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Afterthoughts: SQL Saturday #79 South Florida 2011

This past Saturday August 13th I presented two sessions at SQL Saturday #79 hosted by the South Florida SQL Server User Group (SFSSUG) (Webpage | LinkedIn| Twitter). The first presentation was at 11:00am titled “So, What is BI Semantic Model and why should you care?” and the second one was at 3:00pm titled “Designing  and Optimizing Analysis Services Hierarchies.” I had an amazing time chatting with some old friends that made it to South Florida all the way from Charlotte, NC, Atlanta, GA and  several other Florida cities like Jacksonville, Pensacola, Orlando, and Tampa.

The Driving Adventure

It was an adventure to get there as I decided to make the 4-hour drive from Tampa, FL (about 500 miles round-trip) early in the morning. My original plan was to start my drive around 4:30am but due to being jet lagged from my midnight flight the day before, I woke up until I snoozed the alarm for the 3rd time around 6:30am. That gave me a 30 minute window to get there on time for my 11am session.

The Event

The event was well put together by it’s organizers and volunteers. The food was great and included a mix of Mexican goodies. The Nova Southeastern University Carl DeSantis Building was a great venue. I really liked the central atrium where everybody converged in between sessions and was more than ideal for having lunch and event wrap-up. Great choice of venue & food!

The Attendees

One Mountain Dew + a 5-hour energy bottle and a speeding ticket later, I managed to get there with 20 minutes to spare. My first session titled What is BI Semantic Model and why should you care? started on time and was packed. It was literally standing room only. I had a great time with the audience. They were very engaged and asked both technical and philosophical questions. A couple speakers and friends attended such as my “tweep” (tweeter peep) Phillip Rosen (LinkedIn | Twitter) whom I got to know him in person for the first time. Also, the amazing Data Mining expert and newly minted Microsoft MVP Mark Tabladillo, Ph.D. (Blog | LinkedIn | Twitter) with whom I exchanged a couple of good jokes and funny moments during the presentation. The most memorable being the conception of the term “Bingle” which is the abbreviation of Bing and Google.

Sanjay Soni, Microsoft TSP

One of the attendees was Sanjay Soni (LinkedIn), Microsoft’s new Data and BI Platform Technology Solution Professional (TSP) for the Greater Southeast District (Florida). Sanjay introduced himself after the presentation and was very kind to provide very positive feedback for my BISM presentation. We  spent some time chatting about opportunities to co-present and network some more. I’m very excited to assist Sanjay  as much as I can in his new role in Florida. I encourage for you to network with Sanjay as he is a very friendly and approachable guy. You will see him very soon at a user group or event near you!

At the end of my session several other attendees came up to introduce themselves personally. There were so many I almost ran out of business cards. I appreciate when attendees take a moment to chat with me after my sessions and get the opportunity to listen to their feedback and kind words. I feel truly honored to have been able to present to such a great crowd.

So, What is BI Semantic Model and why should you care?

In this presentation, I did an overview of the new Business Intelligence Semantic Model (BISM) and the new “flavor” of the Analysis Services Engine that Microsoft will release with SQL Server Codename Denali. I explained about the new focus on “Personal BI” with the PowerPivot add-in for Excel, “Workgroup BI” with PowerPivot for SharePoint and “Enterprise BI” with Analysis Services UDM and Tabular mode. I showcased the free PowerPivot add-in for Excel 2010 and later demonstrated how easily a PowerPivot workbook can now be turned into an enterprise grade Tabular database using the new Business Intelligence Development Studio in SQL Server Codename Denali and how simple it is to deploy them.

You can download the slides here or by clicking on the picture above.

Designing  and Optimizing Analysis Services Hierarchies

 

On my second presentation Designing and Optimizing Analysis Services Hierarchies I also had a great time interacting with the attendees. The session was designed as an intermediate session but changed it a little bit to more beginner level from the results of my skillset level audience survey. I had great questions and participation from the attendees.

