Saturday, May 28, 2005

Oracle External Tables...

Have you played with Oracle external tables yet? They are perhaps one of Oracle's more overlooked features. I'm mostly interested in DBA/tuning uses of external tables at this point.

When they first came out in Oracle9i I wrote an article in SELECT for IOUG-A on using external tables to read your database alert log from within the database. I'm now using external tables to load the results of 10046 traces into the database (I have a presentation at OAUG on this topic). The results are interesting and fun to play with, that's for sure.

I'm really just starting to play with the 10046 traces in Oracle. I'm trying to figure out some different reports and different ways to play with the data. If you have any ideas, let me know. I'm also struggling with one part of the 10046 loads, that is getting the SQL statement to load into properly into the external table. I've tried several different ways, but so far it's not working like I think it should. I've not had time in the last couple of weeks to work with it again though...

So, I'm curious what kinds of DBA/development/tuning things have you done with external tables?

Friday, May 27, 2005

Those deadly knives...


Just wait, coming to a do-gooding senator or representative near you.... they want our guns, it will be our knives next! Hey, they only want to protect us... right?

These people just have way to much time on their hands folks. It also clearly makes Paul Harvey's point, "Self-government without self-discipline ......."

I really should write something about Oracle, eh?


Tuesday, May 24, 2005


OK, so in a twist of direction, I thought I'd share my thoughts on HTMLDB.

I've been working with it for a couple of months now I guess. I have to tell you that this is a great environment to develop in. I have really enjoyed the experience. It's a solid product, and the Oracle HTMLDB forum is just remarkable. The actually HTMLDB developers are there... often your question has already been asked and answered on the forum, and the answer is from one of the developers themselves!

I won't say that HTMLDB is simple, certainly basic development is easy. Like anything else, complexity and logic requirements can add to the HTMLDB learning curve. Still, I'd say in spite of this, the learning curve is frequently not as steep as it might be with other languages.

My plan is to start learning more java script so I can integrate that into my HTMLDB screens... but for now, I'm covered up with design paperwork.... so maybe in the future I'll be able to get to it.

So, if you are looking at needing to do some web development, look into HTMLDB.

Monday, May 23, 2005

Iraq.... so many miss the point...

Left, right .... what does it mean anyway?

I will say that when I talk about the "left" I don't distinguish between democrat or republican. There are leftist types on both sides of the isle. While I lean more towards the republicans, I don't see them as the white horse ready to save us and in fact I'm very disappointed in them on many fronts. I think freedom is at risk whoever is in office as long as we the people are content to sit back and let them govern us from a distance. I think freedom is at risk when we are so busy bickering and fighting for power (and make no mistake, that is what so much of the current political scene is about) that we lose sight of the real reason we are here on this planet, that being to aide our fellow man. (I'm sure that there are some exceptional people who are really motivated by what's right here)

I have heard those who have stated that Iraq is a bad war. They state this based on their belief that President Bush went to Iraq with intentions that were self-interest motivated. Based on this belief, they say the war is bad. I'm not sure I know one way or the other, who can read a man's mind? There are those who say we went looking for WMD's that were not there. I say, if we thought they were there, then we should have gone, no questions.

Still, I say, so what? The bottom line is that regardless of the reason that we got there, it was a morally correct decision for US to go there, for the same reason it was morally correct for us to be involved in World War Two. Since the reason is ultimately moral and absolutely correct, then we should be there no matter what the motivation of the commander and chief.

What is that reason? To me, the clear reason here is one word, Genocide. That to me is a trump card, don't pass go, don't collect 200 dollars. See:

Look at the pictures of the DEAD, GASSED children. Tell me this isn't a moral war.

Get beyond your political polar ice cap and thaw a bit. It is a moral and right war, if it stops the genocide. Period. How many human beings were killed by Sadam? How many more would need to be killed before we said enough is enough? When will we stop turning our head away? This isn't about freedom (which is a perfectly good reason in and of itself), this is about something even more basic. This is about the right to simply live.

So, is the fallout worth it? If one has vision, if one looks at the future with hope and *resolve*, then sure it does. Are the American deaths worth it? It's hard to say yes, but I think that we have to stand by our ideals, by our words. We proclaim freedom to the world. It's high time we put our money and our might where our mouth is. It's high time we did this with might and vigor and with a united people who say "This is where it stops. This is where the evil stops. This is the line, and none shall cross it and live to return again."

Also, do we refuse to do the right thing because the consequences of doing the right thing might be bad? Do we refuse to do the right thing because it might make us look imperial, or it might offend a particular group of religious people? The right thing is often the most difficult, gut wrenching thing one can ever do. Doing the right thing can and does cost lives, sometimes in the end, it can cost more lives than it saves. Doing the right thing was never easy, but it is right.

I wonder, do you think the survivors of the holocaust camps ever once wondered if the allied forces were doing the right thing? Do you think they sat and debated over the political merits of the Soviets getting East Germany in the end, or if Monty or Dwight should lead the charge into France? Do you think the Jews being paraded into the execution chambers thought much about the changing political landscape as the US came into World War Two? Do you, REALLY? Do you question the rightness of World War Two? Only a truly heartless person could ever question that the mass death of any group is worthy of the title "evil".

So, should we get out of Afghanistan or Iraq now, I think not. Now is not the time. We must stand firm in our resolve, we must show them that we are right, and that we know that we are right. Let our vision be in terms not of days or weeks or months. Let us be selfless and realize that this is about our children and grandchildren, thus our vision must be in terms of decades and centuries. We must teach, educate and show them we love them. We must be good and consistent examples. It takes time. Years of fostered hate can not be undone in a year, or a decade. It's an investment though that pays centuries of dividends. Do we love our children and do we love our fellow man, to invest that kind of time? I certainly hope so.

There are other places to go, and horrors to stop. Do we have the guts to take those on? Probably not unless there is political motivation. And that is a shame.
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