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February 2012

Where TK agrees with TK (or: why are triggers harmful)

Sofar we've explored playing around with a few triggers to implement a business rule. In this post I'd like to step back a bit and take a birds-eye view at the common use-cases that I see brought up for introducing triggers into the app-development picture.

The first use-case is: we use triggers to assign or modify column values of mutating rows (that is, rows currently being inserted, updated, or deleted). Here's a few typical examples of this use case that, I'm sure, must look familiar to you too.

Index naming

Here’s a model of a little problem I came across recently. It’s something I wrote about many years ago, and I thought I’d seen a note on Metalink explaining that the issue had been addressed; but the problem is still there, even in

We start with a little data set (and it’s my standard setup of 8KB blocks, LMTs, 1MB uniform extents, and no ASSM):

Repairman Jack: The Tomb…

The Tomb is the first book in the Repairman Jack series by F. Paul Wilson.

Jack fixes things. Not washing machines and stuff like that. He fixes situations for people. It’s a job that takes him outside the law and means he has to separate himself from most of the things society think of as normal. It also recently separated him from his girlfriend when she found out his job doesn’t involve fixing household appliances. Now he’s got to fix a situation for his ex girlfriend involving a family curse that started generations ago in India.

Oracle Query Optimizer Vanishing Acts

February 3, 2012 A couple of days ago I noticed an interesting thread in the Usenet group that described a problem of vanishing tables.  The title of the thread certainly caught my attention, and I was a bit disappointed when I found that the there was little to no magic involved in the vanishing act.  The situation reported [...]

Captain Support: Not to the rescue…

This morning, the display on one of my computers was a bit odd. I rebooted the machine and when it came up I got no output on the monitor. I plugged my laptop into the monitor and that worked fine, so it looked like the graphics card had died. I popped down to a local PC store and had the choice of remortgaging my house for new graphics card, or buying a cheap and cheerful one. I did the latter. Even so, the new card was much flasher than the old one.

I put the card in the machine and it booted up and I had a display again. Trouble was, GNOME shell had failed to start and I was knocked back into fallback mode, that looks a bit like GNOME2. Sigh. Forgot to check the the card against support for the ever-so-picky GNOME shell.

I now have a choice to make:


I thought Chronicle was a cool film. Three kids find some weird object and develop super powers. How will it affect them and how will they choose to use them?

It has the “shot on my camcorder” feel, like Cloverfield, and has a kind of Akira feel to me. While I was watching it I kept expecting someone to say, “With great power comes great responsibility!” :)

The effects are pretty cool. At the start they look like they are going to be a bit low budget, but by the end they get pretty impressive.

All about Security - SQL Injection redux

I just wrote about SQL Injection yesterday - after having giving a web seminar on Wednesday the touched on the topic.

One of the comments on that post was by David Litchfield, he wrote:


Just a quick reminder that the Rocky Mountain Oracle User Group Training days are just eleven days away. It’s one of the best Oracle events I’ve attended, and I’ll be there again this year. There are plenty of good speakers and interesting presentations on a wide range of topics – and if you’re wandering around between sessions with nothing to do, I’ll be around too and will be happy to say hello and have a chat.

Here’s the list of things I’ve pencilled in on my timetable so far. (Some of the gaps are there because I’m doing three presentations myself, some are there because I haven’t decided what to see yet.)

Big Data...

I'll be doing a web seminar on Big Data on February 16th at 10am Pacific Time.  Here is the info:

Big Data Essentials: What You Need to Know, February 16th, 10:00 am – 1:30 pm PT

Big data is big news these days. But you don’t base IT investment decisions on magazine headlines.

Join us for the Big Data Online Forum to learn the essentials of big data—from the technology underlying it to real-world use cases. Oracle’s Tom Kyte, Cloudera CEO Mike Olson, and other industry thought leaders will be on hand to explain how big data can deliver revolutionary insight and competitive advantage.

You’ll get answers to tough questions surrounding big data, including:

  •     What business insight can big data uncover?
  •     How do you manage big data?
  •     How do you integrate big data into decision-making?

Register today for this half-day online event featuring live Q&A with big data experts.

All about Security - SQL Injection

I recently did a web seminar on Oracle Database Security (you can see a replay of it here).  We had over 1,300 live attendees (glad I couldn't see you all - that would be scary) and the feedback was pretty good.

We also received a few questions, well, actually - a lot of questions.  I'm going to try to tackle them here bit by bit.  I'm going to start with my favorite topic - questions centered around SQL Injection.  I'll center on the core concepts around SQL Injection in this article and then do a followup article regarding the Oracle Database Firewall - a tool useful for detecting and blocking SQL Injection attacks.