Annual #SQLFamily Reunion – PASS Summit 2013

A few people asked me, “Wait, you’ve just moved from US to Australia for a month and you’re flying back to US again?”. I generally grinned when I got asked this question. Sometimes you knew what you were doing, and no matter how many times people asked you to check your validity (or sanity), you were content with your decision and grinned.

Well, because I can not grin via blog, and I have a few hours before my return flight home to Australia, here is what I thought about my third PASS Summit..

Why PASS Summit 2013?

It is a big deal to me. I have just joined LobsterPot Solutions as a full time member, interestingly enough, PASS Summit is the one time in the year that we see each other, which happens to be in another country instead of our own! Yes, we are unique that way and we make a great team. This year, I was excited to see and to hang out with Rob Farley (b | t)  and Martin Cairney (t), as work mates, a team and #SQLFamily..

Secondly, I was selected to present on “From Impaired to Insightful Analysis with Geospatial Data“, a topic that I continued revising in the past year. Plus, I have also volunteered as a Virtual Chapter Mentor and a PASS DW/BI Virtual Chapter Leader role, so it was an honour to have an in person meetings with the other Virtual Chapter leaders and PASS coordinators; Denise McInerney (t) and Karla Landrum (t). It truly is about Connect, Share and Learn!

Last, but not least, PASS Summit is my ritual  reunion with a lot of friends from all over the world, and to meet with new friends too. I also felt honoured to have Mark Stacey (b | t)  sign a copy of my Visual Intelligence book (thank you to Christina Leo (b | t) for giving me a copy of the books). Most importantly and I could not begin to say how much I am proud of her, I planned my PASS Summit trip with Mickey Stuewe (b | t), my #SQLSister. Mickey has grown so much since I met her last year, as a SQL Professional, speaker, blogger and writer! Yup, my #SQLSister rocks!

VisualIntelligence signed

“To my twitter friend I finally met in person! Mark”

Visual Intelligence: Microsoft Tools and Techniques for Visualizing Data


What was your best moment?

Best moment was when I felt welcomed, which was all the time. From attending sessions, speaking at a session / interviews, talking to new friends, talking to old friends, being invited to official and unofficial PASS Summit after parties! I mean, wow! Sometimes by the end of the day, my cheeks would hurt from smiling and grinning all the time, but it felt great!

What was your sad moment?

On Friday at 5:15pm, after I attended Oliver Engels’s (t) and Julian Breunung’s brilliant and entertaining session on “R” vs “M”: Languages for Data Exploration. I soon realised that it was over for the year – no more PASS Summit 2013 session.

What was your funniest moment?

It’s hard to pick one, so I’m going to list 3:

Being at Quizbowl with Mickey and Mike Donnelly (b | t), losing points to -700 and brought it up as a team to 1100 which put us 2nd rank! Mickey and I really had a great time, losing and winning every single point with laughter.

Wearing the awesome propeller hats as Alumni Summit Buddies with Mickey, and coming up with “SQL-Dee” and “SQL-Dum” name for ourselves (as opposed to Tweeddle-Dee and Tweeddle-Dum). Photo courtesy of Mickey Stuewe.

Owly Images

Oh, did I mention I demo-bombed Kasper de Jonge (b | t) at BI Power Hour. Kasper is a polite Program Manager at Microsoft, who has helped me with a couple of Power Pivot bugs/questions this year, and I accidentally demo-bombed his presentation, commenting his accent. The 300+ attendees were laughing and entertained :)

Where to next?

I am very much looking forward to watching the session recordings. But in the mean time, I have checked out a few of the PASS TV episodes, and will continue watching them in the next couple of weeks.

I have learned that there are other good conferences all year round, around Europe/UK. I love travelling – I always have. So, where to next should hopefully include one of the conferences in Europe/UK as 54 weeks til another PASS Summit is way too long to wait.



Thank you for reading.

Until the next time we meet, hug and cheer as a #SQLFamily, stay safe and healthy.



Other Related Articles

Prelude to my PASS Summit Summary by Mickey Stuewe

PASS Summit 2013. We do not remember days, we remember moments by Maria Zakourdaev.