You can download the slides here or by clicking the picture above.

Thanks to everyone who attended my sessions and to the organizers and volunteers that made SQL Saturday #79 a success!

SQL Server Codename “Denali” CTP3 Resources

SQL Server codename “Denali” CTP3 has been released to the public after much anticipation. You may ask yourself, “What happened to CTP2?” The answer is simple. It was a private build for MVPs and some Microsoft partners. By private, I mean it was not released to the general public. The good news is that you did not miss much in CTP2. A lot of areas were incomplete or not working. But that is to be expected as it is a work in progress.

This blog post will serve as a means to gather resources such as links and blog posts regarding SQL Server “Denali” CTP3. Check back soon as I will be adding new resources. If you have a blog post about SQL Server Denali CTP3 please pingback or email me to add it to the list.

Downloads:

SQL Server DENALI CTP3 Demo VHD
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=27253

A HyperV image of SQL Server Denali CTP3 in action, including fully configured services and integration with SharePoint 2010 and Office 2010
The following software is configured on the virtual machine:

  • SQL Server “Denali” CTP3
  • SharePoint 2010
  • Office 2010

SQL Server codename “Denali” Community Technology Preview 3 CTP3
https://www.microsoft.com/betaexperience/pd/SQLDCTP3CTA/enus/default.aspx

SQL Server code name “Denali” Express Core Community Technology Preview 3 (CTP 3)
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=26784

SQL Server code name ‘Denali’ Community Technology Preview 3 (CTP 3) Feature Pack
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=26726

The SQL Server  code name “Denali” CTP 3 Feature Pack is a collection of stand-alone packages which provide additional value for Microsoft® SQL Server® code name ‘Denali’ CTP 3. It includes the latest versions of  tool and components an add-on providers.

Includes:

  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Master Data Service Add-in for Excel CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Semantic Language Statistics CTP 3
  • SQL ServerReport Builder for SQL Servercode name “Denali” CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” PowerPivot for  Excel CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Reporting Services Add-in for  SharePoin Technologies
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Data-Tier Application Framework CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Transact-SQL Language Service CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Transact-SQL ScriptDom CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Transact-SQL Compiler Service CTP 3
  • SQL ServerCompact 4.0
  • SQL ServerCompact 4.0 Books On-line
  • SQL ServerJDBC Driver 4.0 Community Technology 2 (CTP 2)
  • Connector 1.1 for SAP BW for SQL Server code name “Denali” CTP 3
  • System CLR Types for SQL Server code name “Denali” CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Remote Blob Store CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Books On-line CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Upgrade Advisor CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Native Client CTP 3
  • OLEDB Provider for DB2 v4.0 for SQL Server code name “Denali” CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Command Line Utilities CTP 3
  • SQL ServerService Broker External Activator for SQL Server code name “Denali” CTP 3
  • Windows PowerShell Extensions for SQL Server code name “Denali” CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Shared Management Objects CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” ADOMD.NET CTP 3
  • Analysis Services OLE DB Provider for SQL Servercode name “Denali” CTP 3
  • SQL Servercode name “Denali” Analysis Management Objects CTP 3
  • SQL ServerDriver for PHP 2.0
  • SQL ServerMigration Assistant
    1. Microsoft SQL Server Migration Assistant for Access
    2. Microsoft SQL Server Migration Assistant for MySQL
    3. Microsoft SQL Server Migration Assistant for Oracle
    4. Microsoft SQL Server Migration Assistant for Sybase
    5.  Microsoft SQL Server Migration Assistant 2008 for Sybase PowerBuilder Applications
  • SQL ServerStreamInsight v1.2

Adventure Works sample databases for SQL Server codename Denali CTP3
http://msftdbprodsamples.codeplex.com/releases/view/55330

Denali CTP3 Adventure Works Sample Databases Readme
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/sql-server-samples-readme.aspx

Includes:

