Browsing articles in "Database Design"

Hacking Database Design

Jul 14, 2015   //   by Karen Lopez   //   Blog, Data Modeling, Database, Database Design, DLBlog, Fun, Snark, WTF  //  4 Comments

DBDesignAdaptor

I get asked to help teams increase the performance of their database (hint: indexes, query tuning and correct datatypes, in that order)  or to help the scale it out for increasing workloads.  But when I open it up to take a look, I see something that looks more like this meme.

All those cheats, workarounds and tricks they’ve used are going to make the engine optimizers work harder, make the tuning of queries that much harder and in the end it’s going to cost so much more to make it “go faster” or “go web scale”.

Where are the nail clippers in your data models and databases?

7 Databases in 70 Minutes

Mar 10, 2015   //   by Karen Lopez   //   Blog, Database, Database Design, DLBlog, NoSQL, Speaking  //  No Comments

Lara Rubbelke (@sqlgal ) and I recently presented 7 Databases in 70 Minutes, a sort of homage to the book 7 Databases in 7 Weeks.  The event was SQLBits, a UK-based SQL Server event.  We first gave this talk at the PASS Summit last year.

We don’t talk about the same databases as the book, but the concepts are the same.  We cover relational, column family, graph, key value, Hadoop, and document database technologies, focusing mostly on the reasons why you would want to consider these and what a typical create and query statement might look like.

And then we end with 7 reasons why you should start exploring them.

It’s a blast talking about so many things in such a short time frame and it’s fun watching light bulbs go off as people realize these aren’t just silly open source projects, but real, enterprise class solutions for common enterprise processes.

Check out our slide deck.

Have you been looking at non-relational technologies to tell your data stories, too?

Join us at #SQLBits: Designing for Performance Training, with Video and Snark

Jan 6, 2015   //   by Karen Lopez   //   Blog, Database, Database Design, DLBlog, SQL Server  //  No Comments
At SQLBits

I’m excited to announce that Thomas LaRock (@sqlrockstar | blog) and I will be presenting a full-day Training Day (PreCon) at SQLBIts XIV in London, UK.

Our session, Designing For Performance: Myths and Misunderstandings, is going to feature hands-on labs, exercises and lots of challenges to help you master your own SQL Server superpowers. It will be held on Thursday, 5 March 2015. Registration is open NOW.

 


 

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Everyone agrees that great database performance starts with great database design. So why do so many poorly designed databases exist in the world? Attend this session to understand why bad designs will always exist, what you can do to avoid them, and how best to work with them when needed.
Discussion topics will include:

  • Server/Infrastructure design
    • VM/Server configuration
    • Physical file layouts
    • HA/DR options
    • Archiving
  • Database/Table design
    • Table design
    • PK/FK choices
    • Index strategies
  • Benchmarking
    • Monitoring for performance
    • Control reports

Attendees will leave this session with an understanding of the following:

  • Why common issues are so common
  • How to better anticipate issues before they happen 
  • How to deploy and implement design choices that benefit everyone
  • Proper performance benchmarking and control reports

 


SQLBits Superheroes

 

This will be my 3rd SQLBits conference,  They are a lot of fun and jam-packed full of learning and networking.  As you can see from the video above, Tom and I will also ensure that you aren’t just sitting through 8 hours of bullet points and sparse slides with funny pictures.  We’ll be talking about what design approaches work in what situations and all the myths and misunderstandings out there about database design and configurations.

Register now and engage your own superpowers. Or just stand there looking pretty.  It’s up to you.

Your #1 Job….

Jan 6, 2015   //   by Karen Lopez   //   Blog, Data Governance, Data Modeling, Database Design, DLBlog  //  3 Comments

Tim Berners-Le Quote on CEO connect data

I hear frequently, especially from the DBA groups, that our number one job as a data professional is performance.  That typically includes making sure database queries run fast, that systems have expected uptimes, and that developers/DBAs can do their jobs as fast as possible without slowing down to consider whether or not they are doing the right thing for the data. In fact, I’ve been told many times that data quality is Job NULL, meaning that we shouldn’t care as much about data quality as we do about performance.  The crazy things I’ve read: query running slow? Delete some rows and see if anyone notices.  Assign numeric datatypes to number-like columns so they will be smaller (and missing leading zeros).  Make columns small, even if it means losing data. Shove data in a column with comma delimiters so that you don’t have to change the database.  Re-use a column for something it was never intended for.

Developers and DBAs start thinking this way, for the most part, because they are measured and rewarded based on all kinds of factors other than data quality.  And yet management expects systems to support exactly what Tim Berners-Lee says in this quote.  Sure, making systems purr is one part of allowing data to be connected across sources.  But misleading data, mis-understoood data and plain old bad data means that CEOs can’t run a company effectively. 

Any enterprise CEO really ought to be able to ask a question that involves connecting data across the organization, be able to run a company effectively, and especially to be able to respond to unexpected events.

Most organizations are missing this ability to connect all the data together.

There are all kinds of presentations and blog posts about how to make systems run fast.  There are so few about how to love your data so that the CEO can rely on it. The first person that needs to fix this mismatch of incentives and actions is the CEO.  She needs to ensure that IT professionals are properly evaluated and motivated to produce both fast data and correct data.  And to stop providing incentives for IT professionals to work against data quality.

DBAs and Developers want to do the right thing. It’s just that we are paying them to do the wrong things over the right things.  

Toronto SQL Server User Group PASS Summit Discount Code

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Many Toronto User Group members will be attending the PASS Summit in November in Seattle Washington, including me.  If you work with SQL Server, this is the only community-driven event for SQL Server training, presentations, workshops and networking.

Would you like to join us?  Use our PASS Summit Discount code / Coupon / promo code:

CASUMG64

You can register now at  http://www.sqlpass.org/summit/2014/RegisterNow.aspx and use the code to save $150 off full registrations.  If you register before 27 June, you’ll get the best discount you can get right now and the Toronto User Group gets $50 to fund our meetings which start again in September.  That’s right: you save some dough and our user group gets funding for our upcoming season that starts in September 2014.

If you can’t register now, no worries.  You can still use our chapter code later. 

Feel free to share this information with colleagues, even the discount code.  The more the merrier. And the better you can love your SQL Server data.

Big Data, NoSQL and Data Modeling: Big Challenges in Data Modeling

Jun 24, 2014   //   by Karen Lopez   //   Blog, Data, Data Modeling, Database, Database Design, Events, NoSQL, Speaking  //  1 Comment

Database table

Big data and NoSQL have led to big changes In the data environment, but are they all in the best interest of data? Are they technologies that "free us from the harsh limitations of relational databases?" as I recently blogged about at Dataversity.net?

In this month’s webinar (register now), we will be answering questions like these, plus:

  • Have we managed to free organizations from having to do data modeling?
  • Is there a need for a data modeler on NoSQL projects?
  • If we build data models, which types will work?
  • If we build data models, how will they be used?
  • If we build data models, when will they be used?
  • Who will use data models?
  • Where does data quality happen?
  • Are there NoSQL technologies for which data modeling will never apply?

Finally, we will wrap with 10 tips for data modelers in organizations incorporating NoSQL in their modern data architectures.

Join NoSQL expert extraordinaire Dan McCreary ( blog ) and others (including YOU!) as we talk about the future of data modeling and data modelers this Thursday, 26 June, at 2PM EDT.

We’ll also have some prizes to give a way, so plan on attending live.

 

(BTW, don’t get me started on the lame modeling styles/naming standards in stock photography.  Maybe I should start making some for Getty Images?)

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