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The sdg Blog is designed to show you who we are and what we're all about. Whether you're looking to read up on the latest technologies, trying to improve your soft skills, or wondering what we've been up to, our blog offers something for everybody.

sdg Rings in the New Year

Over the holidays, sdg volunteers donated gifts for the  Toys for Tots  program and participated in the  Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign . For the fifth year in a row, our Toys for Tots drive began during sdg’s Santa Brunch. Kids came to get their faces painted, decorate ornaments, and of course, see Santa. All the families that attended, along with others who simply...
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Power Query - An ETL Heavyweight for Self-Service BI

Introduction In 2010, Microsoft improved upon its already solid Business Intelligence tools with the introduction of PowerPivot, a free Self-Service BI add-in for Excel. PowerPivot extended the capabilities of Excel by giving ordinary business users the ability to build relatively complex data models, inside of an Excel workbook, for the purpose of gaining deeper insights about their...
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Is After-the-Fact Static Analysis a Code Smell?

I just finished a round of security-oriented static analysis at work. It went pretty well. We found a handful of issues that required a second look - nothing immediately exploitable, but things that should be handled with a healthy dose of paranoia. We made them safer. I had my doubts about commercial-grade static analysis. Now I think I’m convinced. I can’t help but wonder what this...
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Baskets of Hope for the Holidays

164 families received  Baskets of Hope  this holiday season thanks to the contributions made by sdg employees. Through this program, every $25 donated to the  Emergency Foodshelf Network (EFN)  provides an entire holiday meal to families in need throughout the Twin Cities. With employee donations and sdg’s $1 for $1 match, we raised $4,100, or 164 baskets,...
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Food and Trust

Trust is one of the cornerstones of an effective team, and building trust often takes time and energy from everyone involved. Over the years, I’ve witnessed many organizations spend countless dollars on extravagant team building exercises; ropes courses, concerts, cruises, parties, seminars, coaching sessions... you name it. While each of these can have varying degrees of effectiveness,...
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