Good News / Bad News


Given the choice, most people want to hear the bad news before the good:

The Bad News

I recently found out that the owner of Atlantis Interactive has decided to throw in the towel with regards to his absolutely amazing SQL Server Tools and IDE.

Matt Whitfield has produced (on his own) a set of tools that puts a lot of full blown companies to shame! The IDE SQL Everywhere is a complete replacement for SSMS, but boasts a number of improvements/extra features that seem blindingly obvious when you see them in SQL Everywhere. My favourites are “extract as CTE” where you mark some code and allow SQL Everywhere to create a CTE for you, and the smart renaming of variables/aliases etc.

When I heard that he had made this decision, I could understand it, but still find it a shame. He was obviously in a hard market to start with, with some very firm competition. I am still surprised that the tools haven’t made any noticeable headway – there are loads of people looking for good tools, even in the niche of T-SQL development.

The Good News

Matt has not decided to throw away all that he created. He has unlocked all the tools and set them free! His blood, sweat and tears (well, not so much blood – I hope!) have not been wasted.

If you have had enough of the limitations of SSMS intellisense, or general SSMS strangeness, take a good look at SQL Everywhere. Whilst you are there, have a look at the other great tools he created, you will be surprised at what you find.

My hat goes off to him and I hope that this setback doesn’t stop him from giving it another go in the future.

@Matt – if you read this, I’m looking forward to meeting you at SQLBits. I would love to hear about any other ideas you have on the back burner 🙂

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SQLBits here I come


I recently found out that I am, unfortunately, not Charlie Bucket. The people over at SQLskills were offering a free ticket to one of their Microsoft Certified Master training camps dubbed SQLskills Master Immersion Events.

I entered into the competition on the off chance that I was picked and got to go to one of their week long training events. The gods were not smiling on me that day and I wasn’t chosen 😦

However, this has not deterred me from continuing my quest for awesome training. I mentioned in my entry to the SQLskills competition that I would be going to SQLBits VIII. I have now completed all the preparations to be able to go there in April.

I will be attending the Friday training day and the Saturday community day and am looking forward to it. I know a couple of the people on the speakers list (the Saturday sessions are still open to voting, so the list may change yet) and hope to either catch up with them (Andre Kamman / Blog – we met at the PASS Summit in Seattle) or finally meet them in person (Matt Whitfield / Blog – we met online at ASK).

I am also hoping to meet up with a couple of other people from the ASK) site (in no particular order):

Jonathan Allen
Kev Riley
Thomas Rushton

They have all helped me a great deal in the last 6 months and I think a pint is in order! On top of which I would love to finally meet some SQL people from the UK, they are very thin on the ground where I live.

I also plan on making this a sort of reconnaissance mission for my employer. They recently made it clear that the PASS Summit is too pricey and I have been inofficially tasked with finding top-rated training a little closer to home. The videos of previous SQLBits conferences are very promising, so I expect things to work out well on that front.

I’ll be staying at the Best Western in Brighton, just down the road from the conference. As this is on my tab, The Grand was a little too much for my wallet to handle (maybe work will foot the bill the next time and SQLBits will be at the Ritz).

I look forward to meeting people and learning a few new things whilst I’m beside the seaside, beside the sea.

Hope to see you there.