RMOUG Presentations

Like many other DBAs, I’ll be attending RMOUG training days conference on Feb 17-18 in Denver. I’ll give two presentations in the conference. On the same day, just thinking about it makes me exhausted.

The first presentation is “Everything DBAs need to know about TCP/IP Networks”. Here’s the paper and the slides. I’ll also present this at NoCOUG‘s winter conference in Pleasanton, CA. Maybe you prefer to catch me there.

The second presentation is “Analyzing Database Performance using Time Series Techniques”. Here’s the paper and the slides.

I still have time to improve the presentations and papers – so comments are very welcome 🙂

Visualization Session at OOW Unconference

OOW is next week, and on Monday, October 12, 4:00pm PST, I’ll be giving my unconference session about visualization.

Visualization is a big topic. What I’m going to talk about is:

  1. Why visualization is such an amazing tool for DBAs. Not just for newbies, it is actually more effective for experienced DBAs. I’ll explain why.
  2. Lots of examples of how you can use different graphs to explore your data set from different angles. I’ll show you some graphs you are familiar with (Histograms), and some that you probably don’t use (QQNorm). I’ll explain when to use each graph type.
  3. Stories about visualization – how a visualization mistake caused a manager to panic and cancel an important maintenance for instance.
  4. Some suggestions on how to format graphs so they’ll have maximum effect in documents, emails and presentations.
  5. If anyone is interested, I can show how I work with R to do visual data analysis. But its not in the slides, so you’ll have to ask for it.

One thing I will not mention:

Edward Tufte.

I know that everyone who talks about visualization talks about him, but I won’t. He does those amazing graphs and demonstrates how powerful visualization can be. I use Excel and R to create my graphs. They are not beautiful or amazing, and they can still be very very effective. This means that you will be able to easily reproduce everything I do in my presentation. You don’t need to be a talented designer to use graphs effectively.

See you on Monday!

NoCoug Winter Conference and Method-R Seminar

North California DBAs – Mark your calanders because May is going to be a busy month 🙂

On May 19-20 Cary Millsap and Karen Morton will give their famous “Oracle Performance for Developers” seminar in Pleasanton. Register on Method-R website, but don’t forget to register to NoCoug first, so you’ll get a member discount on the seminar.

Then, May 21 is NoCoug’s Winter Conference. Cary Millsap will give the keynote, Karen Morton will talk about managing statistics (and hopefully do her magic tricks!), Gaja Krishna Vaidyanatha will give two hours of stand-up comedy about the SAN, Dave Abercrombie will talk about the user of session tags for end-to-end troubleshooting and monitoring.

I’ll also be there, this time presenting “Troubleshooting Streams”. It is an updated version of my OOW presentation. There won’t be a live demo this time, and I’ll talk much more about the way streams work and how to build systems that will require less troubleshooting in the future.

HotSos 2009 Highlights

HotSos was amazing. Here are some of the things I loved best about it:

  1. The people. Attendees and presenters a like. Everyone was smart, insightful and had a good story to share. People who met me there may have trouble believing that I’m normally very shy and quiet. But everyone was so nice and interesting that I found myself talking to many more people than I normally do. This was an incredible social event (yes, and I’m geeky enough to consider conferences as social events).
  2. Chris Date presentation was fascinating. I usually stay away from “useless theory”, but Chris Date gave a good show, and from now on I’ll always remember that “An Object is not a Relation!”.
  3. Karen Morton did magic tricks on her presentation! That was by far the coolest thing I’ve seen on any technical conference.
  4. Henry Poras was the best discovery of the symposium. Everyone says that Queue Theory is important, but only Henry can show you how to use it to identify bottlenecks.
  5. Toons Koppelaars had some very good insights about what went wrong with app development, and he created great graphics to explain them.
  6. Ah, my own presentation was… well, I’m not sure. I got mixed feedback.  A lot of people showed up, I hope most of them enjoyed it, and I learned a lot on how to improve my presentation style.
    BTW. I put up a presentation page, which contains my paper, slides, code etc.
  7. Seeing the HotSos staff dressed as pirates! It was a great party.
  8. Jonathan Lewis training day was great. I did not think I can stay fascinated for 8 hours.
  9. People came up to me and said “I like your blog”. You have no idea how happy this made me 🙂

Troubleshooting Streams @ Openworld Unconference

Thanks for everyone who attended the session – you were attentive, intelligent and supportive audience, I couldn’t have hoped for better. I was especially stoked to see Lewis Cunningham in the audience, since he i an expert on the topic. Thank you Lewis for giving encouraging nods throughout the session 🙂
I definitely got an appetite for speaking a bit more, and I’m now furiously scribbling and sending abstracts. I hope to see you in my future presentations. 

I promised to upload my material, so here we go:


  • Powerpoint (including the component diagram)
  • Script for creating the replication environment (intentionally buggy!) and also (working) script for removing the replication. This creates replication from HR schema to a new schema called MYHR, but only  replicates one table.
  • Script with troubleshooting queries used in the session.