08 January 2020
08 January 2020

Capturing a Mind

When the Netflix series Black Mirror began in 2011, I watched a few episodes. Recently, I “binge-watched” more to catch up. If you’re not familiar with the series, each episode is about technology, and how people must deal with it when it goes awry. For the most part, the technology featured in the series doesn’t … Read more
01 January 2020
01 January 2020

Why the Database Must be Part of DevOps

According to Microsoft, DevOps is “the union of people, process, and products to enable continuous delivery of value to our end users.” The definition doesn’t mention any frameworks or specific tools, and it’s more about communication and culture than any technology. That said, automation and tooling are critical components of DevOps as it helps organizations … Read more
04 December 2019
04 December 2019

Distractions at Work

Many jobs in technology, especially those that involve writing code, take concentration and focus. It’s often called being “in the zone.” For me, it feels like I’m inside a bubble where time goes at a different pace than the rest of the world. In fact, the rest of the world seems to disappear when I’m … Read more
20 November 2019
20 November 2019

SSRS is Still Around

The other day, a friend asked me if Microsoft is discontinuing SQL Server Reporting Services (SSRS) now that Power BI is the premier MS reporting and dashboarding tool. It seems like more organizations are finding fewer reasons to use SSRS due to the ease of use and features of Power BI. Despite all the news … Read more
24 September 2019
24 September 2019

SQL Server Management Studio is as Relevant as Ever

After fifteen years of heavy usage by developers and DBAs, it might seem like Microsoft’s free tool, SQL Server Management Studio, is about to go out of style. SSMS is no longer the cool new kid on the block: Microsoft has shown consistent effort to develop their new tool, Azure Data Studio (formerly known as SQL Operations Studio), … Read more
12 August 2019
12 August 2019

Hiding What You Shouldn’t See

Back when I was working on a master’s degree, one of our professors told us a story about a colleague who learned how to navigate the Unix system. She was so thrilled about learning this new skill that, in her exuberance, she stumbled upon some hidden human resource files containing confidential information. Eventually, an administrator … Read more
12 June 2019
12 June 2019

Building a Great Technical Team

The process of putting together a team of technical people once was largely centered around getting a group of similarly minded people. How people worked was valued more than how well they could accomplish their job. Finding people who could work together smoothly was a big focus when picking new team members, and was a … Read more
28 May 2019
28 May 2019

Innovation: A Double-edged Sword

We humans have been the most successful animals on earth. We’ve accomplished this by changing the environment to suit our needs instead of always adapting ourselves to fit the environment. We use tools, we invent, and we solve problems. Of course, many other species use crude tools, but none have done anything like inventing computers, … Read more
30 April 2019
30 April 2019

What is Automation?

Today I got a bit closer to a meaningful definition of automation as it applies to the software development process. I’ve been turning this concept over in my head for a while, which is partly related to the dreaded question of licensing. Why should licensing an automation product be related to the number of users? … Read more
17 April 2019
17 April 2019

The Future of Medicine

If you are a Star Trek fan, you’ve seen the future of medicine, or at least how the writers imagine it will be. Painless, needleless injections are given by hypospray devices, right through clothing with no chance of cross-contamination. The medical tricorder provides an accurate diagnosis in seconds. Broken bones, illnesses, and injuries are quickly … Read more