PASS Summit – looking back on my first time by Jonathan (@fatherjack)



PASS Summit 2013 Check List

PASS Summit 2013

Last year, I wrote a number of tips leading to PASS Summit 2012. As time is short (and also I am not as familiar with Charlotte), I prefer to write a summarised check list instead.

The list below is dedicated to my PASS Summit First Timers group, which I think may be useful for Alumnis as well. If there is anything that I should add here, I would really appreciate it if you could share it with us.

1. If you are not local, make sure your accommodation and travel arrangement is done. It may also be a good idea to organise for travel insurance. Session schedule is out already and so is the Schedule Builder. (If you are in my First Timers group, you would have sent me your top 3 things of what you want to achieve at PASS Summit. It is a good idea to use these top 3 things to guide your session selection)
Based on past experience, it would be a good idea to choose an additional backup for every time slot, just in case the preferred session is cancelled, the room is full or the session is not really what you are after. In the past, there is Guidebook for it too, which will most likely to be announced on the week of PASS Summit.

2. Melissa Coates who is based in Charlotte, has posted a fantastic article on the layout of the Convention Center.

3. Networking and staying connected is an important aspect of PASS Summit (or PASS community in general). So I highly encourage you to check PASS Summit Connect page.

4. The PASS WIT team pours their heart and soul into organising the WIT Luncheon. It is free for everyone to attend. Similar to last year, the discussion is in panel format that allows attendees to voice their thoughts and opinions. Check it out here.

5. There are a few After Hour events organised by SQL Sentry and community members to let you see what Charlotte has to offer. If you are not local, also check out Patrick Keisler post on Charlotte.

6. Have you ever heard of SQL Karaoke? It is a lot of fun! Get your singing voice ready or just chillax! You have the option to attend the Tuesday one (thank you SQL Sentry and SIOS) or the Wednesday one (thank you Pragmatic Works); or both.

7. Don’t forget to visit the Community Zone - I would feel very honoured if you could stop by and say hello to me at either of my booth times – Wednesday: 10:15 am to 11:30 am and Friday: 9:00 am to 10:00am.

8. Get your questions answered! If you have some questions that have been tickling your brain, either Performance Tuning related, SSAS or Professional Development topics, get ‘em ready. PASS Summit gathers MVPs around the world, from as far as Australia, Europe and Africa, as well as SQL Server CAT team and Office365 / BI team too!

9. Bring a notepad, your Surface RT/Pro, laptop or iPad to take notes. Don’t forget the charger too! For international travellers, don’t forget a plug adapter.

10. Business Cards, with your latest details!

11. If you have been thinking about getting certified, PASS Summit is a great time to do it ! I passed my 070-465 exam last year at PASS Summit. You can pass yours too! Did I mention, it’s 50% off?

12. Feel like PASS Summit is not long enough? Check out SQL In the City on Monday and SQL Saturday #237 Charlotte on Saturday right after PASS Summit.

13. Connect with other First Timers and Summit Buddy on Twitter with hash tag #SQLFirstTimers

14. Attend a webcast for First Timers by Rick Heighes on 3 Oct 2013 at 12:30 PM ET.

15. Post your thoughts and suggestions for the First Timers Orientation here before the Summit starts

16. Check the First Timers page regularly for the latest news:

17. Lastly but most importantly, please stay healthy. Drink plenty of water, eat healthily, maintain your exercise regime (check out #SQLRun and #SQLWalk) if possible and do things in moderation. We want you to be able to learn and have fun at your absolute best condition.

See you there!




Speaking at PASS Summit 2013

I am delighted and honored to be selected as a Community speaker for a Regular Session at PASS Summit 2013. My session is “From Impaired to Insightful: Analysis with Geospatial Data“. This year this summit will be held in Charlotte, NC on Oct 15-18, 2013.

I look forward to meeting PASS Summit alumni, speakers and First Timers too! Is this your first visit to PASS Summit outside Seattle? Mine too! Good news, Melissa Coates (@SQLChick) has posted tips on how to get around Charlotte. Last but not least, congratulations to the other selected speakers at PASS Summit! Also special thank you to volunteers and organizers of PASS Summit!

