Thursday, July 21, 2005

Beam Scotty Up

Makes me feel old reading this: Scotty passed away. I'm a big Star Trek fan (never got into Star Wars, but Star Trek...). Sad.

Yes, the last two days have been busy, Wed was full, by the end of the day I was totally wiped out.  Did 5 sessions that day.  It is strange that while I’m talking, I could go forever. But the moment after I stop, that’s it.  Stick a fork in me, I am done. I don’t want to talk anymore, I just want to take a nap or something. Fortunately, someone was watching out for me and my flight left on time and arrived a half hour early.  That – that just never happens in real life, but it did yesterday.  Unfortunately, we came in to the “G” gates which I believe stands for “godforsaken” at Dulles International Airport.  When you land there, you know you will spend more time actually getting from your gate to your car than you did in the air.  First is the forced march from the plane, 5 miles to the “remote gate”.  Then the wait for the bus.  Then the bus to the main terminal (but you do get the see the ENTIRE airport, and I mean the ENTIRE airport, not just some of it but every single plane).  Then, the neatest sort of maze where you go down an escalator, up one and down another one (can you spell “tunnel”, tunnel would be nice).

Today I did two sessions at the OGUC (Oracle Government User Conference).  At least that was near home, downtown Washington DC. Very nice turnout, I was surprised. I got to do a keynote (drove them crazy, sent them slides and at the last minute said “nah, I don’t want to do that, I want to do a revised things you know presentation”.  You want to make conference organizers crazy, change everything at the last minute).  It worked out well though.  I had a nice short version of it and time for Q&A.  Then a 10g Release 2 update.  That was, how do you say, different.  Normally, when doing a session – I’m talking about something I’ve used for a while.  I have four followup questions that I was not able to address (I didn’t have my own laptop on stage, I couldn’t check out what the right answer was). I’ll be posting that on asktom tomorrow (the Q’s and A’s I didn’t have today).  Everyone was really eager to hear about it though. I think we had near 300 people come (in the middle of july, in DC, I was surprised).

On a totally different note, I was reading HJR’s blog and he wrote something that ‘disturbed’ me (not that he disturbed me, but rather the concept).

 Is there some rule, perhaps, that means Tom is considered above the fray for this sort of "correction", but that I am fair game?

I certainly hope not.  I make mistakes all of the time. I dig yeahbutts.  I want to be told “no, that is not quite right”.  I’ll argue back if I think they were wrong, but we’ll come to a conclusion.  I really really hope that just because I said it, people don’t assume it must be universally true (you must be convinced).  That would be so so wrong.  I know it happens to some degree, so I try to be careful what I say about the database, but trust me – I don’t get it right all of the time (hardly).  The number one reason I’m a “script happy dude” is because 999 times out of 1,000 if I didn’t “show it”, I would be totally wrong. Don’t ever be afraid to question what I’ve written on asktom (frankly, sometimes when scanning I just “miss” the point sometimes). 

POST A COMMENT

41 Comments:

Blogger Don Seiler said....

One such mistake is that Howard's initial are HJR, not HRJ.

;)

Thu Jul 21, 10:39:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Connor McDonald said....

And its not as if you haven't been taken to task about auto-allocate - Howard just needs to look a little harder

http://asktom.oracle.com/pls/ask/f?p=4950:8:::::F4950_P8_DISPLAYID:25322140091802

Cheers
Connor

Fri Jul 22, 12:49:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Hanverspilttijd said....

While we're at it:

" I really really hope that just
because I said it, it must be true. That would be so so wrong. "

Does not parse to me.

Fri Jul 22, 02:09:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Tim... said....

I think you should get together with HJR and perform a statistical analysis on the relative number of contradictions to your posts. You can then post your findings on your repsective blogs and see how many people criticise the analysis on HJR's blog but accept it on yours ;)

I've seen many people, including HJR, use the, "but Tom thinks this also!", line as if that is an argument winning statement. Don't get stressed about this. You should be proud of it. You've got this reputation for a reason. So long as you keep true to your current standards I'm sure it won't have a negative affect on your work.

Of course, you could start posting some bad advice on purpose :)

Cheers

Tim...

Fri Jul 22, 04:55:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Martin said....

Tom said:

I really really hope that just because I said it, it must be true

ehh..You do? ;)

Scotty, may the force be with you ...

