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Category: Learning

Eight Fallacies of Distributed Computing

Kevin Sookocheff dives into things people tend to forget when building distributed computing solutions:

If we continue to develop microservices using the same set of assumptions we used for a monolith, we are operating with a now false set of assumptions that can prevent us from being successful. Even in a small distributed system with just two microservices we need to deal with networked communication that can turn our usual mental model of application development on its head. A common set of rules that can help us update our mental model to be more accurate in a distributed environment is the Eight Fallacies of Distributed Computing commonly attributed to Peter Deutsch, an engineer at Sun microsystems who worked on early versions of Ghostscript, as well as interpreters for Smalltalk and Lisp.

Click through for more information on each of the eight fallacies and what you can do to avoid their resulting pitfalls.

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PASS Under New Ownership

Steve Jones announces that Redgate is the captain now:

Redgate Software confirmed today that it has acquired the assets of the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS), which ended operations on January 15, and will revive the Summit, continue SQLSaturdays, and make available the library of content and training sessions.

Note that this will be different from PASS as it existed, so membership in the old association doesn’t carry over to the new. If you’re interested in keeping up to date on this, check out

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Rule 42 Software

John Mount describes a software development anti-pattern:

As software changes, it often accretes feature and drifts away from its design, if it even started with one, and many defaults and settings become undesirable. New users are blamed for not moving parameter settings away from the defaults to the “obvious” acceptable values.

Click through for the origin of the name and more info on how to avoid it.

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PASS: the End of an Era

Mala Mahadevan reflects on 22 years of association with PASS:

I finally decided I would write about the lessons I’ve learned in my 22 year association with them. This is necessary for me to move on and may be worth reading for those who think similar.
There is the common line that PASS is not the #sqlfamily, and that line is currently true. But back in those days, it was. Atleast it was our introduction to the community commonly known as #sqlfamily. So many lessons here are in fact lessons in dealing with and living with community issues.

Read on to learn from Mala.

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PASS Dissolving

From the PASS board:

We are saddened to tell you that, due to the impact of COVID-19, PASS is ceasing all regular operations, effective January 15, 2021. 

Also check out their final meeting minutes (PDF):

Tim presented a recap of the non-reconciled PASS Virtual 2020 Summit numbers, showing that only $1,973,031 was brought in falling short by $1,642,39 of the budgeted Summit revenue of $3,615,427. He went on to show that with the Summit shortfall and no prospect of funding support from Microsoft, that even if all other revenue was achieved, it puts PASS is a deficit of potentially $3.22M. the non reconciled breakdown of registration and sales and the potential deficit of $3.22M if the remaining budgeted revenue is met.

H/T Brent Ozar for the minutes.

I’m sure I’ll have more to say in other venues, but my brief thoughts are as follows:

  • PASS was an excellent institution, nearly unique among its kind by being community-driven rather than a community effort owned by a parent company.
  • Another example of such an institution that I’m familiar with was INETA. Emphasis on “was” there.
  • I appreciate everything that PASS has done. I think that they certainly fulfilled their mission and although I hate to see them go, I am grateful that they were there.
  • .NET user groups certainly didn’t die with the passing of INETA, and SQL Server user groups won’t either. At the user group level, my expectation is that it’ll be status quo. This is an advantage of the decentralized user group model.
  • I hope that the SQL Saturday property will be spun off and saved. Yes, the community could make a new SQL Saturday, but my biggest concern is getting the sponsors sorted out. I think there’s some time to do this, as virtual events are quite inexpensive, so only a limited sponsor base is required. It’s the in-person events which have biggest monetary outlays.

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Measure Your DBA Skills

Lee Markum has just wrapped up an interesting series:

Over the last 9 weeks I took you on a journey of skills and career topics related to being a SQL Server DBA. We looked at the Production DBA. We saw skills and career topics from the beginning to mid-career to Senior DBA. Then we looked at the Development DBA and their skills and career development needs. Finally there was a wrap up post.

To make it easier for everyone to get to these posts, I decided to bring them all together on a single page.

Click through to get a feeling for where you’re at on the DBA and database developer sides of the house.

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Data Professional Salary Survey

Brent Ozar has another year of the Data Professional Salary Survey:

Take the Data Professional Salary Survey now.

The anonymous survey closes Friday, Jan 1, 2021. The results are completely open source, and shared with the community for your analysis. (You can analyze ’em now mid-flight, but I’d wait until the final results come in. I’ll combine them into a single spreadsheet with the past results.)

I’ve had fun analyzing it over the years. If you wouldn’t mind, please fill it out and add some more data points.

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