Posted in data modeling, SQL Server

How I Really Feel about Surrogate Primary Keys

When someone goes on a rant about something they truly feel strongly about – good or bad, my typical joking response is “You’re being a little wishy-washy about this. Tell me how you really feel.” I recently had a conversation with co-workers about surrogate primary keys and realized I need to use that line on myself.

So let me tell you how I really feel about surrogate primary keys. Where’s my soapbox?

soapbox

Continue reading “How I Really Feel about Surrogate Primary Keys”

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Posted in SQL Saturday

SQL Saturday Boston #797 Reflections

Now that SQL Saturday Boston is over (along with the rest of my insane September), I’m finally able to reflect on the whole event.

my speaker badge
My badge and its ribbons

My first SQL Saturday Boston was as an attendee when it was held out at one of the colleges in Wellesley, MA (either Wellesley College or Regis College – I don’t remember which one.) I missed one or two of the SQL Saturdays after that because I was late registering and SQL Saturday Boston fills up quickly. I managed to volunteer at SQL Saturday #500 helping in the morning at the speaker and sponsor check-in table. I had spoken at my first SQL Saturday before the SQL Saturday Boston BI 2017 but I didn’t submit my T-SQL 101 session because it was a BI Edition SQL Saturday and I didn’t think it met the criteria for a BI session.

This year, I had the honor to be on the organizing committee. It was an interesting experience to see the same event from so many different perspectives.

Continue reading “SQL Saturday Boston #797 Reflections”

Posted in SQL Server, T-SQL Tuesday

T-SQL Tuesday #105 – Brick Walls

TSQL2SDAY-150x150It’s another T-SQL Tuesday. Thanks to Wayne Sheffield (b|t) for hosting this month. His T-SQL Tuesday challenge is to write about Brick Walls we have faced. (If you are unfamiliar with the T-SQL Tuesday party, check out the website for the full backstory.)

It took me a bit to figure out what to write about for this topic. But that’s not the type of brick wall I want to post about today.

The Brick Wall:

I was working with a highly transactional system. The table with the most writes was also the table with the most reads. To add to the problem, the data being updated the most was the same data we need to read the most. The next set of popular tables, i.e. the next most read and updated tables, had triggers that used the most popular table for some of the data needed. As you can guess, we had a lot of deadlocks in our system. Oh, did I mention that this was running SQL Server 2000?

Continue reading “T-SQL Tuesday #105 – Brick Walls”

Posted in data modeling, SQL Server

Designing Super Types of Tables

I want to talk a little about database design patterns. When working with a relational database, there are a couple of patterns that exist to help you normalize your data. I think one of the most useful patterns in this is the supertype-subtype relationship.

You don’t see a supertype-subtype relationship defined as such when you’re looking at the physical database. You’ll only see it explicitly in the logical data model. So what is the pattern and how do you know that you have one in your database?

Continue reading “Designing Super Types of Tables”

Posted in SQL Server, T-SQL Tuesday

T-SQL Tuesday #102 – Giving back little by little

Happy T-SQL Tuesday #102! The challenge for this month is from Riley Major (b|t). His challenge is to think about how we can give back to the community. (Check out his blog invite or the T-SQL Tuesday website to find out more details about this monthly blog party.)TSQL2SDAY-150x150

The list of suggestions that Riley put together is quite an impressive one. It’s a great reminder that there are so many ways to get involved in the community.

I’ve started doing several things on the list over the past year – speaking, taking on the T-SQL Tuesday challenges, getting involved with the local user group – so I’m definitely going to commit myself to doing more of that. Maybe I can “up my game” and submit to a SQL Saturday in a city that I have to fly to or even submit a session to present for a virtual user group or a bigger event like GroupBy or 24 Hours of PASS.

At my new job, I’ve been told there are opportunities to do “lunch and learns” and I’ve been told to encourage my co-workers to join me at the local user group meetings. It’s kind of a no-brainer to do those.

But of all the things on the list, I definitely would love to find a way to pay forward the support I’ve gotten from members of the community to others who need it. A few people have come to me asking for advice or to be sounding board. As happy as I am to help out, I still feel like there’s more that I could do in this area. One concrete thing I think I can do is volunteer to help the first timers at PASS Summit as part of Buddy Program, if they continue that program again this year. But I’m going to keep looking to find other opportunities to help support others as they need it and in general feel like I’m being a better citizen of our #sqlfamily. I know they’re out there, but I just need to find the way that I can contribute.

As I was putting this list together, I realized that these examples are little things that I can do. And that’s OK that they’re little things. I think that’s important thing to note for those who are thinking about how they can start to give back to the community. One of the great things that Riley’s original list proves is that not every way to give back to the community requires big gestures. If you’re not someone who’s comfortable stepping into the limelight or jumping in with both feet (or whatever other catchphrase fits), there are still a lot of behind the scenes ways to contribute. There is a place in this community for that special passion you have and this community wants you to share with us.

Thanks to Riley for hosting this month’s topic! And thanks to all those who are currently doing so much to support our community and those are going to take on the challenge to step up their involvement! And if there is something I can do to help out, please let me know….

 

Posted in SQL Server

Insert Title

Hello LabelI was talking with some people after a user group meeting and over the course of conversation, I was asked what I do. I said my official job title was Senior Database Architect. It then turned to why my blog is called “Deb the DBA” if I’m a database architect. Perhaps “Data by Deb” would be a better name? It’s not the first time the “DBA” part of the blog title has gotten attention. But all of this definitely got me thinking…

As I write this post, my title is no longer a Senior Database Architect. I’m about to start a new job with the title of Senior Database Developer. My title the last time I switched jobs was Senior Database Administrator. Continue reading “Insert Title”