[Video] SQL Query Optimization: Why Is It So Hard to Get Right?

The first paper on cost-based query optimization was published in 1979 by Patricia Selinger from IBM Research. This paper laid the basic framework for optimizing relational queries that is still in place today. While there have been many technical enhancements since 1979, query optimizers still fail to pick the best plan when faced with a complex SQL query.

In this talk I will describe the basic mechanisms used by modern query optimizers including plan enumeration, the use of histograms to estimate selective factors, and plan costing. I will also talk about a new approach to query optimization that I believe will revolutionize the optimization of queries in the cloud.

About the presenter – Dr. David DeWitt has positively wowed audiences at the PASS Summit over the years, consistently delivering amazing technical keynote presentations. You can read his bio at LinkedIn, or check out his Wikipedia page, or his past work at the University of Wisconsin. He could talk about pretty much anything, and I’d listen.

Here are the slides, but note that they use animations extensively – for the best effect, download the PowerPoint directly and step through it in presenter mode to see the animations.

Making a Donation

Dr. DeWitt and I are trying to raise funds and awareness for the Robert Davis Memorial and Grief Fund. Robert Davis (aka @SQLSoldier) passed away very unexpectedly earlier this year, leaving behind his wife, Chrissy. For years, Robert took very good care of so many of us in the community – tirelessly answering questions on Twitter, Stack Exchange, forums, or anywhere that he could help out. He never asked for your money, but I’m asking for you to make a donation to the grief fund to help Chrissy the same way Robert helped all of us.

Every dollar helps. Suggested donation for the webcast is $25 – but if you can give more, by all means, please do.

Donate to the Robert Davis Memorial and Grief Fund now.

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