Teaching is Learning, or How to Survive the SQL Server Learning Curve

teaching-learningDan Crisan, @dandancrisan, a full-time student and tech blogger, has stumbled upon a great way to learn new material — and that’s to write about it. He did just that, taking the material from his Intro to Database Systems course and crafting it into a series of postings called “A Tiny Intro to Database Systems”, http://blog.dancrisan.com/a-tiny-intro-to-database-systems.

Learning by teaching is not a new concept. Dan explained how he stumbled upon Daniel Lemire’s blog posting “How to Learn Efficiently” (http://lemire.me/blog/archives/2014/12/30/how-to-learn-efficiently/), in which Lemire states: “[W]riting … would be a very effective way to learn the material. Teaching is a great way to learn, because it challenges you.” This, in itself, is a good blog, and if you’re like the majority of SQL Server DBAs, always on a continuous learning curve(will Microsoft never give us a moment to relax? I just got a copy of the SQL Server 2016 data sheet from the Ignite conference in Chicago! (And thinking about the continuous learning curve, this gives SQL Server’s “Always On” a whole new meaning…) Argh!), adopting this learning style may be a big help when trying to assimilate the newest, brightest and best features of SQL Server.

A little history about Ted Codd's relational model, circa 1970, http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/ibm100/us/en/icons/reldb/

A little history about Ted Codd’s relational model, circa 1970, http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/ibm100/us/en/icons/reldb/

Where was I?  Oh yes — the purpose of this posting is to point you to a sweet space where you can quickly review what you learned in database class all those years ago. The dashboard site to “A Tiny Intro to Database Systems” is not the place to learn about databases for the first time. Rather, it’s the place to go for a refresher, a review of concepts and terminology that we all knew at one time but have forgotten in the crush of everyday business.

And why bother to review? Because every now and then it’s good to go back to the beginning, to understand why SQL Server and it’s relational counterparts are so valuable. The material presented in these tiny overviews is not specific to SQL Server, but in most cases it’s the way SQL Server works underneath the hood. So grab your sandwich and spend a lunchtime with this walk down memory lane.

Thanks for reading. I publish links to everything I write (my blog, my SQL DBA Knowledge Base, and my LinkedIn Publishing) on my Facebook page, visit it for more goodies. Please like, comment, and share.


Michelle Poolet, Zachman-Certified™ Enterprise Architect