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Podcast Episode 50 – The Year(s) in Review

MissedI figured with the year coming to a close that I would take a look back at the goals that I made on this podcast at the beginning of the year. As I went to pull up that episode to find out what I had promised “exactly”, I found out a sad fact…. I made that episode in 2015! Soldiering on, I take a look at *those* goals and talk about what my goals are in 2017 and even if it is worthwhile to make goals if they are going to change. It all culminates in a little Wes Bos lovefest 😉


Links Mentioned in this Show:
Episode 31
Social Network Movie
Episode 33
Wes Bos’ React for Beginners Course
2 Keto Dudes Podcast
Wes Bos’ Site

You can also subscribe to the podcast at any of these places:
iTunes Link RSS Feed Listen on Stitcher

Thanks to all the people who listen, and a special thanks to those who have rated me. I really appreciate it.

The episodes have been archived. Click Here to see the archive page.

T-SQL TRY_CONVERT()

SQL Server 2012I am a little behind the curve on this one. Starting in SQL Server 2012, Microsoft introduced the TRY_CONVERT() function. This function works the same way as the CONVERT() function, but if the convert doesn’t work, you get NULL instead of an error.

Let’s take a look at the old way:

This returns the message “Conversion failed when converting the varchar value ‘aaa’ to data type int.” If you are doing a CONVERT() on some column in a large dataset, this often can throw you while you try to sort out what went wrong. Enter TRY_CONVERT(). Here is the new syntax:

This just returns NULL and doesn’t error at all. In this case, you can easily provide a default value for the conversion by using ISNULL() or COALESCE()

Pretty darn awesome and about time (well, even four years ago, it was about time!).

Podcast Episode 49 – Obviously

ObviouslyIn this episode, I take a look at one word that you might be using that is making you look like kind of a jerk. Did I just call you a jerk? Maybe a little, but honestly this episode is mostly about how I might have inadvertently been being a jerk for quite some time.

Links Mentioned in this Show:

The O-Word

Simple Programmer YouTube Channel

You can also subscribe to the podcast at any of these places:
iTunes Link RSS Feed Listen on Stitcher

Thanks to all the people who listen, and a special thanks to those who have rated me. I really appreciate it.

The episodes have been archived. Click Here to see the archive page.

Actionable Books

Actionable Books LogoI know from just about everywhere that people just aren’t that in to reading anymore. Even when people are consuming books, audio books are a growing segment. From recent data that I looked up, the median number of books consumed per year is just 5. Half the people in America consumed less than five books last year. I typically average around a book a week. Are they all code-related? No. They aren’t even all non-fiction. I read quite a bit of fiction as an outlet for my imagination, as I watch less and less TV every year. I know that I’m not typical, so I want to try to be a little pragmatic here.

I came across a site called Actionable Books. This site has a section called “Summaries” where you can read people’s “Actionable Summaries” of books. At the time that I’m writing this, there are summaries for “1005 Top Business Books”. The way that the site works is that people read the books and they summarize the gist of the book, called “The Golden Egg”. Then, they also find two “Gems” from the book (accompanied by quotes). Here is a link to the summary of Good to Great by Jim Collins, so you can check out what I mean.

For the vast majority of business books, this site is amazing. I’ve long been a critic of these “single shot” business books. Typically, the author will have an idea that is good for 2-3 chapters, tops. After that, he’s beating a dead horse to try to hit some word count. For those kinds of books, Actionable Books is perfect. They’ll distill it down for you and you can get the idea without reading 200 pages of fluff.

For books that actually are full of value, you can read the summary and then – seeing the value – buy the whole thing. It is like a Book Review++++. So, if you are like me and like to read business books to build up your soft skills and business acumen, but don’t want to risk wasting your time with “low fat” books, check out Actionable Books.

Podcast Episode 48 – Coding is the Easy Part

Easy ButtonIn this episode, I take a look at a question that I ran across, “Is Coding the Easy Part?” I engage that question and take a look at everything that developers need to do to create quality software and try to figure out where the actual “writing code” part falls in the rankings.


Links Mentioned in this Show:
Quick Draw With Google

You can also subscribe to the podcast at any of these places:
iTunes Link RSS Feed Listen on Stitcher

Thanks to all the people who listen, and a special thanks to those who have rated me. I really appreciate it.

The episodes have been archived. Click Here to see the archive page.

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