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NoCOUG's February 19, 2004 Conference


The NoCOUG Winter Conference was held on Thursday, February 19, 2004 at Oracle in Redwood Shores.

Conference Description

The Winter Conference had three parallel tracks of technical presentations covering topics such as database administration, application development, and data warehousing.

Here is the agenda, followed by session descriptions:

8:00 - 9:00

- Registration and Continental Breakfast

9:00 - 9:30

- General Session and Vendor Introductions

9:30 - 10:30

- Keynote: Ken Jacobs, Oracle Corporation

10:30 - 11:00

- Break

11:00 - 12:00

- Parallel Session #1:



Oracle by Oracle

"Exploiting Data For the Benefit of the Business" by Michael Scofield, Professor/Author, Loma Linda University

"Forms to J2EE, Not Java": Architectural Challenges and Strategies for Migration of Oracle Forms to J2EE" by Sri Rajan, Churchill Software

"Enterprise Manager (EM) 10g Grid Control" by Oracle Corporation Product manager's David LeRoy, Cody Maher, and Irina Goldshteyn

12:00 - 1:00

- Lunch

1:00 - 2:00

- Ask Oracle - Question and answer session with a panel of
  engineers from Oracle Corporation. Bring your questions!

2:00  - 2:15

- Break

2:15  - 3:15

- Parallel Session #2:



Oracle by Oracle

"Making DW More Relevant to the Business" by Michael Scofield, Professor/Author, Loma Linda University

"Securing an Oracle Database" by Noel Yuhanna, Forrester Research

"Recent Enhancements in Query Processing in Oracle" by George Lumpkin, Oracle Corporation

3:15 - 3:45

- Break and Raffle

3:45 - 4:45

- Parallel Session #3:



Oracle by Oracle

"Building a Poor Performing J2EE Application is Not Your Developer’s Fault" by Dave Martin, Wily Technology

"Information Lifecycle Management Strategies for Oracle Applications Data" by Erik Jarlstrom, Princeton Softtech

"Oracle 10g Manageability" by Michael Sit, Oracle Corporation

4:45 - …

- NoCOUG networking and happy hour at Mistral Restaurant and Bar, 370-6 Bridge Parkway, Redwood Shores (From the conference center, go right on Oracle Parkway, left on Marine World Parkway, and right on Bridge Parkway.)



"Exploiting Data For the Benefit of the Business" The DBA role is part of a larger function of data management, protecting and enhancing the enterprise data asset for the benefit of the business.  In the modern economic climate, it is tempting for CIO’s or higher executives to seek savings by outsourcing many IT functions (even database administration) overseas.  Thus, it is important to help them to understand the nature of logical data architecture, and the intimacy between the data and IT, and the core of the business.  This presentation illuminates some of those issues.   


We begin by considering a five-level model of IT (from the business and its data down to the hardware infrastructure) and evaluate the personality temperaments are which more inclined to move to the two extremes of business interaction.  Technically oriented positions are often occupied by introverts, who are not always interested in the current business problems. 


We then explore the evolving nature of business data architecture, and why commercial enterprises that hope to survive must morph--including changing their business rules.  To accommodate this morphing logical architecture, applications and databases must also morph.  Indeed, for survival the logical architecture must accommodate the future structure of the business, and hence data architects and the DBA must anticipate business needs.  This requires constant interaction with business decision-makers, and presence in the life of the enterprise. 


We survey some of the emerging ways for exploiting the data asset to further benefit the enterprise and its success in new and innovative ways.  Enhancing the quality of the data asset (and mining it for new insights) is one of these techniques.  Good meta-data is another, along with tools to facilitate ease of read-access to the data asset. 


It is important to make your personal knowledge of the data asset (and data quality) of benefit to the business users.  They must not see you as an obstacle, but look to you for help and advice.  This requires cultivating a supportive relationship with application managers and business process owners.  We will look at ways that your understanding of the data can aid in this. 


"Making DW More Relevant to the Business" This presentation will address some advance issues in data warehouse design.  We will look at staging strategies to break down the effort of building the data warehouse, and how each stage is different.  We will explore some of the arguments for and against a more distributed data warehouse strategy, and consider why a “staged” data warehouse strategy may be easier and of greater use for the enterprise.  With these strategies, we can give business users more unfettered (read-only) access to their data at each stage. 


We will also look at some semantic and cultural issues which, if ignored, can make the data warehouse less attractive (and ultimately cause the project to be abandoned).  These include expressing the data in the paradigms of the business culture, such as cultural sequencers for dimensions.  The presentation of the data, in terms of the semantics of the business, can be crucial for the acceptance of a data warehouse project by the business clients.  If it isn’t easy for them to use, they will ignore it. 