Fri Jul 22, 05:46:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

IMHO people are not "afraid" of pointing out "inaccuracies" on asktom; it's more that they think it's "unpolite" to "wash the dirty laundry in public", they're sort of afraid to damage your reputation (95% of asktommers like you as a person, judging from the tone of the comments on asktom, and success of this blog).

I now know that you *like* "being corrected", but that took me some months of visits to asktom.

IMHO it would be useful to have an "AskTomEtiquette" tab on asktom, where you explain the expected behaviour of visitors or, better, what *you* expect from asktom (eg "... one of my goals is to find out errors in my understanding about Oracle here, instead of in production ..." or "I believe that public discussion is the fast route to understanding ...").

I'b bet that polite people would read it, and improve the communication in the asktom community.

Fri Jul 22, 07:33:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

Thanks all for the corrections on the text, I've fixed those. Wonder what Freud would have to say about those errors being in that paragraph ;)

Fri Jul 22, 08:16:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Are you above the "fray" for correction? Of course not, but I believe for a large portion of your audience, they are afraid to correct or question you. Why? 2 reasons. First of all, they have read the numerous and very humorous responses from "Jr." DBAs who obviously don't know Oracle being corrected by you. For the "sensitive" types I could see how your responses could be considered terse. I realize that some of your bloggers will disagree with that, but in today’s P.C. world I believe your responses could come across the wrong way. But that doesn't mean they are terse.

Second, IMHO there is too much of an "awe" for you. Or maybe I should say I get tired of reading an sktom post then have to skip the 2 or 3 "Tom is great, or that's a perfect answer" reply. Now please don't take that the wrong way. I'm very guilty of being a Tom Kyte quoter! :) If you ask my co-workers I'll invoke the "name of Tom" 2 or 3 times a week when asked for advice. Also, I can honestly say that you and the asktom website have directly benefited my life. I’m considered an “Oracle Guru” at my last few places of employment. But truth be told, I owe it all the asktom website and your books. But when I'm reading and looking for answers I'd rather people just stick to the topics and not waste space praising you over and over. But that's just my opinion! :)
Also, I realize I digressed on my point a little. When talking about the awe factor, I think if someone questions you they are often criticized by all the minions that are in awe of you.

Dan

Fri Jul 22, 08:49:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous denni50 said....

Tom

From my personal observations,
visiting and learning from your
website going on 3+ years, I have seen you acknowledge, embrace and express thanks to those that have pointed out some deficiency in our answers, tests, heck even your spelling.

Given the volumn of help that you give on a daily, weekly, monthly, yearly basis some percentage of 'correction' is to be expected, in your case it's not even worth a comment.

I don't see anybody else doing what you have done to help an entire technology community.

For young and upcoming Oracle professionals, not only do they have the opportunity to learn from your vast wealth of knowledge and experience,from a technical standpoint, but also observe how you conduct and comport yourself professionally and personally...
especially on those rare occasions you are giving acknowledgement and thanks to someone who has corrected you.


Star Trek:
I agree...none of the other so called 'space' clones could ever match to the original Star Trek series...the chemistry of characters was unequaled...the technology concepts were cool,original and believable(back almost 40 years ago). The space age was in it's infancy then and Star Trek portrayed the possibility of space travel and exploration of new frontiers plausible and America was ready for it.

It is now 'Scotty' who has been 'beamed' up to his final resting place.

Fri Jul 22, 09:19:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Speaking of technical future in space and bringing the past into the now : have you heard of Jeri Ellsworth ? What do you think of her and about the computer retro scene ?

Fri Jul 22, 09:40:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous denni50 said....

Dan

Don't know what Tom website you've been visiting but I have never witnessed anyone being attacked by other readers for questioning or 'correcting' Tom...it's how we all learn!

As for myself I am not a sycophant in any way, shape or form.

Where I come from when someone helps you, you give praise and thanks.

When someone helps you consistently, qualitatively and quantitatively more praise and appreciation is deserving of expression.

As a former business and accounting manager one of the most important aspects of my job was to praise and show appreciation to those under my supervision. It builds good esteem, morale and productivity.

I like it when my superiors praise me, it means they VALUE me and that is important to me.

I, in turn, VALUE Tom's effort's and time in helping everyone like myself and he is deserving of every praise, thanks and expression of 'awe' that he gets.

