I’m excited to say that I’ve been asked to serve on the panel of experts that will be judging the SQL Server 2005 Cost Chopper Competition!  (Thank you to Fausto Ibbara and team for the invitation to participate.  I am honored.)

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I’ve had many years of experience in the database industry, not only on SQL Server (which is certainly my forte) but also on Oracle, DB2, MySQL, and PostgreSQL.  (And that’s not including the likes of Access, Paradox, etc.)  I’ve also done a handful of Oracle-to-SQL Server migration projects in the past.  It wasn’t always easy, but it was rewarding to learn about differences and similarities of both platforms.

 

For example, one of the most difficult things for Oracle developers to get used to on SQL Server is that cursors are not a good thing.  As it turns out, Oracle implements a SELECT statement as a cursor behind the scenes.  So on Oracle, there's no difference in the behavior of a SELECT statement and a cursor.  On SQL Server, however, cursors can have a profound impact on behavior because they have their own memory space and a very different execution model than a standard SELECT statement.


I also thought that it was a bit ironic that both Oracle and IBM had strong migration programs in place to help customers off of Microsoft SQL Server and onto Oracle and DB2, respectively.  Yet, Microsoft had nothing of the same sort to assist in moving customers from other platforms to SQL Server.  Now, that is changing.
 

So what does it take to win a custom built chopper from the world famous <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" />Orange County Choppers?  Well, first you have to enter.  (You’d be surprised how good your odds are to win a competition like this).  Your applications will be judged on:

 

-         Innovative use of SQL Server & the SQL Server Migration Assistant

-         Migration Best Practices

-         Speed of the Migration

 

Applicants will be scored 100 points in two main categories: Impact (including cost savings to the organization, overall benefit to the organization, and the mission critical nature of the application) and Scale (including size of the database, volume of database usage, and the level of complexity of the pre-migration environment).

 

The grand prize winning team will get the chopper with ten $100 American Express Reward Cards.  The first place prize of a brand, spankin’ new HP tablet PCs with ten $50 American Express Reward Cards goes to two lucky teams.  The second place prize of a Garmin Street Pilot C330 with five $50 American Express Reward Cards goes to three teams.  And the third prize, which goes to five winners, is the tres cool Orange County Chopper leather riding jacket.  Sah-weet!

 

Cheers,

 

-Kev