SQLSaturday #59 – Speaker Interview #11 with Steve Simon
Queue the track. I can’t help hearing the theme song from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, when I read Steve Simon’s interview below. But I find his background extremely interesting on how he went from a geologist in South Africa, to proficient BI professional and active SQL community speaker. I hope he doesn’t mind the analogy J
RP: Steve, please tell us a little about yourself, your background, your career and your involvement in the SQL Community.
SS: Originally, I was a geologist working in Southern Africa. I entered IT in mid 1985 and have worked on most platforms including mainframes, VAX, and UNIX and windows boxes. I have been actively working with SQL Server for the past 12 years and have been an active speaker within the Northeast, speaking at user group meetings, code camps, SQL Saturday’s and presentations at PASS North America and PASS Europe.
RP: What is your area of expertise? How did you become a DBA/SQL Professional?
SS: Application Development and Business Intelligence
RP: What advice would you give your fellow colleagues who are trying to become more senior professionals?
SS: Work at it and above all read and digest as much as you can. Do not be afraid to make mistakes. We all learn from our errors.
RP: As I see the question all the time, what do you tell folks who want to get more involved in the SQL Community?
SS: No matter how new you are to SQL Server, you should not be afraid to present at your local user group. The most common comment that I receive is “what can I teach or show folks when I am new to the field”. Working in “your” environment, more than likely you will find that you are doing things that other folks never thought of. This is your jumping off point.
RP: What are 3 of your favorite features in SQL Server 2008/R2?
SS: I have not worked with R2, but I believe that the improvements to SSAS and SSRS are great.
RP: Indeed, there are many useful and wonderful new features in R2 that would be of interest to you. Our readers can check out What’s New in R2 for Reporting Services, as well as What’s New for Analysis Data Mining, and SSAS’s Multidimensional Database.
RP: What are you working on currently?
SS: Speaking Circuit. I also work with Information Builders‘WebFOCUS and presented for them at their H/O in New York on Thursday October 14th.
RP: So, sounds like you come down to New York, quite a bit. We’re glad to have you come back for SQLSaturday in November 20, 2010. What are you looking forward to, or, what excites you the most about presenting at our SQLSaturday event in the capital of the world, NYC?
SS: -Being able to pass knowledge and thoughts onto others.
-To seed innovative ideas.
-To learn from others
-To see what other folks are doing with the product. This is a Gestalt effect.
RP: Gesundheit! What are some of your other interests, hobbies, etc. when you’re not being a DBA/Engineer/BI professional?
SS: Classical music, bugging my wife (or so she says).
RP: Funny, some consider bugging the wife a chore, rather than a hobby J. Have you ever bugged your wife, while listening to classical music?
SS: No comment.
RP: In that case, why don’t you give us a preview of the topic and session you have planned for us at SQLSaturday#59
SS: Will be doing two sessions, one on “Handling data anomalies with data profiling tasks”, and “12 ways to write Poorly performing MDX queries.”
The first will be
RP: I see that you have returned to
Steve, thank you for your time and tolerance for putting up with my questions and literary license J Look forward to seeing you there!