ODC Latin America Tour : Quito

The first event of the Oracle Developer Community Latin America Tour (Northern Leg) was in Quito, Ecuador. A group of us met in the hotel lobby at about 07:30 and went across to the conference venue. The event began with an introduction by Paola Pullas and Marco Galarza. This was followed by Pablo Ciccarello with an introduction to the Oracle Developer Community, the Oracle ACE program and Oracle Developer Champion program.

It was a three track event, with most of the speakers presenting in Spanish, so I’m only going to mention the sessions I attended.

The first technical presentation I attended was Alex Zaballa with “Let’s get started with Oracle Database Cloud Service”. Alex has done loads of migrations from on-prem to Oracle Cloud, so it was really interesting to hear his take on it, especially on the migration approach.

The next session was me with “Multitenant : What’s new in Oracle 12.2”. I feel like the session went well. It seems multitentant is still struggling to get acceptance. I see lots of people holding back and sticking with non-CDB at the moment. I hope this changes, as even lone-PDB is still a great solution.

The next block of sessions were all in Spanish, so I had to give them a miss.

After a coffee break it was me again with “DBA Does Docker”. Once again the session went well. One of my demos has been a little frustrating since I moved back to Windows. When I figure out the issue I’ll probably write a blog post about it. 🙂

And before you knew it the event was over! A group of us went out to get some food, then it was back early to the hotel to crash before a travel day tomorrow.

Thanks very much to Paola and the Ecuador gang for inviting us and making the event a fun day, especially considering how much trouble I caused the previous day. 🙂

Thanks as always to the Oracle ACE program and the Oracle Developer Champion program for making this possible for me.

Next stop Colombia…

Cheers

Tim…

ODC Latin America Tour : Birmingham to Quito

The day started at 03:00, which is a silly time to start the day. I got a taxi to the airport and after a short queue for bag drop, I was waiting for the gate to open.

The first flight from Birmingham to Amsterdam went well and we arrived ahead of schedule. After about 90 minutes I was on the plane for the journey from Amsterdam to Quito. I could see there were some free business class seats, so I asked for the price of the upgrade. At 540 euros I decided to upgrade so I could work and sleep during the 11-12 hour flight.

The first issue was my laptop charger wouldn’t work with the power from the plane. My phone charger was fine, but not the laptop charger. I was worried maybe the charger was broken, so I switched off the computer to save the battery in case I needed to look for a new charger in Quito. I decided to watch movies and sleep instead.

I watched Black Panther and Avengers : Infinity War, both of which were good. I think both were over-hyped, but still enjoyable. My main criticism of the later would be, more Hulk please!

Towards the end of the last film I started to get a headache, so I took some paracetamol, put my seat flat and slept for a short while. I woke feeling rather nauseous and that’s where the problems started. For the last few hours of the flight I was being sick every few minutes. By the time the flight was over I was in a bit of a bad way. So much so they brought medical staff on to the plane, who were giving me injections to stop the headache and nausea. I got wheeled off in a wheelchair to the medical centre, where I pretty much slept for the next 3 hours.

When I came out Diego and Paola were waiting for me. I did tell the medical centre people there was someone waiting for me, but nobody told the information desk, so the taxi driver left. Luckily my saviours were at hand! They drove me to the hotel and I slept a lot!

Big thanks to the KLM staff and the Quito medical staff for helping me. Also, many thanks to Diego and Paola for getting me from the airport to the hotel. That would have been a tough journey in a taxi.

So it seems like my mission to be sick in every country in the world is still on track.

The Ecuador event starts tomorrow (probably today by the time I publish this). Fingers crossed everything will go well.

Cheers

Tim…

ODC Latin America Tour (Northern Leg) 2018

Just a quick heads-up to say I’ll be taking part in most of the ODC Latin America Tour (Northern Leg) 2018. These are the events I’ll be speaking at.

  • Quito, Ecuador – 14th August
  • Barranquilla, Colombia – 16th – 17th August
  • San Jose, Costa Rica – 20th August
  • Panama City, Panama – 22nd August
  • Mexico City, Mexico – 24th August

There is also an event in Guatemala on the 28th August, but I can’t make that as it adds another 4 days on to the trip, which isn’t practical for me. Sorry folks!

