Greater Lansing Area for SQL Server (GLASS)

Greater Lansing Area for SQL Server

We are a group of professionals who like to get together to talk about Microsoft SQL Server and related technologies. Meetings are open and free of cost to the public but will require an RSVP so we can get an accurate count for food. 


1. Facilitate networking and create opportunities for our members
2. Deliver quality content for in-depth learning and professional development
3. Encourage community growth and development

Contact Information

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Next Meeting




Black Arts T-SQL: “Auto-Magically” Solving “Excel Hell”

  • In-Person @ Lansing, Michigan, United States (map)
  • 17:30 - 19:30 Eastern Daylight Time
  • Language: English

There are tools, like SSIS, that can easily import spreadsheets that look like somewhat normalized tables but getting a spreadsheet into such a format usually requires a sumo match with the spreadsheet owner because they want their spreadsheets to look pretty.  That also usually means they want a horizontal spread of data and column titles instead of a vertical EAV.  Even if you kowtow to the user and accept their format, they’re going to add new/differently named columns each month, and insert quarterly and yearly totals as they occur.

All of that makes such spreadsheets virtually impossible to automate on a scheduled basis.  Instead, you have to open the spreadsheet manually, figure out what has changed, manually remap your code, do a couple of “Hail Mary’s”, cross your fingers, throw salt over your shoulder, stand on one foot while swinging a rubber chicken counter-clockwise around your head exactly 11 times, and hope that the data successfully imports the first time.

Or, you can come to this session and find out how to do it all “auto-magically” on a scheduled basis using some Black Arts T-SQL that may solve the problems you have for possibly hundreds of spreadsheets with no code changes and no mapping at all.  Heh… and no… this isn’t some form of voodoo.  This code-rich session will show you how to “set it and forget it” as well as the usual sprinkling of magic dust in the form of ancillary learning that Jeff provides in his sessions.

And no need to bring your own chicken… food will be provided. ;-)

Jeff Moden calls his “home away from home” where you’ll find 52,000 of his posts on SQL Server (as he says, “Some are actually useful” ;-) ) and 33 mostly 5 star articles on multiple T-SQL “Black Arts” subjects.  Jeff has the talent for being able to explain and demonstrate complex methods and techniques in a fashion where even beginners will understand and, yet, still keep the interest of advanced T-SQL programmers.  He’s been working with SQL Server since 1996, has been an SQL Server MVP since 2008, won the RedGate Exceptional DBA award in 2011, and coined the world-known acronym of “RBAR”, which is pronounced “Ree-Bar” and is a Modenism for “Row By Agonizing Row” for anything that loops in T-SQL.  Jeff also presented two sessions at PASS 2010, and has spoken at many SQL Saturdays and local PASS Chapter meetings (including several right here in Lansing).



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