Tim Mitchell
Follow Tim Mitchell on Twitter  Like Tim Mitchell on Facebook  Subscribe on YouTube  Connect on LinkedIn  Subscribe to the Data Geek Newsletter
No Picture

SQL Quiz: Career Challenges

I’ve read a number of responses from Chris Shaw’s first DBA networking quiz.  I missed out on the first one, but I have been tagged by Grant Fritchey for the second round. The Questions for this quiz… What are the largest challenges that you have faced in your career and how did you overcome those? 1) The first one of these, I still…


No Picture

The Next Generation DBA

DBA, database developer, analyst, SQL grunt, or whatever your title may be, there is no question that your role will be evolving in the next few years. I read a couple of posts from Jason Massie about the Death of the DBA (part 1 and part 2) earlier today, in which he predicts a diminishing market for database administrators, and SQL DBAs…


No Picture

Microsoft Certified Master program – Is This The Answer to Certification Woes?

In the past few years, many people – myself included – have expressed a desire to see the quality of the Microsoft certification program improved.  Even though there have been some positive changes in the MCP program during the past few years, it still lacks the repute (and frankly, market value) many of us hope for.  On that topic, I…


No Picture

Does regulation make data any safer?

Working with healthcare organizations, I am constantly aware of the restrictions my staff and I must abide by according to HIPAA constraints.  It’s not really rocket science; as far as data security goes, HIPAA mandates what logically should already be in place.  Any organization that takes data security seriously will already have safeguard on the storage and transmission of data, fully tested…


No Picture

SMO Videos on JumpstartTV.com

Last month I got to head out to Orlando and spend a couple of days with Andy Warren and the guys at End to End Training.  They have relaunched JumpStartTV.com and I was out there to record some brief training videos on SQL Server SMO programming.  Check out the SMO channel here.  Also, Brian Knight and Grant Fritchey have both posted recent content on the same site, and I encourage…


No Picture

Data Quality: The Discovery

I wrote a post a few months back about a healthcare data conversion project that I’ve been working on for the better part of 2 years.  My task on this project is to convert data from an old UNIX-based Universe database to a SQL Server-based application; the database we are extracting from is quite old, both in terms of technology…


Defining Value

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the concept of value.  Recently, a colleague of mine tendered his resignation quite unexpectedly and at a very inconvenient time, just before the consummation of a 2-year software implementation and data conversion project.  Citing health and family concerns, he decided that the value he received from his work was disproportionately low compared to…


No Picture

Slacking and data quality (in that order)

Well, I almost missed blogging for the entire month of June.  I’m sure that this fact didn’t go unnoticed by both of the people who read my blog…  I’m working on a major data conversion and am in a mad dash to finish converting and validating years of healthcare and financial data, and unfortunately my free time (including the time allocated…


No Picture

T-SQL Quirk: Using NOT IN With NULL Values

There is a little quirk in T-SQL with NULLs when using the NOT IN qualifier.  I use the term “quirk” loosely here because the behavior is exactly as intended, though it may not be obvious.  The following query shows a trivial example: At first glance, one might think that we’ll see returned the row for the Chevy MINIVAN.  However, when…


No Picture

A little fun with SSIS expression language

The SSIS expression language is a powerful yet enigmatic entity.  Once you get used to its syntax – which is part C#, part T-SQL and part *WTH?!?* – it’s actually somewhat fun to use.  However, one thing it is lacking (as far as I can tell – correct me if I’ve missed something) is the ability to use an IF…ELSE…