Presentation Tools

Professional Development
Let's face it, the core of a presentation is you. Your knowledge and your ability to share that knowledge through whatever means you choose, slides, demos, sock puppets, whatever, is the primary tools you need to hone. Know what you know and be ready to acknowledge what you don't. Put out the information as only you can. That's the key to presenting. But... A few things can help reduce your stress and make your life easier. Let's talk about them. My Presentation Tools Whether your travel to the event or not, chances are good, that whatever code camp, SQLSaturday, or awesome event where you are presenting is not your home or office. This means, you can't know what their set up is. Because of this, road warrior or not, if…
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Buggy Whips 2.0

DevOps, Professional Development
I recently found myself rereading a very old blog post of mine, from the very beginning of this blog, discussing Buggy Whips. I'll save you the long read, I was learning new tech, it made me second guess my working assumptions, I was curious if I was manufacturing a buggy whip while watching an automobile drive by. 2008 to 2018 Well, I'm still here. In fact, Feature Driven Development has disappeared from the lexicon and the project that it was introduced to took years longer than anticipated, performed horribly, and had to have a major redesign and rework to be fundamentally functional (all after I left the old organization). So, my fears that database design was a thing of the past were just that, fears... right? Yes and no. Here…
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YouTube Channel Update: March 30, 2018

Professional Development
Hey everyone! Here's the latest stuff on my new YouTube Channel. Please let me know if these videos are helpful. Also, if you have requests for videos on a particular topic, even a video of a blog post I did here, let me know. I take requests and I'm more than happy to help. I've been talking a lot about the GDPR. I released three videos on this topic this week alone: [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSbrhv1Fuh4[/embedyt] [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFyS45kvtMY[/embedyt] [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YLYxflj8O9A[/embedyt] I also released a video on using SQL Prompt to help your team audit their code: [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TBHGuhgS4E[/embedyt] Finally, I added a video discussing database mirroring as it relates to Azure SQL Database [embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I26K-FWilXA[/embedyt]
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Precons in Richmond, Philadelphia and New York

Professional Development
I love when I get the opportunity to present at SQLSaturday events. Even more than that, I love when I get the opportunity to do a precon at a SQLSaturday event. Well, I've got three coming up. All three are an all day session entitled "SQL Server Tools for Query Tuning." Seating at all the events is limited, so please register early. First, in Richmond, on March 23, 2018, you can register here. Then, I'll be in Philadelphia on April 20, 2018. You can sign up here for that event. I will be in New York, NY, my old stomping grounds, May 18, 2018. Go here to register for that event. I hope to see you at one of these events where I'll do my best to share as much…
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GDPR: Your Hair Is Not On Fire

DevOps, Professional Development
Along with a lot of other people, I've been attempting to call people's attentions to the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that was created two years ago and becomes effective in May of this year. The regulation defines processes and practices around the privacy and protection of personal data of any EU citizen. While the regulation is defined by the EU, since it's applicable to the data of EU citizens, the applicability is anywhere that data may exist, even in other countries. So, the GDPR applies to you and your data if you have EU citizens data in your databases. Different countries have trade treaties in effect with the EU which will allow the EU to enforce this, even though you and your data are located somewhere else. None…
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The GDPR and You

Professional Development
Ever heard of the General Data Protection Regulation? If not, go and read the Wiki. I'll wait. I can already hear what you're thinking. "Grant, this doesn't apply to me because my company is in the <insert non-EU country here>." How do I know you're thinking that? Because every single person with whom I've brought this up has had the same response. You might want to go back and re-read it. Data Subject There are three terms from the GDPR that you need to know. The first is Data Controller. This is any organization or individual that collects data from the Data Subject. If the Data Controller is located in the EU, then you're subject to the new regulations. Yes, I know, this means you don't have to worry. Hang…
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Being a Positive Influencer

Professional Development
I read a lot of self-help and improvement information. I'm always trying to hack my brain or my attitude to arrive at a better, more productive, more useful individual. I suck at it. Positive If you read a lot of these books and articles about how to go about getting better, positivity is one of the most important aspects. That's not to say you should be a Pollyanna. In fact, it's extremely important to be honest with yourself and others. It's more about how you're critical or how you deliver bad news, not whether or not you should deliver bad news. Quick story that happened to me recently. My family and I went to Fort Sumter during our vacation (that's "on holiday" for my friends across the pond). Follow the…
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SQL Cruise: Alaska 2017

Professional Development
We're weeks away from another SQL Cruise. If you've never heard of this before, follow the link to read more. There you'll also find testimonials and suggestions on how to sell SQL Cruise to your boss. I'm going to leave selling it to your boss to you. I want you to consider this. Class Time I'm extremely honored to once more act as one of the Technical Leads. When you look at the people I'm working with, Argenis Fernandez, Andrew Kelly, Allen White and Bob Ward (SQUEEE!), you can understand why I feel this way. I'm as grateful as I can be to Tim Ford for putting faith in me to let me stand next to these wonderful people. I'll do everything I can to prove myself worthy. That means…
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The Choices We Make

DevOps, Professional Development
If you keep your head up and look around you'll see the choices people make all the time. I saw a recent example online in this story about two experiences, shopping at Home Depot vs. Lowes (very minor NSFW warning due to language). I don't want to get into a debate about the two stores. That's not the point. The point is, we all have two sets of priorities that we have to serve. The first set of priorities are the ones immediate to us, the rules and regulations we create and enforce around our jobs. The second set of priorities are the ones that are at least a step removed from us, the service and services we supply to our "customers". Make no mistake, we're all serving customers to…
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