Oracle Midlands : Event #2

Just a quick reminder that the second Oracle Midlands event will be taking place on 25th March 2014.

At this event you will get a chance to see Graham Wood (my Dad) speaking about “Advanced ASH Architecture and Usage” and Nikolay Manchev speaking about “Using Clusterware 11g to protect single-instance databases”.

The event is sponsored by those kind folks at Red Gate Software, which means it is not going to cost you anything to come to the event. You can register here.

These events live or die based on your support. Please spread the word and come along. See you there!



Copyright Theft: not making my life easy!

Yesterday I was informed about someone stealing my content again. I take a pretty hard line to this these days. I used to be a little unsure about how to approach it, but now I just hit them with a DMCA take-down notice straight away. I’ve not got time to explain to everyone and their dog about copyright law…

So the current thief has nicked 35+ of my articles. I went to the DMCA Notice page and they say the usual stuff, except that you have to file a separate notice per blog post. All other services I’ve encountered allow you to post a single notice, listing all the offending posts. Not! (see update below)

So now I’m faced with posting 35+ notices, or not bothering. I’m posting the notices and a shitty email to By making this process significantly more clumsy than other service providers, they are playing into the hands of the thieves. I think this is an almighty fail on their part!



Update: have got back to me saying they have removed the offending content. They also said I should have posted a single DMCA notice for all the URLs on this blog. Easier said than done when the form prevents this! I think someone at needs to do some proper testing of their form.

OTN Yathra 2014 : It’s a Wrap

The OTN Yathra 2014 tour is over and I’m back home now. Here are all the blog posts from the tour.

Although I come from the second biggest city in the UK, Birmingham has a very slow pace in comparison to other UK cities. Friends had told me how busy India was, so I was quite nervous about this trip and how I would cope with it. My initial fears were confirmed during my first taxi ride from Amritsar airport to Jalandhar. Getting ill on the first morning of the tour wasn’t a good omen either. Once the kind folks at the Lovely Professional University sorted me out with some medical attention, things started to get better and I started to believe I might make it to the end of the tour alive. 🙂

As the tour progressed I got into my stride and really started to enjoy the whole process. As I’ve said many times, I’m not a fan of travelling, but I like being at different places. The travelling part of this tour was very strenuous, which was my own fault for choosing to do all 7 events, but that was easily outweighed by getting the opportunity to connect with the attendees and speakers in all the cities.

Here come the much deserved thank you messages:

  • Thanks to everyone from All India Oracle Users Group (AIOUG) involved in the organisation of this tour. Aman, SaiSatyendra and Murali did a great job of making the logistics as simple as possible.
  • Thank you to Oracle Corporation for the use of their offices and to all the Universities that let us visit them.
  • A big thank you goes out to Oracle Technology Network (OTN) and the Oracle ACE Program, without whom this tour would not have happened.
  • Thank you to my fellow speakers. I’m not sure I would have stayed sane on my journey from Jalandhar to Noida without the company of Raj Mattamal. 🙂 Raj, Debra and Hans were welcome distractions from the hours spent in airports, planes and taxis. Thanks everyone for putting up with me. Thanks to all the other speakers that dotted in and out for specific events. It was fun to hook up with you all.
  • Finally, thank you to all the attendees for coming and supporting this event! Without you being there, the events would not happen, so if you want to see more of these events in future, please join AIOUG and get your friends to join too. 🙂

My lasting memories of India will be:

  • Crazy traffic.
  • Fantastic food.
  • Very friendly people.

Until next time…



OTN Yathra 2014 : Chennai

Yesterday’s flight from Bangalore to Chennai was very short. It felt like less than an hour to me. Hans Forbrich wasn’t coming to this event, so it looked like Debra Lilley and I would be on our own for this journey, but we bumped into Kuassi Mensah at the airport. 🙂

The hotel was very nice, but doing in-room check in freaks me out. I know the hotels think it is something special, but I would rather check in at the front desk and go to my room on my own. There is something about having other people in my room that reminds me I am only one in a very long procession of people to use that space. Gives me the creeps…

Today’s Chennai event was held at the Loyola-ICAM College of Engineering and Technology (LICET), not far from our hotel. The keynotes from the University staff focussed on development of knowledge, rather than focussing just on facts or what skills you need to get a job. One of the slides read,

“Data becomes information when it is organised. Information becomes knowledge when it is placed in actionable context. Without context there is little value.”

I am always concerned when people or institutions focus totally on what is job-worthy as I think it develops blinkered individuals. Applied research can only be a part of the whole picture, not the total focus. It seems LICET has the same point of view as me. At the end of the keynote I felt really inspired and quite excited about the day ahead. 🙂

As part of the engineering course, the LICET students have access to a stripped back car, which has all the internal systems on display, allowing the students to see both the individual systems and how they fit into the big picture. I was asked if I wanted to drive this car, so I can now say I’ve driven in India. 🙂

I had a few minor issues with my laptop, but despite that my sessions got very positive feedback. As always, I spent a lot of time answering questions between my sessions and at the end of my last session as well.

Thanks to everyone at LICET and all the attendees for coming to the event. It really made for a great last event of the tour!

I fly home early tomorrow morning, so that I can get back in time for work on Monday. I’ll write a wrap-up post when I get home. 🙂