T-SQL Tuesday – SQL Family and community

This month’s T-SQL Tuesday is being hosted by Jeffrey Verheul (B|T). Our topic of the month is SQL Family. Check out the host page here.

Here is our task:

” How do you feel about SQL Family? Did they help you, or did you help someone in the SQL Family? ”

I feel that the SQL Family is a great online community that helps each other out wherever and whenever they can. I don’t like to use the term SQL Family though. I prefer to keep work and personal life separate so I tend not to use the term “SQL Family”. When talking about my job and why I like what I do, one of the things I always bring up is the great online community.

When I first started learning about databases, I lived on sites like SQL Server Central and MSSQL tips. I loved how that people had tons of questions and other people just answered them…ACTIVELY. What was even better was that people weren’t jerks about answering basic or n00b questions.

Then I was introduced to twitter.  I started using twitter when I was working in New Zealand. My boss at the time was encouraging us to use twitter but I never really thought it was useful. Then I met the #SQLHelp hashtag. That is when I really understood what it was all about. For me, it’s like an ongoing discussion in a huge room of DBAs, developers, and Sys Admins. Great use of twitter. Almost always a good discussion on there.

As for me helping someone, I am currently on the committee that puts together Pittsburgh’s SQL Saturday (did you sign up yet?!). For the last 3 years I have helped organize this event. It’s been a great experience working with some great people. We periodically meet to discuss the event. It takes quite a bit of work to pull these off. From organizing speakers and figuring out what is for lunch (no pizza!) to actually getting people to come. The reward comes the day of the event though. It’s great seeing the last couple months worth of work all come together.

Overall I think the community as a whole is the best part about being a SQL DBA. Most of the time every problem you’ve ever had has been seen by someone else and that person will 99% of the time be willing to help you out with it. And if there is a time where you might have a new problem, there will always be about 50 people on #SQLHelp or stackexchange to give you some ideas of what to check. Thanks SQL peoples!