I’m still in the process of booking flights and hotels, but I’ve got the travel approval now from the Oracle ACE Program & Oracle Developer Champions Program, I everything should be good now!

It’s great that people go to the trouble to organise these tours and that Oracle sponsor them, but they only work if attendees come and interact. Your stories are as important as our presentations. Please make the effort to come along, join in and make the Latin America tour as fun as usual! 🙂

See you soon!

Cheers

Tim…

Update. It seems some people think I’m doing some additional events on the ODC Latin America Tour. I don’t know if this is because of some mistakes on event agendas, or some other mistaken communication. Sorry to disappoint you, but these are the only events I’m doing on the tour this year. I didn’t agree to do any more and I don’t have time, approval or funding for any more. If you do notice something that contradicts this post, please inform the relevant user group, or drop me a line so I can clear it up. Really sorry if some communications have gone out to make you think differently…

OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 : Panama to Costa Rica

I had a broken nights sleep. My luggage turned up at midnight. At about 03:00 I did a blog post. Then at 05:00 I officially woke up to get ready for the taxi at 06:00. 🙂

There were no dramas at the airport. Debra and I got through bag drop and security with plenty of time, so we got some breakfast and chilled until the flight.

The boarding was a little chaotic, mostly because people heard one piece of hand luggage and one personal item, and understood that to mean four pieces of hand luggage and a donkey. Needless to say, the overhead lockers were short on space. 🙂

It was a 55 minute flight, with a rollercoaster landing. I actually got my luggage back this time as well, which was nice. 🙂 Another quick taxi ride and we were at the hotel.

I did a couple of hours of work, then headed off to the gym, which was great. The hotel gym is a small Golds Gym, so I was able to do proper weights. It was super hot, which made training really hard, but when I finished I did some stretching and it was awesome. I can’t remember the last time I’ve stretched in that temperature. I was super flexible.

I think I’m going to head off to the pool for a bit, then chill for the rest of the day.

The Costa Rica conferences starts tomorrow. See you there!

Cheers

Tim…

OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 : Panama

laotn16Panama and ORAUG PTY was the first leg in the OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 (Northern Leg). The event took place at the Wyndham Panama Allbrook Mall Hotel.

The day started with a general introduction by Edgardo Sanchez Diaz, then an introduction to OTN and the Oracle ACE Program by Pablo Ciccarello.

From there I presented three sessions back-to-back.

  • Improving the Performance of PL/SQL Function Calls from SQL
  • Pluggable Databases – What they will break and why you should use them anyway!
  • It’s raining data! Oracle databases in the cloud.

I think the sessions went well. People were a little shy at the start, but as the sessions progressed people got more confident about asking questions.

After lunch was Kamran Agayev speaking about “Oracle 11g Clusterware failure scenarios with practical demonstrations”. Kamran discussed lots of failure situations with video demos of them, which were pretty neat. He also discussed numerous test scenarios people should work through before they go live with a RAC system.

Next up was Debra Lilley presenting on “Pass4SaaS”. I’ve seen this presentation many times over the last couple of years, but it has evolved somewhat. This one had a live demonstration of Debra using the Application Builder Cloud Service, almost like she’s a developer! 🙂

Next up was Kamran again with “Oracle 12c ASM new features with practical demonstrations”. This was a quick run through the ASM new features, including a video demo of Flex ASM and ASM Disk Scrubbing.

That was the day done for me. There were other presenters speaking in Spanish, but after my three sessions and three others I was done for. 🙂

I was presenting for half of the day, so I didn’t get much time to film, which is why this video was so short.

