Do You Have a Career or a Job?

Recently, I thought about the difference between a career and a job. Technically, a job is one employment agreement out of many that span a career. A career could be database administration, while a job could be the time employed at one company. The difference between these could be considered in another way, however. If … Read more

Is Certification Worth It?

I was recently asked if I thought getting a Microsoft certification was valuable. I see quite a few benefits. Certifications might help your company become a Microsoft Gold Partner, and certification may be a selling point when assigning consultants to engagements. For me, the big benefits have been about learning new features and getting to … Read more

Security, Compliance, Data Ethics, and Breaking the “Not My Job” Mindset

Security, compliance, and data ethics are related concepts that everyone who works with software should know about, from the help desk to the C-level office… but almost everyone thinks that worrying about these things is someone else’s problem. As data breaches become increasingly common and data privacy regulations pass in more regions, there are increasing … Read more

Giving Back to the Tech Community

Most of us haven’t learned everything we know about technology from books or classes. Instead, when things go wrong, a quick search on Google or Bing typically brings up possible solutions from others who have experienced the same problem. I often wonder about that unfortunate guy who is the first to tackle a difficult issue. … Read more

Automation and Work

I recently took two of my grandchildren to a McDonald’s restaurant for some lunch. We were greeted by a young woman with a big smile on her face asking if she could show us how to use the new kiosk to place our order. My first thought is that she must have been instructed by … Read more

Taking Time Away from Work

As I write this, my mind is focused on my big holiday trip, just two days away. It’s a trip I’ve been planning for five years, and it includes our children, their spouses, and our grandchildren – eleven people in all. I’m still debating on whether to take a laptop along, but I’m leaning towards … Read more

Do We Really Care About Privacy?

You may have noticed a recent flurry of activity in your email inbox as many companies sent out new privacy policies and, in some cases, asked you to opt-in to continue to receive communications from them. This coincides with the deadline to comply with the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). This regulation is meant to … Read more

One Space or Two?

Typewriters have become rare over the past twenty years or so as we began to use computers more often at home and in the workplace. Correction tape, whiteout, and those typing erasers with a brush on the end have been replaced by the backspace and delete keys. Most people welcome this progress or have never … Read more

When You Need A DBA: Inhouse Vs Outsourced

One big question for software developers and IT departments in small companies is always “should I hire a DBA?” The fact that one is asking this question demonstrates that there are some symptoms that need a deeper diagnosis than you can handle. This may be a concern about backup procedures, database slowness for users, or errors … Read more

The Facebook Fiasco

About ten years ago, my friends and family were abandoning their Myspace accounts and heading to Facebook. I fought it for a while but eventually assimilated and ended up with over 650 Facebook “friends” at last count. Even my mother embraced the platform, very happy that she could see frequently updated photos of her many … Read more

Supporting Women in Technology

We make a special effort in March to acknowledge the accomplishments of women. Women have been making gains in many professions over the past several decades but are still underrepresented in technology. There are several hypotheses about why this is the case, but often women find they are not welcome in the “brogrammer” cultures of … Read more

Why You Need a Time-Management Strategy

Time management is simply the ability to plan how and where you spend your time throughout the work day.  When you have a proper time management strategy in place, you will be more productive, enjoy your work more and have less stress.  The process of implementing time management is really quite simple; it’s all about … Read more

Working from Home

I’ve been fortunate enough to work from my home office for the past six years. My commute is about twelve steps, or, occasionally, a 45-minute drive to the nearest airport. It may not be for everyone, but I think that more employers should let their workers take advantage of an arrangement like this. Since I … Read more

How to Know When It’s Time to Hire a DBA

There are many reasons why one would consider hiring a professional database administrator (DBA). You may be concerned about user experience issues such as errors or slowness, or possibly backend items like backups, security or stability. If your database is hosted on a SQL Server, eventually you will run into issues that you cannot solve … Read more