Live Power Query Web Course: Mastering M, A Deep Dive Into the Language That Powers Power Query

Mastering M class graphic

Want to master, to understand M, the language that powers Power Query?

Maybe you are comfortable writing M code, but you realize there is more to M which you could leverage as you craft mashups—if only you had a deeper mastery of the language. You want to take your M code skills to the next level, to go from coding in M to being well-versed in the breadth of what the language offers.

Instead, perhaps your comfort level with M is limited. You searching online, find a code fragment which you copy into your project, then make basic edits to tweak its behavior. Maybe at the start of your Power Query journey, this was satisfactory—but now you’re ready to go beyond hacking someone else’s code examples (that somehow seem to work) or cobbling together your own code snippets to actually understanding what they do and why they work. Maybe you even want to go beyond this to writing your own mashups from scratch, so you can make them do precisely what you want.

In either case: You already use Power Query to work with data. You know what M code is—perhaps just a little, perhaps fairly comfortably. Now, you’re ready to take your data mashing up to the next level. You want to master, you want to deeply understand M—the language that powers Power Query.

Sound like you? Then join me for a systematic exploration of the M language, a deep dive into the language at the heart of Power Query!


Upcoming Classes

  • June 27–29 (Tuesday—Thursday)
    Each day: 9 am—1 pm Eastern Daylight Time

Cost

  • $625 USD
  • $575 USD if registering 2+ weeks in advance
  • Other Discounts Available:
    • Alumni Discount: Attended this class before? Then take $125 off the applicable regular or early rate!
    • Group Discount: $50 per registration. Applies to 2 or more non-alumni registrations being paid for using a single payment.

Topics

  • The Journey Begins
    Drinking from the fire hydrant: A crash course in how to read M code.
  • Simple Scalars: number, text, date/time/datetime/datetimezone, duration, logical, null
    Meet the basic “bits” of M life that make up most values in its universe. While not glamorous, scalars are the base on which more exciting things like lists and tables are built on, so a sound grasp of these values are important.
  • Building Blocks: functions, records, let expressions
    Weave, reuse and compose code using these constructive components. Functions allow logic to be compartmentalized and reused. Records organize related data. Then there’s the ubiquitous let, which as we’ll learn is basically a record in disguise.
  • Sensational Streamables: lists, tables
    A tranquil brook? A rushing river? At the heart of most Power Query activities are things streamed, particularly tables. But what exactly is streaming? Essential to effective M coding is a solid understanding of table, its cousin the list, and the key concept of streaming. In this segment, we tackle these data types; later, we delve into the important concept of streaming.
  • Facing Faults: error handling
    When things go wrong, what’s a person to do? M’s error handling is easy to code, but, as you’ll learn, can be tricky to apply in the right place to achieve the desired effect.
  • Philosophical Ponderings: streaming, query folding, firewall
    a.k.a. How Power Query Thinks
    Beyond the raw beauty of the language, there’s the environment in which it operates and the methodology it uses, encompassing important concepts such as streaming, query folding + expression auto-optimization and the firewall. A deep dive into these realms could fill a course of its own, so this course will suffice itself with just getting our toes wet by presenting the basic rudiments.

What Others Have To Say

Note: This class’s title formerly started with “Meet M” instead of “Mastering M.” This old title is reflected in some of the testimonials below.

Ben is an excellent teacher, first explaining Power Query’s M language, then illustrating his points with examples and finishing each section with exercises that help put the concepts into practice. Questions are encouraged at each step and he listens carefully before answering, engaging his students in order to clarify the way the language works. His mastery of M and his wide-ranging knowledge of databases in general allow him to address questions about how Power Query works within the larger realm of data analysis in general.

Scott B.

Power Query is game-changing technology. VLOOKUPs, custom VBA code, manual data aggregations, etc., may soon be things of the past.

While the programming language is very powerful, it is difficult for someone to learn or master. We have the language specification here, the function reference there, and books published by Microsoft MVPs, but there’s still a void after getting through all of that material.

That’s where Ben’s class comes in!

I took Ben’s class, and all the pieces started to connect. It was three days of well-structured content. He takes you on a journey from the basics to the most complicated concepts, such as environments, closures, and query folding and streaming.

I think Ben’s Primer is the #1 source for ramping up in power query, so just imagine how much I thoroughly enjoyed his class. In fact, I have a better appreciation and understanding of his online content after taking the course.

This class is for anyone who works with Excel or Power BI that wants to stand out from the crowd. Simply getting by is not enough. You need to master the technology and all of its arcane components, and Ben can help you get that done—quickly.

Kareem, United States

I attended the course: Meet M, A Deep Dive Into the Language That Powers Power Query, by Ben Gribaudo.

This course has taken my knowledge in M to a whole new level!

It’s not easy to find a course that provides you with an understanding on how Power Query “thinks”, but this course does just that.