  • AdventureWorks2008R2 Data File
  • AdventureWorksDWDenali Data File
  • SSAS Multidimensional Model Projects Denali CTP3
  • SSAS Tabular Model Projects Denali CTP3
  • SSAS AMO2Tabular Denali CTP3

Don’t forget to read the sample databases readme file:
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/sql-server-samples-readme.aspx

Tutorials

Tutorials for SQL Server “Denali”
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh231699(v=sql.110).aspx

Includes:

  • Multidimensional Modeling (Adventure Works Tutorial)
  • Tabular Modeling (Adventure Works Tutorial)
  • Tutorial for Project Crescent

Blogs / Wikis:

Microsoft SQL Server Code-Named “Denali” CTP3 Release Notes
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/3711.aspx

SQL Server Team: SQL Server Code Name “Denali” CTP3 and SQL Server 2008 R2 SP1 are HERE!
http://blogs.technet.com/b/dataplatforminsider/archive/2011/07/11/sql-server-code-name-denali-ctp3-is-here.aspx

SSIS Team Blog: Matt Mason – What’s new in SQL Server Denali?
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/mattm/archive/2011/07/12/ssis-what-s-new-in-sql-server-denali.aspx

SQL Server Reporting Services Team Blog: Thierry Dhers – SQL Server codename “Denali” CTP3, including Project “Crescent” is now publically available
http://blogs.msdn.com/b/sqlrsteamblog/archive/2011/07/12/sql-server-codename-quot-denali-quot-ctp3-including-project-quot-crescent-quot-is-now-publically-available.aspx

What’s New in Master Data Services (MDS) in Denali CTP3
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/3714.aspx

Marco Russo: Installing Analysis Services ssas #Denali CTP3 and PowerPivot Denali CTP3
http://sqlblog.com/blogs/marco_russo/archive/2011/07/13/installing-analysis-services-ssas-denali-ctp3-and-powerpivot-denali-ctp3.aspx

Brent Ozar: CTP3 is Here! Five Things to Know About the Next Version of SQL Server
http://www.brentozar.com/archive/2011/07/five-things-sql-server-denali-ctp3/

Jamie Thompson: SSIS enhancements in Denali CTP3
http://www2.sqlblog.com/blogs/jamie_thomson/archive/2011/07/12/ssis-enhancements-in-denali-ctp3.aspx

MSDN SQL Server (Pre-release) forum threads
http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/category/sqlserverprerelease

SQL Server “Deanali” Books Online (BOL)
http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms130214(SQL.110).aspx

Technet Wiki: Project Crescent Overview
http://social.technet.microsoft.com/wiki/contents/articles/project-crescent-overview.aspx

Update Log:
7/26/2011 Added Denali CTP3 Adventure Works Sample Databases Readme link

9/25/2011 Added SQL Server DENALI CTP3 Demo VHD download link and description and Technet Wiki Project Crescent overview.

Top 10 reasons to attend SQL Saturday #62 Tampa

We will jumpstart 2011 with the first SQL Saturday event of the year in Tampa, FL on January 15th, 2011. SQLSaturday #62 is a joint effort between the Tampa Bay SQL Server User Group along with the  Tampa Bay Business Intelligence User Group, its volunteers, members, speakers and sponsors.

I’m fortunate of co-organizing the event with one of the most experienced User Group leaders and SQL Saturday organizers, Pam Shaw (Twitter | Blog). It is great to have a mentor such as Pam and learn from her past experience organizing this type of events.

This will be the 4th SQL Saturday organized in Tampa. It will be held in an area of Tampa known as Ybor City (wiki) with a lot of Spanish, Cuban and Italian influence. As with previous years, we will be providing awesome Spanish food for lunch. This year we will also have two paid pre-conferences for the SQL Server/DBA track and Business Intelligence track the day before SQL Saturday on Friday, Jan 14th.

