Girl 99…

When I was at University I lived in shared houses with the author of Girl 99, Andy, for several years. We were on the same degree course and both stayed on to do PhDs. When he left to go to London I shared a house with his (then) girlfriend for a year before she left Uni. Suffice to say, over those years I got to know the guy pretty well.

A few days ago I got an email to say his book was available in the Kindle store so I immediately bought a copy and started reading. It’s kinda weird reading a novel written by a friend, because part of you is looking for the pieces of them that have made it into the characters. It is a long way from being an autobiography, but I can spot elements of the author, and possibly other people we knew, in the book. Of course, I could probably say the same of any number of books if I were looking for the connections. 🙂

So what about the story itself?

“William Fisher is on a mission to bring the total number of his sexual conquests up to 100.

During the course of his quest he sleeps with a colleague, a colleague of a friend, a friend of a friend, a friend of a friend’s wife, the estate agent selling his flat, and several more besides. Everything is going, if not well, then at least according to plan … and then Fisher goes and ruins it all by falling for Girl 99.

Girl 99 is a story about love, sex and the sticky area in-between.”

It’s really cool. The lead character had a good mix of funny, sad, frustrating and endearing qualities. Some scenes resulted in full on belly laughs, while others were of a more reflective nature.

The writing style was really comfortable to read and it was paced well, making me a little annoyed when I had to put it down. 🙂

If you fancy reading it, I would love to hear your feedback, as would the author in the Amazon reviews…

Call me biased, but I’m looking forward to reading the next book from this author. I’ve already suggested the lead character should be a boring, fat science graduate that stumbles into an IT job… 🙂

Cheers

Tim…

Oracle Database File System (DBFS) in Oracle 12c : WebDav Support?

On a yoga course a teacher said to the group, “Don’t try to remember everything I say. Some things will come back to haunt you later.”

So I was reviewing a couple of chapters of Marcelle Kratochvil‘s multimedia book and she mentioned DBFS. That jogged a memory of the DBFS demo stand at OOW12, where the guy told me that 12c will (probably) have WebDAV support for DBFS.

DBFS is a neat feature, but it’s a little frustrating if you are using any OS other than Linux because you are forced to use a client utility with limited functionality, rather than accessing it like a regular file system as you can on Linux using the FUSE project. If this WebDAV functionality does get released in 12c it will make it accessible from pretty much any OS or browser.

Not surprisingly, it uses the XML DB infrastructure, which has supported WebDAV since its introduction on Oracle 9i (here). I seem to remember hearing XML DB is a mandatory feature from Oracle 12c onward, which means you will be able to use DBFS on any database running 12c or above.

Remember, all this was prefixed with a Safe Harbor slide, so there are no guarantees this will make it to the production release…

Cheers

Tim…

 

 

Movember at ORACLE-BASE.com…

Movember is coming to ORACLE-BASE.com…

You will be able to track my progress here: http://mobro.co/timseanhall

If you can afford to make a donation, no matter how small, it would be much appreciated!

I’ll try and post a photo each day for the whole month, so you can see how bad I am at growing facial hair. 🙂

Cheers

Tim…

PS. I feel really nervous now. It’s suddenly become very real!

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) : Context is everything…

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is definitely an important issue for companies and IT departments, but what the vast majority of reporters and CEOs seem to forget is that context is extremely important.

Looking at this from a company perspective, when we are talking about phones and tablets, then BYOD is a pretty important issue. It seems to be creeping into the laptop side of business a little, but as far as desktops are concerned, BYOD it is virtually non-existent. So when Marc Benioff talks about the affect of BYOD on Windows 8 uptake I think he is living in some sort of dream land. I’m not suggesting Windows 8 will be a success in business, but it’s failure will not be down to BYOD.

Ignoring the board rooms and the sales teams, who are essentially consumers, the real IT work in companies is still being done on PCs. Yes, you can use a cloud service on your phone, but look around the office and you will see those cloud services are actually being used by people on PCs. Applications such as Oracle Fusion Apps have mobile device interfaces, but typically people will be sitting at a PC doing all the real work, not using some crappy little software keyboard. This idea that the office is full of people doing their job on an iPhone is just stupid.

