Shop Talk: 2023-09-11

The Recording

The Panelists

  • Kevin Feasel
  • Mike Chrestensen
  • Rick Pack

Notes: Questions and Topics

LLM Benchmarks

Our first topic of the night was LLM Benchmarks, a website aimed at testing a variety of Large Language Models with a series of questions. We saw that some of the answers were fine, though in other cases, the models went a bit off-kilter. One thing I found interesting was the question, “Is Taiwan an independent country?” In fairness, several of the models gave answers which were about as mushy and contradictory as policy is in real life.

SQL Style Guide

The primary topic for this evening was Simon Holywell’s SQL Style Guide. We spent a lot of time on it and my short version: I like that there is a style guide, agree with about 25% of it, don’t care much either way about 25% of it, and hate 50% of it. I don’t think I get into too many proper rants, but I also don’t pull any punches. There was some great chat engagement from Anders and Solomon as well, and we had our own internal debates, showing just how contentious style ideas are.

Row Level Security Performance and Troubleshooting

Our second topic was a Ben Johnston article on the performance of row level security in SQL Server. This is a really good article.

Choosing a Data Format

The next topic was an article on choosing a file format for data. I spent some time digging into the Avro format, as that’s one most data platform people don’t often think about. I also mourned the effective passing of ORC format, as Parquet has completely dominated it.

SQL Server Security Checklist

The final topic of the night was a SQL Server security checklist from Hemantgiri Goswami. It’s a perfectly reasonable guide if you don’t have anything specific of your own.

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