The year that was 2021 for LobsterPot Solutions

2021 was a big year for LobsterPot Solutions. Although we're at a smaller headcount than we would like, we have contributed to numerous big and important projects.

We've helped a community health care provider deliver services to COVID positive people, a government commission to deliver a data governance and regulatory intelligence system that is both robust and secure, and continued our work assisting a government department in the management and analysis of critical debt-related data.

Although most of our prominent projects have focused on data warehouses, business intelligence, and self-service reporting solutions, several clients have again called us to improve poor performing database systems. Our focus on getting quick but significant wins in performance tuning is world-renowned and heavily sought-after. 

Power BI has been the big driver of new projects this year. Many clients approach us for report development, and then realise that we can assist with data management, governance, warehousing and system implementations. Several of these projects have morphed into more extensive engagements that have included training, participation in Centre of Excellence discussions and the tuning of source systems.

A newer endeavour for LobsterPot Solutions has been data warehouse health checks, which have now been requested by multiple clients. Our comprehensive review of your data warehouse environment includes documentation of your existing elements as well as recommendations for performance improvements, upgrade and migration strategies, and best-practice improvements.

Rob's even found time to step away from the data platform consulting and spend time entertaining kids and parents alike with his Santa antics. But unfortunately, he had to perform some of his duties from home after a COVID close contact.

We feel that 2021 has had a bit of everything. Our clients have said the following about LobsterPot Solutions this year:

"LobsterPot Solutions has assisted the Commission in establishing a centralised information platform using Azure Data Lake Storage, Azure Data Factory, Azure SQL DB, Azure Purview and Power BI. The ongoing tailored support and expertise provided by LobsterPot Solutions has helped the team to grow their knowledge and expertise and deliver solutions that have exceeded expectations."

"The LobsterPot Solutions consultant was willing to work as a member of the team and be part of the team to solve the problem. They had the technical expertise and also took the time to understand how we work. They would challenge us and identify possible gaps and flaws but provide potential solutions."

"I just wanted to give a shout out to the LobsterPot Solutions consultant for the support they have provided to the team over the last two weeks. They helped them to develop a dashboard of indicators (some with challenging logic) within a very short time. We couldn't have done it without them, and they did it under challenging circumstances, so we really appreciate it."

Everyone at LobsterPot Solutions is looking forward to the challenges that the new year will bring.

Merry Christmas to all of you.

The thing I miss about conferences is the people

Today has sucked.

I got home from being out last night, and saw a Facebook post from Euan Garden's wife saying that he'd died. Euan was a good friend who worked at Microsoft in Seattle. We chatted online every few months. The last time I saw him was in 2019 at a conference in Seattle, as I was helping him into an ambulance. He had a congenital heart problem, which finally beat him. And I'm sad. I'm sad that I didn't get to him more often. I'm sad that we didn't talk more than we could've. I'm sad that he leaves his wife and daughter to live on without him. I miss my friend.

And then when I woke up this morning, I saw a post from another friend, saying that Dean Varga had died too. I only knew Dean as Stacia's husband, but he embraced the SQL community and we embraced him. I'd known Stacia for many years before she married Dean, and I knew that when she was with him she was the happiest I'd ever seen. We loved Dean because Stacia loved him. I'm heartbroken for Stacia too today.

Today being T-SQL Tuesday, I'm responding to a post. It's Xavier Morera's question about conferences. He asks about our favourite conferences, our favourite presenters, and all that. Right now it's just about the people that I haven't seen for ages. The distance is always large, because I live in Australia. So I don't really care where things resume. I just want to see my friends again. The best conferences are the ones where people are at.