New England Data Camp Evals

January 27, 2009 at 8:01 am (PASS, SQL Server 2008, Tools, TSQL) (, , , )


Anyone reading this who attended the New England Data Camp and filled out an eval, for any of the sessions, thanks. For those 63 evals between the two sessions that I received, thanks. Here are the aggregates on my sessions:

Using Visual Studio Team System Database Edition:

Average of Knowledge 8.344827586
Average of Presentation 8.482758621
Average of Preparation 8.103448276
Average of Interesting 8.172413793
Average of Overall 8.275862069
Number of Submissions 29

Understanding Execution Plans

Average of Knowledge 8.647058824
Average of Presentation 8.617647059
Average of Preparation 8.705882353
Average of Interesting 8.529411765
Average of Overall 8.625
Number of Submissions 34

These are all on a scale of 1-9. I’m really quite happy with the results. Here are the average results for all the speakers and all the sessions at the Data Camp:

Total Average of Knowledge 8.407843
Total Average of Presentation 7.912109
Total Average of Preparation 8.130859
Total Average of Interesting 7.962891
Total Average of Overall 8.096004
Total Number of Submissions 515

Overall, both sessions beat the average.  My knowledge level was marked down a bit on the Visual Studio session and I attribute that (mostly) to a lack of rehearsal and preparation. I changed that slide deck just the week before the Data Camp and it showed.  Same problem with the Visual Studio session regarding preparation. What practices and rehearsals I had done were on my desktop at work. I found out that morning that my laptop didn’t have the GDR release installed, so I had to RDP to my desktop. It created several technical issues. I’m glad that people picked up on it. It really does keep me honest. I guess the session on execution plans was well received (despite the fact that I kept saying page when I meant leaf when referring to an index structure, bleh).

There were some really nice comments, thanks everyone. A couple of the comments on the Visual Studio session talked about market penetration and the readiness of the tool set. I had about 60 people in the audience and only three (3!) were using the tool. More were using the Team Foundation System, but not to the extent we use it where I work. I don’t think that’s because the tool isn’t ready (although I think it has a few shortcomings in & around deployments, especially incremental deployments) but rather the fact that it costs a bloody fortune. Few individuals can afford it and not that many companies are going to be willing to pay for it, especially in this economy. Other than that, no suggestions for improving the presentation, despite the fact that I got marked down a bit on this one. I’ll take the preparation more seriously next time.

I only got one negative on the Understanding Execution Plans session and, unfortunately, it’s only marginally useful. One person gave me a 2 on “Interesting” (in a sea of 9’s a few 8’s and two 7’s). This person wanted to see a session on query tuning and optimization. But, that’s just not what the session is about, at all. So it’s hard to take this as a mechanism for improving my presentation on what is an execution plan and how do you read one. However, it does let me know that I should probably try to come up with some kind of performance tuning & tips session that I can give from the new book. Unfortunately, this is such a full field with great presenters like Gail Shaw already showing exactly what I’d show (except better) that I’m not sure what to do about it. I need some idea to drive the session, a hook like Gail’s “Dirty Dozen” (fantastic name). I’m thinking about this one.

Anyway, there are the results, all out in the open. Thank you again for sending in your evals (even the 2 was very helpful) and your comments. The compliments were extremely nice to read, thank you.

UPDATED: Typed Gail’s name wrong AND forgot to link to her site.

3 Comments

  1. Gail said,

    Don’t compliment me on the name of that session. One of the PASS Program committee came up with it. I’m nowhere near that poetic.

  2. scarydba said,

    No kidding? Really? That’s pretty cool. I thought it was yours.

    Well, regardless, it’s a unique hook, like your 12 bad practices, that I need to come up with.

  3. Now syndicating Grant Fritchey and Scott Herbert | Brent Ozar - SQL Server DBA said,

    […] New England Data Camp Survey Results – Grant presented sessions on Visual Studio and execution plans, and the reason I’m linking to this particular blog entry is that you need to read his eval scores. They rock. If you ever get the chance to see him in person, I’m guessing you should take advantage of that opportunity. […]

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