RustProof Labs: blogging for education (logo)
My book Mastering PostGIS and OpenStreetMap is available!

My Journey Begins

By Kevin Reardon -- Published August 02, 2016

I began an educational journey, with only a vague idea of my destination, and no road map to lead me where I wanted to go. My “journey” involves learning how to design and manage relational databases. Unfortunately, taking college level courses about database design only scratched the surface. I’ve heard the phrase, education can seem “a mile wide and an inch deep.” This statement reflects my experience in the majority of my classes. The depth of knowledge was simply not provided by most of my instructors. Time after time, I experienced a lack of responsiveness from my instructors. They either had good technological skills or good people skills, but rarely did they have both. They and the course material did not prepare me for working in the real world.

I have discovered database design is challenging and rewarding work. It is worth all the effort it takes to succeed. I realized the best way for me to succeed was to find a person working in database design who appreciates hard work and good questions. My challenge was to find that special person and create a relationship.

Good fortune smiled upon me the day I meet Ryan Lambert, founder and owner of RustProof Labs. I was connected to Ryan by my college career counselor. This professional recommendation proved to be extremely valuable. At our first meeting we talked for two hours and quickly established a great relationship. Immediately, I knew Ryan was the teacher/mentor I was seeking and our journey together began. Ryan has been extremely generous with his time, the most precious of all commodities.

Little did I realize the depth of the subject matter at our first meeting. Two months into my apprenticeship I am beginning to grasp the vast amount of knowledge it takes to perform good database design. The knowledge and skills required go far beyond mere technological expertise. It requires an understanding of how people and technology work together. I quickly discovered database design is as much an art as it is a science. With Ryan’s assistance, I am learning how to orchestrate a symphony of software into a unique and valuable product serving the end-user’s needs and increasing their productivity.

Ryan’s blog is written for the advanced database designer, mine is for the novice. I hope my insights will be of value as I explore the fascinating world of database design and management. At the present time, I have many more questions than answers.
One of my greatest challenges is articulating my questions. They include understanding how software, web-based tools (services), and various programing languages work together. Another question within the world of programing languages, is which language do I choose for the specific task? Every answer generates more new questions. For me, this is the joy of discovery and learning. Let the journey begin!

By Kevin Reardon
Published August 02, 2016
Last Updated August 02, 2016