Know your enemy

In The Art of War, Sun Tzu said, “If you know your enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” But, he went on to warn, “If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat.”  It’s for this reason that…

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A trip down memory lane

I’ve always found the story of the early days of the PC industry to be extremely interesting.  One reason for this is that I experienced those early days myself.  I have my own memories of them.  Another is that the PC’s eventual rise to prominence is the stuff of movies.  When the PC was first…

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Tee time

I’ve always felt that proficiency in the command language of an OS was an essential part of being able to write code for it.  I suppose it’s possible to write code in a high-level language all day without knowing anything about writing batch files, but I wouldn’t feel very good about my skills as a…

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More about self-reproducing T-SQL

In yesterday’s entry, I talked about self-replicating programs and how educational it can be to construct them.  Commonly known in hacking parlance as quines, these self-reproducing programs force us to think about how our language works and are a good way to pass the time when your employer thinks you should be working. I posed…

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T-SQL coding challenge

This is an oldie, but a goodie.  It’s an article by Ken Thompson about, among other things, writing self-replicating programs.  Thompson is one of my heroes and someone who’s had a profound impact on the industry.  His list of accomplishments is too long to get into here, but let me summarize it by saying that he…

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Poem over on my personal blog

For those interested in such things, there’s a poem over on my personal blog having to do with history, politics, and religion.  Enough of my friends have been stumped by it that I thought I’d post it publicly to see how many could figure out who it was about.  You’ll find the entry here.

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Sometimes it’s better just to waitfor

You may have noticed that the sample blocking detection script in KB articles 251004 and 271509 uses WAITFOR in a loop in order to run the sp_blocker_pssNN stored procedure. Ever wonder why that is? Why wouldn’t we schedule the execution of the procedure externally using one of the many facilities readily available for doing this…

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Favorite web sites

I have a number of sites I frequent and do business with, but I’m sure there are plenty of great ones that I don’t know about.  I’m interested to hear about the ones that you visit often.  Here’s my list: 1.  Books, CDs, and sometimes other stuff:  Amazon.com 2.  Audio books:  Audible.com 3.  Movie rentals: …

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There’s no such thing as a query timeout…

…not at least as far as the database engine is concerned, anyway.  As frequently as the subject of query timeouts comes up with applications based on SQL Server, people are often surprised to learn that query timeouts are a client-side concept only.  Discounting situations in which SQL Server becomes a client to another server (e.g.,…

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Poll: Do you see SQLCLR as a security threat?

I’ve been hearing from some folk that they consider the SQLCLR functionality in SQL Server 2005 to be a potential security hole.  Some have even gone so far as to say that they plan to leave it disabled (it’s not enabled by default).  When pressed, many can’t articulate what their specific concerns are, or they…

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