Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Ken’s Legacy

Some of you may remember an obscure little man who used to take a shot at writing now and then.  His name was Ken Henderson.  And he wrote (among others) small series of books called the Guru’s Guide to SQL Server.  He also wrote a little tome on SQL internals.  Now, Ken isn’t with us anymore, but his legacy lives on.  I remember sitting in Ken’s office at MS a few times talking about his vision for what he wanted his books to be.  His goal was to teach at several levels.  What he wanted was for the beginners and the experienced alike to get something out of his books.  And he succeeded very well.  I can still go back and read some of the Guru’s books and understand things I didn’t get before.  I remember saying that to Ken once and he just smiled.  Then he said, finally somebody gets it.  I want people to be able to grow into my material.

So what brought all this on?  Well, as I do sometimes, I was looking through one of my favorite blogs to kinda keep up on things.  I typically go through the back posts to make sure there’s nothing I missed the first time, or see if there’s anything I’ve grown into since reading it the last time.  And by looking at the writing style, and the intent behind it, I see that this author has the same principles that Ken held.  He not only tells you the most intimate details of the inner workings of SQL, but he does it in a way that allows you to learn at different levels.  I don’t even think he does it on purpose because like Ken, he’s just being himself;  a true teacher.

And I’m not sucking up. The only reason I’m writing about this is because it really hit me tonight because I just finished going over an old chapter of Ken’s before I went through the blog.

So since I read his material the same way I read Ken’s, I’m naming Paul Tripp the new Ken Henderson.  Paul, you make me proud to be your friend.


SQLRockstar said...

Sean - you nailed it. Paul has that natural ability to let everyone learn at their own level.

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Sean McCown
I am a Contributing Editor for InfoWorld Magazine, and a frequent contributor to as well as I live with my wife and 3 kids, and have practiced and taught Kenpo for 22yrs now.
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