PASS Summit 2013


Check out Coupon Code that may be available from your User Group. Malibu SQL Server User Group members should use the code mentioned here.

See you in October!

Twitter Analysis on PASS Summit 2013 – Part 1

Two of the most important times in the year as upcoming and existing SQL Server Community speakers are the submission day for PASS Summit and the Summit days (or shall we say “week”?).

I am one of community speakers – nervous, anxious and excited all at the same time about session abstracts and the opportunity to speak in front of other passionate SQL Server professionals. PASS Summit is more than just a conference for most of us – it’s a gathering for #SQLFamily; we share knowledge, we have fun and we bring back lots of good memories as well as new learning.

April 3, 2013 9 PM is the big deadline for Community speakers. Using Analytics for Twitter I was able to gather some information on how busy the community was today – discussing SQL PASS and PASS Summit itself. Without further ado, here are the charts.

Let me see!

Analysis based on today’s date up to 9:15 PM (April 3, 2013)


Analysis based on location the past week.


Tone analysis the past week

Note: The time play tone analysis has been replaced with Line Chart instead for easier viewing on the website.

If you are interested in tone / sentiment analysis on social network, below is a good session that cannot be missed at PASS BA Conference on April 10 – 12, 2013. Hope to see you there!

Social Text, Sentiment, and Tone Analysis by Ruben Pertusa Lopez  Paco Gonzalez


Wrap Up

Using Analytics For Twitter add-in, we can analyze the buzz around Community Speaker submission for PASS Summit 2013. The submission ended on April 3, 2013 at 9 PM (PST).

I am certain that the conversation about abstract submission will continue for at least another week. Topics discussed will include wishing good luck to other speakers, encouragement, selection announcement, the rules, the system (time out issues), deadline and many others.

I’ll post another article with some more Analytics for Twitter in about a week to follow this up.


Further Reading

Analytics For Twitter on Technet

Analytics For Twitter Download by Extended Results

Social Text, Sentiment, and Tone Analysis session at PASS BA Conference, 2013

Now What? by Colin Stasiuk


My 2012 US Tour with #SQLFamily

My Pacific North West US tour earlier this month officially concluded on 11 Nov 2012. I am very honoured and grateful that I met new friends, caught up with old friends and delivered 4 presentations too. The greatest thing about this trip is the community and networking, especially at SQL Saturday 172 in Portland, PASS Summit 2012 in Seattle, and SQL Saturday 166 in Olympia.  The sessions delivered in these two SQL Saturday events were superb and attendees were so eager in learning.

Last year, I was just a book-worm (or a session worm?) where I went to every single session slot, as I had two very specific aims; i.e. learning SSAS performance tuning and finding out more about SQL Server 2012. I achieved what I wanted and was really happy to find a gateway to learning. I met lots of new people during the sessions too.

This year, I decided to take a different approach. Throughout 2012, I have talked to people from other parts of the world via twitter, LinkedIn and emails. So, it was important during PASS Summit 2012 for me to meet them, and to thank them in person for sharing their thoughts and opinions. The result is, throughout my US trip, I met more people, from different parts of Australia, United States (outside of Seattle), United Kingdom, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Mexico, Denmark, Slovenia, Philippines, Netherland, Norway, Brazil, New Zealand, to name a few.

One thing that I realise is that we are a family, #SQLFamily; we are diverse in knowledge, expertise and other aspects of life, but we are one that we share passion in knowledge sharing and learning. So, I am proud to be part of #SQLFamily and that every time I am around my #SQLFamily, I feel home.

As an Alumni Mentor for the First Timers group at PASS Summit 2012, I sent a few tips. One of them was that everyone’s experience for PASS Summit would be unique. You are entitled to have different experience from your peers. The most important thing is that you are having a good time and learning. I had a blast! So, I’d like to thank the sponsors, organisers, volunteers, speakers and #SQLFamily in making PASS Summit 2012 happen.  The feedback that I have received from other speakers, my First Timers group and attendees have been nothing but positive. So, once again, many thanks.

How do you rate your PASS Summit 2012 experience? Share your thoughts here and let PASS know!

