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Louis Davidson

Post PASS Summit Resolutions

Many years I have tried early in the year to list a set of “New Year’s Resolutions” but one thing I have noted every year is it isn’t New Year’s Day that is the defining part of my year, but rather it is the PASS Summit that defines my year. Usually, by the time the end of October rolls around, I am pretty spent. The summer has ended, and all of the events of the year are winding down, heading into the holiday season (I like start the holidays 2 weeks before Halloween and end them on Super Bowl weekend!) So usually I have pretty much gotten to the point where I am thinking “should I do this another year?” about when the Summit rolls around. Admittedly, the past five years have been hard because the hip replacement have made getting around somewhat more difficult at times. But attending the PASS Summit has always been the shot in the arm that gets me thinking and planning. Even last year when I attended PASS strictly via PASS TV, it was where I decide what I wanted to try to do for the year.

Today I want to put out my list of things I resolve to do differently (or the same) in the PASS Community, based on my renewed energy I have from the two weeks I spent in Seattle with all of my fellow SQL Community, SQL Family, and SQL Friends learning and sharing (blog on that topic forthcoming).

1. Don’t submit to speak again next year – As much as I appreciate the surprise by a few people that I wasn’t speaking, and the kind words by a few people about liking my sessions, this was my favorite year. I am not a natural speaker, so I spend a lot of time preparing and I miss a lot. This was the first year I actually ventured out with people for a meal or two, caught a movie, and attended sessions in all but 2 slots (I saw my SQL Friend Joe Webb whom, I hadn’t seen in forever and I started talking to him and 5 other people who kept stopping by (Worth it!)

2. Don’t stop submitting to speak at SQL Saturdays\User Groups – As much as I didn’t miss speaking at PASS, I do love speaking at smaller venues where I can do most prep at home, and the room size doesn’t give me heart palpitations. I plan to submit to 4-6 more events, and I have 2 or 3 user group presentations planned.  I have hopes of doing one pre-con this year as well possibly, and I will submit to a few (It won’t kill me if I don’t get chosen, it is a lot of work!) I also hope to submit for SQL In The City next year if RedGate does it (and I see the call for speakers before it closes).

3. Possibly attend a SQL Saturday and don’t submit to speak – It might be nice to just come to one and just hang out. I would be more than happy to work a booth for PASS or RedGate or whoever would want me to!

4. Get a kilt and a costume to wear for PASS next year – Okay, so this one is probably a long shot (consider this my “lose weight” resolution that may not make it, because I will have to lose weight for the first one to occur), but I have a fantastic costume idea that was inspired by Bob Pusateri’s (@SQLBob) this year (nothing to do with Dilbert, but that is all I will say.)

5. Get well enough to walk without making me and others feel bad – I know that I made some people uncomfortable this year watching me try to stand up after sitting down for a few minutes, but I felt better this year than I have in 6 years or more. It was just that muscles tighten when you sit for a while and it hurt really bad. 

6. Keep being involved locally – I may not be the primary chapter leader for Nashville this year because there are so many great people to let have a swing. I don’t know what I will be doing for SQL Saturday, but I will certainly be there if I am in town.

7. Finish my book early so I can bring some to give away at PASS Summit next year – I will have four chapter done by next week, and hopefully will be done with the all of the logical design stuff before the start of the year. Then I have to work in columnstore, in-memory, and all of the other database design changes that are in 2014 and 2016. Sounds easy and a ton of work at the same time (thankfully, I use very few screen shots.)

8. Continue volunteering for the SQL PASS Program Committee – I have greatly enjoyed working with the program committee for the past several years, and last year we started a service to allow submitters to get a review of their abstracts done before they submitted it for the year. This year I hope we can expand the service to help more people who are great speakers to get the writing stuff out of the way.

9. Blog somewhat more – And not just these post PASS blogs either. I started blogging about new stuff in SQL Server 2016 until I had to get to work on the book (and some other writing projects,) and I will minimally continue that process as SQL Server 2016 matures. After the book is finished, I do hope to get some mastery of the stuff that Azure offers as well once the book is written (more about that in the next blog I will publish.)

10. Mystery Project -  I have started shopping around an idea to some folks to see if I can do something kinda different and interesting in the coming year (or so). I have a lot of details to work out, but I want to wait until some other thing have past before I do too much else. (I may send out a survey in the coming months on twitter to see what more people thing too.)

In some respects, the most interesting part about resolutions is they stare at you and shout “YOU ARE NUTS” because it looks like a lot. But really, it is what I do for fun. I like doing stuff for the community because I learn stuff. Will I do as much as I hope over the next year? Probably not, as I never have. Will I have fun doing it, and will hopefully a few people learn a thing or two from it? Let’s hope, or I could be paying attention to the football game that is on my TV right now instead of editing this list for a third time before hitting submit.

Published Monday, November 9, 2015 8:25 PM by drsql

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Joe Webb said:

Good list of resolutions, Louis!

I thoroughly enjoyed seeing you in Seattle. It's a shame that we don't catch up more in our home town. I'm going to add that to my list of resolutions.

November 10, 2015 2:17 PM

Mike Lawell @sqldiver said:

Come to Atlanta, and we'll take you to Atlanta Kilts for a kilt... that is where Ed Watson, Rob Volk and I got our kilts.

November 10, 2015 9:49 PM

drsql said:

@JoeWebb, Agreed. We need to get together for lunch some day when you are doing some work around Franklin or perhaps Nashville.

@sqldiver That just put Atlanta on my "definitely going to attend speaking or not" for Atlanta this year (as long as it doesn't conflict with something else Non-SQL, naturally)

November 12, 2015 3:02 PM

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