Showing posts with label PASS. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PASS. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

#PASSVOTE 2014

Hello Dear Reader!  The PASS Board of Director elections are upon us again.  We have 3 spots open and 4 great candidates.  A lot has been written about this election already.  Andy Warren has sounded off, Brent Ozar as well.  There are blogs by the candidates and many others.

While we are all waiting to get into the website to vote, here's who I'm voting for and why.


1. JRJ aka James Rowland Jones.

James is energetic, incredibly knowledgeable, and a pleasure to hang around.  James has done a lot of work expanding and evangelizing for SQL Server on the international front.  He helps head up SQLBits and I love the idea of a FREE & PAID conference combined.  I'm hoping that we can adopt some model of that in the U.S.

James is a flat out leader in this field of IT/SQL Server/Microsoft Consulting.


2. Wendy Pastrick.  

STOP SCREAMING INTERNET.  Before people go "OF COURSE, SHE WORKS FOR PRAGMATIC" stop.  If that is all you think of what I write, stop reading.

Being in IT as long as I have the way someone's mind works is incredibly important to me.   I work with Wendy, I've interviewed her.  I also encouraged her NOT to run for the board.  That's right Dear Reader not to run.

She has a wonderful enthusiasm.  She is thoughtful, and she truly believes that she can make a difference and told me so when I encouraged her not to run.  I like the work that Wendy has done for the community.  The first part of victory is wanting something. She does.  I may never run for the board but, in the conversations she and I have shared I have no doubt PASS is a better organization with her there.


3. Grant Fritchey.  

I know Grant, I like him quite a bit.  Met him at SQL Rally in 2011 when he did his first pre-con.  I've seen him at conferences, presenting, and talked about everything from SQL, presenting advice, to cleaning shot gun's vs. sharpening swords to intimidate boys coming to date a teenage daughter.

It's safe to say I like him.  But why do I think he would be good on the PASS Board?  Grant is an optimistic, enthusiastic, realist and when we talk I can't help but think he's somebody I would want to work with or work for.  He is passionate at the right times, and he clearly explains what is on his mind and the way his decisions work.  The most important thing to me is how someone's mind works.

He's a DBA, but he has taught pre-con's on Azure, he has looked at Big Data, he doesn't shy away from learning and tackling new things.  Plus the man produces a damn fine book on Performance Tuning.  I'm looking forward to seeing what he can do on the board.

WRAP IT UP

Alright Dear Reader.  I don't expect to convince you, this is just who I'm supporting and a short reason why.  The thing you do not see in this post is the hours, meals, and conversations I've had over time.  All of that adds up.  I'm lucky to know these 3 people.  PASS would be lucky to have them.

A long time ago before I got involved I thought the Speakers ran PASS.  It never occurred to me that the public face of PASS was not who ran the show.  I've been very happy the last couple of years with the additions to the board.  I'm excited to see these Speakers stepping up to help.


If you have a ballot to vote please do.  Good Luck to all of the Candidates!  As always Dear Reader, Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks,

Brad






Monday, September 15, 2014

Outstanding PASS Volunteer

Hello Dear Reader!  In June this year I was recognized by PASS as with an Outstanding Volunteer Award.  In an unusual move I found myself speechless.  This is a very quick post to give the true credit where it is due.  June was a very busy month for me and I had a blog post scheduled to post it in July, but… let’s just say a couple things happened on the way to the theater.  The timing felt a bit wrong.

“So Balls”, you say, “Why blog about it now?” 

Great question Dear Reader.  The original blog was a big Thank You, and I want to say that in earnest.  The reason I received my award was for a lot of the work and presentations I’ve done this year. 32 presentations so far in 2014 with 9 more planned out and hopefully a couple more to come. 