Thanks to Edgardo and ORAUG PTY for inviting me to the event. I had a really good time and it cheered me up a lot after yesterday’s travel disaster. It reminded me why the travelling is worthwhile. 🙂

Cheers

Tim…

PS. All through the day I kept getting the hotel reception to ring the two numbers I was given for the KLM missing luggage service, but never got an answer. The online bag tracker they provide was useless. It just acknowledged your bag was marked as missing, with no idea of the location or ETA. Since I was planning to leave early the next day I was worried my luggage would arrive after I left, but had nobody to speak to about this. At about midnight there was a knock at my door and my luggage had arrived. Obviously I’m very happy about that, but the lack of communication was a nightmare! Judging by the tweets to KLM, I got lucky!

OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 : Birmingham to Panama

Where do I start with this day?

I arrived at Birmingham Airport about 2 hours and 20 minutes early. I was then presented with a huge queue to get to the queue for the bag drop. To be fair to the people at the desk, they seemed relatively efficient, but there were 2 floating staff who were chatting to each other and laughing, rather than handling the queue. There needed to be:

  • A specific “bag drop only” queue, which most people would have breezed through.
  • A “special cases” queue for those families that turn up with 45 cases and wonder why they can’t take them.
  • A “check in” queue, where people who have not already checked in can go.

Something simple like that would have meant the queue moved much quicker and the floating staff could have organised that easily if they could be bothered and weren’t morons. Of course, that couldn’t happen because we are talking about the Air France / KLM gate, so you know it’s going to be terrible. I sent a few tweets to both KLM and BHX that contained lots of expletives. Sorry if that offended anyone, but tough!

Eventually I got through the “queue to the queue” for bag drop, then I joined the “queue for the queue” for security. Yes, there was a queue to get to the place you normally queue! Once again, an obvious case for sorting your staff out. They know when they will be busy in advance, so they should staff accordingly.

I finally got to the boarding gate and could see the plane, but they were unloading for ages. Turns out there were a team of Para-Olympic athletes on the plane and the ground staff did not anticipate how long it would take to get them and their wheelchairs off. Once again, bad planning. We took off 40 minutes late, which was a worry since I had a very short connection at Amsterdam for the next flight. Just before we landed they announced some people had missed their connections, but mine was still possible if I legged it. Fortunately for me, the next flight was delayed also, so I made it!

I sat on the flight from Amsterdam to Panama, sighed with relief, then got a massive headache. I thought I was going to have one of my puking episodes, but I managed to down some paracetamol and sleep for a bout 10 minutes, which was enough to take the edge off.

I arrived in Panama, but my luggage didn’t. After a queue to deal with my lost luggage, I queued for about 40 minutes to get through the bag check, without my bags.

After a death-race taxi ride to the hotel and the travel was over. At that point, if I had the option to got straight home I would have done. The flights themselves were fine, as were the flight staff. It was the chaos on the ground that was the problem, which left me feeling like I never want to fly again. It was a terrible day!

I met up with Debra so she could watch me eat cheese and talk me down. Then it was bed and the hope that I would never remember this day!

Tomorrow is ORAUG PTY, the first event of the OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 (Northern Leg).

Cheers

Tim…

PS. The video is dedicated to Mark Rittman, who loves my travel videos, describing them as “boring” and saying, “nothing happens in them”, which is of course the whole point of doing them. 🙂

OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 : It’s Nearly Here

ace-directorIn a couple of days I will be setting off for this years OTN Tour of Latin America 2016 (Northern Leg). For me, the tour consists of the following locations:

  • Panama City, Panama:  01-Aug-2016
  • San Jose, Costa Rica:  03-Aug-2016
  • Mexico City, Mexico: 05-Aug-2016
  • Guatemala City, Guatemala: 08-Aug-2016
  • Pereira, Colombia: 11, 12-Aug-2016

I’ve had a last minute panic over hotels, but the main thing is I have flights. 🙂

If you’re coming to the events, it will be great to see you!

Cheers

Tim…

OTN Tour of Latin America 2015 : It’s a Wrap!

ace-director

I just realised I didn’t write a closing post for the OTN Tour of Latin America 2015, so here goes.

Here are the links to all the posts I wrote during the two weeks that related to the main body of the tour.

Here are the links to the posts I wrote during the little trip to Machu Picchu.

Overall it was a really fun tour. Ignoring my illness at Machu Picchu, I think I coped a lot better with it than I have the previous couple of tours, which was good news.

