I've been doing a bit of research about why I hadn't received a SQL Server e-newsletter from Pinnacle Publishing since February.  As it turns out, for those of you who know SQL Server Professional, the long-time periodical has been bought by a company called Eli Journals.

I first came to read SQL Server Professional back in the mid-1990's when it was the only publication of any kind dedicated to SQL Server.  Back in those days, the articles were categorized by whether they applied to Sybase or Microsoft's implementation of SQL Server.  Over the years, the newsletter remained somewhat small in circulation, no doubt due to it's $100+ yearly cost.  But I always found at least one or more articles per issue that saved me at least $100 of my own time. 

For many years, my favorite articles were written by a superhero DBA named Andrew Zanevsky.  Andrew wrote a column that was my number one must-read of each issue.  And when the day came that I had a book contract of my own with O'Reilly, Andrew stepped up to the plate to become my co-author and friend.  Andrew still writes an occasional article and, believe me, they're top quality and always a huge time-saver for anyone who spends a lot of time in database administration.  Other frequent contributers that I loved to read included Ron Talmage and Tom Moreau.

But I think one of the somewhat overlooked talents of the publication was its awesome editor, Karen Watterson.  Karen, who also edited Pinnacle's Visual Studio Developer newsletter, always brought an added level of value and intelligence to the publication that I found to be unique and irreplaceable in the market.  In particular, I always enjoyed her "Brain Bait" section of each newsletter.  Here's an exerpt from one of her "Brain Bait" entries from late in 2005:

* IBM Alamden Research Center's Hippocratic Database, a contract database based on 10 principles, including "Above all, do no harm."

http://www.almaden.ibm.com/software/dm/Hippocratic_Databases/index.shtml.

Related:

http://www.almaden.ibm.com/software/quest/index.shtml

* Winter Corporation's Top 10 databases. (Would you believe 100+ terabytes?) http://wintercorp.com

* Interesting article on the US "Do Not Call" registry

(43 percent of the US's 240 million phone numbers are in its Oracle database).

http://www.networkworld.com/news/2005/100305widernet.html

* Gmail tips and hacks. http://gmailtips.com and http://www.extremetech.com/print_article2/0,1217,a=161383,00.asp

* It's been said that by the time we turn 40, we get the face we deserve. Do you agree?

* Cartoon I've enjoyed recently: One dog, feeding papers into a shredder, to another dog: "I know it's unconventional, but there's only so much homework one dog can eat."

I recently tried to take a look at Karen's equally fun blog, but alas it was non-responsive.  Although I'm guessing, it's reasonable to assume that Karen did not make the transition to Eli Journals with the SQL Server Professional newsletter.  This makes me very sad.  However, I want to take the opportunity to praise Karen for her awesome work and service to the SQL Server community.  Karen, we miss you!

It is my understanding the Eli Journals has a publication called SQL Server Solutions.  I haven't tried to contact Eli Journals yet about their plans, but I'm optimistic that either the titles will not be consolidated or, if they are, that SQL Server Professional's focus on interesting and highly-detailed technical articles be transferred into the consolidated publication.

Does anyone else have a SQL Server Professional experience to share?  An article that made your life a lot easier?  A columnist who was your go-to guy for advice on a specific topic?  I want to know!

And if you'd rather not post publicly, feel free to email me privately at kevin.kline@sqlpass.org.

Cheers,

-Kevin