These presentations don’t happen in a vacuum.  I’ve been very blessed as a presenter and community member.  I’ve written recently about how SQL Saturday’s impacted my life.  This year friends in the community invited me to new and wonderful locations.  Mike Walsh (@Mike_Walsh| Blog)  and 1/2 of my future law firm of Biguns & Balls Jack Corbett (@UncleBiguns | Blog) started out my January in New Hampshire from there I've presented physically and remotely in Florida, Puerto Rico, Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Missouri, Texas, California, North Carolina, Virginia, Oregon, Colorado, Georgia, with more before the end of the year.  That doesn’t include Webinars where people from all over the world signed up to attend.

If you attended, were forced to attend, dragged, cajoled, or otherwise persuaded to attend I Thank You.  Dear Reader without you it doesn’t happen.

For the organizers, who put in their time, put on events, get sponsors, volunteers, and manage the process Thank You.  My time to present is a pittance compared to the effort it takes to lead a group and the hours that you put in.  Many Thanks for letting me be part of your group.

To PASS, the volunteers (the literally HUNDREDS of volunteers from SQL Saturday’s, program committees, Leadership Staff, down to the volunteer picking up coffee a noble and thankless job), Chapter Leaders, the employees whom I see and send emails to for the Summit or SQL Saturday’s, and all of those who I do not see Thank You. 

Your hard work helps create an environment that allows our community to thrive.  There have been lots of fantastic winners already this year.  I encourage you to check out the PASS page of Outstanding volunteers here.  Chances are if you’ve been to an event this year one has touched your life.

A Quick late-CONGRATULATIONS to my friend Shawn McGehee (@SQLShawn | OPASS) who is the August Outstanding volunteer.  Shawn is the Chapter Leader for OPASS and has done an incredible job.  He is leading the charge for our Pre-Cons for SQL Saturday Orlando amongst many, many other things!  Way to GO Shawn!!

To my friend who nominated me, the beers on me.  To anyone who wants me to present and I haven’t presented for you. If I’m in your area or you need a virtual presenter, shoot me a message on twitter or an email at bball@pragmaticworks.com  I’m always happy to help.


ONE MORE THING



“So Balls”, you say, “You’ve said Thank You, anything else?”

Why Yes Dear Reader!  Yes there is one more thing, actually 4 more things.  I got something big that I cannot share quite yet.  In celebration of the community and the influence you’ve had on my life I want to give something back.

So in October I’m going to blog a community script a week.  These will be scripts that people have asked for, as I’ve presented that I never found the time to get out there, plus a couple new ones.  One a week leading up to the PASS Summit in November.

As Always Dear Reader, Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks,


Brad

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

24 Hours of PASS Preview: Zero to Hero (I'm the Zero)


Hello Dear Reader!  We are already away into the 24 Hours of PASS Summit Preview for 2014!  I don't know if you heard, but I have a pre-con at the PASS Summit!  More precisely SQL MVP Robert Cain(@arcanecode | Blog) had a great idea for a precon and invited SQL MVP/MCM Jason Strate (@stratesql | Blog) and myself to join him.

We decided early on that we have a great opportunity to showcase how we use PowerShell to complete tasks on the Business Intelligence, DBA, and Cloud engagements and pass on real world skills.  We also want to do it in a way that things are useful.  Our goal is to have things we can give you that will allow you to leave the pre-con and use right away.

We also realized with a bunch of smart guys (and me), presenting we had the opportunity to use Humor and a bit of stage acting.  I'll be playing the role of the Zero in our pre con.

"So Balls", you say, "What's a Zero, and how do you play one? (and why are you explaining this)?"


Great questions Dear Reader!  First let's talk about, what's a zero?  I will be pretending that I do not know how to use PowerShell.  That I don't understand how to use the verbiage, variables, function, modular code design, how to import modules, or do a lot of other stuff you need to know.  I will need to learn from the ground up as if I'm a beginner in the class.
Hopefully me at the Summit (without the awkward flying)

I will ask questions, get explanations, and help bring the audience along.  As the day progresses I'll become a hero using concepts and technology to deliver some end to end solutions.  I'll even take over the Azure PowerShell portion at the very end of the day.

Why am I explaining this?  PASS has an international audience and I'm not a professional actor.  I'll do my best but some may miss the humor in what we are presenting.  Robert, Jason, and myself spoke last night and we didn't want anyone to think that I didn't actually know PowerShell or give reason to doubt why I'm participating in the pre-con.