Perhaps you have 'sour grapes' over some lacking in your own professional life.

Fri Jul 22, 09:54:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Robert Vollman said....

Scotty - a fellow Canadian.

"Hello, computer!" ... just use the keyboard Scotty ...

I loved Star Trek, too. Especially the original.

Fri Jul 22, 10:44:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Bill S. said....

Tom, I can't help but wonder if the problem is that you are typically looked upon as the "Oracle go-to guy" who either knows the answer himself or knows who to get involved that does know the answer. Folks like Niall, Mark Rittman, Howard, etc. are looked upon as "lesser experts" if you will, certainly extremely qualified and able technologists in their own right but slightly lower on the Oracle totem pole - mind you, this is just my opinion based on what I've read at everybody's sites, I don't necessarily share that opinion (I think each of you has a specific talent that contributes to the community as a whole).

Dan Wrote:
[quote]I think if someone questions you they are often criticized by all the minions that are in awe of you. [/quote]
The only people I've ever seen ridiculed were very much worthy of said ridicule (they were not part of the general population, more of deliberate upstarts whose only purpose in posting was to initiate a mud-slinging match. And you know who they usually are ;-D). Tom (and Howard for that matter) has been called on answers he provided, and when wrong has said so, with thanks. So I guess I don't see what you do.

RE: Star Trek
Job well done, Engineer Montgomery Scott. Rest in peace.

Fri Jul 22, 11:06:00 AM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

"Makes me feel old reading this Scotty..."

surely ... "... that Scotty..."

Denni50 said: "The space age was in it's infancy then ..."

Well, it hasn't got much further since ... we seem to be about a thousand years away from "Standard orbit, Mr Sulu" when an intermittent error on one of four fuel guages keeps a multi-million/billion dollar orbiter on the launch pad. I'll tell you what, I'm not a fan of NASA and their manned space flight program ... apart from providing national pride and the world's most expensive soap opera, I see no point to it at all.

Fri Jul 22, 11:22:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous denni50 said....

Dave...

have to agree NASA has not seen the best of years after the 1969 moon landing with Neil Armstrong. The Space program has gone bust and it's incredulous that PH.D Engineers are grappling with an electrical shortage problem.

Having said that though the launching of the Hubble Telescope and the Mar's rovers(Spirit and Opportunity) have been significant accomplishments with amazing results along with new discoveries about Mars.

sadly, can't believe they are allowing the Hubble to 'die' in space after 15 years of spectacular images.

oh well,,maybe we can Scotty to beam us up to some far off distant galaxy.

Fri Jul 22, 11:56:00 AM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

denni,

I'm with you on the robot explorers and space telescope ... they achieve infinitely more in scientific terms than the manned missions. I can't believe that so many of my tax dollars are going to be burned up in trying to send people to Mars, when literaly hundreds of robotic missions could be sent instead at the same price and lower risk.

You know, I think there may be more chance of getting beamed to another galaxy by a sadly-deceased actor than there is of NASA getting us out of the solar system?

Fri Jul 22, 12:09:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

surely ... "... that Scotty..."

no, meant this, not that. Was missing puncuation though :)

Fri Jul 22, 01:06:00 PM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

Hey, you edited! No fair.

Well, at least i've established my not-afeared-to-critisise-TK credentials. I'll take the rest of the day off.

Fri Jul 22, 01:23:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

Was missing puncuation though :)

"puncuation" ? Freud again or trying to start a Soap Opera ? :)

Fri Jul 22, 01:48:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

punctuation.....

I give up, this entry apparently has some bad karma associated with it ;)

Fri Jul 22, 01:55:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

denni50

Your post is exactly what I mean! :)
You said "Perhaps you have 'sour grapes' over some lacking in your own professional life."

I obviously meant nothing negative about Tom in my post. But I couldn't even bring my points without someone attacking me. This proves what Howard said. I wrote this my original post to see how long it would take to get flamed! :)

But Tom shouldn't take that as a dig. If anything it's a compliment to achieve the success he has!

-Dan

Fri Jul 22, 05:11:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

Dan,

please avoid the word "minion" in the future, I find it very offensive (since I checked the exact meaning of the word on a dictionary first time it popped up - English not being my native language).

