Ward Pond's SQL Server blog

Ruminating on issues pertinent to the design and development of sound databases and processes under Microsoft SQL Server 2008, SQL Server 2005, and SQL Server 2000 (while reserving the right to vent about anything else that's on my mind)

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  • Blog Post: Throw Some SPARKs: Microsoft’s First Windows Embedded Hobbyist Competition

    I think contests are really cool, so I tend to blog about them here even when they’re not overtly SQL Server related. A little background..  back in March of this year, the Windows Embedded Group launched SPARK Your Imagination , the first hobbyist-focused program for this exciting technology. ...
  • Blog Post: Made In Express Contest Winners Announced!

    Yes, the winners are in ! The Made In Express contest has announced its Grand Prize , First Prize , and Community Choice award winners. Congratulations to Ernie Hall , Ali Khalid , Jonas Martinsson , and Sanchez Roman Canlas !
  • Blog Post: Made In Express Contest Voting Closes Tonight

    I last blogged on this contest a couple of weeks ago , as well as in March and in June . The community voting for the contest ends at 11:59 PDT tonight (less than eight hours from now), so if you'd like to vote for your favorite, time's a-wastin'! I'll post a link to the announcement of the winner...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Learning Asks a Loaded Question: Are You Certifiable?

    This is a really cool idea.. If you’ve ever considered taking a certification exam but aren’t sure if you’re ready, here’s a fun, risk-free way to practice – Are You Certifiable? , a new on-line game from Microsoft and Fuel Industries. Choose an avatar, select your expertise, and pit yourself against...
  • Blog Post: Technical News: The Develop Without Borders Contest

    Word of another great programming contest has made its way to my inbox. Sponsored by Microsoft and HP , it’s called the Develop Without Borders Challenge and it encourages developers and architects to submit a solution design that helps a non-profit organization. The concept is simple: Developers...
  • Blog Post: Made In Express Contest Finalists Selected

    I first blogged on this contest way back in March.. well, the twelve finalists have been selected, and all of the work that's going on is pretty cool. Head on over to the Made In Express Contest website and check out the latest details. You're sure to find something to get your technical juices flowing...
  • Blog Post: Community Voting Is Open In The Made In Express Contest

    I've previously blogged on this contest in March and in June .. and now the finalists are ready for your consideration. Twelve projects -- including a personalized print newspaper/magazine, an all-terrain self-maneuverable robot, and an X-10 smart house system -- are vying to be crowned the winner...
  • Blog Post: And The Winners Are..

    Stephen Moore and rudy, who both correctly divined that " the contest post " was the 500th on the blog. By the time rudy got here, there were already two new DWWTWT? posts since the contest post had gone up, which made his successful entry all the more remarkable (although, in fairness, it appears...
  • Blog Post: Where Has Ward Been?

    Well, at least I can say that I was counting my blessings.. I've been slowly getting back up to speed since a relapse of my pancreatitis just after New Year's. With the patience of family and colleagues, I'm most of my way back to being a productive human being again. I have an appointment with my...
  • Blog Post: Today's Blog Post Is Brought To You By The Letter "D"

    Let's have a little fun.. This is a special post in the history of this little backwater of the internet. Its specialness is related to the letter D. If you can figure out why this post is special, and how that specialness is related to the letter D, leave a comment on the post explaining your...
  • Blog Post: Technical News: Develop Without Borders Contest Winners Announced

    Last July , I mentioned the Develop Without Borders Contest , an application development contest designed to assist non-profit organizations. Earlier this week, the winners were announced. There are two Grand Prize winners, two First Place winners, three Second Place winners, and five Third Place...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Hosting Silverlight 2 Developer Contest with $5000 Prize

    This week I’m hoping to get through my backlog of postable material. It makes sense to start with the time-sensitive stuff.. Microsoft is asking game developers to bring their best ideas to light using Silverlight 2, a flexible new platform for delivering rich on-line content. If you’ve got a good...
  • Blog Post: Database Programming Contest: Adam Machanic Throws Down

    Never let it be said that Adam Machanic lacks style.. Adam left a comment on yesterday’s revisiting of the XML String Concatenation Trick, announcing his T-SQL Challenge: Grouped String Concatenation contest. Read Adam’s post to get all of the particulars for the event.  I hope to be able to play...
  • Blog Post: At Long Last, Great News For Stephen and rudy

    It took me far too long to get this done.. health issues, project deadlines.. but forty posts after the December contest was annouced and thirty-eight posts after your victories were confirmed -- not to mention a month after I promised to ship them in a week -- Stephen and rudy, your books finally went...
  • Blog Post: Are You An ISV Who's Making A Difference In The World? Here's A Contest For You!

    I just got word of an interesting new contest sponsored by Microsoft called The Ingenuity Point . The contest is designed to recognize and celebrate ISVs who are making a meaningful difference in the areas of education, healthcare , and environmental sustainability . If you have a software solution...
  • Blog Post: Microsoft Announces Development Contest

    This is a pretty cool idea.. Microsoft has recently announced an opportunity for you to get a substantial audience for that wild-hare software and/or mechanical device development concept that's been rattling around your brain. The grand prize is a cool US$10,000. The Made In Express Contest is...
  • Blog Post: SQL Rap Contest Results in the Hizzle!

    As my team celebrates the successful release of the latest version (v 2.5, for those of you keeping score at home) of the SQLRAP (SQL Risk Assessment Program) toolset, it should also be noted that Michelle Ufford has announced the winner of her SQL Rap Contest. You can read about how this whole thing...
  • Blog Post: Yes, It’s True – I’m A Judge in SQL Fool’s RAP Contest

    I’ll say one thing for Michelle Ufford, the SQL Fool : she’s not one to leave a good idea on the table, unseized. Yesterday she and I indulged in a little bit of silliness after I made an innocent tweet about some Risk Assessment Plan work I was doing. Well, the SQL Server Twitter flock got hold of...