Winter Conference 2011

February 24, 2011

CarrAmerica Conference Center
4400 Rosewood Drive
Pleasanton, CA 94588


See directions to the conference location near the bottom of this page.


8:00 - 9:00 Registration and Continental Breakfast - Refreshments Served
9:00 - 9:30 General Session and Welcome - Iggy Fernandez, NoCOUG President
9:30 - 10:30 Keynote: Optimizing - Cary Millsap, Method R.
10:30 - 11:00 Break
  Auditorium Tassajara Diablo
11:00 - 12:00
Session 1
Thinking Clearly About Performance
by Cary Millsap, Method R.
MySQL in Production - A War Story
by Chris Schneider, Ning
Get Proactive with DBA Task Automation
by Jagan Athreya, Oracle
12:00 - 1:00 Lunch
1:00 - 2:00
Session 2
Thinking Clearly About Performance
by Cary Millsap, Method R.
Best Practices for Upgrading to Oracle Database 11g
by Mark Townsend, Oracle
NoSQL Deep Dive
by Gwen Shapira, Pythian
2:00 - 2:30 Break and Refreshments
Last chance to visit the vendors
2:30 - 3:30
Session 3
Maximize your Oracle investment with enabling technologies from EMC and VMware
by Jason Kotsaftis, EMC
Extreme Performance Data Warehousing (updated)
by Hermann Baer, Oracle
How DBAs can help success of a BI projects
by Sunil S. Ranka
3:30 - 4:00 Raffle
In the vendor area
4:00 - 5:00
Session 4
Database Performance Made Easy Through Graphics
by Kyle Hailey, Delphix
Don't Be in a Funk, Use Analytic Functions
by Philip Rice
Oracle Application Express 4.0
by Raj Mattamal, Niantic Systems
5:00 - ??? NoCOUG Networking and No Host Happy Hour at FAZ Restaurant (bar area), 5121 Hopyard Road, Pleasanton. 925-460-0444
(Directions: Leaving the conference, Head west on Rosewood Dr toward Owens Dr 0.6 mi. Turn right at Owens Dr 0.2 mi. Turn left at Hacienda Dr 0.3 mi. Turn right at Gibraltar Dr 0.5 mi. Turn right at Hopyard Rd.)

Mark your calendar for NoCOUG's Spring Conference:
May 19, 2011 at Oracle in Redwood Shores



Speaker Abstracts for Winter Conference


“Optimizing” - Cary Millsap, Method R.

Does Oracle Exadata mean you don't have to think about "tuning" anymore? In this keynote, Cary Millsap talks about the relative leverage between software and hardware in achieving high performance, and about why the organization structure of the people in your company makes the biggest difference in how your system performs.

“Thinking Clearly About Performance” - Cary Millsap, Method R.

Creating high-performance as an attribute of complex software is extremely difficult business for developers, technology administrators, architects, system analysts, project managers, and their users. However, by understanding some fundamental principles, performance problem solving and prevention can be made far simpler and more reliable. This paper describes those principles, linking them together in a coherent journey covering the goals, the terms, the tools, and the decisions that you need to maximize your application's chance of having a long, productive, high-performance life. Examples in this paper touch upon Oracle experiences, but the scope of the paper is not restricted to Oracle products.

“Maximize your Oracle investment with enabling technologies from EMC and VMware” - Jason Kotsaftis, EMC

Oracle applications and databases are delivering mission critical data and drive critical decision making in small, medium and global enterprises. Increasing performance, efficiency and management of these environments, to deliver new value back to the business is a driving force in 2011 and beyond. With the advent of advanced virtualization, Cloud Computing and data de-duplication, many customers are re-architecting their server, storage, backup and network architectures. Technology innovations from EMC, VMware, Intel, Cisco, and others are delivering customers 45% performance improvements with Virtual RAC environments, consolidating by 80%, and streamlining management.

Come learn from technology experts as they share their hands-on knowledge of developing Integrated, proven solutions based off actual environments that showcase real savings in cloud computing. The topics will cover Oracle virtualization benefits, how to establish optimum backup and recovery processes and how to plan for the virtual data center.

“Database Performance Made Easy Through Graphics” - Kyle Hailey, Delphix

Average Active Sessions (AAS) Formulas, Interpreting Load Charts, and Visual SQL Tuning (VST) - Kyle begins his presentation with a discussion of the use of sample data to create Active Sessions History (ASH). But ASH is dense, multidimensional data, which makes it difficult to analyze. Fortunately, ASH can be simplified using a metric called Average Active Sessions (AAS). AAS shows the load on the database and allows you to drill down with precision and clarity into the cause of each bottleneck. Most often, bottlenecks are caused by poor-performing SQL statements. For analyzing suboptimal SQL statements, Kyle will show you how to lay out the query graphically in a Visual SQL Tuning (VST) diagram. Through the VST, you'll learn how to quickly visualize any coding errors in the query, discover flaws in the underlying database schema, and most importantly, find the best execution path through the query.

