Careers in SQL Server

I’m doing a presentation today on Careers in SQL Server. Here is the slide deck in PDF format for your reference.

I also mentioned the upcoming SQL Saturday event, see the site for registration and more info.

Atlanta SQL Saturday – Full Text Searching

Let me start with a big thank you to everyone involved in the Atlanta SQL Saturday. It was a great event, well run and well organized. Also a big thanks to all those who attended my sessions, and put up with my cold.

Here is the information for the Full Text Searching presentation. Still working on the getting started with SSIS details, if you want to see the 2005 version it’s at http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/SSIS . I’ll add the 2008 base in the next day or two.

First off, the slides and sample code can be located at the Code Gallery site I setup specifically for Full Text Searching with SQL Server:

http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/SqlServerFTS

Look on the downloads page to see various projects around SQL Server Full Text Searching. I’ve created one “release” for each of the projects around FTS. Be sure to look on the right side at the various releases in order to see the various projects.

Next, you can get started with the basics by reading these entries on my blog:

Lesson 0 – Getting the Bits to do Full Text Searching in SQL Server 2005
Lesson 1 – The Catalog
Lesson 2 – The Indexes
Lesson 3 – Using SQL
Lesson 4 – Valid Data Types
Lesson 5 – Advanced Searching

After that you’ll be ready for some advanced topics.

Can you hear me now? Checking to see if FTS is installed.
Exploring SQL Servers FullTextCatalogProperty Function
Using the ObjectPropertyEx Function
Using FORMSOF in SQL Server Full Text Searching
Creating Custom Thesaurus Entries in SQL Server 2005 and 2008 Full Text Search
Creating and Customizing Noise Words in SQL Server 2005 Full Text Search
Creating and Customizing Noise Words / StopWords in SQL Server 2008 Full Text Search
Advanced Queries for Using SQL Server 2008 Full Text Search StopWords / StopLists

Finally, you can find some videos I did for JumpstartTV at:

http://www.jumpstarttv.com/profiles/3177/Robert-Cain.aspx

Introduction To Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence

At the Atlanta SQL Saturday 2009 one of the presentations I am doing is “Introduction to Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence”.

You can download the slide deck for this presentation in PDF format.

Any sample code came from either my Intro to SSIS presentation or the book Programming SQL Server 2008.

SQL Server 2008 SP1 Released

SQL Server 2008 Service Pack 1 has been released. You can now get it at this location:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?displaylang=en&FamilyID=66ab3dbb-bf3e-4f46-9559-ccc6a4f9dc19

Thanks to @wardy for passing along the info.

Inspiration in New Places

Michael Arrington did an interesting post on TechCrunch Saturday. Essentially he recommends putting down the business books and reading Sci-Fi as inspiration for new technologies. Seeing what others have dreamed of as a way to come up with new and innovative solutions.

It’s an interesting concept, looking to new places for inspiration to solve problems. I’m wondering what new ideas can be derived by rereading some of these classics with an eye not just for entertainment, but inspiration. I think it’s time to dig out my copy of The Foundation Trilogy and The Caves of Steel.

Why Celebrities on Twitter is a Good Thing

Recently there has been a flood of celebrities on Twitter. Many in the tech industry have begun the “end of Twitter” cry already. True, the influx of some air headed bleach blond celebrities that use Twitter to advertise their shallow lives to an equally air headed fan base adds little to the universal intelligence quotient. Remember though that the population of Celebs reflects the population in general. Many are very bright, creative, and intelligent.

Over the weekend I was watching an episode of Tekzilla where Veronica was interviewing Levar Burton. (@levarburton on Twitter). Levar showed himself to be very intelligent, and open to new ideas. He is exploring various internet tools, such as Twitter, as a medium to connect with others and, more importantly expand his art. As he connects with people in the technology area he is going to start asking questions. “How do I…”, “I want to…”, “What can I use to…”

It is this questioning, this exploration that I believe will setup a new synergy between people in the creative arts and the developers of technology. As creative folks like Levar seek new tools, it will spur developers to make them. The geek community will then find new ways to use these tools for other things, such as business, social websites, etc and everyone benefits. This is why rather than join the chorus of doomsayers, I instead welcome them to the “interwebs” as together we seek new opportunities in the technology world.

SQL Server Sample Data – The SQL Name Game

Like most folks, I seem to have a perpetual need for realistic test data. While there are many databases available, sometimes the need is quite simple. All I need is some names, perhaps dates and phone numbers that can be used for testing my applications, SSIS or SQL Server Reports. I decided to take care of this need once and for all, and set out with a simple goal. At the conclusion of my work I wanted to wind up with a realistic looking, but totally fake set of data. I wanted to do it in the simplest means possible, using whatever tools I had available. Finally, I wanted to do it as quickly as possible.

Along the way I documented my efforts, as well as created a sample table with 100,000 rows. When I started I thought to publish everything in a blog post, but it turned out to be far too much for a single blog post. Thus I decided to document everything in a white paper, and upload all the code to a MSDN Code Gallery site. Note that while I used the 2008 versions of SQL Server and Visual Studio, the SQL Scripts should run just fine with SQL Server 2005.

You can find everything at http://code.msdn.microsoft.com/SqlServerSampleData . Look in the downloads section for the complete PDF with all the details, as well as all of the sample data. Using the techniques outlined in the white paper you too could easily be generating your own test data for a wide variety of projects.

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