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The Actuator - April 26th

Level 17

Heading to Salt Lake City this week for the SWUG meeting on Thursday. If you are in the area I hope you have the chance to stop by and say hello. I'll be there to talk data and databases and hand out some goodies. I haven't been to Salt Lake City in a few years, and I'm looking forward to being there again even if there is a chance of snow in the forecast.

As always, here's a handful of links from the intertubz I thought you might find interesting. Enjoy!

Steve Ballmer Serves Up a Fascinating Data Trove

As someone who loves data, I find this data project to be the best thing since Charles Nelson Minard. Head over to and get started on finding answers to questions you didn't know you wanted to ask.

The New York Times to Replace Data Centers with Google Cloud, AWS

Eventually, we will hit a point where *not* having your data hosted by a cloud provider will make headlines.

Do You Want to be Judged on Intentions or Results?

Short but thought-provoking post. I learned a long time ago that no one cares about effort, they only care about results. But I didn't stop think about how I want to be judged, or how I could control the conversation.

Cybersecurity Startup Exposed Hospital Network Data in Demos

Whoops. I'm starting to understand why they didn't earn that contract.

Microsoft is Bringing AI and More To SQL Server 2017

In case you missed it, last week Microsoft announced the new features coming in SQL Server 2017. It would appear that Microsoft sees the future of data computing to include features that go beyond just traditional storage.

Windows and Office align feature release schedules to benefit customers

In another announcement, Microsoft announced fewer updates to their products. But what they are really announcing is the transition from traditional client software to subscription-based software for their core products such as Office and Windows.

Uber tried to fool Apple and got caught

If you were looking for another reason to dislike how Uber operates as a company, this is the link for you.

Took the family for a drive to the Berkshires last Friday and realized that my debugging skills are needed everywhere I go:


Level 21

Steve Balmer's Treasure:

     I hope this story is true, and is as transparent as it looks.  It's hard to imagine someone who lead Microsoft, who retires early and discovers the need to be useful, does good for us all by discovering altruism.  My hat's off to Steve!

Replacing Data Centers with "The Cloud":

   Skeptical Cat remains skeptical of the cloud.  Is convenient and less expensive equivalent to secure and available?  This control freak has trouble giving up control to strangers when his job is based on ensuring data is secure and always available.

Which counts--Intentions or Results?

     That's an easily answered question:  do you want to be in the newspaper & blogs & on TV for intending to do good, or for actually doing good?  Do you want to be judged for your inability to predict the outcome of hitting Enter, or the success or failure of that action?  Maybe it's better to put this into two different categories--one for how YOU want to BE judged (by intent or results) versus how you will judge OTHERS--by results or intentions.

Cybersecurity Demos Done Without Client Permission--and then Published To The Web:

     This is another head-shaking-in-bewilderment event.  If true, how could this company think it was ethical to perform black-hat probing activities against an unwitting and unknowing client and then publish that client's vulnerabilities to the web as a sales tool for the company's services?


     Sky-Net, here we come!

Microsoft Increasing Licensing Costs:

     When I read about companies being required to spend loads of new money on network support or licensing fees--maybe 300% or more higher than the hardware costs--I think someone's learning how to increase corporate earnings by following the Cisco support path . . .

Uber Being Unscrupulous:

     The flavor of this article seems to show more bad things happening by Uber.  Frankly, I don't need the hassle, nor do I need what a SmartPhone offers when the price requires loss of personal information and security violations by unethical or clandestine companies or individuals.
Level 16

Level 14

Steve Balmer - I agree with rschroeder​ if it's true.... good news.

NY Times in the cloud - given that I was on their election site in November and it worked flawlessly, I have to say good for them.... now if subscriber info gets lost......... another story.

Intentions or Results - Results every time!!! Talk is cheap....

Cyber Demo - I've actually seen live data from another firm when a company came in to demo a software package for me. Needless to say we passed on their offering!!

AI SQL - Sky-net indeed!!!!

Microsoft licensing - the cost of being ubiquitous!!!

Uber - These guys are headed to the Slimeball Hall of Fame...... What's next, their app disables the Lyft app?

sqlrockstar​ - Really good stuff this week. Your posts are a must read every Wednesday!!! Keep up the good work!

Level 14

wow - does that mean Steve Balmer is responsible for something good?

On microsoft licensing, does that mean that all the customer wallet mining of the old microsoft wasn't entirely Balmer's fault - and this is just the old dog returning to its type?

Level 13

can you imagine how long that CEO lasted - hey look at our demo, oops, don't look at our demo!

Level 19

I wonder what kind of network visibility that Fastly CDN service offers?

Level 14

How do you not normalize data used for public presentations?

Level 13

the same way programmers hard code IP addresses into the code so the settings you put in don't take effect....POOR QUALITY CONTROL

Level 18

sounds like uber is headed for an "Uber Fail"...

Level 16

Methinks Uber and United need a PR makeover. They keep shooting themselves in the foot. I would have made a rabbit's foot joke up until this week...

I've always liked the quirkiness of Ballmer. Gates was great, but he was sooooooo boring to listen to.

Level 13

Wait.  Wait.  SQL 2017?  We are still trying to get 2016 certified in our organization.  I can't keep up.

Level 18

Wow, Tanium using non masked customer data for demo's......<loss of words happened here>

Level 18

Steve Ballmer, so much data, so little time.

Level 13

O the cycle continues:  Data is stored on the mainframe with dumb terminals accessing it.  Then we went to stand alone computers.  We wanted to connect our stand alone computers to a central file server to share what we stored on our local PC's.  Now were back to a "cloud" to store all our information.  One day we will be back to a stand alone computer.

Level 18

the mainframe still lives...nothing wrong with big iron.

Level 14

Nothing at all.

About the Author
Thomas LaRock is a Head Geek at SolarWinds and a Microsoft® Certified Master, SQL Server® MVP, VMware® vExpert, and a Microsoft Certified Trainer. He has over 15 years experience in the IT industry in roles including programmer, developer, analyst, and database administrator.