“MySQL in Production - A War Story” - Chris Schneider, Ning

For those who have been using Oracle or other RBDMS solutions in production and don't believe that MySQL can be run in production with great success this talk is for you. Over the years MySQL has proven to be a free and reliable data store for some of the largest companies in the world like Facebook, Godaddy and Google. During this presentation I will share some of the experiences I've had over the years along with the different MySQL setups used.

During this presentation we will dive into the following:

  1. Hardware needs
  2. Scaling and sharding
  3. MySQL configurations
  4. Tips, tricks and gotchas

“Best Practices for Upgrading to Oracle Database 11g” - Mark Townsend, Oracle

If you are planning to upgrade to Oracle Database 11g from Oracle9i Database or Oracle Database 10g, this session is a rare opportunity to learn firsthand from an Oracle expert. In this session, we'll cover all the basics you need to know about upgrading to Oracle Database 11g, including all the required preparatory steps, which upgrade strategies best fit your environment, how to address post-upgrade performance analysis, along with helpful tips and common pitfalls to watch out for.

“Extreme Performance Data Warehousing (updated)” - Hermann Baer, Oracle

Extreme query performance and in-database analytics are key requirements for data-driven organizations looking to uncover revenue opportunities and take action on trends faster. However, the need to ask more complex questions and analyze greater volumes of information and can conflict with these requirements. In this presentation, we'll examine how intelligent optimizations in Oracle Exadata and Oracle Database 11g can improve data warehouse performance by a factor of 10x, reduce storage footprint by 10x, and meet all your data warehousing requirements, from simple ad-hoc queries to complex predictive analytics.

“Don't Be in a Funk, Use Analytic Functions” - Philip Rice

Analytics are similar to the more traditional functions such as sum, count, and avg, but they can offer much more power. Analytics are most helpful in a reporting environment, but all Developers and DBAs can gain by seeing the flexibility and performance benefits. We'll start with basics, including syntax and a comparison with the traditional count function. We'll move into real world examples, in use at the UC Santa Cruz campus. The session is intended to raise awareness about alternatives in using SQL. The slides were already used for several presentations within UCSC, and NoCOUG members can use the slides as the basis for internal sessions at your own site.

“Get Proactive with DBA Task Automation” - Jagan Athreya, Oracle

Learn about Oracle's unique database management capabilities for automating many of the mundane and manual tasks facing DBAs. You'll discover how Oracle Database's intelligent self-managing infrastructure automates routine tasks that control configuration drift, provide rapid database patching and provisioning as well as enforce security policies and compliance requirements. Whether you're an experienced DBA or someone looking to learn new skills, you won't want to miss this session.

“NoSQL Deep Dive” - Gwen Shapira, Pythian

NoSQL is a general name for a new type of database - One that throws away the relational model in favor of better scalability.

In this presentation Gwen Shapira will discuss the new model, which problems it was designed to solve and when does it make sense to use it. The presentation will include details about the specific algorithms and design patterns used in NoSQL databases, overview of the new data models and most important: Everything you need to check when picking a NoSQL solution to make sure it matches your requirement and will allow you to successfully adapt it for your applications.

“How DBAs can help success of a BI projects” - Sunil S. Ranka

In most of the Business Intelligence project people talk about the functionality, features, scalability and most importantly data. Most of the success of a BI project is often attributed to functionality, features, scalability and most importantly data. DBAs plays significant role in success of any BI project, most of the BI tools are smart SQL generator, but having insufficient or mis-configured database can take toll on performance as well as success of project. During this conversation we will touch upon following topics

  • Role of Data in BI project
  • Need to smart DBAs for success of any BI project
  • How DBA can help
  • Things DBA need to know for any BI project

“Oracle Application Express 4.0” - Raj Mattamal, Niantic Systems

This session will introduce all the exciting new features in APEX 4.0, the increasingly popular feature of Oracle Database 11g that enables you to quickly develop web-based applications that are fast, secure and scalable. You will learn how Websheets, a new feature of APEX 4.0, makes application development even easier for non-technical, business users. This session will also cover other new features such as dynamic actions, plug-ins, charts, improved application builder, tabular forms, and REST Web Services, etc.


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Area Map and Driving Directions to the conference.

BART/Bus Information

From BART -
Take Bus 1B from BART and this will drop you off at the CarrAmerica Corporate Center property in the morning. Bus stops are located on Rosewood Drive across from the Conference Center at 4400.

To BART - Bus 1A will take you from the CarrAmerica Corporate Center to BART in the afternoon. Bus stops are located on Rosewood Drive across the street from the Conference Center at 4400.

For a map and schedules, see wheelsline01.pdf and

Copyright © 2011 NoCOUG.  All rights reserved.