Since we are going to have PCs on our desks for quite some time, then Microsoft are going to do OK. The PC on your desk at work will be replaced and Microsoft will get their pound of flesh, because there is no real alternative. Apple is a tiny fraction of this market and Linux desktops have never taken off. Whether the company install Windows 7 or Windows 8 is another issue, but Microsoft get paid all the same.

So please stop insulting our intelligence by telling us BYOD is a game changer on the office desktop. It’s not!

Note. I’m looking at this from a company IT perspective, so don’t start telling me how your granny got rid of her PC and happily replaced it with an iPad! Your Granny is not running SalesForce.com!

Cheers

Tim…

 

WebLogic and Forms & Reports Services Articles Updated…

I ran through a Forms & Reports Services installation on WebLogic 10.3.6 this morning, so I made some minor tweaks to my existing 10.3.5 articles on that subject.

The current spin of Forms & Reports Services has a prerequisite check for 10.3.5, so you just have to turn off the prerequisites check using this.

$ ./runInstaller -ignoreSysPrereqs

Apart from that it’s pretty much business as usual.

Cheers

Tim…

VirtualBox 4.2.2 Released…

I knew there was something missing from my life. It seems ages since I’ve updated all my VirtualBox guest additions. 🙂

VirtualBox 4.2.2 is available, with the changelog and downloads in the usual place.

Happy upgrading.

Cheers

Tim…

Knowledge Spreading at Work…

During my PhD our lab would have Friday meetings where we would take turns (3-4 people each week) to stand up and talk about scientific papers we had read recently. It was on a rota, so you only had to speak about once a month, but I truly hated it. I would go as far as to say I preferred taking my turn to clean the hot lab (the room we did all the radioactive stuff in), even if my mate Big Steve had spilt stuff all over the place, which he did on a regular basis…

Fast forward the best part of 20 years and I’m pretty comfortable with this whole speaking thing, so I suggested it might be a good idea if we start some type of regular meeting at work to help with the knowledge spreading. I spoke to Connor McDonald about this a few years ago. It was something he used to do in a previous company…

So next Tuesday begins the first of our fortnightly 1 hour meetings. Initially I will be doing all the presenting, but I’m hoping over the coming weeks some people will pluck up enough courage to give it a go, even if it’s just for a 10 minute slot. I’ve got a whole bunch of stuff I can present on, so what does the boss ask me to do for the first one? The talk I’m giving at UKOUG this year, which I’ve not written yet… 🙂 Looks like I better knuckle down over the next few evenings and get something written.

I’m quite looking forward to doing it. I’ve said I will take requests, so I’m hoping it gives me some inspiration for new articles or conference presentations.

Cheers

Tim…

Repairman Jack : Nightworld…

Nightworld is (sort-of) the sixteenth book in the Repairman Jack series by F. Paul Wilson.

The days are getting shorter, the stars are changing and all hope is lost… Or is it?

Having thought that I had finished this series at book 15, it seemed a little daunting to start book 16, but I’ve made it my mission to finish this book as soon as possible. As I’ve mentioned a number of times, this is one dark series of books. I would go as far as to describe them as depressing. I do like the Jack character a lot, but my liking of him does not outweigh the toll this series of books takes on you. I feel like a need a course of Prozac now…

Whatever I read next, it better be bright and breezy!

Cheers

Tim…

Android Jelly Bean 4.1.2 on my Nexus 7…

I turned on my Nexus 7 last night and it asked if I wanted to upgrade to Android 4.1.2 (Jelly Bean). The install was pretty quick and went through with no dramas.

I’m not all that interested in the whole Android thing. To be honest, I can’t even be bothered to check the change log. It’s just an enabling technology for me, not something I’m passionate about. What I can say it that it has finally fixed the home page swivel issue. In case you hadn’t heard, the Nexus 7 automatically orientates the screen to whichever way you are holding it, except for the home page which always stays in portrait mode. Not any more. Finally it too can swivel.

I was never sure why this screen didn’t act like all the others, but it seems Google has responded to the criticism and sorted it.

Cheers

Tim…