A Year Of Blogging

I decided to begin this blog at the end of 2008 and published the first three entries on January 3, 2009.  This is my 54th post, twelve months later.
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SQR Timeline 1999 – 2009

Last week we saw the origin of nine companies that owned or influenced the SQR programming language: Brio, D&N Systems, Hyperion, Oracle, Peoplesoft, Ray Ontko & Company, SQ Software, Sqribe, and Sybase.  We saw the maturation of the feature set and what I called “The Golden Age” of MITI and Sqribe.  In 1999 and beyond, SQR became part of an ever larger and more diverse product line.
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SQR Timeline 1984 – 1999

I wanted to write the history of SQR, but I can’t.  I’ve reviewed dozens of press releases, news articles, websites, state government documents, and SEC filings to create this timeline.  But that’s not a history; it’s missing key events that weren’t documented, or weren’t put online, or I just couldn’t find.  It’s also missing explanations.  I tried to track down the key people who contributed to the history of SQR.  Even when I could find them, most of them didn’t respond to e-mails or phone messages.  So, here’s what I have.
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How To Write Spreadsheets From SQR

SQR and the Peoplesoft Process Scheduler work together to allow users to choose output format. The favorites in my organization are document (PDF) and spreadsheet (XLS). I mentioned this in 4 SQR Resolutions and I’ve had three readers ask me to elaborate. For this blog, that’s a tsunami of feedback.
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SQR Versus Application Engine

What is the relationship between SQR and Application Engine?  Is one better or are they complementary?  They are both frameworks for batch processing in the Peoplesoft environment.  As such, they must have overlapping functionality.  Like Star Trek and Star Wars, they each have fans and detractors, with not always rational reasons for their preferences.
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Re-Use Peopletools Run Control Objects

Peoplesoft HCM (HR, BA, PR, and TL) comes with at least 1300 run control records, yet my organization has added 2% more over the past ten years.  We’re not running out of table space or disk space, but we probably did more work than we needed; creating new records, tables, and pages.  For that matter, Oracle probably did more work than they needed, not reusing their run control objects.
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Vacation, Part II

By now, I’m back from vacation, but I didn’t write anything while I was gone.  I’ll have a new article next week.

I’ve been thinking about my blog.  While spending almost a year writing about SQR, I’ve collected a list of topics relating to SQL, Peopletools, and Peoplesoft HCM that I want to discuss.  I assume most of my readers work in those areas too.  I may begin a new blog on those subjects in the new year, and I hope you’ll join me.  I would update this blog occasionally, but I’ve already said most of what I want to say about SQR.

Vacation, Part I

For the past few weeks, I’ve been working on an exciting Peopletools / Peoplecode project.  It’s hard to focus on SQR.  I’ve also been distracted by my upcoming vacation.  The result?  I haven’t had time to create a new SQR entry for this week.  I’ve got several essays in progress:

  • a program to help choose run control records and pages for a new SQR program
  • a comparison of SQR and Application Engine
  • an business and technical history of the SQR product line

So, please reread my older entries while I’m away.  You haven’t memorized them yet, have you?

Batch User Interfaces

Even batch programs have user interfaces.  They start with actual or implied inputs (run control parameters in Peoplesoft).  They end with actual or implied outputs (reports, log files, Process Monitor messages).  We shouldn’t take these elements of program design for granted, even in the simplest programs.
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SQR Masks

It seems appropriate to talk about masks with Halloween coming.  More powerful than trick-or-treat facewear, SQR masks can format numbers, analyze dates, and precisely extract characters from strings.  Boo!
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