Monthly Archives: October 2012

Another SQL Saturday Recap – #SQLSat153

Just yesterday I finished uploading my slides from my first ever talk at a SQL Saturday. Of course being a “rebel” I am my topic was actually about NoSQL. However, I believe it was still SQL-relevant in drawing comparisons and talking about when you might use it to compliment your RDBMS’s

Road Trip
I was very fortunate to be able to travel to SLC with two other guys (Andre DuBois – @MtnDBA and Jason Kassay – @JasonKassay). It seemed much more of an adventure and really less headache than dealing with airports, plane fair, and grouchy airline passengers. Got to see some beautiful desert areas, have some great conversations, and eat a delicious burger at Ray’s in Green River, UT.

Stranger In A Strange Land
My talk went very well I thought and I ended up having a packed room. I also got a chance to talk at length to Cindy Gross (@SQLCindy) from the Microsoft SQL CAT team about Hadoop. She’s totally changed my mind about the value of Hadoop in smaller companies. It also ties very well to some things I discuss in my talk so I will be sure to add those tidbits in if I give this talk again.

SQL Family
The concept of #SQLFamily is super strong with the SQL Utah community. Not only did I save gas money driving out with other speakers TJay Belt (@tjaybelt) even let us stay in his RV so we didn’t have to shell out money on a hotel (which I had initially planned on). Then @MtnDBA let us stay at his place in Glenwood Springs on the way back. Still can’t get over how gracious that was and remain extremely grateful to them.

Things I Learned

  • It’s ok to panic, just take a breath and keep going.
  • Donuts aren’t as popular as they used to be (at least in the speaker room). They were virtually un-touched.
  • Don’t change your slides at the last minute, be confident in your preparation (I really wanted to do this, but I restrained myself)
  • Utah has coal mines
  • Always keep hand sanitizer in your car in case someone spills gas on their hands otherwise instant headache.

Share and Enjoy

Using Trello To Manage Your Book Queue

This past January I took the plunge and bought myself an e-reader. The idea was to have my books, both technical and for fun, always at hand.
Now I have small children, a house, a car, etc etc and don’t make the “big money”. So the outlay of $150 for myself was kind of a big deal.

I remember thinking “is this really worth it?” At about the same time I had begun to really use Trello to manage some small projects around work. (For those not familiar with Trello it’s a free Kanban tool you can use to manage just about anything. You can create an account at

Then it occurred to me, why not use Trello to keep track of my books and see for myself if I really read more?

So that’s what I did. I added books into my To Do including my must reads and recommendations from Twitter (thanks guys/gals). Then I was able to log on via my desktop PC or on the iPhone app to move the books around as I finished them.

Unexpected Results

Oddly enough, I even figured out my “flow” (1 technical book and 1 “for fun” book in my Doing column at a time). I can even glean how long a book took by the moved dates as I dropped them into from Doing into Done.

So this year my goal is to read 60 books and I’m about 12 away.
Judging by my done column on Trello I think it’s safe to say I read much more and in a very productive (to me) way.

Share and Enjoy