OOW 2007: The Great Oracle SQL Quiz. We have a winner: Laurent Schneider


Just under an hour ago, we completed The Great Oracle SQL Quiz session at Oracle Open World. Around one hundred attendants managed to find their way to the session which took place right after the ‘biggest company party in the world’ and for some reason amidst dozens of sessions on JD Edwards. One of them was me – after having set up my laptop in the wrong room only to be evicted by the real speaker in that room just a few minutes prior to 8.30am, the designated start time of the Quiz.

Unfortunately for most of the audience, Laurent Schneider was among them.....

Not only is he an Oracle ACE, writer of an excellent blog, Oracle Certified Master and author of an upcoming book on SQL (due late 2008). And Laurent did in fact manage to come of the quiz as a winner, beating four other finalists. Most importantly though, we had good fun!

The Quiz consisted of 15 questions on SQL and PL/SQL, most of which were illustrated with sometimes surprisingly slick demos (all is done in SQL*Plus). Laurent ended up scoring 11 out of 15, partly because he did not recognize Bruce Scott in a photograph from 1978 (the give away question that the quiz starts with) and because he failed to spot the PL/SQL fragment with the faulty declaratation (as did 95% of the audience):

-- Answer A:
a1 varchar2(10 byte);
a2 date;
a3 timestamp;
a4 blob;
-- Answer B:
b1 boolean;
b2 natural;
b3 positive;
b4 binary_float;
c1 string(200);
c2 nvarchar2(100);
c4 interval day to second;
d2 sys_refcursor;
d3 lob;
d4 rowid;

Did you find it?



About Author

Lucas Jellema, active in IT (and with Oracle) since 1994. Oracle ACE Director and Oracle Developer Champion. Solution architect and developer on diverse areas including SQL, JavaScript, Kubernetes & Docker, Machine Learning, Java, SOA and microservices, events in various shapes and forms and many other things. Author of the Oracle Press book Oracle SOA Suite 12c Handbook. Frequent presenter on user groups and community events and conferences such as JavaOne, Oracle Code, CodeOne, NLJUG JFall and Oracle OpenWorld.


  1. Hello.
    Thanks for a great quiz, I attended your session at the oow. In fact i’ve been telling my colleagues about this quiz, and i wanted to try it on them.
    Are your example scripts available?

    Regards / Martin Blomster

  2. Note that lob is the generic name that covers BLOB and CLOB but can itself not be used as type to base variables on. d3 lob is the faulty one. That means that answer D is the correct one because it contains the incorrect one – if you can still follow me.