PASS Business Analytics Conference Hands-on Micro Workshop

I’m jumping on a plane bound for San Jose, California today headed to the PASS Business Analytics Conference (BAC).  If you plan to attend my hands-on workshop, Tuesday at 2:00, the following information will help you prepare:

Bring your laptop
running Windows 7, 8 or 10.  Power BI will work, at minimum, on Windows 7 32 bit with 4 GB of RAM.  A 64-bit OS with more RAM is better but not required.  When you install Power BI Desktop on Windows 7, you may be instructed to install the .NET Framework 4.5.  Please do this ahead of time.

Install Power BI Desktop
Just go to and install it from the Products menu.  You don’t need an account to install Power BI Desktop.

Charge your laptop battery
We will be meeting in a standard session room in the afternoon without additional power.  Plan to spend the two hours running on battery power (and don’t use up your battery charge earlier in the day).  I don’t have control over the schedule or meeting room facilities so please plan ahead.  We also won’t have control of the wireless Internet connectivity which I hope to use to provide files and exercise instructions.  Just in case of connection issues, I will provide files on USB drives.

If you do not yet have a subscription setup at, that’s OK.  In this shorter version of the workshop, we will spend most of the time working offline.  If you do have a subscription, you can publish and work with the online features but this is not a requirement.

Really looking forward to seeing you there!

Get To Know D&B MVPs and SQL Server MVPs

Last year Dun and Bradstreet, the world’s leading business data authority, recruited leading SQL Server MVPs to help their customers integrate business solutions using D&B services, and conducted a set of video interviews with 18 members of the MVP program community at the PASS Global Summit in Seattle.  Details about the program are on the D&B MVP Program web site here.  Many of these fine people are trusted friends, associates, and long-time members of the outstanding SQL Server community. Following is an excerpt of the announcement on the D&B MVP Program web site:

Posted by Kim Schmidt 5votes on December 19, 2014

Each year the Professional Association of SQL Server (PASS) Experts holds their annual SQL PASS Conference. This year it was held Nov. 3rd and 4th for Pre-Conference Sessions and officially the conference ran from Nov. 5th through the 7th in Seattle, WA.

We hired a professional Hollywood Videographer to tape interviews of as many of our D&B MVPs that we could, so you could "get to know them better" both in their areas of expertise as well as in their role as a D&B MVP. We taped 18 of our current 42 D&B MVPs.

I truly hope you watch this video series, even one per night (each one is between 5-9 minutes long). It will show you the collective intelligence we have in our MVPs, it will show you their fun and personable personalities, and tell you how you can contact them online.

If you are looking for the industry top experts to help with data management, Business Intelligence, problem-solving or how to use any of the business data integration services from Dun & Bradstreet, these are the people to go to.

Here are the D&B MVPs (and two others) that were interviewed that day, in the order of the video series:

D&B MVP Program Manager Kim Schmidt

D&B MVP Argenis Fernandez

D&B MVP Karen Lopez

D&B MVP Mark Tabladillo

D&B MVP Stacia Misner

D&B MVP Kevin Kline

D&B MVP Ryan McKnight

D&B MVP Tamera Clark

D&B MVP Thomas LaRock

D&B MVP Paul Turley

D&B MVP Tim Radney

D&B MVP Joey D’Antoni

D&B MVP Arnie Rowland

D&B MVP Andy Leonard

D&B MVP Denny Cherry

D&B MVP Jose Chinchilla

D&B MVP Kendal Van Dyke

D&B MVP Tim Ford

D&B MVP Luis Figueroa

Davide Mauri of Italy