So sit back today, enjoy our session.  I hope you enjoy me being the Zero, and come to the Summit to find out how to be a Hero with me.

But wait there's more!! Today during out session Robert and I will do most of the talking.  Jason will be live answering your PowerShell questions using the #pass24HOP hash tag on twitter, and answering the questions in the room chat on Twitter as well.  This promises to be a fun session, hope to see you there!

Here is the link to our pre-con.   Here is a link to the 24 Hours of PASS website.  Good luck, happy learning, and as always Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks,

Brad

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Why You Should Go to SQL Saturday

SQL Sat Puerto Rico
Hello Dear Reader!  Soon SQL Saturday #318 in Orlando FL will be here.  The SQL Community does a lot of work at SQL Saturday’s, present at them, and help put them on.  When talking about them, one of the most frequent questions I get asked is: “Why should I go to a SQL Saturday?” 


Almost 4 years ago I attended my first SQL Saturday, attending was a last minute decision and one that has changed my life.  I have a real passion for SQL Saturdays, and while results may vary, my simplest answer is “they can be life changing”.  Here’s how I got there.   



Summit 2013 - Denny's awesome Party
The only SQL Event I had ever attended was the first 24 Hours of PASS.  I loved it.  I watched with eager anticipation, this was the first SQL training I’d ever been to.  Every company I’d worked for thus far had balked at sending me to training. 


I desperately wanted training.  When I discovered the 24 Hours of PASS I became a fan, FREE SQL Training on the internet!!! What a concept!  Of course it was to plug the PASS Summit, and if training was a no go you can guess what my chances of ever going to the Summit in 2009 were. ZERO.  This was as close as I could get, but closer than I’d ever been before.


So as the PASS Summit 2010 was gearing up there was another 24 hours of PASS.  I reserved conference rooms at my company, registered for the events, had a router for network connections set up, and I pumped up the “free” training to the other DBA’s. I worked for two days from there as the sessions were streamed. 
Jorge at SQL Sat Jacksonville


While talking with the other DBA’s that when the magic moment happened.  My friend Greg and my buddy Dan Taylor (@DBABulldog | Blog) said, “If you like the 24 Hours of PASS you’ll love SQL Saturday”.  What’s a SQL Saturday I asked?

A free event where Consultants, MVP’s, and SQL Community members set up tracks and have free presentations all day long.  I was stunned.  It was like I was a child hearing about “FREE CANDY” given out at Halloween for the first time.  Where was this? When was this? This weekend!  In Orlando!  I can do that!  I had to pay $5 for my lunch, but other than that no cost.  I almost felt like I was getting away with something.  As if someone would stop me at the gate and say, “Sorry Sir, you get to sit in the lobby only paying attendees get to see the sessions.”  It didn’t happen.  I got in just fine.


Tom Larock kicking
off SQL Sat OC 
It was everything I’d wanted.  Sessions on Wait Stats, PBM, CMS, Indexing, two deep dives one on partitioning and another on CPU!  I met DBA’s that understood my pains, issues with hardware stressed beyond capacity, aging relic’s with critical LOB apps that we couldn’t get new hardware for, 3rd party vendors with bad indexes, bad code, and little support.  People trying to find a way to survive with NEW insights and experiences sharing openly and free.  People who understood my issues without having to pretend that they actually understood.   


I met Tom Larock (@SQLRockstar | Blog), Argenis Fernandez (@DBArgenis | Blog), Jorge Segarra (@SQLChicken | Blog), Patrick LeBlanc (@PatrickDBA | Blog), and 1 half of my future law firm of Biguns and Balls Jack Corbett (@Unclebiguns | Blog).  There were more.  Lot’s more.  That could take me pages more.  The point is I made it and it was like coming home.


Jason and Steve at SQL Live 360 

That day started it off.  Without Kendal Van Dyke (@SQLDBA | Blog), Andy Warren (@SQLAndy | Blog), Karla Landrum (@KarlaKay22 | Blog), and Jack putting on this SQL Saturday 49 I’m not here today.  