So why not come down to Tampa? SQL Saturday #62 has so many great speakers and sessions. We had over 45 different speakers who submitted more than 75 different sessions. The list was narrowed down to fit the number of rooms and time slots available, giving opportunity to new speakers as well as seasoned speakers and MVPs.

These among many other reasons make up the Top 10 reasons why you should attend SQL Saturday #62 Tampa, FL:

1) Preconferences

SQL Saturday #62 Tampa, FL will have its free sessions on Saturday Jan 15th as well as two paid pre-conferences on Friday Jan 14th. Yes, you read correctly, two all-day pre-conferences the day before SQL Saturday. The pre-conferences have a registration cost of $99. Price includes course materials, coffee, donuts, lunch, water and sodas. You can register for the paid all-day training events at:  http://sqlsaturday62.eventbrite.com/

The two pre-conferences scheduled are:

Pre-con A: Storage and Virtualization for the DBA
Presenter: Denny Cherry
Abstract: This session will be a two part session in which we will be focusing on two of the biggest topics in the DBA field, how to properly design your storage and virtualization solutions.

 Pre-con B: End-to-End Business Intelligence
Presenter: Stacia Misner
Abstract: This session will cover the basics of ETL using SSIS, a deeper focus on mutl-dimensional cube design using SSAS, effective report design using SSRS and an introduction to PowerPivot ad-hoc analysis.

If the pre-conferences (Reason #1) are not reason enough to come to SQL Saturday #62, these are additional reasons to attend;

2) Learn for free : 

Yes, free! No strings attached. All expenses for Saturday sessions are covered by event sponsors and volunteer time and effort by speakers, organizers and user group members.

3) Quality sessions by world class speakers:

And did I mention free sessions on Saturday? Learn from the best in the industry, SQL Server Most Valued Professonals (MVPs), book authors, bloggers, and certified professionals. Take a look at the MVP speaker line-up for SQL Saturday in Tampa, FL: 

MVPs                            

Adam Jorgensen
David Dye
Denny Cherry
Geoff Hiten
John Welch  
Jonathan Kehayias
Kevin Boles
Plamen Ratchev
Rodney Landrum

4) Networking opportunities

At SQL Saturday you have the opportunity to create new friendships, establish professional relationships with other professionals, meet your rockstars and if you are on Twitter, get to meet the source of some of those odd and funny tweets! You have a full day to hunt down and stalk your rockstars, enjoy a casual over lunch conversation or have more deep conversations over a drink at the after party!

5)  Talk to industry leader vendors and explore their products and services

Advaiya
Confio
CozyRoc
Enterprise Software Solutions
Enterprise Software Solutions
Fusion-IO
Gerasus Software
KForce
Melissa Data
Microsoft
Pragmatic Works
Professional Assosciation of SQL Server (PASS)
Redgate
SQL Server Magazine
Tavolacci & Associates / YouCanLearn
Confio
Fusion-IO
Enterprise Software Solutions
Pragmatic Works
Tavolacci & Associates / YouCanLearn

6) SQL Karaoke – SQL Saturday Edition
Show off your talent at the SQLSaturday after party. SQL Karaoke is a must-do event for everyone. Sing along with some of the SQL Server professionals for good’ol fun. We will have our after party at Rock-N-Sports Bar & Bistro at Centro Ybor.

7) Great food
We will be providing free lunch and back by popular demand we will be delighting you with Spanish/Cuban cuisine!

8 ) Enjoy warm and sunny weather
Escape from the cold weather and come down to Tampa. Enjoy a weekend in Ybor City, visit Busch Gardens, or take a trip to the beach.

9) Job opportunities
Looking for a job or planning a career move? Kforce representatives will be on site to talk about several job openings in the area and nationwide. Make sure to visit their booth.

10) Get your Swag on!
As an attendee you will receive a bag full of free swag from our sponsors and raffle tickets for a chance to win netbooks & other electronics, software licenses, training vouchers, books, etc.

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