Power Platform Conference – 7/23-24/2019

Pragmatic Works is hosting a 2-day Power Platform online conference. If you are unable to get out to onsite conference but need some help with Microsoft Flow, PowerApps, or Power BI, this is a great opportunity to learn from some experts from around the world.power-platform-virtual-conference-v04_facebook Information About the Conference

This is a 2-day virtual conference covering Power BI, PowerApps and Flow. The cost is $49 for all sessions, recordings and bonus materials. There will be 12 sessions each day.

 Dates: July 23 & 24, 2019

Times: 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET

Website: https://powerplatformconference.com/

I hope to see many of you there virtually!

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It’s Been a While …

Last Post – SQL Saturday MN 2018

When last I wrote, it was after I spoke at SQL Saturday in Minnesota. I co-presented a pre-con with Josh Owen. Prior to that was a few weeks of blogs on Azure and Azure Data Week. As Pragmatic Works moved to an Azure focused company, I, too, was learning much about Azure and what it takes to move workloads to the cloud.sqlsat796_header                                                  Post Linkden

The New Role – Director of Consulting

In October 2018, I was promoted to Director of Consulting at Pragmatic Works. Over the past 6 months or so, I have had the chance to lead and grow the consulting team at Pragmatic Works. This has been a great growth opportunity for me and my career. I am not perfect by any stretch, but the team is awesome! Pragmatic Works Consulting continues to grow and do awesome work. email-signature

The Beat Goes On …

As I look forward to the next few months, there are some great things happening at home. I get to see my youngest daughter graduate from high school, my second child and oldest son will be graduating from Liberty University next month, and then he will be getting married to his college sweetheart. It is will be a busy summer and into the fall at my house. But it will be great as well. Love watching the family grow up and move us all to the next stage all of life.

As Pragmatic Works continues to grow this year, I look forward to seeing new team members join our team and existing team members expand skills and capabilities. In the last two years, Pragmatic Works has transformed itself from a SQL Server based solution company focused on Microsoft Business Intelligence to an Azure solutions company specializing in bring customers to Azure and Azure Data Services. It is an exciting time in technology today and we are a part of that excitement.

Here’s to a great year!

 

SQL Saturday #796 – Minnesota, 2018

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First, many thanks to the SQL Saturday and MNPass team for putting on another great event and letting me participate.

I co-presented with Joshuha Owen (@JoshSQL) in a precon on Modern Enterprise Data Warehousing on Azure. Thanks to those who attended and participated in the conversations around changing the way we implement data warehouse capabilities in Azure. Josh and I will be talking more about this in the future.

Now, those of you who attended my Saturday presentation on Consumption Based Architecture, I wanted to get you the slide deck and reference materials here. Thanks again for attending.

The slide deck from the session is here.

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I also have blog post around this topic: Consumption Based Architecture for Modern Data Analytics. Feel free to join the conversation there around this.

ERPs and the Consumption Based Architecture Conversation

One of the key topics that came up during the session was related to handling ERPs with minimal change. The key issue surrounding ERP solutions is with the data structure in those systems. Whether you work with SAP, JackHenry, or Dynamics, you have a situation where the data model is very complex and definitely not user friendly. In Consumption Based Architecture, we try to minimize data transformation and reshaping, but ERP solutions are by nature cryptic and complex. By definition, they are not consumable. So in the consumable space, we typically recommend using the vendor supplied solutions such as JHKnow, SAP BW and so on. These solutions provide a vendor managed interpretation of the data in the ERP for reporting and other solutions.

Security in this Architecture

The question was raised during the session around how to secure this. This does not have a simple answer. Each solution may have implemented security differently. For instance, an Oracle database may use user names and not have AD integration. This means that you need to determine how to secure your consumable space. For instance, if you pick Azure Active Directory, you would move data to AAD compliant structures in Azure such as Azure SQL Database, Azure SQL Datawarehouse, and Azure Databricks. This means you might need to use a tool like Goldengate with CDC to update a SQL DB which you can apply security to. This will allow you to centralize security for your consumable data. You will need to plan for security in whatever you do and create what you need to support it.

Thanks again everyone for joining us at SQL Saturday.

 

 

Walmart Chose Azure, How About You?

Another major corporation has announced their decision to move to Azure. Perhaps you’ve heard of them? Walmart—yes, Walmart and Microsoft have announced an ongoing cloud partnership this year. While AWS would have been a competitor in this case, because Amazon put themselves in that position. But that’s not the real reason Walmart chose Azure. In this post, I’ll go over the key reasons why they went with Microsoft Azure. Clay Johnson, Walmart CIO and Executive VP of Global Business Services stated that Walmart is excited to accelerate their digital transformation using Microsoft and the Azure cloud.

In a joint press release, Microsoft and Walmart CEOs called out 3 key reasons why Walmart chose to use Azure and Microsoft Office 365:

Digital Transformation

We hear about the great concept of digital transformation all the time and we’ll see it in action with Walmart and Microsoft. They’ll work together to move 100s of applications to cloud based solutions. Not only will they do lift and shift, but in many cases, they’ll be looking for optimization opportunities to transform their business.

Looking at Azure or want to do more with it, join us next week for Azure Data Week!

Innovation

Walmart plans to build a global IOT solution on Azure and the advanced technologies to improve their performance in the world of energy conservation and to drive efficiencies in supply chain with machine learning to become a better company.

Collaboration and Agility

Using Microsoft 365 and a variety of Azure tools, Walmart is investing in their people to move to a more collaborative and productive workforce.

So, as you can see, Walmart put in a lot of thought and consideration before they made their choice to go with Azure. Look at these 3 key areas and at your business – can Azure help you improve your business in such a dramatic way by moving to the Azure cloud?

Making the move is not a technology decision, it’s a business one so you can do better business.

Azure IP Advantage

In today’s Azure Every Day post, I’d like to talk about something a little different from our normal posts, and that is Azure IP Advantage. Maybe you don’t know what this is. Well, Microsoft realized that innovating the cloud came with certain risks involving intellectual property (IP).

In realizing this, they built a program that allows you to protect yourself against lawsuits from attorneys and patent lawyers, which can wreak havoc in the industry. Here are 3 ways that Microsoft is working to protect your creativity and innovation when using Azure:

Best in industry, uncapped defense and indemnification coverage, which includes any open source technology used by MSFT Azure

As an Azure customer, you are automatically protected for free, without having to enroll or sign up. If an open source technology is used in an Azure branded product, you are protected.

Monday, we kick off Azure Data Week. See you there!

Use of Microsoft’s over 10,000 patents in its portfolio to counter assert when you’re trying to deter a patent lawsuit or defend against a patent lawyer

All you need to do is use Azure regularly and as a regular Azure consumer you’re covered and have access to this library of patents to counter assert.

Commitment to protect Azure customers from lawsuits if their patents are transferred to a non-practicing entity

Sadly, patent law firms essentially buy patents and sue people. It’s how they make money. Having worked in a prior industry and been part of patent lawsuits, I know this is a common occurrence, and the ability to prove certain things, especially when the technology isn’t yours to prove, can often be very difficult.

While this is not something they do regularly, Microsoft is committed to protecting Azure customers if it does happen. One thing they are not doing is putting restrictions on your own IP, so if you build your own IP on the Azure platform, they’re not restricting your ability to protect it.

Microsoft is allowing people to innovate and do what’s needed for the next generation of business and to do great things in the industry. Once again, they are leaders in the industry on matters important to business, while protecting you, even on open source technology. No one else is doing this.

Thoughts on data, business analytics, and the SQL Server community

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