OOW2K7 – Day 1

11:00 – GRID Design  – I arrived late to this session due to traffic delays, but I still managed to get most of it. It was interesting, but not exciting. The speaker reminded us to pay close attention to throughput and not just to size, and to design for flexibility. He stormed through everything from buses to application design, but never got any details about any of them, just some general good advice.

1:15 – DBA 2.0 in the No Slide Zone – That was the big disappointment of the day.  the description in the content catalog seemed very interesting: “The next generation DBA will play a more strategic role in managing increasing numbers of complex and business-critical database systems. Learn how to take automation, management and decision-making to the next level”, and I assumed that Tom Kyte will talk about how DBAs can  play a more strategic role in the organization.  This topic seemed interesting enough that I decided to skip Steven Feuerstein’s SQL Addiction talk and attend the DBA 2.0 session.
Unfortunately, the topic was in fact Enterprise Manager, in which I have very little interest, and Tom Kyte didn’t speak, he just played host. I felt significant physical pain as the audience laughed at the old DBA who was editing his scripts in Emacs and then applauded the new DBA who point and clicked his way through Enterprise Manager.
Shame on you Oracle, for the false advertisement.

2:00 – Richard Foote talks about Indexes at the Unconference. That was simply the best technical lecture I’ve heard all day, and maybe ever. Richard Foote is a very engaging speaker. He went over some facts and myths and really made everything much clearer to me. I’ll try to hear him tomorrow as well. It is so much fun to listen to someone who is actually passionate about what he is doing and doesn’t sound like an overtrained monkey.

3:15 – Storage Capacity Planning on the back of the envelope. This session was useful. The speaker briefly explained how to measure storage usage in an existing system and how to use this to estimate growth, and then went on to explain how to interpert the capacity capabilities of the hardware components – CPUs, drivers, devices, FC cards and routers, arrays and disks. Taking all this into account requires a rather large envelope, but it was a good session anyway.

4:30 – 11g Performance features. This was the most exciting session, simply because Oracle added many neat features in 11g. I never imagined that table compression could actually improve performance, I didn’t pay enough attention to secure files and they sound very exciting too, combine this with new cache capabilities, partitioning features and new advisors and all of the sudden I’m actually excited about 11g instead of the usual fear that production DBAs feel toward new versions.

This was a great day. My mind is about to blow from all the new information and this is only the first day of the conference. I hope that tomorrow I’ll be a bit less shell shocked.

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