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Patrick Roach

Meet the Faces of Software Release

Around the middle of last year, Alex Papadimoulis introduced us to Release!, the game about building software. With their wildly successful kickstarter, and enthusiastic support from many pillars of modern software development, the team have create a fun game with a strong pedigree. Patrick Roach is the lead game designer for Release!, and who better to introduce us to the software engineering Greats who have contributed their support and their faces to the game. Read more...

Richard Morris

Conrad Wolfram: Geek of the Week

Conrad Wolfram is the 'younger Wolfram' of Wolfram Research, the company behind Wolfram|Alpha and Mathematica. He wants to transform the way in which we engage with mathematics. In particular, he would like to reform mathematics education to make greater use of information technology, and he is also leading the way with interactive publishing technology. Read more...

William Brewer

IT Compliance and Software Development

What is IT Compliance and is it really necessary for contemporary Agile applications to be constrained by the requirements of compliance? William Brewer argues that if the objective is rapid delivery of applications, then compliance controls must be understood as early as possible in development. Read more...

Steve Smith

Release Testing Is Risk Management Theatre

"You cannot inspect quality into a product" - Harold Dodge. The adoption of Continuous Delivery often leads to the discovery of suboptimal practices within an organisation, and the Release Testing antipattern is a common example. Steve Smith explores the questions: what is Release Testing, and why is it an example of Risk Management Theatre? Read more...

Matt Hilbert

Going to Extremes to Release Bug Fixes and New Features

XP is no general panacea; but for the right team, and for a product that needs to release bug fixes and new features as fast as possible, its benefits are obvious. Working on one of Red Gate's most popular tools, SQL Prompt, Aaron Law and David Priddle use Extreme Programming (XP) . But is their adherence to XP a personal preference or does it bring real benefits? We sent Matt Hilbert to find out. Read more...

Dan Appleman

The Salesforce Platform: The Return of the Citizen Programmer

The current popularity of the Salesforce software development platform has taken the industry by surprise. The current IT culture favours the esoteric, yet here is a development platform geared to the idea that anyone can use it: a populist language like BASIC. Does this threaten the careers of professional developers? Paradoxically, not at all, says Dan Appleman. Read more...

Matt Hilbert

Staying Ahead of the Game

Matt Hilbert has noticed a term that keeps popping up: The Next Generation DBA. He believes it's been coined because change is afoot, and a lot of change that will transform the way DBAs work. But what exactly is going on – and what can you do to actually become a Next Gen DBA? Read more...

Matt Hilbert

Does NoSQL = NoDBA?

There’s a joke doing the rounds at SQL conferences and seminars: three DBAs walk into a NoSQL bar and leave when they can’t find a table. You may have heard it before, but it made Matt Hilbert sit down and ponder. What’s happening? Is there a division opening up between the newly fashionable NoSQL followers and DBAs? Matt bravely enters the shiny new world of NoSQL to investigate. Read more...

Joe Celko

Data Is Crazier than You Think

As a society, we have an unrealistic respect for data, especially if it has a decimal point somewhere and uses metric units. We who are in the business of data need to cultivate a renewed interest in the sceptical and rigorous science of statistics: it is too important to leave to 'Data Scientists'. If the data is wrong, or the way we analyse or report it is misleading, much of what we do is pointless Read more...

Grzegorz Strzelecki

The Role of the Technical Architect in Development

What do Technical Architects (TAs) actually do when in a development role? Are they just senior developers 'pushed upstairs' into a management role? Is there a clear distinction between a TA and a product, or project, manager? In an increasingly automated and joined up development environment, the role is important, varied and wide-ranging; as Grzegorz Strzelecki explains Read more...

Edward Charbeneau

Building a Better NuGet

NuGet is the standard package manager for the Microsoft development platform including .NET. It has transformed the ease of getting and installing the latest version of .NET packages, tools and frameworks. It relies on NuGet package authors to get packages right but there is little documentation for them to go by, and there are a few inevitable problems. Ed Charbeneau offers advice from experience Read more...

Robert Young

Ninja Immutable Databases

'Immutable' databases operate under the principle that data or objects should not be modified after they are created. Once again they hold the promise of providing strong consistency combined with horizontal read scalability, and built-in caching. Are Immutable databases a new idea? Are they different in any way from the mainstream RDBMSs. Read more...

