Data Head Stats:
- Senior database engineer
- Based in Ohio
- Focuses on performance tuning, internals, high availability, and maintenance strategies
- Blog: The SQL Sequel
- Where are you from, and what kind of company do you work for?
- I live outside of Cleveland, Ohio, but I grew up in a small town in Iowa and went to college at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. I currently work for a software company as a senior member of the Database Services team. We provide support to customers for issues related to the database, and also provide consulting for a wide array of services (custom reports, conversions, migrations, etc.).
- What’s decorating your office and/or desk right now?
- My decorations consist of pictures of my family and a few drawings from my kids. I also have a couple cards, one from my great aunt and one from one of my closest friends. The card from my great aunt is 10 years old…she sent it to me after I moved to Cleveland (which was not a popular decision in my family) and found a job. On the inside she simply wrote, “Charge.” The other card from my friend has the following quote, “People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.” The item on my desk which other people tend to notice and alter is my Mood Calendar. It currently says, “Mischievous,” as we recently decorated a team member’s desk for his birthday.
- What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced with SQL Server this year? What made it such a roadblock, and how did you eventually turn it from a problem to a solution?
- This is a difficult question to answer; nothing immediately came to mind. We have a lot of customers who still run SQL Server 2000. I believe we even have some on SQL Server 7. When I have to work with customers who run 2000, I feel like I have to re-learn where everything is within SQL Server. I heavily rely on 2005+ features such as the DMVs when reviewing system performance, index utilization, and blocking issues. When I have to go back to the “old school” methods it takes me a minute to adjust.
- When did you discover your love for technology?
- My use of technology increased significantly in my senior year of college, and I extensively used computers and wrote some simple programs in graduate school. But it wasn’t until a full year after graduate school, when I was trying to figure out a new career path, that I truly understood how much I enjoyed technology. At that time I was moving to Cleveland and had no idea where I would work. I finally realized that I liked working with computers and found a job working in technical support. It took off from there.
- Any thoughts on Denali, from how it looks in its latest release to its sticking-with-the-mountain-theme name?
- I’m really looking forward to working with the Always-On functionality and figuring out how our customers will want to use it, and then testing it out and creating some good recommendations. I am interested in contained databases as well, though I’m not sure if I will be able to convince our development team it’s something we need to integrate immediately, as much as I would like that!
- What’s the geekiest thing you’ve ever done? (Or at least will admit to!)
- I think that spending my free time working with SQL Server, blogging about it, and speaking is pretty geeky. Within the SQL Server community it is “normal,” but in my personal world and my work world, it’s considered geeky. A lot of people don’t understand why I do it, but to me it’s fun.
There are a lot of us lean, mean, data-analyzing machines out there in the real and virtual worlds, and it’s easy for interesting colleagues to get lost in the shuffle. With that in mind, we’ve launched Data Heads, a series of profiles of some of the most intriguing database professionals out there.