Friday, August 14, 2009

(Mostly) disappointing meeting

Last night I went to the monthly meeting of the Chicago SQL User group, held on the second Thursday of the month. You can check them out and register for meeting notifications here. This is a good resource for anyone wishing to attend. Anyway,there were two topics last night. The first was on SQL and Powershell, the second on clustering with SQL 2008 and Windows Server 2008.

I don’t have any experience with clustering since we don’t use it at work but it’s one of those topics I feel I should know more about. But last night I was really looking forward to the discussion on Powershell. I’m looking for reasons why I should use Powershell over other methods like SMO or WMI to monitor servers I’m responsible for. I wanted to see some amazing Powershell cmdlets in action.

Unfortunately the presenters of the Powershell segment were not prepared very well. It started with having problems connecting a laptop to the projector and went downhill from there. The demos were filled with errors; most flatly didn’t work. The first presenter dwelled too long on the basics of Powershell itself, the second barely did more than read from the slide deck. Their presentation ate into the second segment on clustering. I wonder if their book was written better.

The second presenter did a much better job. He knows his topic extremely well, being a Microsoft MVP on clustering, and you can tell he is passionate about the subject. And he’s an effective speaker. But since he didn’t have much time he had to cut his demos short.

Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate everyone who presents at these meetings. It’s not easy getting up in front of a room of 80 strangers and talking about a deep subject in a short period of time. I just wish they could have presented their material in a more effective manner.           

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