I submitted to be a speaker at the next event I could, I started a blog (you may be familiar with this one), got on Linked-In, and even got a Twitter account.  That event, that one SQL Saturday lead me to presenting at 7 more the next year.  


Getting a spot in the 2nd chance track at SQL Rally, getting voted in by the community at the PASS Summit 2011, and being invited to be on the planning committee for SQL Saturday Orlando #85 the following year after I’d first attended.

Summit 2013 with the guys

At the end of SQL Saturday Orlando every year we stand up top of a stair case and throw out t-shirts and give away raffle items.  In 2012 Andy Warren looked at me while we were tossing out t-shirts and asked “How’s the view from up here?”  I grinned imagining about 50 different replies, but in the end it was a simple “amazing” that left my mouth.


My second job after college took me to Virginia.   A friend had recommended me for the position.  He met me at the airport, as I flew in for my interview, so I would see a friendly face.  I thanked him.  He told me “I showed you the door, you have to walk through it”.  He was right.  I did.  That job taught me a lot and led me new places.


SQL Saturday was the same way.  It showed me the door.  Walking through it brought me new acquaintances, some new friends, new ideas, to SSUG’s, the PASS Summit, Dev Connection in Las Vegas, SQL Live 360 in Orlando, two books, and a pretty awesome job at Pragmatic Works.
Summit 2013 - Karaoke at the Pragmatic Works Party
This is just the journey so far.  Funny how close yet far away 2009 feels. There is always the question, Dear Reader, of where tomorrow will take you.  We all start somewhere.  Everyone has to have the first time.  That brings us back to the question. 


Why should you go to SQL Saturday?  Because they can be life changing.  Hope to see you at one soon, click here to register for Orlando.

As always, Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks,


Brad

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Deck & Demo's Live & Thank You AZSSUG & OPASS!

Hello Dear Reader!  Just a quick post to say Thank You to the Arizona SQL Server User Group and to my home town nortth Orlando user group OPASS!

This week I was very lucky to present Inside the Query Optimizer to the AZ SSUG and Performance Tuning, NOW! to OPASS.  I had promised to get my decks and demo's live and I wanted to do that.

Click Here for the Deck for Inside the Query Optimizer, and here for Demo's.

Click Here for the Deck for Performance Tuning, NOW!, and here for Demo's.

AZ to FL and back again.  I believe next week I'll just rest :).

Seriously Thank you to the wonderful SSUG leaders, Matt & Amy in AZ, and Shawn, Karla, and Rodney in my home town.

Without you this isn't possible!  And Dear Attendee's Thank You, if you have any questions please feel free to shoot me an email.

As always Thanks for stopping by.

Thanks,

Brad

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I'm Presenting Today for 24 Hours of PASS!!

Hello Dear Reader!  This is just a very quick blog to let you know that the 24 Hour's of PASS is currently going on.  Brent Ozar(@BrentO | Blog) started things off Strong and Alan Hirt(@SQLHA | Blog) is working his magic as we speak.

This year I was extremely honored to get to introduce Joseph D'Antoni (@Jdanton | Blog) in the 6 am slot tomorrow.  It would also work out that I could be a backup presenter as well.  So Tonight at 6 PM East Coast Time, following the one and only Brian Knight(@BrianKnight | Blog) is SQLBall presenting on Data Internals.

This is a mere glimpse into the 90 minute Spotlight Session I'll have at the Summit this year. So come join me for some Spelunking around the Data Internals tonight!  Here's the link to sign up and Here is the Abstract.



SQL Internals

Duration: 60 minutes
Track: Enterprise Database Administration & Deployment
Often as DBAs, we learn backwards. You get a DBA job, and you have databases that have tables, which have data in them. Nobody tells you that there are records, stored on pages, grouped in extents, assigned by allocation bitmaps, with IAM pages and allocation units that span partitions and filegroups.

Today is your lucky day! This 24 Hours of PASS session will cover byte swapping and bitmaps and dive a little into decoding Hex and binary, working to give you an understanding of database internals and how you use them every day!  




