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Archive for the ‘Writing’ Category.

New Guitar

I turned in the first draft of my last chapter in Expert Oracle Exadata last weekend. Tanel and Randy are working on their last chapters so we should be done with the basic material in a matter of days. We’ll still have a fair amount of editing work to do, but that’s a lot easier than coming up with the first pass at the material (which feels a little like giving birth). So as a reward to myself I bought a new guitar.

The picture’s a little dark, but check out the awesome paisley case in the background. I chickened out and didn’t play it on Sunday at my church gig. (takes a little while to get used to a new guitar don’t you know) Maybe next week. πŸ˜‰

I’ve Updated the White Papers/Presentation Page

I finally took a little time to update the page with some of the presentations I’ve done over the last couple of years. You can get there via the menu bar above or by clicking here: White Papers/Presentations

Maybe some day I’ll have time to organize all the scripts.

Expert Oracle Exadata Book Available as Part of Apress Alpha Program

I’ve had several inquiries about whether our upcoming Exadata book is part of the “Alpha” program at Apress. Honestly, I wasn’t even familiar with the program so I asked our editor, Jonathan Gennick, and found out that our book is part of the program. Tanel already did a post explaining how it works here:

I just wanted to follow up with a quick post since I’d had a few questions about it already. It’s actually pretty cool if you are anxious to get your hands on the material. It’s also interesting because you can see how the book writing process goes. You basically have access to draft versions of chapters as the authors turn them in – warts and all. Then you’ll get emails when the chapters are updated as they go through the reviewing and editing process. Here’s a link to the Apress page where you can see all the details:

So welcome to the future where everyone can see everything you’re doing. Next thing you know we’ll all be wearing jet packs.

Exatadata Book 2

I have been getting quite a few questions about our upcoming Exadata Book lately so I thought I would post a quick update. We are working feverishly on it so please give us a break!

Just kidding!

I am actually feeling like we can see the light at the end of the tunnel now. We are well past the half way mark and I am feeling confident about the content. Well more than confident actually. I think it’s going to be awesome! In large part that’s due to the fact that I feel like we have the Dream Team working on the project. Tanel Poder has signed on as a co-author. Kevin Closson is the Official Technical Reviewer (and we’re tentatively planning on including a number of his comments in the book – in little “Kevin Says” sidebars). As one of the main architects of Exadata, this should provide some interesting perspective. Arup Nanda has volunteered as an unofficial technical reviewer as well. I have to say that Arup has been a great help. And I really appreciate him providing another perspective on what we’re writing about. All three of these guys are fellow Oak Table bretheren, by the way. Randy Johnson is the other co-author, and although he generally prefers to keep a low profile, he is extremely knowledgeable on things that the rest of us don’t deal with that much on a day to day basis, namely backup and recovery and storage configuration. He has a great RAC and ASM background as well. I have to also say that a guy none of you has ever heard of (Andy Colvin) has been a huge help as well. He is our in-house Exadata patching guru. Without him I’m not sure we would have been able to do the necessary testing to complete the book.

I must say that I feel honored to be involved in a project with such an accomplished group of guys. And by the way, we have had numerous offers from people that I have a lot of respect for to help with various aspects of the project. I want to thank all of you for those offers, even if we haven’t taken you up on all of them (our little brains can only absorb so much feedback at any one time). The book is actually available for pre-order on the Amazon already (so someone must think we are actually going to finish it pretty soon). I think we’reΒ  right on track for later spring delivery. πŸ™‚

I’m in the Wrong Business

Well I stayed at home today to do some writing on a book project while one of my sons and one of my daughters and my wife went to the Fort Worth Natural Science Museum. So I was feeling a little overworked and like I was missing out because I’ve been slaving away writing “scholarly technical material”. Then I got a text from my son. Just a picture that’s all.

I’m sure these two books will probably sell a few orders of magnitude more copies than any book that I contribute to. Kind of puts it all in perspective. I think next weekend I’ll go to the zoo with them.

Exadata Book

Here’s some white Exaddata text

Well, I guess it’s official. A couple of weeks ago I committed to write an Exadata book for Apress, along with my intrepid co-author Randy Johnson. For those of you who don’t know Randy, he’s a very experienced Oracle Guy with a wealth of knowledge, particularly around RAC. I think the two of us make a pretty good team – making up for each others weaknesses (oh wait, I should say we have “Complimentary Skill Sets” – yeah that sounds better).

Anyway, it turns out that writing a book is a lot of work! The way Tom Kyte turns them out I thought it must be pretty easy, but I’ve always been a little overconfident. So I’m starting to realize that I may not have time to do as many blog posts as I might like. But I must say that I am really excited about the subject matter! So I think it will be worth the effort. By the way, that’s not the official cover art (or even the official title as far as I know). I just hacked that together with a Adobe Illustrator. πŸ˜‰

As I have said many times, I think the Exadata storage software will usher in a whole new era in relational databases. Not just for Oracle, because you know the other guys will be trying to follow in their footsteps. But I think Oracle is miles ahead at this point, and they own their own hardware platform. Oracle claims that it has been their most successful product launch ever and I believe it. They are starting to pop up like weeds. It will be very interesting to see what the future holds for this platform. To be honest, I think we’re just seeing the tip of the iceberg at this point. Anyway, I appreciate the guys at Apress having the faith in us to take on this project. I hope we don’t disappoint them (I don’t think we will).

Writing Some Chapters in a Book

My friend Karen Morton asked if I would be willing to contribute to a book that she is working on (i.e. write a few chapters). Of course I said yes. The book’s title is Pro Oracle SQL and it is to be published by Apress sometime before the end of the year (my first deadline is fast approaching).

Karen is the lead author, but there are also several co-authors involved in this project, all of whom I have a lot of respect for. Here’s the List (in alphabetical order by last name):

Robyn Sands
Riyaj Shamsudeen
Jared Still

If you’re reading this you are probably already familiar with Apress. They have published a number of Oracle books by notable authors including Tom Kyte, Jonathan Lewis and Chris Antognini. They have also published a few collaborations by members of the Oak Table Network. So I am happy to be joining that illustrious group.Β  Anyway, I am particularly excited about getting to write the chapter on Plan Stability and Control which is a subject near and dear to my heart. So I’ll get to drone on about Outlines, Profiles, and Baselines – among other things. You can pre-order the book from Amazon. πŸ˜‰