Again, we will explore examples of data profiling, and the anomalies which might be found, and how to bring those anomalies to the attention to the business experts and process “owners” to help them better understand their business.  Of course, this must be done in a non-threatening manner.   The more you explore the data, the more you become an expert on the business and its issues. 


“Building a Poor Performing J2EE Application is Not Your Developer’s Fault” While it is a known fact that your developers will write buggy code going into the project, most project plans include very little resources for addressing this from the onset of development.  When do you address quality assurance?


By building an automated and repeatable application testing harness, you can put your J2EE application builds through a battery of functional and performance tests as often as every night.  Developers could come to their desks each day with a complete analysis of how the commits they made the previous day changed the features and responsiveness of their application.  Extending this harness becomes a logical part of developing each new feature of the app. The end result is a better J2EE application that requires orders of magnitude less effort to debug and enhance.  In this session, we’ll discuss in detail the tactical steps you can take to realize this approach with your next project.


"Forms to J2EE, Not Java": Architectural Challenges and Strategies for Migration of Oracle Forms to J2EE" The J2EE architecture presents as many technology, skill, adoption, and management challenges as it does benefits to open, standards-based, freedom-of-choice computing.  In this session, proven patterns of client/server frameworks, such as Oracle Forms, will be reviewed for effective N-tier J2EE design.


"Securing an Oracle Database" Database security has become increasingly important to enterprises as hackers continue to gain access to critical and data sensitive databases, disrupting business operations. A comprehensive DBMS security architecture should include database hardening, secure administration processes and strong approach to data protection. This presentation looks at various Oracle security features including VPD, Label Security, Fine-grained Auditing, Identity Management, log miner, Database Encryption and how to use OEM for managing database security.  It also walks through step-by-step on how to implement a secure database including encrypting data, deploying VPD and using log Miner.   Besides the features, it also looks at some of the industry best practices around database security.   The presentation will also touch upon some of the latest Oracle 10g security features.


"Information Lifecycle Management Strategies for Oracle Applications Data" This session describes Information Lifecycle Management (ILM) as a best practice and how it enables companies to manage explosive data growth in a manner that supports corporate compliance objectives.  Particular focus will be on defining archiving policies that put into practice ILM's principles.


"Enterprise Manager (EM) 10g Grid Control" The emergence of Oracle's Grid computing allows businesses to deliver end-user services and applications more easily and cost-effectively than ever before. To realize the full benefits of grid computing, data centers need the right management tools to monitor, administer and provision the sets of systems within the Grid and applications that run on those systems. Oracle Enterprise Manager 10g Grid Control delivers bottom-line IT savings through tools that provide end-to-end application management, rich system performance monitoring and enterprise-wide task automation for the complete Grid environment.


"Recent enhancements in query processing in Oracle." Oracle continuously evolves its query processing technology.  Enhancements include new features, such as new compression and partitioning techniques, new algorithmic improvements to current processing methods, as well as enhancements to the query optimizer to increase its space of options and make it more accurate in its choices of plans. In addition, Oracle10g introduced various features for query tuning that can significantly improve performance while simplifying the life of a DBA. We will discuss some of the latest enhancements and how they may affect DBAs and application developers.


"Oracle 10g Manageability" Management is one of the largest contributors to the overall cost of ownership for software systems.  One of the major value propositions of Oracle Database 10g is the significant reduction in the management cost of deploying and maintaining an Oracle-based solution.  Oracle Database 10g has taken a major step in simplifying and automating all the tasks in the life cycle of database management including automatic performance diagnosis and tuning.



If you have suggestions for future meetings or would like to offer feedback on previous conferences, then please complete our online survey or send us an email.

Directions to the Oracle Conference Center

Address: 350 Oracle Parkway, Redwood Shores, California. Phone: 650-633-8300 Fax: 650-633-8399

Southbound- Take Highway 101 South (toward San Jose) to the Ralston Ave./Marine World Parkway exit. Take Marine World Parkway east which will loop you back over the freeway. Make a left at the first light onto Oracle Parkway. 350 Oracle Parkway will be on the right.

Northbound- Take Highway 101 North (toward San Francisco) to the Ralston Ave./Marine World Parkway exit. Take the first exit ramp onto Marine World Parkway. Make a left at the first light onto Oracle Parkway. 350 Oracle Parkway will be on the right. 




Copyright 2004 NoCOUG. All rights reserved.