Last but not least, I would also like to extend my thank you to SQL Saturday 172 and SQL Saturday 166 organisers, sponsors, volunteers and attendees.


Highlights from PASS Summit 2012

WIT Luncheon – PASS Summit 2012 by Sarah Strate

PASS 2012 Day 1 – Interviews and Keynote

PASS 2012 Day 2 – Keynote and Session Recording (Query Tuning Mastery with Adam Machanic)

PASS 2012 Day 3 – Interviews and Session recording (Working with Claims and SQL Server BI Technologies with Adam Saxton) 

PASS Global Community Video

PASS 2012 Keynote and Mobile BI Announcement by Marco Russo

PASS 2012 Announcements by James Serra




WIT Luncheon at PASS Summit 2012


Moderator for today’s luncheon is Wendy Pastrick, and the luncheon is spoonsored by SQLSentry, Inc.

Panelist Bios are available from

  • Stefanie Higgins
  • Denise McInerney
  • Kevin Kline
  • Jen Stirrup
  • Kendra Little


Ballroom 6AB is filled with 720 people attending WIT luncheon for Q&A sessions with the panelists on “Where have been and where are we going?”

12:10 PM

WIT envolvement in education changes throughout time. Number of PASS Events

In 2011 we have 24 HOP organised specificlaly for female speakers. This has encouraged more women to participate and to speak at various PASS events. Wome in all computing application has declined to 25% in US. Women leave the Technology industry twice than men.

Companies like Microsoft, Google, Twitter have been investing in WIT, such as in form of training and process.

DigiGirls at Microsoft is a great example of initiative for WIT.

Let’s start thinking “what can inspire or have inspired women to contribute more in the Computing / Technology field?”


12:17 PM

At PASS, funding / sponsoring is not like those in IBM or larger companies. But we at PASS have great attitude, community. As a community, we need to say “Come in, sit next to me, let me introduce you to my friend”. At PASS we want to be the organisation that says more than just “Welcome”.

Based on experience, younger women needs nurturing and encouragement to see why IT is awesome, and not succumbed to peer pressure.


12:25 PM

International speaker, Jen Stirrup, brings her views and findings of WIT. It seems that not only Women are more disengaged in IT but more so in data.

SQL Saturdays in Europe have managed to attract female attendants. It became apparent that both men and women are interested in WIT and diversity issues.


12:35 PM

Kendra Little shared her experience from working as just an employee to an enterprenuer, via PASS. Speaking at various events, helps growing mentoring skills and evetually develops consulting / consultancy sense essential in becoming an enterpreneur.


12:40 PM

Focus groups with women who dropped out classes, help in understanding why it happens and how we can counteract that.  Money may not be the only incentive for IT career. Most women are interested in the work/life balance.

PASS WIT website ( contains resources for you to start up WIT community near you!


12:50 PM

Work life balance is quite important to women. Track how you spend your time – get some data – analyse it and make some proposal to do things more effectively.  Web cams and time tracking are ways to show that you are working hard and effectively. Retaining employees by offereing work/life blanace is important.

A great way of proposing more flexibility is “Why don’t we try it for a month, if I don’t work more effectively, we’ll revert back to how it was before”.


12:57 PM

There are organisations that can help you get started in participating in WIT in your area. and some examples in US.


1:00 PM

A comment from an attendee “Women who are in IT seem to be more analytical and less emotional than those who aren’t”. Not eveyone is in IT, it’s best to give opportunities / facilitates opportunities for women to try it out first.


1:15 PM

Culture greatlly affects Women involvement in IT, and people in some countries are being funellled into specific areas of study or work.  PASS Global Growth and WIT can help in reaching out those women in other countries with small participation of Women in IT.

“You can be what you want to be and great at what you do” is a great encouragement for young women to get into IT.


1:25 PM

Closing note: send a tweet, blog about it and mention it to some one to start conversation on  ”Where have been and where are we going?”



PASS Summit 2012 Tips

Having such a fantastic experience last year at PASS Summit 2011, I cannot resist to volunteer as an Alumni Mentor for the First Timers program this year.

