2013/11/15

T-SQL Throwdown at SQL Saturday Dallas (#255)

The first open-to-public running of my SQL game, T-SQL Throwdown, happened at SQL Saturday Dallas on 2013/11/02, at the University of Texas in Arlington. Thanks to the NTSSUG Board, and especially Ryan, Sri and Ganesh for making it possible for me to run the event at SQL Saturday.

This being my first presentation at the community level, I was a little afraid that nobody would show up. I had run it at my workplace a couple of times and it was generally liked, but at those times I had access to the audience to explain beforehand what this was about. But now, I could not predict how people would take to this idea based on only a small paragraph in the schedule. I was hoping for the best.

Turns out people did show up. My team and I had to explain the game a few times, and a very few people even left the room after hearing us because they weren't interested in playing a SQL game. But fortunately, most people stayed and participated, and I dare say even enjoyed the experience. I owe a huge debt of gratitude to my team of judges/experts/technical support who helped me run the event and improve it way beyond my original idea: Gabe F, Ed S, Patrick B, Adam P, John G, John S, Mark R, Kathy K.

The winning team (Brad, Ranjith, Marc) received a $100 gift card, runners up (Gonzalo, Ryan, Sal) got $50, sponsored by Think Finance. I received some very nice feedback via the session evals:
















A couple of user groups even expressed interest in running the event at their gatherings. Looking forward to more throwdown fun.