Thursday, January 04, 2007

Questions, Questions

Well it’s that time of year again! Companies’ budgets are set which means they’ll be looking to spend money, which means software purchases and upgrades, which means there will be a flurry of questions on the DBA forums on how to do things (and it’s already started).

I don’t know if this is going to turn into something of a vent for me but if anyone else feels the same or can give some insight that would lessen my frustrations please speak up.

Let me start off by saying that being a DBA in my eyes means that you have a great responsibility, one that should not be taken lightly. The company you work for depends on you for basically two things, ensure that their data is accessible and kept safe. If those two things are not met, the company is loosing money and potentially could bankrupt them if it’s not. Agreed? Yes, we are also responsible for daily flogging of developers but I look at that as a fringe benefit not a duty.

Hanging out on the DBA forums keeps me in tune with what’s going on in the Oracle world and also keeps me on my toes. However, *drum roll* when people start asking questions that you know that they didn’t do any type of research and simply posted the question really boils my potatoes. I mean the kind of question if you were to plug it into Google it would give you the answer right off the bat. When I see these things, I ask myself “why on earth would a company entrust their database to this individual?” and “what gives them the right to be called a DBA because a true DBA would of done research”. I honestly don’t know how Tom copes with it because I know he gets pelted with these things (Tom if you’re reading this please for the love of God tell me how you avoid these questions getting to you). I guess I feel like we as DBA’s are a whole and when one of us displays a lack of motivation makes us all look bad. Ok, I’m done.

Last week an anonymous reader posted a question about Oracle Spatial and ArcSDE in one of my previous blogs. He asked if he has Oracle Spatial why would he need ArcSDE? The short answer….which would you rather do, load a large size raster image via the SDO_GEOR.importFrom package or use ArcCatalog? If you have your dbtune.sde file setup right it’s too easy :)
Here’s some light reading GeoRaster and Oracle Spatial.


Anonymous said...

I guess you can take the word DBA into several categories. One category is a job title or job description.

For people who have DBA or the long words for it in their job title it doesn't mean they view it as their profession. They could have been promoted into it unwillingly, they could be the rookie holding that position with no relevant experience, etc.

There's also DBA as a "profession" where one would expect some kind of desire for professional behavior and an aquisition effort for relevant knowledge. Often these types want to help others.

Finally there's the one's who think of DBA as some kind of religious pilgrimmage to the holy land. Beware of those types and look carefully in the mirror!

Jeff Hunter said...

I love the forums, especially DBA I've learned so much working on other peoples problems and honed my diagnostic skills. You have to remember everybody started from somewhere, but I agree, do a little research.

Noons said...

This is one of the reasons I've stopped participating in most online fora.

Nowadays it's the blog world and even that, in small doses.

Quite frankly: no one pays me to do this online stuff, it requires a lot of time and I strongly reject the "everything is free" approach to - at least - professional training.

The sources are there, from Oracle and a zillion other places, for folks to ask the basic questions.

The ones that get stuck on the harder stuff are usually intelligent enough to figure out how to reach me directly: it's really not hard at all.

But free, on-tap, advice for absolute beginners, 24X7X52, repeatedly and because these folks haven't even given themselves the trouble of doing a basic search?

Nope, I'm done with that: the IT world neds badly some sort of selection, too many incompetents around.

I'm a strong admirer of Darwinian theories: nothing wrong with a bit of natural selection! Let them figure the basics out.

I'm here, free, for the more complex stuff. Within the limits of my knowledge, of course.

OracleDoc said...

Ohh come on Anonymous, everyone knows us DBA's are Gods! :) jk.

The people who've been "thrown" into the slot or a total rookie are the ones who more often than not state right off the bat "hey I don't know anything" when people state that right from the get go, I'll bend over backwards to help them.

Sure, I'll admit there's been times where I've gotten on my high horse with that "I'm holier than thou" attitude. And, usually when that happens I'll get served with a heaping helping of humble pie (usually from my Oracle developer wife). Believe me, nothing brings one back down to earth faster than being reminded your still mortal by your spouse. Can I get an Amen?

Anonymous said...

I know a lot of people who think they have a lot of oracle skills. Many of them vastly overrate themselves.

In my experience, the ones that don't think that much of themselves are the easiest types to work with.

OracleDoc said...

You know, you're absolutely right. ood call!