I have quite a number of First Timers in my group and I have been sending them with tips fairly regularly. I plan to do so until the PASS Summit 2012 starts on Nov 6, 2012. Some of these tips I have covered in my previous First Timers article. This year, I’m planning to put a bit more details and update it regularly prior to the Summit.  I think these tips should be useful for First Timers, and would be a good checklist for Alumnis as well.

So here are what I have shared so far in reverse chronological order. If you have any other tips, please feel free to share them too!

Tip #9: Updates from last week and last reminders

The PASS Summit 2012 mobile guide is now available.

On October 25th, Rick Heiges – a former PASS Board Member – discussed “What to Expect at PASS Summit 2012”. The slide deck is available for download.

Also, for every session, you are able to voice your feedback via a survey. I believe this year it will be done electronically. Please fill in the form with your feedback of the session. The feedback process is important for the speakers, PASS and the community. Good quality feedback will help speakers to better themselves and PASS to know how good the speakers/sessions are, which will help for future presentations for the community.

A few reminders:

1. Don’t forget your business cards
2. Attend First Timers orientation (important)
3. Have a plan on which sessions to go
4. Come in early for the Keynote sessions
5. Come in early to register on site at the Washington State Convention Center
6. Say “Hi” to fellow First Timers and “Hi” to alumnis, speakers, volunteers, sponsors and SQL CAT team.
7. Be safe and healthy; have a good learning time and most importantly have fun!

We really are not far away from PASS Summit at all. Some of us will begin their overseas or interstate travel this week for PASS Summit (and may be SQL Saturday #172 in Portland) – like myself. If you are, travel safe and see you in Seattle.


Tip #8: PASS Summit 2012 Webcast and SQL Saturdays

[Posted on 20 Oct 2012]

A few days ago, Denny Cherry shared very interesting information for First Timers about PASS Summit 2012. In the session titled SQL PASS 2012 First Timers Webcast, he discussed the following areas:

  • Transport/accommodation.
  • Out and about in Seattle.
  • Getting around the conference center. The layout is quite different from last year’s Summit. It looks like we have expanded the area to cater for more people.
  • Things to do in Seattle including networking events and SQL Karaoke.
  • The meaning behind the Session “Levels” – 100, 200, 300, 400, 500 mean, so you can appropriate choose the sessions for you.
  • The type of Sessions – PreCon, Regular, Spotlight, Half-Day and Lightning Talk.
  • Networking and meeting new people.
  • Registration schedule.

If you missed out, it is worth watching the session recording.

At this stage, the PASS Summit organizers are busy with allocating sessions to the appropriate rooms. Some sessions may be moved to another location depending on the demand. So make sure that you use the Schedule Builder to choose the sessions that you would like to go to. Seats are allocated on first come first served basis. Most of the time, there will be enough seats. In the case that the room is too full or you miss out on some sessions, you can pre-purchase the sessions now, or after the event.

I would also like to remind you that there is going to be another upcoming webcast What to Expect at PASS Summit 2012 – presented by Rick Heiges.

I hope by now you would already have the following things organized:

  1. Transport / Accommodation
  2. Use the schedule builder to put together a list of sessions to go to
  3. Check out the networking events
  4. Have your business cards ready

It is wise to visit the Registration booth at the Convention Center, to get your pass for the Summit and your swag bag on or before early Tuesday, 6 Nov 2012 at the Convention Center. They usually have enough Staff to serve a large crowd at the Registration booth, but it’s better to get them early then missing out on your First Timers Orientation session. Registration opens from Sunday evening, 4 Nov 2012. See the At-a-Glance page for more information on the schedule and what you could expect at the Summit.

By the way, SQL Saturday #172 in Portland (about an hour by plane) is held on Saturday, 3 Nov 2012, which is free. There is also SQL Saturday #166 in Olympia (about 90 minutes drive from Seattle) which is held on the Saturday after, 10 Nov 2012, and is also free. So, why not check them out if you’re in the area! There will be lots of people attending PASS Summit who are presenting at these SQL Saturdays, such as myself. It may be worthwhile connecting with others who may be heading to these SQL Saturdays too.