I concede that you probably didn't mean to be offensive, anyway please be more careful with words ... ;)

Fri Jul 22, 06:15:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Renee said....

Re: the final frontier, the longer we wait to go back to the moon the more those conspiracy theorists who say we didn't go in the first place seem to have a point. Just kidding... sorta ;)

Alberto, no one has a right to tell someone else what words they can use and expect to be obeyed. Minion is a commonly used word used without offense amongst those who speak English as a first language. If you're not certain of an author's intention, you may want to ask thme to clarify what they meant.

Fri Jul 22, 06:56:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

"minion"

1 "a servile dependent" ...

"servile" = "of or befitting a slave or a menial position", "meanly or cravenly submissive" ...

2 "one highly favored : IDOL"

3 "a subordinate or petty official"

They seem to me all offensive meanings, and when it popped up in a certain flame war, it was for sure meant to be offensive.

Anyway I just *asked* to avoid the word; if you note, I also placed a nice emoticon in my comment, which was intended as a polite request, and nothing else.

Fri Jul 22, 07:23:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

No worries! :)

I like another meaning from dictionary.com for the word minion:

1. # An obsequious follower or dependent; a sycophant.

Never heard the word obsequios before! I don't have one of those colluge edjumacations, so maybe that's why I never heard that word before! :)
Anyway, here is the meaning of the word from dictionary.com:
obsequious
Full of or exhibiting servile compliance; fawning.

Now that would have been a better word to describe the "minions". 

Like I said it posted my reply because I had a feeling it would garner the responses that it has. I have the utmost respect for Tom and everyone who posts on his blog, so I want to apologize for the diversion.

-Dan

Fri Jul 22, 09:52:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Gabe said....

Dan said …

[1] I obviously meant nothing negative about Tom in my post. [2] But I couldn't even bring my points without someone attacking me. [3] This proves what Howard said. [4] I wrote this my original post to see how long it would take to get flamed! [5] :)

[1] Did anyone say you did?

[2] Wrong … you brought your points and then got ?attacked?

[3] No it doesn’t … page up to the HJR’s quote: Is there some rule, perhaps, that means Tom is considered above the fray for this sort of "correction", but that I am fair game?

A: that sort of “correction” was about a technical statement … I don’t see anything technical in your contribution.

B: True though, HJR later says: … I should say that this is an issue of more general concern. I've noticed the phenomenon a number of times of late: if Tom, or Fabian Pascal, or Guru X says it, it passes without comment. But if I say very much the same thing, it gets picked apart. … if anything, it seems to suggest that anyone should/could be called to task on their public statements. Assuming you agree it goes beyond purely technical statements then it should be applicable to you too.

[4] Good thing the people in charge of the nukes during the cold war had a different perspective on human interaction.

[5] You got me there dude … big time.


Renee said …

[1]Alberto, no one has a right to tell someone else what words they can use and expect to be obeyed. [2]Minion is a commonly used word used without offense amongst those who speak English as a first language. [3]If you're not certain of an author's intention, you may want to ask thme to clarify what they meant.

[1] Since you used the Boolean “and” … and since I have this nagging suspicion Alberto didn’t really expect his [very polite] observation about attentiveness to be [interpreted as a request and] “obeyed” … does that leave one with the right to tell someone else what words they can use? You know, free speech all around.

[2] In line with [3] and assuming English is your first language … I need some clarification on what you meant by: "minion is a commonly used word used without offense amongst those who speak English as a first language"?

Did you mean?

A: minion is just a regular word … and … it is always used without offense (as in, it just cannot be used to offend someone); in other words, people speaking English as their first language would never feel offended to be called minions.

B: minion is just a regular word … and … in general [commonly] it is used without offense

C: ???

If you meant …

A: then I’ll leave it for English speaking people to judge since English is not my first language. Nevertheless, should someone call me a minion to my face then … that means they would have to be very close to me.

B. in this case, there is the possibility for the word to be intentionally used to offend and/or for the word to be offending to someone [whether intentionally or accidentally used by the other party]. Hence, Alberto’s [again, quite polite] call for a bit of discretion seems justifiable.

C. then ???

[3] Since you didn’t ask Dan what he meant by the minion comment but took it upon yourself to suggest to Alberto he should ask for clarification … I am lead to believe you did understood what the author’s intention was or, at least, had an interpretation that was different than Alberto’s. So, just for clarification, what do you think Dan meant?

