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SQL South West User Group

SQL South West is a chapter of the Professional Association for SQL Server (PASS)

PASS Chapter

If you are using SQL Server in any way and are interested in meeting other SQL professionals in the South West then please contact us.

We are a group of DBAs and developers from Cornwall, Devon and Somerset who get together in Exeter once a month to talk about anything related to SQL. If you live or work in the South West of the UK or are in the area on business or holiday then we’d be happy to see you; scroll down or contact us for details of upcoming meetings.

The group is for anyone working with SQL Server or anyone interested in starting to work with it. You may be a full time DBA or developer or someone looking to understand SQL Server things more clearly or maybe you are the guy that didn’t run fast enough when the last DBA left.

Our meeting day is changing

In response to a recent survey of group members we are moving our meeting day and time. No longer are we going to be on the 3rd Thursday but we are going to try out the 3rd Monday of each month to see if it is easier for more people to attend. We are also slipping back 30 minutes, from 17:30 to 18:00 start, again to let more people have time to get to us. Our first Monday meeting will be on August 17th. If it works then it will stay like this, if we don’t see more people at the meetings then we will consider moving to a different day. All upcoming meeting dates are on the Calendar page.

July Meeting – Thursday 16th

For this month’s meeting, we have two sessions by Steph Locke ( t | b ). Steph does a lot of stuff in BI, from building snazzy Azure 6NF data warehouses to developing R web services. On top of the cool day job, she organises user groups & SQLRelay, speaks at events, and runs a boardgame company.

Do come and join us from 1730 at the Jury’s Inn in Exeter.

Board packs: Combining shiny, LaTeX and databases for full effect

The monthly report pack for the Board — with lots of information from different sources and all requiring commentary from lots of people — these things can take weeks to produce, send for commentary, and then compile into one pack.
This full hour takes you through a framework for a single core source document, a shiny interface, hooks into the database for commentary, and the LaTeX (or markdown) document structure needed for developing a single interface through which lots of people can contribute to a single document.

Knowing your Rs from your elbow

R, a fantastic open-source language, will rock your world.

Instead of showing you how to do dry old statistics and worrying about your random trees and bagging methods, this session is going to take you through the super-cool stuff. No TLAs allowed in this session, only cool terms like shiny & LaTeX!

We’re gonna get your data out of SQL Server in just a few lines, then we’re going to chart it for awesomeness, and then the fun begins.

We’ll go through the easy experience of using shiny to make interactive, real-time reports.

I’ll show you how you can add markdown & LaTeX to the mix to replace Excel, PowerPoint & Word so that you can save yourself months over your lifetime formatting bullet points and headers.

By the end of this session, you’ll truly know your Rs from your elbow.

More info about Steph:

Steph Locke wants to live in a world where everyone she encounters enjoys their jobs and is awesome. Since she’s gifted with the inability to be daunted by a task, she’s using her unbounded perkiness to bring awesomeness to the people.

In the day job of BI & Credit Risk, she heads up a small team responsible for using and building a blend of open source and proprietary technologies into a cutting edge analytics function for a startup company in the finance space. You can benefit from her severe aversion to grunt work by nabbing her work from CRAN, github, her blog, and the book Tribal SQL.

When she’s not making numbers look pretty, you can probably find her at a community event.

If it’s not an event she’s organised, then she’s at someone else’s event where they’ve been crazy enough to let her talk or help out at. SQLBits, SQLRelay and SQL Saturday organisers have all let Steph speak and help out, and most recently she was nominated for the Tribal Award recognising her gift of the gab and willingness to help out.

She runs three user groups in Cardiff and supports a number of others. As well as enjoying helping increase awesomeness locally, she’s also tackling the task nationally! A veteran organiser of SQLRelay, Steph runs the Cardiff event growing it year on year, and has taken stints running the marketing, sponsorship and the whole conference to help bring more knowledge to the masses.

Her latest project — run 1, speak 1 — has her running an event and speaking at a different one each month for the whole year. If you want to attend one of her user groups in Cardiff, or get her to a user group or conference near you this year, contact her on twitter to find out more.