Indexed Collective Memory

One of the many benefits of modern search engines is how they index our collective memory. Historically, if you remembered bits and pieces of information about something, to find out more, you’d have to ask around to learn more about the thing– like it’s actual name. A few examples stick out in my mind.

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T-SQL Tools

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By Riley Major, 2018-04-10

For this month’s T-SQL Tuesday, Jens Vestergaard asks us to write about our essential SQL Server tools.

I must admit that Microsoft SQL Server Management Studio (SSMS) is where I spend most of my development time. I haven’t tried the cool kids’ new SQL Operations Studio. And I haven’t spent much time with SQL Server Data Tools. But Microsoft has come a long way from Enterprise Manager and Query Analyzer and honestly from a feature perspective, SSMS is fine.

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NDC Minnesota Micro 2018

By Riley Major, 2018-04-04.

NDC has been “inspiring software developers since 2008”. Based in Norway, they host large conferences in Oslo, London, Sydney and for the first time this year, Minnesota. To introduce the Twin Cities to their conferences, they hosted a “micro” conference at the Saint Paul RiverCentre on Thursday evening, March 29, 2018.

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PASSMN 2018 Board

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By Riley Major, 2018-03-30

Back in October, after a successful SQLSaturday, the PASSMN board requested applicants to fill the positions of Jim Horn, Cecil Spivey, and Eric Zierdt who were each finishing the second year of their two-year terms. (Jim Horn stepped down a little early on 2017-10-11, but other board members fulfilled his duties for the remainder of his term.) We began planning for the election we avoided last year.

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PASSMN 2017 User Group Survey Results

By Riley Major, 2018-03-30.

Survey Responses

Graph of PASSMN User Group Survey responses showing 31 on 3/6, 4 on 3/7, then a few more.

About a year ago, the PASSMN SQL Server User Group published two surveys– one about the user group in general and one specific to SQLSaturday. We reviewed the results of our SQLSaturday survey a few months ago and now address the responses to the more general group survey. Almost all of our 49 responses came within a few days of our initial email blast.

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Machine Learning in SQL Server

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By Riley Major, 2018-03-13

These days, most business logic is still built by subject matter experts. Humans explore their habits and instincts and try to come up with a process which business analysts turn into an algorithm which developers turn into code. That’s expensive, time consuming, and is all based on the presumption that computers need to be told what to do.

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Midwest PHP 2018

By Riley Major, 2018-03-13

Radisson Blu and L.L. Bean at Mall of America

Midwest PHP — a Friday and Saturday $275 conference with three tracks of PHP-themed content — was hosted again at the Radisson Blu at the Mall of America on March 9th and 10th, 2018. In addition to 30 individual sessions, the conference opened and closed the event with keynotes highlighting community, inclusion, and accessibility.

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Logical Location

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For the 99th T-SQL Tuesday (that’s over 8 years of blog parties), Aaron Bertrand invites us to write about our #sqlibirum (credit to Drew Furgiuele and Melissa for the term)– our passions outside of SQL Server and technical community.

These days, aside from my family and technology, I’m putting most of my energy into learning more about the privileges I enjoy in society and how to dismantle the systems which provide them. Twitter has exposed me to ideas and realities which I’ve never had to face in the past, and it’s frustrating to learn about how stacked the deck is against so many people. That said, except as those issues intersect with technical communities, I’m not ready for this blog to become overtly political. So I’m going to take Aaron’s escape pod and talk about a T-SQL bad habit.
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PASSMN SQL Saturday 2017 Survey Results

By Riley Major, 2017-11-08

Survey Responses

Back in March the PASSMN SQL Server user group published two surveys– one about the user group in general and one specific to SQLSaturday. We sent the survey invites out in emails to our user group members and to attendees of our SQLSaturday in 2016. We’ve received over 100 responses and as promised we’d like to share some insights. Continue reading

That Community

Riley Major – 2017-08-09

Buckets of bacon, piles of marshmallows, and fire (yes, real fire this year) await those in the queue snaking out the door into the hallway. Kids tired from days of water play wait to finally get mom or dad back. They dig into a giant bowl of Starbursts and bury their head in screens. “Can I have another one mom?” “I don’t care.” Continue reading