Pragmatic Works Blog

Azure ML, SSIS and the Modern Data Warehouse

Written by Ginger Grant | Apr 17, 2015

Recently I was afforded the opportunity to speak at several different events, all of which I thoroughly enjoyed. I was able to speak on Azure Machine Learning first at the Arizona SQL Server Users Group meeting. I really appreciate all who attended as we had quite a crowd. Since the meeting is held practically on Arizona State University’s Tempe Campus, it was great to see a number of students attending, most likely due to Ram’s continued marketing efforts on meetup.com. After talking to him about it, I was impressed at his success at improving attendance by promoting the event on Meetup, and wonder if many SQL Server User Groups have experienced the same benefits. If you have, please let me know. Thanks Joe for taking a picture of the event too.

Modern Data Warehousing Precon

The second event where I had the opportunity to talk about technology was at the Precon at SQL Saturday in Huntington Beach, where I spoke about Modern Data Warehousing. It was a real honor to be selected for this event, and I really enjoyed interacting with all of the attendees. Special thanks to Alan Faulkner for his assistance. We discussed the changing data environment including cloud based storage, analytics, Hadoop, handling ever increasing amounts of data from different sources, increasing demands of users, the review of technology solutions demonstrate ways to resolve these issues in their environments.

Talking and More Importantly Listening

The following day was SQL Saturday in Huntington Beach #389. Thanks to Andrew, Laurie, Thomas and the rest of the volunteers for making this a great event as I know a little bit about the work that goes into planning and pulling off the event. My sessions on Azure ML, Predicting the future with Machine Learning and Top 10 SSIS Tuning Tricks were both selected and I had great turnout on both sessions.

To follow-up with a question I received during my SSIS Session, Balanced Data Distributor was first released as a new SSIS transform for SQL Server 2008 and 2008 R2, so you can use it for versions prior to SQL Server 2012. I’ve posted more information about it here.

I also got a chance to meet a real live data scientist, the first time that has happened. Not only did I get a chance to speak but a chance to listen. I really enjoyed the sessions from Steve Hughes on the Building a Modern Data Warehouse and Analytics Solution in Azure, Kevin Kline on Convince Me – Persuasion Techniques That Get Things Done, and Julie Koesmarno on Interactive & Actionable Data Visualisation With Power View. As always it’s wonderful to get a chance to visit in person with the people who’s technical expertise I read.

In addition to listening to technical jokes which people outside of the SQL community would not find humorous, it’s great to discuss technology with other practitioners. Thanks to Mr. Smith for providing me a question which I didn’t know the answer, which nowI feel compelled to go find. I’ll be investigating the scalability of Azure ML and R so that I will be able to have an answer for him next time I see him.

I really enjoy the challenge of not only investigating and applying new technology but figuring out how to explain what I’ve learned. I look forward to the opportunity to present again, and when I do I’ll be sure to update this site so hopefully I get a chance to meet the people who read this.