Adam Jorgensen, PASS Executive Vice President of Finance, came out to talk about the financial health of the PASS organization. PASS gets $5.9M revenue from the annual Summit, and $1.3M from the BA Conference. Other than that it receives $82K from Chapters and Events, and $260K from other sources. The money raised by the community goes back to the community, via the Summit, the BA Conference, SQL Saturdays, Virtual Chapters, etc.
Tom LaRock came out to thank Sri Sridharan and Olivier Matrat for their service on the PASS board. He then introduced Sanjay Mishra as the Microsoft board rep, and Grant Fritchey as the newly elected board member.
Denise McInerney came out to talk about all the viewers watching from all over the world. She talked about the personal growth path that brought her from a lonely DBA to where she is today as PASS Executive Vice President of Marketing, and how everyone here at the Summit can do the same thing by just reaching out to others.
She announced that this year's PASSion award winner is Andrey Korshikov, a SQL Server MVP and PASS Volunteer for the last 3 years. She also recognized those nominated for the award, and the monthly Outstanding Volunteer nominees.
Denise talked about the Business Analytics conference scheduled for April 20-22, 2015 in Santa Clara, California, and a board discussion about that conference on Friday afternoon at 2:15pm. She also talked about the Community Zone and how you can become an active part of a local chapter, or even starting one.
She announced that next year's Summit will be in Seattle, October 27-30, 2015.
Dr. Rimma Nehme, Principal Research Engineer, Microsoft Jim Gray Systems Lab
Cloud Databases 101
Dr. Nehme talked about her background, why she has an accent (born in Belarus), how she knows about databases, and how she's learning about business administration, and how much respect she has for the PASS community.
Cloud technology has all kinds of misconceptions, she referred to as "Shiny Object Syndrome".
Cloud Computing is defined as computing and software resources that are delivered on demand, as a service, that is always on, and accessible from anywhere. (You can blame networking people for the name "cloud", based on the old network diagrams indicating a network cloud for WANs.)
The characteristics of cloud computing include on-demand self-service, location transparent resource pooling, ubiquitous access and elastic capacity. It offers quick and easy deployment for solutions with almost no need for provisioning. It doesn't require any capital expenditure, so ramp up is quick and easy. With the pay as you go model, it makes the cost benefit analysis simple.
She talked about the history of computing for the "masses", starting with the mainframe world of the 1960s, the arrival of Salesforce in the 1990s, Amazon Web Services in 2002, and on. She then showed us insight into the Cloud Data Center. Pictures of the Chicago Data Center looks like an indoor trailer park, but each of those containers contain thousands of servers. The data center is evaluated based on it's efficiency, and improving the Power Usage Effectiveness reduces the effective cost of the computing resources we're using in the cloud. Traditional data centers have a PUE value of 2.0, where the modular systems have a PUE value of 1.15.
Why Cloud? Elasticity, No Cap Ex, Pay per use, focus on business, and fast time to market.
Cloud service has three main layers. Infrastructure, platforms and applications.
She equated cloud services to a model she called 'Pizza as a Service'. Self-managed is like buying all the ingredients and making the pizza and enjoying it at home. Infrastructure-as-a-Service is like buying a pre-packaged set of ingredients, but you make it and eat it at home. Platform-as-a-Service is like ordering a pizza for delivery to your home, and Software-as-a-Service is like going out to the restaurant and enjoying your pizza at their location.
Dr. Nehme then explained virtualization and how it brings efficiency to the use of servers, using a house example, where the resources available in the house can be scaled up as required. Cloud services use virtualization to maximize use of the servers in the data center. She continued her analogies talking about Service Level Agreements. Azure SQL DB SLAs are 99.99% (four nines), which translates to about 53 minutes of down time per year. Azure SQL Database is designed with high availability in mind. A single database has up to three replicas at any given time.
The question is asked, "do we still need a DBA in the Cloud era?" and the answer is unequivocally Yes! With the idea of augmenting on-premises infrastructure with cloud resources, with the ability to "stretch" on-prem database historical data into the cloud, a DBA is just as critical to the process now as ever before.
After a standing ovation for Dr. Rehme's discussion, Dr. David DeWitt came out to acknowledge what a great presentation she gave.
Allen White is a consultant and mentor for Upsearch Technology Services in Northeast Ohio. He has worked as a Database Administrator, Architect and Developer for over 30 years, supporting both the Sybase and Microsoft SQL Server platforms over that period.