Posted in: Technical Track

As you probably guessed I didn’t have a chance for a nap yesterday as I mentioned. All the usual suspects gathered in the Jury’s Inn pub sipping beer. Some of us went for dinner in the Indian restaurant after which I ended up in All Bar One and then later in Tap and Spile with more traditional old style atmosphere and nice selection of ales on tap. Even though they had Guinness, I decided to enjoy London Pride premium ale — very smooth with interesting combination of flavors. Indeed, “the sensation of angels dancing on the tongue” as described by Stephen Cox, a famous beer writer. But that was yesterday so moving on…

Unjustifiably early start today at 6:30 (your fault Christo). After registration, we tried to find some breakfast across the bridge from the rear entrance to the ICC but no luck. I always wanted to have a breakfast on the boat that is parked on the canal below the bridge and this morning we decided to wait until 9AM when it supposed to be open for breakfast according to the ad on it. No luck – it was still closed and looked dead at 9:05 and 15 minutes later I saw the boat leaving.

We had interesting speaker gifts — motion powered torch and radio:

motion powered torch and radio 1 motion powered torch and radio 2

I should say that later in the day I gave mine to Pete Scott. Pete was going it Iceland for a project at customer’s site and it’s very dark there during the winter so he definitely needs it more than I do. Alex Jr. should understand and forgive me and Christo might actually sacrifice his gift. :)

Tom Kyte’s keynote on 11g started with a poll — out of few hundred people there were 13 that worked with Oracle 4, 2 – with Oracle 3 and no one working with Oracle version 2 (version 1 didn’t exist as we all know now). Interesting that since 1994 we had new release every year on average — impressive pace. Inspired by one of Tom’s slides we’d had an interesting idea with Christo on how to scary managers away while they watching you recovering database behind your back (how many time that happen to you?). Fire up Google and search on “How to restore oracle database” — that will teach them! Don’t forget to use Oracle Safe Search when Google about Oracle, by the way.

The next session was from Tom Dale — “Virtualization in Production”. It was somewhat risky choice and it turned out to be a disappointment of the day. Tom was very nice presenter and presentation was actually very good but it wasn’t about what title says it is — it hardly touched topic of production database virtualization. It should have been titled like “Practical Virtualization Introduction” as it was about couple real-life implementation projects but it didn’t answer any of my concerns about production databases on VMware. So I would say that Tom did good job but I think the title was misleading.

The next presentation for me was Jonathan Lewis’ “Playing Russian Roulette with Silver Bullets”. What a surprising choice for a Russian Oracle DBA. Brilliant presentation. It wasn’t filled with lots of technical details but was of rather motivational nature and I think it was very close to the ideas of the BAAG Party. Couple interesting highlights:
ALTER SESSION set "_go_faster"=true; does work!
– “silver bullets are very expensive… especially if they miss!”

My next presentation was about scaling 6 node RAC cluster at CERN by Eric Grancher and Anton Topurov. Summary of the presentation — RAC is not a silver bullet (see above Jonathan’s session) but RAC does scale well providing application designed well and is RAC aware. I had a brief chat with Anton after presentation — I enjoyed few minutes to talk Russian.

My last session of the day was Joel Goodman’s — Oracle 10g: RAC Tuning Tips. It over-ran and was packed with technical details. It’s a pity that Joel couldn’t upload the presentation to the UKOUG web site — slides are part of Oracle University course and Oracle policy doesn’t allow to publish them. Very unfortunate.

By this time I was so tired that I had to go to the hotel and have a quick power nap even though it meant that I’m missing Melanie Caffrey’s presentation on Data Mining. I wanted to limit my nap to an hour and make it to Tom Kyte’s late session but I couldn’t wake up on time and missed it as well. However, I’m well rested now and it’s important as I won’t get much sleep this night and could fall asleep during my own presentation tomorrow.

I’m already late for Bloggers Meetup at Pitcher and Piano so I’m off now. Stay tuned — more to come.

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About the Author

What does it take to be chief technology officer at a company of technology experts? Experience. Imagination. Passion. Alex Gorbachev has all three. He’s played a key role in taking the company global, having set up Pythian’s Asia Pacific operations. Today, the CTO office is an incubator of new services and technologies – a mini-startup inside Pythian. Most recently, Alex built a Big Data Engineering services team and established a Data Science practice. Highly sought after for his deep expertise and interest in emerging trends, Alex routinely speaks at industry events as a member of the OakTable.

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