

On Snowflake. Right. Because for the most part, they already have your credit card information paying for the compute and everything, your standard Snowflake operation usage and capacity usage of the system. 

So now this just extends that in so many ways. It seems like maybe Snowflake might be getting over their skis a little bit by adding so much to the marketplace. But then when you take a step back, I don’t think that’s going to be the case.

I think this is going to be one of the more popular, more successful marketplaces ever attempted, especially when it comes to technology, software, and data. So, again, I’ll overuse the word, kind of like they did at the conference.

This is all just super exciting. It is. I think the other part of the marketplace, and still not a lot of information released, is that if you’re a partner, they’re going to have different tiers within that marketplace.

They’re able to level up. Not completely clear as to what all the criteria is. So if you are a partner, just like we are, another set of things that we’ll have to work through in order to elevate our role within that marketplace.

Yeah, we’ll be getting some good stuff in there ourselves, actually. All right. The Community, they’ve done all kinds of stuff with Community. Drew, I think, attended a session on that or a few. Yes, as you can see just by looking at the shared screen, is that they’ve completely redone their UI, and ultimately they’ve made it so it’s become this one stop shop for finding any answers related to anything stowflake.

You have the ability to just. A quick link over to documentation or click a link and it will take you right to any sort of Snowflake training courses. But then you also have this new and upgraded ability to ask questions in a forum.

They’re all separated out by different Snowflake category, whether it be So park or data governance, snow storage patterns, anything like that. So it almost kind of feels like they’ve created their own stack overflow where they’re just trying to build this community up of Snowflake users where everybody’s doing everything that they can to try and enable people to the best of their abilities to be.

The phrase that we heard a lot was data heroes and they’re really hyping up everybody to be data heroes within the Snowplay community. But you’ll also see this phrase superhero, which is kind of a distinguishing feature between heroes.

But the superheroes are those who are leading the way in terms of content creation. So think about blog posts, these webinars, anything like that. There are also people who are actively leading discussion within community answering all forum questions really, as I alluded to earlier, enabling Snowflake users to the best of their ability to find answers easily and readily.

And ultimately that’s all being able to be done through this super hero program. And superheroes also get this. Get access to perks or product access and access to training for advanced certifications.

But ultimately all of this is better or being done to create this really active community. And that’s exactly what it is with this upgraded UI and upgraded area for Snowflake users to be able to utilize.

Yeah, speaking of the data superheroes, they open up nominations in November, and I’ve got a couple of people in mind, so check that out and nominate a data superhero that you feel is just great with content creation, contributing to the forums, and helping people become data driven in every way possible.

If any of you guys attended the summit, let us know what you thought about it, and if you want any more insights, connect with us, ask us questions. We’re always here to answer your questions on the discussion board. 

And also we’ll have a blog post coming out and we’ll link that in the video description along with our website. We’ve also got an open beta program right now where you can have the opportunity to get some cool swag and access to DataLakeHouse.io. 

So if you’re interested in that, check us out at DataLakeHouse beta and I can put that link in the description as well. And that is it. Unless you guys have anything else to add any afterthoughts that we want to throw in or we pretty much covered a lot. 

I mean, there’s so much more that went on at the summit that there was no way possible we could cover all of it in this session. I think we’ll have to have a part two. To this coming up soon, but yeah, the compass was amazing. 

Can’t wait till next year. Too many good things to say about it. Yeah, and we’re hoping to get a booth, I think. Yes, we should be there with a lot of great swag and full force next year. And Snowflake announced that June 26, the 29th of 2023, back at Caesars Forum in Vegas, is when the next summit will be held. 

Thank you guys for attending, and we hope to get this video uploaded in the next couple of days and I’ll put it out on our discussion board so you guys can check it out. 

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