Tip #7: Have you read the Summit Bulletin?

[Posted on 12 Oct 2012]

By now you should have received the Summit Bulletin email from the PASS Headquarters, which contains a plethora of information on the exciting things that are coming up at the Summit.

I attended the Keynote sessions from PASS Summit 2011 and really enjoyed it. They talked about SQL Server 2012 last year and what’s new in the SQL / Azure world. We had both Microsoft SQL Server Executives Ted Kummert and Quentin Clark too. So, I’m happy that we have them this year again and am looking forward to hearing what they have to say in on the Keynote Addresses this year.

Did you know that PASS Summit attendees are entitled to 50% discount? There will be free Practice Test and e-Learning. If you’ve been thinking about getting your first Microsoft SQL Server certification or upgrading your existing ones to SQL Server 2012, now is a good time. You might be home with a certification or two!

Luncheons are ideal for networking and meeting new people. So I hope to see many of First Timers in my group during the Luncheons. Don’t be shy, say Hi to your fellow First Timers,/Alumni Mentors, make new friends and catch up with your old friends too 

In case you miss out the email notification from PASS, the 24 Hours of PASS Summit 2012 Preview session recordings are available from here.


Tip #6 – First Timers Events

[Posted on 8 Oct 2012]

As you may already know, PASS website contains a wealth of information on the Summit and is updated frequently.

Next week we will kick off the first couple of First Timers events:

(Subject to Change)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

20:00 GMT Webcast: SQLPASS 2012 First-Timers – presented by Denny Cherry

Thursday, October 25, 2012

16:00 GMT Webcast: What to Expect at PASS Summit 2012 – presented by Rick Heiges

I would also like to remind you of the Professional Networking Events on Nov 6th afternoon. Please ensure that you send the RSVP on time to secure your spot. If you haven’t received an invitation, please let the organizers know.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

1:00pm – 4:45pm Professional Development and Networking Workshop Session #1* (Room 4C 3&4)

2:00pm – 2:45pm Professional Development and Networking Workshop Session #2* (Room 4C 3&4)

3:00pm – 3:45pm Professional Development and Networking Workshop Session #3* (Room 4C 3&4)

4:00pm – 4:45pm Professional Development and Networking Workshop Session #4* (Room 4C 3&4)



Tip #5 Maximising your First Timers Experience

[Posted on 4 Oct 2012]

One of the ways to get the most of the PASS Summit is to have at least one goal on what you want to achieve, even if it was just to “hang out” with SQL Family. Everyone is unique :)

I would recommend having a list of 3 goals – you don’t have to be “hardcore” about it, but keep them in mind when you are at the Summit. A few “goals” require planning, like which sessions to go. You may find that some sessions are conflicting with one another; or may be changed on the date. So for that reason, it would worth noting other sessions of interest that are in the same time slot.  Check out the Schedule Builder, where it’s an equivalent of “wish list” or “shopping cart”. Once you’ve picked the sessions you want to go to, you can have the list emailed to you or added to your calendar.

During the Summit, especially the Professional Network session(s) and the orientation, there will be a lot of opportunities to network. So, be sure you are ready and bring your business cards.

It may sound silly at first, but I’ve been asked for business cards numerous times during these events. It seems to be expected these days.



Tip #4 – Schedule

[Posted on 27 Sep 2012]

Great news! The PASS Summit 2012 schedule is out. You can check it out via the following links

Schedule in PDF format

Interactive Schedule via Pivot Viewer by LobsterPot Solutions

As it gets closer to the date, there’s going to be more tools available that will help you to add the sessions to your calendar. So, keep an eye out.


Tip #3 Transport and Accommodation

[Posted on 27 Sep 2012]

6 weeks away from PASS Summit seems to be long, but it really isn’t – especially if you are not local. If you are not based in US, like myself, it would be worthwhile organising your visa, flights and accommodation as early as possible.

Similarly if you are not based in Seattle, please organise your flights/transport as well as accommodation as soon as possible.

For travel and accommodation to PASS Summit, please consult the PASS Summit 2012 Travel & Accommodation page.

If you’re local, well, what can I say other than lucky you!