It has helped me to understand the main concepts of the M language.

After attending to this class, my confidence with M has increased significantly!

Thank you so much Ben, for your patience and the knowledge that shared with our group during these 3 days.

Alejandra Horvath
Canada
YouTube channel

Recently I attended the course Meet M: The Language That Powers Power Query! by Ben Gribaudo. This course provides a great understanding of the main concepts of the Power Query engine and the M language. There aren’t many courses available who take you on a tour of the M language, but I believe this to be a premium course and a must follow for anyone who want to grasp the way Power Query thinks. After attending the class, I feel much more comfortable reading and writing M and more importantly it gave me the insights to improve my own work.

Chiel F., Netherlands

I am a Microsoft Certified Trainer who regularly teaches Power BI. I realized that I need to ‘skill up’ in Power Query Editor and its’ associated language, M. I was aware of Ben’s blog, but much of what was on it was ‘above my head’. When I saw that he offered a class, I jumped at the chance to take it. I just completed the class and I learned so much, both theoretical and practical. He presents the material and builds in time for exercises practicing the skills he has demonstrated. He is incredibly knowledgeable about the Power Query Editor and M. I came to the class with LOTS of questions about M and the behavior of the PQE and I left with lots of answers! I also left with a desire to take another class with Ben, either diving deeper into the exercises or deeper into the theory. Either way, I am very happy I took this class. If you are wondering if you should take it, I would say that if you have used the PQE UI extensively, and/or dabbled in editing the M you are a good candidate. Or if you have always wondered WHY PQE does the things it does, you are a good candidate. Thanks so much, Ben, for offering this great class!

Jessica Jolly
Owner, ALT-Enter, LLC
Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT)

I attended Ben Gribaudo’s course “Meet M: The Language That Powers Power Query!” in April 2022, and it was worth it for every cent and second spent.

Ben managed to make me understand a few concepts that I struggled to understand for a while. Query Folding is one of those concepts.

Ben puts his technical background to use with a very organized, coherent, calm, and clear speech, offering his students a new perspective on how Power Query and the M Language work. Gaining this better understanding of how things work behind the scenes and why they work a certain way allows me to deal with Power Query with less resistance against the technical challenges and approach the problem I want to solve from new points of view and with new skills.

I recommend Ben Gribaudo’s course to anyone interested in leveling up their Power Query game.

Celia Alves
Solve & Excel, Canada
Microsoft Most Valued Professional (MVP), Microsoft Certified Trainer (MCT)

Thank you, Ben, for a fantastic ‘Meet M’ course! It was exactly the course I was looking for and delivered at exactly the level I needed. It has provided me with the background I need to make better use of the M language and to better help guide my clients through their own use of M. It also prompted me to go back through some old M projects and make them both more readable and more efficient! Not only was the content great, but the course was delivered in a friendly style with plenty of exercises to put the learning to work. Fantastic!

Alan Harman-Box
Trainer/Consultant
Burningsuit, United Kingdom

Could not speak more highly of Ben or the course Meet M. Exceptional content with a clear pathway to building foundation knowledge starting with the first principles of M. The level of knowledge we gained will be critical to us as we start to build and better understand the language and its use cases.

Alison & Dom

Ben’s course is a good dive into M, the language behind Power Query/Dataflows. I thoroughly enjoyed the course. To make the best out of the class make sure to read the introductory posts of Ben’s Primer, so that you can get the most out of the class. Happy data mashing.

Franco

Thanks for the great class! I really appreciated Ben’s willingness to pause and answer questions from a newbie! Came back to work energized to tackle some things that had been eluding me.

Paul

Details

  • Goal: Enable you to go further with Power Query by providing a broad, deep, sound foundation in the M programming language, including how to work with tables at the M language level.
  • Training Style: A systematic walk-through of the language (with examples) covering a majority of the M language’s features along with an exploration of how key components in the Power Query environment work (like query folding and privacy levels/data protection firewall).
  • Class Size: Small group. Limited to about 15 students.
  • Intended Audience:
    • You have some level of familiarity with M code—somewhere in the spectrum between “I’ve touched it” to “I’m comfortable with it.”
    • A formal programming background is not required, but comfortableness in grasping some level of technical concepts is important.
  • Requirements:
    • Computer with audio and video capabilities (web cam optional).
    • Stable Internet connection.
    • Microsoft Power BI Desktop or Microsoft Excel 365/2019 installed.
    • Microsoft Teams desktop client installed (highly recommended).
      • Teams will be used to deliver the course. To ensure a quality experience, the desktop client should be used instead of the web-browser-based version.
    • Enough students to sign up for each class in order to make it viable to conduct. (If enough don’t sign up, a full refund will be given.)
  • Instructor: Ben Gribaudo, author of the Power Query M Primer series, longtime BI developer, database engineer, programmer and technical architect.

Register

To sign up, drop Ben an email.