I 'was' a Coldfusion programmer - at some point about two years ago I realized I was having CF do things for me that the back end database would have done much better and faster. So, I started trying to learn more about SQL Server and use it for what it's meant to do (instead of hacking the front end app because I didn't know how to do it in the database!)
I started doing a lot of web searching and learned some very interesting things.
I have taken a couple of online courses through a local community college, which have been also interesting and taught me some things I hadn't stumbled upon in my various web searches. However, I was very disappointed by the text in my 'general' SQL Server class (covering transact-SQL). There was one 'technique', in particular, that was covered under sub-queries that I could NOT wrap my head around by reading the textbook. (I don't remember exactly what it was.) It was a technique that didn't offer very good performance, so it was very difficult to find information about it on Google. I finally stumbled upon it after a couple of hours of searching, and the web information allowed me to understand the concept enough to finish the homework. I also left a note to the professor that I realized that the query didn't totally reflect the textbook, but that I really couldn't understand from the textbook. I also commented the query and left a link to the page that I found that explained the concept.
So, I was stuck buying and using what I considered a less-than-adequate textbook. Fortunately, I didn't pay the $60 book price through the college's book store - I purchased it as an eBook for maybe $15.
A friend recommended sqlservercentral.com and that has, by far, been the best learning tool. Thanks, everybody ;-)
I have since been hired as an "almost DBA" - i.e. the company can't afford an actual DBA, but wanted to find someone with some experience and some desire to learn how to BE a DBA. sqlservercentral.com and web searches have helped me so much, but I know there are things I should be learning about and starting to implement that I don't even KNOW I should be doing
That is where, I think, a great book would come into play.
I'm not much of a blogger, but I've considered starting one and capturing my journey to becoming a DBA, in hopes that it may be a good reference to other newbies. Maybe if I get ambitious and do so (and do it well), I could turn it into a book at some time!
Thanks again, everyone here. You are a wonderful resource for the community!