A SQL Saturday in Cambridge – Buck Woody’s Ragtime Database Workshop

The SQL Server community is really engaged. They are an active bunch on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn, they help each other on forums, they attend conferences. But that isn’t enough interaction – the community started a grass-roots effort to hold local conferences on a Saturday. Free conferences. Odds are there’s one near you… http://www.sqlsaturday.com/default.aspx … and if not, you can start one.

Sessions at SQL Saturdays are all over the map, and there’s something for (almost) everyone, from Business Intelligence to Database Administration and Development. Some of these events have “training days” associated with them – longer, more in-depth training that has a fee. I’ve taught quite a few of these, and of course I’ve done my share of other presentations at the events as well.

I’m honored to be presenting at the Cambridge, UK SQL Saturday this year (http://www.sqlsaturday.com/162/eventhome.aspx) in September. For one thing, I used to live near there and plan to take the family with me to show them my old stomping grounds. For another, I’m excited about the sessions I get to present.

The Training Day

Friday I’ll be leading one of those training days – and I’ll be delivering a very important workshop, where I’ll cover SQL Server – all of it. OK, maybe not *all* of it, and maybe you won’t be a complete PhD after the class, but we’ll do a complete immersion in learning SQL Server as a product from the ground up. It’s a workshop format, so no sitting and listening to someone droning on and on for hours. You’ll be asked to bring a laptop, and do actual work on the product from the first few minutes of the 8-hour day to the last of the workshop. You’ll be jumping in from the very start, and in deep until the end of the day.


But wait – this is kind of a “beginner” thing, isn’t it? Shouldn’t I be doing something on the internals of the locking mechanism of the hashing system in memory on x64 architectures, with complete code diagrams? Shouldn’t you be able to snatch the T-SQL pebble from the master’s hand when you’re done, or be able to shoot the wings off of an XML fly when you’re done?


We need this kind of session. For one thing, you can get that depth in other sessions. For another, we need to have a place for someone that wants to learn SQL Server but doesn’t have a lot of time to do that. We need something relatively inexpensive that a boss can send a developer, administrator or new employee to learn how to take over the SQL Server, or augment the DBA team. We need a place where good habits are formed, and where someone can branch out into a new part of technology, into one of the best places in tech to be – data.

After you’re done with this session, stick around for Saturday – now all those presentations will make more sense. And you’ll be able to network with a lot of folks that already do what you learn about on Friday, and who knows – find out where to look for work in this amazing career field.

What will you learn?

You’ll start with knowing that SQL Server is a database product by Microsoft. That’s all the pre-requisite you need, other than being the technology industry. From there we’ll cover:

  • The Data Professional Career
  • Installing, setting up and configuring the right Edition of SQL Server for the job (including SQL Azure)
  • Database engine fundamentals – How does the engine work, what are the components, what can you configure and tune
  • Transactions, Locking and Blocking
  • Creating and managing databases
  • Database options and their impact
  • Database Objects including Tables, Views, Stored Procedures, Functions and more
  • General maintenance including backups and recovery
  • Security fundamentals including users, roles, and object security
  • Performance tuning fundamentals including indexes and query research tools
  • Multiple resources to help you get to the next level

 In 8-hours. Come ready to learn. You’ll need a laptop, and complete focus for a few hours. You’ll leave with the ability to manage and work with a SQL Server system – and you’ll learn what to do next.

Who should go?

If you’re new to Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS’s) but not technology, and you’re looking to expand your technical reach, coming from another platform (to be sure, there will be some repeat info here), want to explore a new tech career area, want to learn more about developing against an RDBMS or know someone who does.

The registration for the training day is here: https://www.regonline.co.uk/?eventID=1120017&rTypeID=242030 

What else are you doing whilst (I love saying whilst) there?

I’m also pleased to be providing the keynote on Saturday. (I can’t wait to see what I’m going to say), as well as two other sessions – more on those soon. My daughter wants to be a Zoologist, so while we’re there we’ll be visiting the Zoology museum at one of the colleges, I’ll probably eat too much and potentially go punting. I’ll also mingle with you, my SQL Family, and we’ll just generally have a good time.

If you’re not busy in September, and even if you are, make plans to come check all this out. It promises to be awesome. (Americans think everything is awesome)

See you there.