Alright Dear Reader, I'm off to practice!  I'll see you at 6 pm.

Thanks,

Brad

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Speaking At the PASS Summit!


I’m Speaking at The PASS Summit 2013!

Hello Dear Reader!  Big news.  I’ve been selected as a speaker for the SQL PASS Summit 2013 in beautiful Charlotte NC!  I graduated High School and College in North Carolina.  

My roommate and best friend lived there and I made the trip with him to his family’s house on holidays.  I’ve not been back for several years, and I’m really looking forward to being in Charlotte for more than just an airplane stop.

Getting selected for the Summit is a huge honor.  My initial reaction….. 

 
Upon Learning He Was Speaking at the PASS Summit, SQLBalls  had this reaction


Excited, doesn’t begin to describe it Dear Reader.  My session this year will be different for the first time since I started submitting to PASS.  The past two years I did a Deep Dive on Page & Row Compression.  I love this presentation, and it is a lot of fun to give.  This year I got selected for something different. 

“So Balls”, you say, “What did you get selected for, why so excited?”

Excellent question Dear Reader!  The excitement?  This session is not just a session.  It’s a Spotlight Session.  That means 90 minutes and a little more pressure to do a really good job.  The Topic Data Internals Deep Dive.  Here’s the abstract:

Data Internals Deep Dive

As a DBA we learn backwards.  Most of the time you get a DBA job and you have Databases, that have tables, and in those tables you have data. Nobody tells you that we have records, stored on Pages, grouped in Extents, assigned by Allocation Bitmaps, with IAM Pages and Allocation Units that span Partitions and Filegroups.  Today is your lucky day, we will start at the bottom and build our way up.  We'll cover byte swapping, bitmaps, and dive a little into decoding Hex & binary.  Working to give you a full understanding of database internals, and how you use them every day! 


As much as I love data internals, the really cool part?  We have no idea when SQL V-Next is going to land.  If it is before the Summit, then expect we’ll cover some of those internal components as well!   Guess we’ll just have to see. 


As always Thanks for stopping by!

Thanks,

Brad

Friday, May 3, 2013

SQL Saturday 232 Orlando Call for Speakers!


Hello Dear Reader!  We are at that time of the year again.  SQL Saturdays are popping up all over the country, spring is beginning to give way to summer, and the planning for SQL Saturday Orlando 2013, aka #SQLSAT232, is gearing up.  

This year our team of unbelievable SQL Server professionals  Shawn McGehee (@SQLShawn | Blog), Karla Kay (@karlakay22 | Blog),  SQL MVP Kendal Van Dyke (@SQLDBA | Blog), SQL MVP Andy Warren (@SQLAndy | Blog), and Ben Cork are working to bring you an incredible event.

Leading up the speaker track are myself and SQL MVP Rodney Landrum(@SQLBeat|Blog).  That brings us to you Dear Reader.  I need your help, I need YOU to submit to be a speaker for SQL Saturday 232.

“So Balls”, you say, “What is SQL Saturday and why should I submit to be a speaker?”

That my Dear Reader is the $50,000 question.  The short answer, let’s go make a little history together.

COME MAKE SOME HISTORY


What is SQL Saturday?  From its humble beginnings, SQL Saturday was started as a way to give back to the SQL Community.  The statement “give back”, is over used and often clich├ęd.  It is used to give meaning to deeds, when people have trouble justifying “why” they did something with greater substance than going with the truth and saying they did it because “it was popular to do”.   True justification rolls off the tongue like drops of rain water fall off leaves.   In this case, however, I find to “give back” fitting. 

The professionals that assembled saw value in sharing knowledge.  Turning hard learned lessons, production level victories, and new and unexplored concepts into group discussions and learning.  In the end it created an amazing support group.  We are one group of professionals, which have a particular job. Sometimes we are on a team, other times alone, the people we interact with outside of our field do not often understand our challenges.

