My ODTUG Kaleidoscope 2009

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Every year ODTUG – Oracle Development Tool User Group – organizes a conference, called Kaleidoscope. This time it was in Monterey, California.
 
If you have never been to this conference, you are missing out on something great. A lot of great presentations, great food, lots of time to network and meet a lot of great people.
Anyway, this year was fabulous again.
 
In this post some of the highlights of that conference.
 
The start of the conference is "always" a whole day symposium. The one I attended was the APEX symposium. Most of the presentation were about succesful implementations of Oracle APEX at customer sites. The common denominator of all of these sessions was "start small".
Too bad that no one showed live demo’s. The demo’s that were shown were pre-recorded.
At the end of the day was a Panel Discussion where a lot of questions were asked about APEX 4.0 – which was demo’d on Monday.
Later in the evening Steve Miranda gave a keynote on "Building the Future", which Lucas covered in full
 
On Monday Tom Kyte did a presentation on "Efficient Schema Design", and reminded me of the differences between Single Table Hash Clusters and Index Organized Tables. On a later date I will write about this.
The last session of the day was on APEX 4.0,.. a lot of people attended this session – around 200. There are a lot of nice new features in that release. Last year’s ODTUG Websheets were mentioned, and it seems they are going to be part of 4.0. A lot of other enhancements are going to be in there as well, like the use of jQuery and jQuery UI.
 
Tuesday morning started out with the Database Development Panel. The most noticable quote "We work in an environment which refuses to learn from history". Some interesting discussions on the use of Hints and Materialized Views to declaratively validate business rules.
Followed by two session by Tom Kyte: "Database Worst Practices" and "Advanced Analytic Functions". I love Analytic Functions and use them almost on a daily basis – still this session helped me gain even more insight in the Windowing Clause.
After attending "PDF Printing with APEX – a Cost-free alternative" by Dietmar Aust, very nice. JasperReports can be a great, and cheap, alternative to BI Publisher. Would like to learn more about that. It was time for my own session.
My session was a case study where "today" and "yesterday" data were causing some problems, the performance wasn’t up to par.
Even though it started out the way I did the dressed-rehearsal, the demo’s were all going fine, at a certain point my demo’s went south…. Where Full Tables were supposed to be showing, Index Range Scan started appearing. Something was wrong. Thankfully I discovered what went wrong during the session. My laptop was still on European time (Amsterdam), a nine hour time difference. During my presentation it turned midnight, shifting the concept of "today" and "tomorrow". I must say I was glad that I discovered this during the presentation.
 
Toon Koppelaars did "Fat Databases: A Layered Approach" on Wednesday, great session. I really like his ideas, right up my alley. Ronald van Luttikhuizen did a Case Study on implementing "SOA in a Database Centric Environment", very interesting.
"Making Friends with the Oracle Database" by Cary Millsap was another highlight. Cary is a great speaker, if you missed it this session was recorded – where and how the recordings can be viewed I don’t know at the time of writing.
 
The highlight of the last day of the conference was Karen Cannell’s session on debugging APEX. Even though I couldn’t read all the slides – I was sitting in the back of the room – I got some really good tips on debugging APEX.
 
All in all, it was a great conference.
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