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Back to Basics, Reaching for the Clouds, and Leveling Up

Voice of the DBA

Release Date: 06/01/2021

Poor Work Management show art Poor Work Management

Voice of the DBA

The future of how we will work is uncertain. Every time I read something or talk to someone, I hear different thoughts and experiences, which influence how I feel. Actually, I'm not sure how I feel. Some companies are pushing back their office openings (, ) to a future time, while others are bringing people back part or full time. I had lunch with some friends working at a financial institution, and they are allowed to work at home a day or two a week, but otherwise, they're in the office every week. I know some other people that are back in the office five days a week. There are mixed...

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A Great Use for AI show art A Great Use for AI

Voice of the DBA

In the last couple of years there has been a tremendous amount of hype for machine learning and artificial intelligence as a way to improve the world. Plenty of companies have tried to implement ML/AI to generate more revenue or improve their products, often with mixed success. However, I recently saw a place where I think AI might shine. I've never owned a Roomba or any robot vacuum, and I've never encountered a scenario. I do have a cat that is an avid hunter, so I certainly could envision something similar with a carcass in the house, but apparently, some owners of these vacuums have had a...

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Help Your Manager show art Help Your Manager

Voice of the DBA

Most of us have some sort of review with a manager on a regular basis. It might be once a year, once a quarter, or even monthly. Some of us like these, and some don't (me), but the review is often a way to assist your manager in evaluating how you are performing in your job. This is quite common, and I've gotten used to this, though I never really like the process. I do know reviews are important. This is a time when you have an opportunity to shape your career. A good impression here can help you with a raise, a promotion, even the choice of a project or work you want to do in the future. I...

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Unix vs PowerShell show art Unix vs PowerShell

Voice of the DBA

I saw an article on . I used to know how to use those, though I was by no means an expert. However, working with a stream of text with an input and output was a valuable skill I've used over and over in my career. There are plenty of times when I've needed to handle a long set of text, and my practice with Unix in university helped me a lot. I've only lightly needed to use Perl and regex in my career, but I was glad I had some idea of what I was doing. In the last few years, I've spent quite a bit of time working with PowerShell (PoSh) instead of text-based utilities. While I found some of the...

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New Old Architectures show art New Old Architectures

Voice of the DBA

Many years ago I was starting in a software development role using dBase and Clipper. I needed to upgrade a DOS based dBase program to Clipper to take advantage of some graphical libraries. Around this time, we were also moving many clients machines from DOS to Windows 3.1, giving them a GUI experience. Also, to the dismay of the management, access to Solitaire. One of our early jobs was to remove that game and Minesweeper from installs. In any case, I started to experiment with compilers that would allow Clipper programs to run in Windows as native apps. This meant moving to a more...

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Patterns and Potential Problems show art Patterns and Potential Problems

Voice of the DBA

I saw a post recently from a developer that needed to . The post describes a pattern for doing so and gives the steps taken, though not the actual code. I like the pattern overall, and I think it can work well in many situations. It's for a PostgreSQL table, so I don't know what restrictions might be different from SQL Server, but this type of pattern can work for SQL Server as well. It also could be problematic. Using the famous "it depends", there could be issues with this pattern, depending on your workload and how your application is structured. The triggers in use could also be an issue...

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Live Your Life show art Live Your Life

Voice of the DBA

Summer is coming to an end. For many of you with kids in school, it's likely already over.  The first Monday in September in the US is Labor Day, and that's often when I've marked the end of summer. Hopefully you had the chance to get a break from life, the pandemic, and work with some vacation this summer.I've tried to work hard, be successful in my chosen career, and at the same time enjoy my life. That means time for me and my family away from work. It also means meeting responsibilities that I have, which include taking care of my home and animals. In other words, chores. All of this...

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Enhancing Client Experiences with Data and Analysis show art Enhancing Client Experiences with Data and Analysis

Voice of the DBA

I love sports. The idea of competing and testing yourself against others (and against yourself) is something I've enjoyed for most of my life. Often it hasn't even been important who wins; it's the experience of competing. I don't compete much anymore, but I enjoy watching and coaching sports. Teaching a group of younger people to work, train, win, lose, and enjoy sports is very fulfilling. I take statistics when I coach, and I provide those to my athletes regularly. The data is helpful for them to understand their performance and how they compare to others. The numbers don't drive my...

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Where We Need Better AI Disclosure and Responsibility show art Where We Need Better AI Disclosure and Responsibility

Voice of the DBA

There are a lot of contract and gig jobs in the world today. It used to be this type of work was widely spread throughout programming and technology, but these days many types of jobs are commonly completed using contract workers. I like the flexibility of contract work, but I also think that these workers need to be better at saving and planning for the future because of less employment stability. Usually they are paid more, but they need to use that to reduce the risk of being unemployed.   One trend that I've seen taking place in some of these positions is the use of software and AI to...

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Eyes Wide Open show art Eyes Wide Open

Voice of the DBA

Not many of us work in startup environments, but many of us do work with new databases that are created for new applications. These might be carefully designed, thrown together, or your database might be constructed by an ORM. In any case, I find many people make decisions and write database code for today, solving the problems that they see in front of them. they often do this with little data and a single system. They might have their eyes on using some new technology, and they decide on a data strategy without really considering what they will need later.   That seems to be what...

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More Episodes

The three themes for speakers at this year's PASS Data Community Summit are: Back to Basics, Reach for the Clouds, and Level Up. The goal here is content that covers a wide variety of areas, with many fewer restrictions from previous years. Perhaps the big thing to note for this year's event is:

Free.

That's right, this year's Summit is free for the general conference. That should boost attendance, and it might mean some incredible audiences for this year's speakers. I'd recommend you submit something and take a chance, as there are opportunities ranging from 10 minute lightning talks to 2 1/2 hour half day sessions. This is a great chance to speak at the largest Microsoft Data Platform focused conference out there. There are also pre-conference sessions. They'll cost something, but with all the proceeds going to the speakers, I'm looking to support someone that will teach me a few new skills.

Read the rest of Back to Basics, Reaching for the Clouds, and Leveling Up