A series of episodes that look at databases and the world from a data professional's viewpoint. Written and recorded by Steve Jones, editor of SQLServerCentral and The Voice of the DBA.
A Work Conference
I like the idea of a work conference. We're actually having one at Redgate this week, though it's all virtual. I'd like an in person one, and it sounds like that will happen at Atlassian four times a year when they require employees to be in the office. That's it.
Four times a year.
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The Gift of Asking Stupid Questions
I am a fan of teaching someone to fish, rather than giving them fish. But when teaching someone, I want to allow them to make mistakes and not just dictate how they work. I want them to learn how to solve problems themselves, gain knowledge, and improve skills.
I was watching some of the Pluralsight Tech Skills day recently and in the Scott Hanselman interview, I really appreciated his answer on how to approach a problem. He talks about asking bisection questions at scale, asking lots of yes/no or querying questions that lead you towards the solution.
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Incident Response Data
I was watching a PoSh session at the PowerShell + DevOps Global Summit recently where a sysadmin had a series of scripts to run when there was a problem. One of these was Rapid Response, which gathers information from a machine(s) and stores it in a series of files. It's a grab bag of various items, but the data can be used to help determine what's wrong.
Some of us have monitoring tools for our databases, and some don't. I'm wondering, in each case, is there a set of data you want or need when an incident occurs? Do you have separate types of incidents that require disparate data? Perhaps you respond differently to performance issues than security incidents than hardware problems and want different types of data gathered.
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Checking Up on Vendors
Many years ago I was in the Denver airport, waiting to board a plane. At the time I was consulting with a small startup company and they called me in a panic, having had an issue with their database deployment and needing to restore the previous version. However, they were getting the "The media set has 2 media families but only 1 are provided. All members must be provided." error. Fortunately, I knew what was wrong and verbally walked them through the process. When I landed, I logged in and verified things were working and that they'd followed my instructions.
A few years later I was shopping for furniture with my wife one Saturday night and I got a call from a fellow Operations person at JD Edwards. They had some security issue with a SQL Server, and since I was the SME (subject matter expert), they called me for help. Sitting in a comfy lounge chair (which I never purchased), I helped them solve the issue. Later, I verified things were working.
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Getting Started Remotely
My middle kid is about to graduate from college and is starting to look for a job. I suspect he won't have too much trouble, as an aeronautical engineer near the top of his class, but I do think that it's going to be more challenging to find employment than it was two years ago. Though likely better than last year.
While my employer has continued to hire people throughout the last year, we definitely know it's been a challenge for some of them to get up to speed, build relationships, and get productive. It's likely easier for technical people, especially for those with experience, but not necessarily easy for those just getting their careers going.
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Cloud Database Growth
The growth of the cloud is exploding overall, with all of the major vendors showing growing lots of revenue growth. Not all of them are profitable, but they are growing. This shows that customers want to use the cloud, and more of them are migrating all the time.
I do think that databases are likely migrated less than many other services, though their use is increasing. Plenty of organizations would like to offload some of the overhead of owning and managing hardware, which may be one reason why the growth of IaaS in the cloud is one of the more popular options.
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Steve is great at providing information for the Database Administrator. I am a 'part time' DBA. And I get a lot out of this podcast and SQL Sever Central.
Sr. Systems Engineer
I look forward to hearing Steve's podcast each week on what DBA/IT people are going and how the industry is evolving. Balance technical with business goals is always a never-ending opportunity.
Steve's shows are great
Steve is a matter-of-fact DBA that has a lot of experience in the trenches of database development and database maintenance. He is a straight-shooter that doesn't pull any punches. He offers his opinions and makes you question what you would do in the same situations. A must listen for anyone responsible for data in an organization.