It would also be worthwhile to start planning on how you’d want to get to Washington State Convention Center, i.e. by car or public transport, etc.


Tip #2 – 24 Hours of PASS Summit 2012 Preview

[Posted on 20 Sep 2012]

In less than an hour, we will start the 24 Hours of PASS Summit 2012 Preview. It’s virtual, free and is a sneak peak of what you’re going to see at the Summit this year. Quite a few of these sessions are actually from the Pre-Con, so if you are still “umm-and-arr”-ing which Pre-Con sessions to go to, check them out at 24 Hours of PASS. If you haven’t registered, it’s not too late.

Stay connected by using #24HOP on twitter.

Update: Session recordings should be available within 2 to 3 weeks post event.


Tip #1 – Stay Connected

[Posted on 19 Sep 2012]

So, we are just 7 weeks away.

A great way of staying connected is via Twitter, with hashtag #sqlpass. For in person events, designed specifically for First Timerswhich you can have a look here: This page will be updated with more information for First timers and events, so please check regularly.

Please mark your calendar to remind you of these events. I would encourage you to make yourself available in the afternoon of Nov 6th, 2012, especially for registration and attending the First Timers Orientation.


Other resources

PASS First Timers Guide and Schedule – 2012 edition by Jen McCown

Attending the Pass Summit, Pre-Summit Planning for First timers by  Pat Wright

How do you introduce yourself to people at SQLPass Summit?  by Jen Stirrup

Community Blog Roundup for PASS Summit 2011


PASS Summit 2012 - Nov 6th - 9th 2012



PASS Summit 2012 Lightning Talk Session

Firstly, I’d like to thank everyone who voted for my “TRY CATCH in a Nutshell” Lightning Talk session for PASS Summit 2012. I am very honoured and thrilled to be selected.

I’d like to congratulate all the selected speakers and I’m very excited to meet you all at the Summit.

Lastly, I hope you’d be able to join SQL Family in PASS Summit this year. It’s not too late to register!


PASS Summit 2012 - Nov 6th - 9th 2012


24 Hours of PASS Summit 2012 Preview

How awesome is it to be able to watch 24 out of the 190+ upcoming PASS Summit 2012 sessions from your own home?

Very awesome! I’m excited about the 24 Hours of PASS Summit Preview.  It’s 24 consecutive hours of great sessions for SQL Server Professionals delivered by outstanding speakers in the SQL Community around the world, and best of all FREE!

I am also thrilled to be a moderator for Session 22, with Peter Myers on Big Data Analytics with PowerPivot and Power View.

The tracks in 24 Hours of PASS event include

This event starts on 20 September 2012 at 12:00 GMT. So, be sure you check the schedule in your time zone.

Below is a list that I’ve created for Australia Easterm Standard Time (AEST). Also see more info here:


** 20 Sep 2012 GMT **

Session 01 (BIA) – Starts at 12:00 GMT (Thu, 20 Sep 2012 at 22:00 AEST)
Choosing the Right Reporting Platform 
Presenter: Brian Knight, Devin Knight

Session 02 (DBA) – Starts at 13:00 GMT (Thu, 20 Sep 2012 at 23:00 AEST)
Best Practices for Upgrading to SQL Server 2012 
Presenter:Robert Davis

Session 03 (AppDev) – Starts at 14:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at Midnight AEST)
Three Ways to Identify Slow Running Queries 
Presenter: Grant Fritchey

Session 04 (AppDev) – Starts at 15:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 01:00 AEST)
Fasten Your Seatbelt – Troubleshooting the Most Difficult SQL Server Problems 
Presenter: Klaus Aschenbrenner

Session 05 (CLD) – Starts at 16:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 02:00 AEST)
SQL Server Private Cloud != Azure 
Presenter: Allan Hirt, Ben DeBow

Session 06 (AppDev) – Starts at 17:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 03:00 AEST)
What are the Largest SQL Server Projects in the World? 
Presenter: Kevin Cox

Session 07 (AppDev) – Starts at 18:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 04:00 AEST)
Practical Demos of Text Mining and Data Mining using SQL Server 2012 
Presenter: Mark Tabladillo