Big thanks to the organisers and attendees at all the events. I hope to see you all again soon! Thanks also to the ACE Program for giving me the opportunity to fly the flag! I must also say a thank you to my fellow speakers for putting up with me for all that time. I know I can be hard work, so you are all deserving of an “I survived a tour with Tim”, badge, if one existed. 🙂

Sorry for the delay in writing this post! See you soon!

Cheers

Tim…

OTN Tour of Latin America 2015 : PEOUG, Peru – Day 1

A quick taxi ride got us to the conference hotel really quickly, so we were nice and early for the PEOUG event.

After the introductions by Miguel Palacios, it was time for the first sessions of the event. Of the English speakers, first up were Debra Lilley and Dana Singleterry. Debra had some problems with her laptop, so she did her presentation using mine and all went well. Dana did his session over the net, so I sent a few Tweets to let him know how things looked and sounded from our end. I figured a bit of feedback would help reassure him there weren’t any technical issues.

My first session of the day came next. I had a good sized audience and some of the people were brave enough to ask questions at the end. 🙂 I had some in English and some in Spanish using the translation service to help me. 🙂

Debra fixed her laptop by the time her next session started, but her clicker died, so she borrowed mine. Dana’s second session was at the same time as Debra’s, so I flitted between the two, sending a few feedback Tweets to Dana about his session again.

After that session, Ronald, Debra, Pelinio, Enrique and myself ducked out to get some lunch in a place down the street.

After lunch, both Ronald and I each had back-to-back sessions. I did my Cloud Database and Analytic Functions talks. I feel like they went well. I hope the crowd did too. 🙂

There was one more set to talks, all from Spanish speakers, including a very full web session by Edelweiss from Uruguay. After that we got together for the closing session and some prize draws. I didn’t understand what was being said, but everyone seemed really happy and in good spirits, so I think the whole day was well received. Certainly all the feedback we got was very positive!

Big thanks to MiguelEnrique and everyone at PEOUG for inviting us and making us feel welcome. Thanks to the attendees for coming to the sessions and making us feel special by asking for photos. 🙂 Also, big thanks to the ACE Program for making this possible for us!

So that marks the end of this years OTN Tour of Latin America for me. Sorry to the countries in the northern leg. I hope I will be able to visit your folks soon!

Debra and I are going to visit Pikachu Machu Picchu over the next couple of days, then it’s back home to normal life for a while. 🙂

I’ll write a summary post to close off this little adventure when I get home. Once again, thank you all!

Cheers

Tim…

OTN Tour of Latin America 2015 : PEOUG, Peru – Day -1

After the CLOUG event, Francisco drove us to the airport, where Kerry, Ronald, Debra and I parked ourselves in the lounge for a while. Lots of eating then ensued! Kerry was flying back home, but the rest of us were on our way to Lima, Peru, for the PEOUG event. 🙂

The flight across to Lima was pretty straight forward, taking about 4 hours, if you include the time sitting and waiting to take off. I think the flight time was about 3 hours and 30 mins. We arrived at the airport at about 02:00 and we were all pretty beat up. It was an effort to even speak, which if you know me is a rather extreme state. 🙂

I had a complete brain fade and forgot we were being picked up by Enrique Orbegozo, but fortunately he caught us before we disappeared onto the shuttle, so it ended OK. I’m so sorry Enrique! 🙂

We arrived at the hotel at about 03:00. I can’t speak for the others, but I was feeling like the living dead. I got to my room and I don’t remember anything else until the morning! 🙂

Debra has Hilton Honors status, so I got signed into the lounge for the day, which meant free food. 🙂 We had a lazy day. Apart from a 10 minute walk down to the coast and back, it was a hotel day, trying to recharge the batteries. Some food, sitting in the pool and sitting in the lounge with our laptops, trying to catch up with the world.

This morning we are off to the PEOUG event. The last event of the southern leg of the OTN Tour of Latin America 2015. I’ve got three presentations to do, plus some backups in case speakers don’t show. 🙂

Cheers

Tim…