Job title/description: Senior Oracle Application Express consultant, working on customer projects as a developer, technical lead, and solution architect
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Length of time using Oracle products: 21 years
How are you using social media in your work these days? I use Twitter daily. If you work with Oracle Application Express and you’re not on Twitter, you’re missing out. Just about every member of the Oracle Application Express development team is on Twitter, as are prominent speakers, bloggers, and other experts. Search the #orclapex hashtag to filter through the noise.
How did you get started in IT? As a teenager I was interested in electronics, but my projects often didn’t work. Once I tried to make an intercom—you couldn’t talk into it, but it received Radio Moscow! When trying out programming in BASIC on a Commodore VIC-20, I finally discovered something that I could get to work and liked doing. I ended up studying math and computer science at university, and then got a job programming customer modifications of an ERP [enterprise resource planning] system for a consulting company.
Job title/description: Senior consultant, responsible for developing solutions in SQL and PL/SQL
Location: Middelfart, Denmark
Oracle credentials: Oracle Database SQL Certified Expert (Oracle Database 11g), with 16 years of experience using Oracle products
Which new features in Oracle Database are you currently finding most valuable? The “analytics on steroids” capabilities of row pattern matching: MATCH_RECOGNIZE. This can be a useful tool for many different types of tasks beyond data analysis. In many ways it can be thought of as declarative analytics, enabling me to almost “write in English” the result I’m looking for, and the database itself figures out how to do it.
What’s the most common cause you see when IT projects go wrong? When those involved consider the database a “bit bucket” and only think about the front end, saying, “The database is just storage, we’ll use a framework to get data in and out.” Instead, project leaders should include a SQL and PL/SQL database developer in the project from the beginning and think about database and application logic simultaneously—so the logic is firmly grounded in the database.
What advice do you have about getting into web development? Starting from scratch to build your own app, beginning with the modeling and architectural layers, will help you understand all the phases of developing an enterprise-level app. I started to work with databases by writing my own address book application, where I could store, modify, or filter any kind of information including pictures, back in 1994. It didn’t matter that I was the only user, because I learned a lot about developing standards, development architecture, and data modeling.
Job title/description: Senior solutions architect, providing solutions to Metric customers to help them get more out of their data
Location: Istanbul, Turkey
Oracle credentials: Oracle Data Integrator 11g Certified Implementation Specialist, with 13 years of experience using Oracle products
Oracle ACE Director
What’s the next big thing driving change in your industry? Big data and its use cases, such as a retail company targeting particular customers with the products they’re most likely to buy or a telco company offering alternative shortcuts based on traffic conditions and accidents. We can now harvest gold from trash with the help of Internet of Things devices and data produced from everywhere. The companies who take best advantage of this will be ahead of their competitors.
What green practices do you use in your work? I work paperless. Whiteboards are much more helpful than paper to see and create a complete solution. I also take notes via phone, laptop, or iPad, in order to work seamlessly.