Invitation for T-SQL Tuesday #22 – Data Presentation
Whilst I was winding down an eventful day with the family on Labor Day Weekend, here in the US, I looked out the window, and saw the symbol shining in the moonlit sky. I slid down the pole to the bat-cave to reply. This was no ordinary “bat-signal”, but an urgent DM from SQL MVP, T-SQL Guru and founder of the awesome T-SQL Tuesday Blog Party, Adam Machanic. It seems, that due to circumstances beyond his control, the original host for this month’s T-SQL Tuesday had cancelled. Holy Tuesday!
Originally, I had signed up and been scheduled for March 2012, which suited me fine, because I had so much already on the plate. BUT, I could not ignore the call, and the honor of being chosen and thought of as someone who can come to the rescue in a pinch. (Everyone one else on the list was on vacation, or busy getting ready for 24-HOP :-O)
Believe me, changing gears is not an easy task, but this is a noble cause, and someone has to save this month’s T-SQL Tuesday. Or, at least, I didn’t want to be the one to let everyone down L So, I am stepping up to the plate, and happy to host this month’s T-SQL Tuesday #22. No matter what, the show must go on! Right? Looks like by default, I, Robert Pearl, your host! So, let’s get this blog party kicking!
I hereby cordially invite all of YOU, the SQL Community, to this month’s T-SQL Tuesday No. 22, on the Thirteenth Day of September, Two Thousand Eleven.
In T-SQL shorthand, that’s 9-13-2011 00:00:00.
The Post must go live between 00:00:00 GMT on Tuesday, September 13, 2011 and 00:00:00 GMT on Wednesday September 14, 2011 (also known as 8pm EDT, 5pm PDT).
What’s T-SQL Tuesday?
Adam Machanic (Blog | Twitter), a long time SQL Server MVP came up with an excellent idea of improving community involvement around blogging where bloggers around the world post their views on a same topic chosen by the host on the 2nd Tuesday of every month.
On to this month’s Topic
What I have described above may be some behind-the-scenes details, but nevertheless, I packaged it in such a way that would provide entertainment (maybe ridicule?) to the reader at large. This was my presentation to the reader.
Therefore, the topic of this month’s T-SQL Tuesday is, “data-presentation” Or put better, formatting data for presentation to the end-user.
We may be the developers, and techno-geeks behind the code, whether simple, advanced, spaghetti, or otherwise. But, the data the user sees is most critical. The query output, the report, or data presentation, must be absolutely formatted in such a way that is easily understandable and readable by the end-user. The end-user can be the boss, supervisor, department head, the analyst, employees, or customers. And they must be the ones we cater our queries to!
It helps a lot, if we can simplify our code too. For example, when doing comparative analysis of the dataset results returned by a query, it makes it completely understandable if the output includes a percentage column. While for the end-user, it may be hard to digest milliseconds, megabytes, totals, and other assorted aggregated data, everyone can easily comprehend when something is X% percentage out of the whole.
For example, with the advent of Common Table Expressions (CTE), this makes it a whole lot easier to return all the data rows, along with the percentage in one single T-SQL pass.
Therefore, I am inviting you all to write about “data presentation” to the user. This can be in the form of T-SQL code, an SSRS report, etc. What can you do to streamline data presentation? I used a CTE, you can use one, but you don’t have to. No hard format, just be creative, and mention the importance of data presentation.
Robert’s Rules (ok the T-SQL Tuesday Rules)
Asking for…Nice to haves
Host a T-SQL Tuesday Event
You too, can host an event like this! If you’re interested, definitely reach out and contact Adam directly. You may be placed in the queue, but never know when Adam might call upon you in a pinch.
You can also tweet him or leave a comment on his blog, as described in his first T-SQL Tuesday Invitation.
Indeed, September is a busy, busy month for the SQL Server Community. T-SQL Tuesday should always be part of that! I look forward to all your posts! I will have a round-up as well, following shortly afterwards.
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