Interview with Peter Spiro - Building Great Databases
This is great video from Channel 9 - an interview with Peter Spiro, a Technical Fellow and Distinguished Engineer at Microsoft. It's probably an understatement to describe Peter's career path as "unconventional", a path that lead to him eventually to accept a role at Microsoft in 1994 within the database team as an architect, going on to manage the dev team and building SQL Server's technical team to where it is today. This is after studying Forestry and stint as a charcoal maker in Mali, West Africa.
In the interview, Peter discusses lessons learnt through his various career experiences, including the people / management skills acquired, the technical challenges involved in solving complex software problems, thoughts on leadership, mentoring & coaching and his approach to recruiting and growing technical talent. He also gets to draw his favorite data structure in the interview.
The question asked by by Bill Hill toward the end of the interview was unusual "What did nature teach you about software?"
And yes, the beard is real and according to Sam Druker is probably around 15 years old. Btw, Sam (my old boss during my stint with Data Programmability team) also appears in the video describing how Peter <didn't> recruit him into the team.
Five out of five for this one.