Snowflake made it possible for my company to move to the cloud in less than a year. We’ve never looked back.

Photo by Philipp Birmes on Pexels

Can a company, having already invested in and matured an on-premise data warehouse, abandon it entirely in favor of a cloud-based solution, reengineered from scratch, leveraging none of their existing software stack, and manage to do so within a year? Well, yes! Here’s what we learned along the way.

I currently work for the world’s leading B2B bedbank. We provide wholesale accommodation, transfers, activities, and car rental products through a global network of travel distributors. With thousands of daily…


Whether working faster or working smarter, these hacks lay the foundation for BI efficiency.

Photo by Kolleen Gladden on Unsplash

Ill habits gather by unseen degrees, as brooks make rivers, rivers run to seas.

— Ovid, “Book XV,” Metamorphoses, trans. Sir Samuel Garth, John Dryden, et al.

“Unseen degrees” is the poetic way of saying that bad habits have knock-on effects that often go unattributed, though certainly not unnoticed. When left unchecked, inefficiency will eat up chunks of your day and frustrate you through tedious and unrewarding work.

Although there are volumes of books and articles written specifically on productivity and getting things done (GTD), they tend to orient toward a general audience. …


What’s responsible for the recent DV boom, and how to ensure a successful implementation.

You had to be there

A good speaker lineup is critical to the success of any conference, but the real value lies in the attendees. This year, the WWDVC featured presentations from Kent Graziano, Snowflake’s Chief Technical Evangelist, Data Vault (DV) creator Dan Linstedt, and a man who needs no introduction, Bill Inmon. However, the real price of admission was in the open forums.

Attendees got to ask questions directly to technical experts, swapped war stories with fellow DV veterans, and saw firsthand how tools like SqlDBM facilitate DV rollouts.

While this article can’t recreate the live experience, it can highlight the key insights from…


Using DevOps to achieve maximum efficiency from your BI infrastructure

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The four pillars of modern BI, described in “Exploring The Modern BI Data Stack, ML Included,” are essential to any enterprise that wants to stay competitive in the modern data landscape. Has your enterprise checked all the boxes?

Cloud Data Warehouse, yes!

ELT tool, check!

Visualization, covered!

ML, you bet!

Extended holiday… not so fast!

Atop these four pillars lies the extended ecosystem of tools that enhance efficiency and save time by automating redundant tasks. Have you accelerated the project lifecycle through these means, or are you still losing time through manual labor?

DevOps

An amalgamation of development and operations, DevOps…


What is Data Vault, and how thousands of enterprises are using it to simplify how their data warehouse is built and maintained

Photo by Jason Dent on Unsplash

The Word Wide Data Vault Conference (WWDVC) is back for its seventh year as the epicenter of Data Vault 2.0 learning and networking. The WWDVC is a unique one-of-a-kind single track annual event run by Data Vault Alliance (DVA). It’s a chance for the Data Vault 2.0 (DV) community to share stories, exchange anecdotes, learn about what is new in the industry, and interact with fellow participants, presenters, and vendor representatives.

Due to covid, the event will be completely virtual this year, which is a rare opportunity for Business Intelligence professionals from all over the world to attend. The conference…


From Ingestion, Warehousing, Visualization, and even Machine learning, cloud-based solutions are taking BI into the modern era.

The four pillars of the modern BI stack

As companies grow, they inevitably bump up against the limitations of ad-hoc reporting and begin thinking of ways to expand their BI and analytics. Much has already been written about the three pillars of the modern data stack: Ingestion, Warehousing, and Visualization. Their importance cannot be overstated. However, it might be time to extend this concept to account for the latest BI trends and peer into an additional area that is becoming too big to ignore.

Today, for a data stack to be…


Coupling SQL with iterative and conditional logic to create dynamic pivots for any database

photo by Felipe Hoffa

There’s something about SQL and PIVOTs: Everyone wants to PIVOT their results, but there never seems to be an easy way for it.

— Felipe Hoffa

Felipe Hoffa recently posted an excellent article on creating dynamic pivots in Snowflake using javascript stored procedures. It's worth a read not only for his creative approach but also because it introduces functions that not everyone may be familiar with.

Querying a query withresult_scan(last_query_id()) , that’s so meta!

However, Felipe’s solution relies on features that are exclusive to Snowflake. …


Enhancing human cognition through data visualization

A spark ignites the flame Photo by Elia Mazzaro on Unsplash

Rumor has it, Elon Musk is developing Neuralink — an implantable brain-machine interface to augment human cognitive abilities. What if it was possible to augment your cognitive abilities through a brain-machine interface right now, at no extra cost, and with absolutely zero holes drilled in your cranium?

Think, Rotate, Drop?

Let me start by making two predictions:

  • You’re familiar with Tetris, having played it countless times.
  • You’ve never stopped to consider that there are two reasons to rotate a shape: to fit a selected slot, obviously, but also to help you think about which slot should be selected.

David Kirsh and Paul Maglio…


Views, Virtual Relationships, DB Ops, and more!

cartoon avatars of Yew Inc introducing new SqlDBM features
cartoon avatars of Yew Inc introducing new SqlDBM features
New Features available in SqlDBM — Jan 21 update

Two months ago, Yew Inc. adopted SqlDBM — a database modeling tool that requires absolutely no coding. Besides helping their IT team develop and maintain their DB landscape, we saw how SqlDBM could help Yew Inc. foster collaboration, automate manual tasks, promote data stewardship, and reduce costs through time-saving measures.

Yew Inc. has been busy, riding the wave of efficiency that SqlDBM has introduced in its day-to-day operations, but the folks at SqlDBM have been busy too. …


From complexity to control through CI/CD, automation, and best-practices.

By James LeeFormerIP on Flikr on Wikipedia

The tale you’ve been told about the boiling frog is a lie.

For an ectotherm, location change as a response to temperature variation is the primary means of thermoregulation. A frog would be long gone before the water even became uncomfortable.

However, another organism has evolved to be particularly vulnerable to the boiling pot scenario: the database developer.

Under the steadily rising heat of an enterprise system, a developer will begin to perspire, complain, and on occasion, even resort to foul language. …

Serge Gershkovich

Peaceful warrior. Traveler sans terminus. BI Architect.

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