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IT with Peak Effectiveness and Efficiency

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    Historians have described the period following the collapse of the Western Roman Empire (400 to 1400 AD) as the “Dark Ages.” Existing knowledge was lost and society regressed to a more primitive organization and technology. In IT, we do not learn from history. We routinely throw away existing knowledge to start over, constantly emerging from … Continue reading IT Entering the Dark Ages (Again)

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    TL;DR: Yes. Developers often ask me which language or tool they should use or learn. I have definite opinions on good and bad tools for various tasks, but the most important tip is to continue learning new technologies. This gives you joy in your life, prevents burnout, and provides a platform when the time comes … Continue reading Do You Need to Learn a New Technology?

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  • 04/21/17--01:14: Oracle Critical Patch Update
  • Oracle has released the latest quarterly critical patch update (CPU). The database gets off lightly this time with two moderate severity vulnerabilities in SQL*Plus and the Oracle JVM. On the other hand, Oracle Secure Backup is not very secure with a bug that can be remotely exploited without authentication. Bad. The Fusion Middleware stack gets 31 … Continue reading Oracle Critical Patch Update

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    In a famous Monty Python sketch, John Cleese tries to return a dead parrot to the shopkeeper where he bought it. However, the shopkeeper is impervious to reason and claims the clearly dead parrot is still alive. I just had a “dead parrot” moment with iTunes support. Their support used to be excellent, but the humans … Continue reading Why I Now Hate Apple (Hint: Chatbots)

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    Developers hate it when pesky users raise bug reports against their wonderful creations. I’m a developer myself and have sometimes found myself mystified why a specific piece of code didn’t work in a specific case. But don’t ever let developers tell the users that the code works fine, and the problem must be with the … Continue reading Don’t Let Developers Ruin Your Reputation

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  • 05/30/17--03:42: Cash is King
  • Medicins Sans Frontieres have an annual collection here in Denmark, and I was one of the volunteers going house-to-house to collect donations. I experienced quite a few people who didn’t have cash but still wanted to contribute. This is in alignment with recent surveys who show 21 percent of Europeans rarely use cash. However, the … Continue reading Cash is King

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  • 06/16/17--04:41: Oracle Cloud Strategy Fail
  • Oracle rose to database dominance by making their software freely available. Anybody can download a $100K+ enterprise edition database and use it for personal learning as long as he likes. The Oracle Cloud offerings, on the other hand, are strictly limited. You need to provide both a mobile phone number and a credit card number … Continue reading Oracle Cloud Strategy Fail

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    40 years ago, Fred Brooks told us in his book The Mythical Man-Month why full outsourcing couldn’t work. Since outsourcing was rare and difficult back then, nobody took note. Today, advances in communications and technology make outsourcing much easier. That doesn’t mean it will work. The reason is that IT work is not uniform. There … Continue reading Why Outsourcing Doesn’t Work

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    Lots of programmers insist on working late. That’s a bad idea. For every one time a programmer reaches “flow” state and effortlessly produce reams of brilliant code late at night, there are a hundred inefficient programming sessions with low productivity and high error rates. In most organizations, it is a near certainty that you will be … Continue reading Why working at night doesn’t work

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    In cloud vendor rankings, Oracle is often found somewhere in the pack of “other cloud providers,” way behind Amazon, Microsoft and Google. But on their home turf, the database, Oracle is moving towards its natural leadership position. In the latest Forrester Wave™ for Database-As-A-Service, Oracle is right behind AWS and Microsoft in the Leaders section. … Continue reading Oracle a Top-Three Cloud Provider

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    Many of my customers are still running venerable Oracle Forms applications that they have no intention of retiring or replacing. So when Oracle announced in support note 2310266.1 that “Oracle has no current plans to certify or support Java 9 with any version of Oracle Forms,” they were understandably worried. From Oracle’s standpoint, it makes … Continue reading Oracle Forms won’t run on Java 9 – now what?

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    Larry Ellison announced the self-patching database at OpenWorld this year. Until we get to that point, professional DBAs and system administrators need to keep their Oracle environments secure. Right now, that means at least installing the patches Oracle provides quarterly in the Critical Patch Updates (CPUs). The latest from October 2017 is one of the scariest I … Continue reading Scary Oracle security issues – patch now!

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    I’m often asked, “what does the future look like for an Oracle developer?” The answer is that the future for IT developers, in general, is bright, but the future for Oracle developers is more murky. Most people who consider themselves Oracle developers are using a very specific part of the Oracle product line – typically … Continue reading The Future of the Oracle Developer

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    I’m soon heading to Nürnberg for the Deutsche Oracle-Anwender Gruppe (DOAG) annual conference. I’m on the agenda with two presentations, both on Tuesday, Nov 21: “APEX, ADF, or ABCS? A real-life application built in 3 tools” in room Oslo at 8.30am “The Seven Ways of Building Oracle Applications” in room Hongkong at 2.00pm I know … Continue reading Which Oracle tools are popular?

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    I was asked on Quora “I have been given a choice to work either in ADF or PLSQL. What should I choose?” My answer is ADF, for many reasons: The programming language in ADF applications is Java, which is the most popular programming language. That means whatever you learn is applicable for the rest of your … Continue reading Should I work with ADF or PLSQL?

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  • 11/23/17--00:40: What Oracle developers think
  • I’m speaking at the German Oracle user group conference this week. This is one of the two big Oracle user group conferences in Europe and they have good technical content for Oracle developers. I’ve attended Forms, APEX, ADF and Oracle JET presentations, and it’s interesting to observe the differences between the communities. Oracle Forms developers … Continue reading What Oracle developers think

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  • 11/28/17--04:32: Oracle Forms is Not Extinct
  • I was at the German Oracle user group conference in Nürnberg last week, and one interesting observation was that there was a lot of Forms-related content. The distribution of development topics looked like this: One interesting feature presented by Oracle Forms product manager Michael Ferrante is the Forms Application Deployment Service (FADS). This functionality allows you to … Continue reading Oracle Forms is Not Extinct

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  • 12/05/17--00:26: How cool is Oracle?
  • In my short DOAG video, I opined that the APEX community wants to be cool. Many APEX developers took umbrage at that. There is nothing wrong with wanting to be cool. But as Oracle developers, we must realize we start at minus 10 on the coolness scale. Oracle has never been a first mover in development tools, … Continue reading How cool is Oracle?

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    For a long time, APEX was Oracle’s Excel-killer. With the ability to upload a CSV file and create a matching table and then build an application on top of that, this was the easiest way to convert a spreadsheet into a secure multi-user application. Visual Builder Cloud Service (VBCS) has now appeared as a serious … Continue reading The new Excel-killer from Oracle

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    You can change your life on any day of the year. But for some reason, incrementing the year counter in the Gregorian calendar makes more people aware of this fact. So should you change your life as an Oracle professional in 2018? If you are a DBA, the autonomous, self-driving database is not going to … Continue reading Do you need to learn something new in 2018?

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