Jeff Pries

Business Intelligence, SQL Server, and other assorted IT miscellany

Category: 2015

PASS Summit 2015 Roundup — My Third Summit

PASS_2015_200x200Now in my third year, I recently attended PASS Summit in Seattle, Washington.  This was my second visit to Seattle for PASS Summit, with my first Summit experience in Charlotte, NC.  Having experience my “first time in Seattle for Summit” last year, I had a pretty good idea of where things were and what things would be going on and when and for the most part, things followed the previous year’s pattern very closely.

I arrived in Seattle a few days early so I could work some sightseeing in.  While it’s generally not a good idea to try to have a rental car during the conference, in the days leading up to the conference when you want to see a lot of places, it’s the way to go.  I rented a car from the airport and made my way down to Portland for a couple of nights.

I spent my first two days of vacation, Saturday and Sunday doing some geocaching and exploring the Portland area.  The weather was overcast but nice the first day and lots of rain the second day.  I’d really wanted to see Mt. Hood, but unfortunately the weather didn’t cooperate at all.

Mt. Rainier while driving down to Portland after arriving in Seattle

Mt. Rainier while driving down to Portland after arriving in Seattle

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Updates to the Blog and Site

constructionUpdates to the Blog and Site

One of my goals for my Professional Development Plan for 2015 was to update my online presence…and a large chunk of that is the blog (or blogs).  When I originally started my blog, I performed the debate that many do — which platform to use.  This was a decision between the three primary ones in my opinion:  Blogger/Blogspot, WordPress (Free), and WordPress (Hosted).  Not wanting to deal with cost and wanting a quick setup time, I chose Blogger/Blogspot as well as free Google Sites web hosting.

This configuration has worked well, but I wanted more ability to tweak and customize than I currently had, and that meant it was time to move!  WordPress (Free) has a number of limitations, so my path was pretty clear — WordPress (Hosted).  As if there weren’t already a lot of options, you also get the choice between subscribing to a WordPress only hosting account and a standard web hosting account in which you add WordPress sites to it.  I chose the latter option so as to have flexibility with some other possible projects down the line.

At this point, I’ve completed the migration of most of the data I had on Blogger over to WordPress and it has been a pretty easy transition.  There was a bit of learning curve in getting the initial site setup — domain names and aliases, installing WordPress, and learning how themes and plugins are handled, but the data migration was very easy.  WordPress has a plugin to easily import Blogger content which did a surprisingly good job of bringing over all my content, media, and formatting.  I had to do some minor tweaks to each post to line things up with the new theme, but it was really very minor.  This migration also let me take some of my other sub-sites and match the themes to integrate everything into one cohesive unit.

So, here we are.  I’m pretty happy with how things are progressing and looking forward to completing this project.  Welcome to the new blog and site, hope you enjoy it!




Happy New Year 2015!

new-years-2015Happy New Year 2015!

Well, technically, we’re about two weeks into the new year at this point, but it’s still January so this counts, right?  2014 was a great and productive year.  I won’t go into a lot of detail, but I learned a ton of new skills, updated some others, attended a number of user groups, SQL Saturdays, and PASS Summit 2014, and made a lot of progress on the blog.

I’ve started my Professional Development Plan for 2015 — have you?  I’m still working on filling out all of my goals for 2015, but a few of them include:  attending 4 SQL Saturday events, attending PASS Summit 2015, updating my online presence (the blog revamp), and documenting a number of the development-oriented skills I started picking up near the end of 2014.  I’ve definitely found the PDP a useful exercise in setting goals and tracking progress as the year progresses and highly recommend it if you haven’t started one yet.

Well, it’s time to get started…Here’s looking to another great year!


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