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The Scary DBA

I have twenty+ years experience in IT. That time was spent in technical support, development and database administration. I work forRed Gate Software as a Product Evangelist. I write articles for publication at SQL Server Central, Simple-Talk, PASS Book Reviews and SQL Server Standard. I have published two books, ”Understanding SQL Server Execution Plans” and “SQL Server 2008 Query Performance Tuning Distilled.” I’m one of the founding officers of the Southern New England SQL Server Users Group and its current president. I also work on part-time, short-term, off-site consulting contracts. In 2009 and 2010 I was awarded as a Microsoft SQL Server MVP. In the past I’ve been called rough, intimidating and scary. To which I usually reply, “Good.” You can contact me through grant -at- scarydba dot kom (unobfuscate as necessary).

#sqlfamily

Microsoft is supporting an effort by PragmaticWorks targeted at supporting technical training for returning veterans. I can’t think of a single better cause to throw some support behind. Not one. They’re going to donate money based on posts about #sqlfamily.

Well done to Brian Knight (blog|twitter) and all the team at PragmaticWorks. I knew you were great people, I just didn’t know how great.

Thanks to Microsoft and the SQL Server Team for their support of Brian. Oh, and for all the work you guys do with SQL Server. I may bitch about you guys more than you’d like, but it’s only because I live inside your software, constantly. I wouldn’t be there all the time if you didn’t do great work. Keep it up. We can talk about this issue with rpc_complete and sql_batch_complete showing TSQL in two different fields in extended events another time.

Enough fawning. This post is supposed to be about #sqlfamily, so let the fawning begin.

My previous post for #sqlfamily didn’t go much into specifics. I don’t have a deeply personal story of support to share. I do have a story of technical support to share. I’m not going to name names on this one because the person involved gets paid to do what they did for me for nothing. If this person reads this, thank you.

I’ve only recently started working with Extended Events with SQL Server 2012. I know, I know, I should have been using them for years. What can I say. I’ve been busy and trace did most of what I needed. Anyway, I tweeted about the experience of getting going and a particular problem I had hit and how I solved it. I received an immediate direct message asking me for my skype account and if I had a minute. Sure, I thought, let me get five minutes of face time and I’ll be good. After a 40 minute drink from the fire hose, I had a much better understanding of extended events, as well as several pages worth of notes and links to information I had previously missed. Why did this person do this? Because someone they knew needed some help. That’s #sqlfamily to me.

You gotta think of it like this. Technically, we’re all competing for jobs. If I know something really well and you don’t, that makes me more marketable than you so I’ll be damned if I’m going to give you a leg up for free. And there are technical communities out there that behave exactly that way. We don’t. We share. We share our knowledge, our time, our struggles, our passion.And the funny thing is, we all get better for it. Will there come a day when I’m sitting in an interview room with someone I know next door interviewing for the same position? Ha! Already did that. I recommended the other person (neither of us got the job). Will there come another day where the same thing happens? Yes. And I’ll do the same thing again. I’ll list the other persons strengths and suggest they’re perfect for the job if that’s what I think. After all, we’re #sqfamily.

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