David Poole

DBAs vs Developers: A Sad Tale of Unnecessary Conflict

For many developers, does DBA really stand for Don't Bother Asking? David Poole thinks it is time to end the unnecessary conflict between developer and DBA, and explains how to deal professionally with the inevitable friction between development and operation activities in IT Read more...

Richard Morris

Chris Date and the Relational Model

Chris Date is famous for his writings on relational theory. At IBM in the seventies, and afterwards, he was a friend and colleague of Edgar Codd, who invented the principles of the relational database. Chris took on the role of communicating and teaching Codd's relational theory, and reluctantly admits to a role in establishing SQL as the dominant relational language. Richard Morris interviews the well-known author and computer scientist Read more...

Richard Morris

Bjarne Stroustrup, and Programmers With Class

Bjarne Stroustrup devised C++ or 'C with Classes' in 1978. It has evolved a great deal over the decades and and it is still being used today for some of the most demanding programming tasks. Google has acknowledged their debt to the language, and referred to it as 'is the best-performing programming language in the market'. We spoke to Bjarne about the longevity of his creation and how C++ is likely to evolve further. Read more...

Chris Massey

Managing Memory with Third-Party Components

Integrating third-party .NET components and libraries into your codebase can be tricky at the best of times, so when we started thinking about memory management we decided to go straight to the source. Chris Massey got in touch with the developers at Aspose, creators of a huge range of .NET components, to learn how they think about .NET memory. Read more...

Karsten Kempe

Observations from ALM Forum 2014

Earlier this year Karsten Kempe enjoyed a double premiere: he became a Visual Studio ALM MVP, and he then participated in the ALM forum for the first time. While several people from Red Gate did attend the forum, Karsten’s write-up of the 3-day event is thorough and republished here in English with his kind permission. Read more...

Melanie and David

Improving SSMS One Add-in at a Time with Vladimir Yangurskiy

As a serial developer of open-source software in his free time, Vladimir Yangurskiy was bound to be noticed by Red Gate’s SSMS ecosystem champion David Pond. One of Vladimir’s projects, Supratimas, has since become the ecosystem’s most popular SSMS add-in. Melanie and David sat down with Vladimir to talk about his tool, writing add-ins, and what he’d like to see added to SQL Server Management Studio. Read more...

Alex Papadimoulis

My month with Release!

Alex and his team at Inedo are developing a game – inspired by development strategies like Lean, Agile and DevOps - about software and some of the people who make it. In this opening of a short series, Alex looks at how games affected his office culture, what he’s learned about designing games to do more than just be fun, and how his team are hoping to share their passion with the developer community. Read more...

Dwain Camps

Writing Outstanding Proposals

Oftentimes you will be forced to learn how to write proposals without a whole lot of help. You can learn, and be taught, the skill of writing an outstanding proposal, but you can’t do it without a fair amount of practice. Today, Dwain explains how to write proposals that can be judged to be outstanding and what, specifically, that means. Read more...

Tony Davis

Tony Davis is an Editor with Red Gate Software, based in Cambridge (UK), specializing in databases, and especially SQL Server. He edits articles and writes editorials for both the Simple-talk.com and SQLServerCentral.com websites and newsletters, with a combined audience of over 1.5 million subscribers. You can sample his short-form writing at either his Simple-Talk.com blog or his SQLServerCentral.com author page.

As the editor behind most of the SQL Server books published by Red Gate, he spends much of his time helping others express what they know about SQL Server. He is also the lead author of the book, SQL Server Transaction Log Management.

In his spare time, he enjoys running, football, contemporary fiction and real ale.


Phil Factor

Phil Factor (real name withheld to protect the guilty), aka Database Mole, has 30 years of experience with database-intensive applications. Despite having once been shouted at by a furious Bill Gates at an exhibition in the early 1980s, he has remained resolutely anonymous throughout his career. See also :

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Damon Armstrong

Damon Armstrong is a Senior Engineering Team Lead with GimmalSoft in Dallas, Texas, and author of Pro ASP.NET 2.0 Website Programming. He specializes in Microsoft technologies with a focus on SharePoint and ASP.NET. When not staying up all night coding, he can be found playing disc golf, softball, working on something for Carrollton Young Life, or recovering from staying up all night coding.