Sat Jul 23, 02:35:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

I'm happy to see that Dan understood what I meant and didn't take it personally - for Gabe is right, it was meant as a polite suggestion, a constructive critic if you prefer, and not the spark to initiate a flame war, absolutely. My ";)" was there on purpose (great invention, the emoticons).

And frankly, I'm still convinced that this "minion" word has to be avoided. For (from www.m-w.com) :

"sycophant" = "a servile self-seeking flatterer"

"obsequious" = "marked by or exhibiting a fawning attentiveness"

"to fawn"

"1 : to show affection -- used especially of a dog
2 : to court favor by a cringing or flattering manner

synonyms FAWN, TOADY, TRUCKLE, CRINGE, COWER mean to behave abjectly before a superior. FAWN implies seeking favor by servile flattery or exaggerated attention 'waiters fawning over a celebrity'. TOADY suggests the attempt to ingratiate oneself by an abjectly menial or subservient attitude 'toadying to his boss'...(snip)"

Not offensive ? mmmh.

At the very least, using this word has a very high of potential to be misunderstood as offensive - so *I* would avoid it, and *suggest* to others to do the same.

Sat Jul 23, 05:01:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Rachel said....

To most Americans, weaned on comic books and superheroes, the term "minions" tends to imply evil subjects of a villian (the storm troopers in the Star Wars series are minions of Darth Vader).

dictionary.com (one of my more favorite sites, after this one and google of course) defines minions as:

1. An obsequious follower or dependent; a sycophant.
2. A subordinate official.
3. One who is highly esteemed or favored; a darling.

I don't see #3 above as being derogatory or demeaning.

The problem is, most native English speakers usually don't go to the dictionary to ensure they are using a word correctly. We've read or heard a word somewhere, gotten a vague idea of the meaning from the context and go on to use it improperly.

Sat Jul 23, 11:05:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Renee said....

Alberto, you say you requested the word not be used. In the American vernacular (and possibly other places) to say "please do not..." is similar to a mother saying "please take out the trash". If you don't take out the trash, you'll learn quickly it really wasn't a request but an order. ;) Perhaps that was not your intent and it's a cultural perception. Words are troublesome little buggers at times, no?

Gabe, I don't have an abundance of time for a lengthy comment analysis and response. So I'll leave it as this - I didn't take offensive at Dan's original comment and therefore felt it may be a language and/or culture barrier. These things do happen on the Internet, you know I'm sure.

Sun Jul 24, 12:57:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Renee said....

PS, I guess I won't leave it as that.

People I know, when using the word "minions", use it in place of the word "followers". This is why I said it is used by many without offense intended. Otherwise, it is used as a joke.

Honestly, when was the last time outside of a dramatic novel or movie referring to someone EVIL (pronounced EVIIIIILLLLLLL of course)did anyone hear the word minions used with seriously negative intent?

Sun Jul 24, 01:05:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Tom, I'm sure you've read "The Physics of Star Trek" (http://tinyurl.com/bpgua). If not, highly recommended. Ever think about how a database would look in the 24th century? -- Tom

Sun Jul 24, 03:26:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous denni50 said....

Dan

By your own admission you wrote the post with the intent,anticipation and purpose of garnering a response,
quote:
Like I said it posted my reply because I had a feeling it would garner the responses that it has
end quote:
..so you evidently expected whatever response given would not be favorable.

quote:
Second, IMHO there is too much of an "awe" for you. Or maybe I should say I get tired of reading an sktom post then have to skip

the 2 or 3 "Tom is great, or that's a perfect answer" reply. Now please don't take that the wrong way. I'm very guilty of being a

Tom Kyte quoter!
:) If you ask my co-workers I'll invoke the "name of Tom" 2 or 3 times a week when asked for advice. Also, I can honestly say that

you and the asktom website have directly benefited my life. I’m considered an “Oracle Guru” at my last few places of

employment. But truth be told, I owe it all the asktom website and your books. But when I'm reading and looking for answers I'd

rather people just stick to the topics and not waste space praising you over and over. But that's just my opinion! :)
Also, I realize I digressed on my point a little. When talking about the awe factor, I think if someone questions you they are often

criticized by all the minions that are in awe of you.
end quote

I asked myself when I read your post initially:

"What would influence and motivate someone to possess such thoughts and actually express them?"