The one thing I hear over and over again from first time SQL Saturday goers is, “I feel like I arrived at a home that I never knew I was missing”.  I share that feeling, it was how I felt on my first day.  My first was SQL Saturday 49 Orlando 2010.  You can see, I arrived late to the party. 

The very first SQL Saturday happened in Orlando on November 10th 2007.  It was the brain child of Andy Warren.  There was only one SQL Saturday in 2007.  The concept was simple, get MVP’s, Authors, first time presenters from the SQL Community, and put on a FREE day of training.

Six Tracks, Seven different time slots, and a total of 37 different sessions throughout the day and we had our first one in the bag.  The very next Year saw SQL Saturday 2 in Tampa, followed by SQL Saturday 3 in Jacksonville, SQL Saturday 4 back home in Orlando, and SQL Saturday 5 (the first one out of Florida) in Olympia Washington.  Five SQL Saturdays in 2 years.  Last year in 2012 there were 50 in many different States across the US and 32 in other countries and US Territories, for a total of 82 different events.

Now it’s time for SQL Saturday to come back home.  Now it’s time for SQL Saturday Orlando.  Once a year we do this.  We come back home to where it all started.  It is fitting that Orlando is associated with attractions from far across the globe.  There is a magic here that draws us in (no not just the Mouse).  This is where it all began and this is your chance to be a part.  I wouldn’t want you to miss it!


WHAT DO I NEED TO DO?

If you want to give a talk but don’t know where to begin, read this blog I put together ( I WANT YOU to Present at SQL Saturday 85).  I discuss Abstracts, how to write one, and how to put together an author biography.

Once you’ve done that all you need to do is click here to submit, the call closes 7/23/2013 so get yours in now!

“So Balls”, you say, “I already see some SQL BAD @$$es like Tim Ford, Devin Knight, and Andy Warren have already submitted?  What chance do I have?”

Not just good, but a GREAT chance Dear Reader!  SQL Saturday not only has the goal of educating people for free, but we grow local speakers. I was in charge of speakers for SQL Saturday 85 and my mission was to give everyone a slot especially first time speakers.    Rodney and I have talked about this, it took longer to drink the beer than it took to set our guidelines.

I want you to succeed Dear Reader, and so does the rest of the SQL Saturday Team.  If you have the fire in your belly to go out and give a talk to a group of IT professionals, newbie or Pro, you cannot find a better venue than SQL Saturday Orlando.

I hope to see you there!  As always Thanks for Reading!

Thanks,

Brad

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Pro SQL Server 2012 Practices



Hello Dear Reader.  Every now and then professionally you get to be a part of something really cool.  Back in the spring of 2012 Jonathan Gennick of Apress contacted me about participating in a book.  His idea?  Get together a lot of really amazing SQL Server Professionals in order to write on subject they were passionate about.

The list of professionals involved was one that made me immediately want to own the book.  When I got the chance to help I jumped!  I wasn't alone.

The companies whose employees collaborated on this book come from Red Gate SoftwareSQL Skills,Brent Ozar Unlimited, Pragmatic Works, and many others.  They are MVP's, MCM's, and regular old SQL Community folk like myself.

We all decided to write blogs reviewing/describing each others chapters.  I will be listing and updating them here.

If you're interested here is a link for the book on Amazon.  Big Thanks to Apress, Jonathan, and my fellow Authors!


Reviews/Summaries

Jes Schultz Borland @grrl_geek

1/14/2013   Book Review: Pro SQL Server 2012 Practices Indexing Outside the Bubble


Herve Roggero  @hroggero

1/15/2013 Chapter Review:  The Utility Database (By Chris Shaw) and how it applies in Cloud Computing 


I'll be updating this page on my blog daily as we crank out new reviews.  All the authors have pitched in and we'll be writting them out one day at a time.  Tomorrow SQL MVP Chris Shaw (@SQLShaw | Blog) all around awesome guy will have his review  on Compliance and Auditing. Thursday the Dr.  of Database Design himself SQL MVP Louis Davidson(@drsql | Blog) is up on Release Management.

Hope to see you then!

Thanks,

Brad