Session 08 (DBA) – Starts at 19:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 05:00 AEST)
PowerShell 101 for the SQL Server DBA 
Presenter: Allen White

Session 09 (BID) – Starts at 20:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 06:00 AEST)
Mobile Business Intelligence 
Presenter: Jen Underwood

Session 10 (BID) – Starts at 21:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 07:00 AEST)
Slow MDX Queries: The Case of the Empty Tuples 
Presenter: Stacia Misner

Session 11 (DBA) – Starts at 22:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 08:00 AEST)
Using SQL Server 2012 Always On 
Presenter: Denny Cherry

Session 12 (PD) – Starts at 23:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 09:00 AEST)
Leadership – Winning Influence in IT Teams 
Presenter: Kevin Kline

** 21 Sep 2012 GMT **

Session 13 (BIA) – Starts at 00:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 10:00 AEST)
BI Architecture With SQL 2012 & SharePoint 2010 
Presenter: Rod Colledge

Session 14 (DBA) – Starts at 01:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 11:00 AEST)
DBCC, Statistics, and You 
Presenter: Erin Stellato

Session 15 (BIA) – Starts at 02:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at Noon AEST)
SSIS Design Patterns for Fun and Profit 
Presenter: Jessica Moss, Michelle Ufford

Session 16 (AppDev) – Starts at 03:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 13:00 AEST)
Characteristics of a Great Relational Database 
Presenter: Louis Davidson

Session 17 (BIA) – Starts at 04:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 14:00 AEST)
What’s All the Buzz about Hadoop and Hive? 
Presenter: Cindy Gross

Session 18 (AppDev) – Starts at 05:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 15:00 AEST)
Taking SQL Server Into the Beyond Relational Realm 
Presenter: Michael Rys

Session 19 (BIA) – Starts at 06:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 16:00 AEST)
Agile Data Warehousing with SQL Server 2012 
Presenter: Davide Mauri

Session 20 (AppDev) – Starts at 07:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 17:00 AEST)
Digging Into the Plan Cache 
Presenter: Jason Strate

Session 21 (BIA) – Starts at 08:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 18:00 AEST)
Introduction to Microsoft’s Big Data Platform and Hadoop Primer 
Presenter: Denny Lee

Session 22 (BID) – Starts at 09:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 19:00 AEST)
Big Data Analytics with PowerPivot and Power View 
Presenter: Peter Myers

Session 23 (CLD) – Starts at 10:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 20:00 AEST)
Best Practices and Lessons Learned Using SSIS for Large Scale Azure Data Movement 
Presenter: Steven Howard

Session 24 (PD) – Starts at 11:00 GMT (Fri, 21 Sep 2012 at 21:00 AEST)
Mentoring for Professional Development 
Presenter: Andy Warren


Also, check out what the PASS Director, Rob Farley has to say about the upcoming 24 Hours of PASS 

See you there!


PASS Summit 2012 - Nov 6th - 9th 2012

SQL PASS Summit 2011 Recorded Sessions

I have finally received my copy of the recorded sessions of SQL PASS Summit 2011 in DVD format last week.  So, obviously this brought back memories on my first ever co-presenting with Victor Isakov at the Summit.

A copy of the “Important Trace Flags Every DBA Should Know” presentation is available form Victor’s website:

By the way, if you bought a copy of the DVD set, Marcella McKeown would have emailed you about the mission recorded sessions. In case you didn’t get the email, see below details from Marcella:

Application and Database Development
Working With XML in SQL Server
Kendal Van Dyke, Insource Technology

SQL Azure
This Ain’t Your Father’s Cloud
Buck Woody, Microsoft and Kevin Kline, Quest Software

BI Architecture, Development and Administration Topics
Common Analysis Services Design Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
Devin Knight, Pragmatic Works

BI Client Reporting and Delivery Topics
End-user Alerting with SQL Server Code Name “Denali” Reporting Services
Lukasz Pawlowski, Microsoft

These sessions are now available for download here:


To stream the sessions, please go to:


You will need your PASS Summit username and password to access the sessions.


So, the learning continues…!