I focused on the troubleshooting & performance analysis sides of my internship this week. I worked with another performance engineer to do some load test analysis and completed introductory work on performance monitoring. I also spent a good deal of time shadowing my supervisor to learn some system troubleshooting and build processes. It’s amazing how valuable good log files can be… a lesson I’ll be taking forward into my own programming projects.
Continuing along with my database research from last week, this week I learned about MDX, a query language for OLAP databases. OLAP cubes are n-dimensional (as opposed to relational databases, which are 2-d) and are often used in analytics and business intelligence. At a high-concept level, MDX queries essentially slice a geographic region from a hypercube– this is a similar technique to clustering methods I learned in Data Mining last quarter, and is really cool stuff if you geek out on information theory like I do.
I also experimented with some of Visual Studio 2012’s new features, played around with the ASP.Net profiler, and made further revisions to my previous suite of web performance tests which will make them more useful in load testing.
Oh, and I went undefeated for my first four matches in the employee Magic league– not bad for an intern!
Most of this week was spent doing independent research into database topics. As Evergreen does not regularly offer database coursework, I was grateful for this opportunity. I focused my studies on SQL concepts and ADO.NET, which is a C# framework for interacting with relational databases. I ended up writing a small C# console program that uses ADO.NET to interface with a local database instance, performing basic tasks such as selecting/inserting/deleting rows and calling stored procedures. This was a great exercise and really gave me a solid basic foundation for coded database interaction. Soon, I will begin applying those concepts to writing some C# code related to gathering database performance metrics.
I also completed a number of other small projects. I finished my research into Silverlight web testing and wrote up a document presenting my findings. I also fixed a couple of issues with the suite of web tests I had written previously, and have begun writing an internal troubleshooting document for web performance tests.
I had a moment of excitement when the tests I wrote turned up what looked like a bug, but it turned out to be a known issue… so the search continues for my career-first bugfind.
Culture-wise, I picked up my cards for the employee Magic: the Gathering league and made my deck. I will be playing approximately 15 games over the next five weeks against various coworkers; this will not only be fun, but be a great chance to network.