I see you claim you wrote the post in an attempt to demonstrate some proof to comments written on someone else's blog or website...however by your own admission of digression...your comments bear no relevancy to whatever 'proof' you are trying to illustrate here.

I believe your comments truthfully reflect sentiments that are not meant to convey the best of intentions,they convey some measure of resentment and envy. They are aimed and directed towards readers who do feel
a need to express sentiments that do reflect the best of intentions.

The comment about anyone questioning or correcting Tom being criticized by all the 'minions'..is baseless,unfounded and devoid of any substance and I believe Tom would not tolerate such conduct on his website.
I have seen readers trying to help other readers with solutions to their questions.

Tom gives, gives and gives, day in and day out, gets nothing in return from those us of who benefit enormously from his help...the only avenue we have to let him know how much we value what he's doing for us is to express our collective thanks and 'awe' of the knowledge
and expertise he so willingly shares with us.

99% of readers express their gratitude in some form or manner, if you happen to fall in the 1% that feels unwilling or unable to...that's fine...but you have no right to subject readers to comments of how tiresome and bothersome it is to you and that you'd prefer we 'stick to the topic and not waste space....'.

I find it so perplexing that someone who professes to have benefitted enormously from someone else's help expresses sentiments contrary to that benevolence.

You and I know the manner and context of how the word 'minion' was used was not meant to be flattering.It was meant to 'garner a response'...and so it has.

As for my comment, perhaps I could have chosen a more diplomatic way to express my sentiment, for that I apologize, however I stand by the intent and meaning of those words.


Denise

(sorry Tom, felt the need to speak out on behalf of those of us who value and appreciate what you do and want you to know it).

Sun Jul 24, 10:18:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

Renee, thanks for letting me know about the meaning of "please avoid" for native-speakers. I didn't realize it could sound as an "order", I will remember it in the future. Thanks again!
---
About databases in the 24th centuries ... they will be relational for sure.
The idea of a "table" is just too simple to be dumped - it's similar to a "matrix" in Mathematics, that has been around, as far as i know, for at least a millennium - both will still be here 400 years from now for sure.
Put the data into a table - anyone will be able to understand how the data is organized, and access it, even if they couldn't spell the word "relational" - since it takes 5 minutes to understand what a table and a PK is. Even non-tecnical people will get it in 5 minutes, that's even more important.

Sun Jul 24, 11:16:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Wow! I honestly did not expect this kind of response! :)

As I previously stated, I did mean to garner a response. But truth be told, I honestly did not mean for the word minion to draw the kind of scrutiny that it had. Also, nothing in my comments were meant as a negative on Tom. In American we do live in a politically correct society. At most employers, managers never give proper evaluations because we are afraid of hurting someone’s self-esteem. We live in a country where some educators are advocating not giving grades because it might hurt a child’s self-esteem. So my comments were to the effect that Tom’s comments could be seen as terse to some people. But, just because they seem terse, it does not make them terse. Nor did I ever say Tom was terse.

Now on to the word minion. From my socioeconomic and educational background, or lack thereof, I don’t think of the word minion in the same way as everyone on this blog. I've never meant the word minion to be offensive.

If anything your responses show why you all are probably "Oracle Scientists". You took my comments and dissected them and then proceeded to debate the meaning of them. Of course the English language is much more difficult to argue and tune than an Oracle database! :)

With that said, in my opinion, the messages above with the many defenses of Tom when no attack was made, demonstrates my “Awe of Tom” point. Not that I’m saying it’s not deserved or warranted. :)

--Dan

Sun Jul 24, 10:28:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

BTW denni50, you said I have "resentment and envy".

This is my last reply to this, but you couldn't be more wrong. Would I quote Tom weekly if I had resentment? Would my homepage be asktom.oracle.com if I had resentment and envy? Would I have bought all his books and had many other DBAs buy Tom's books if I had resentment? Would I have suggested and gotten many co-workers and ex-coworks to go to one of his user group presentations if I had resentment and envy?

If I hadn't read Tom's previous notes about how little the royalties are on books, I'd have asked him for commission on all the books I've sold for him! :)


--Dan

Sun Jul 24, 10:40:00 PM EDT  

Anonymous Flado said....

alberto dell'era said....

Renee, thanks for letting me know about the meaning of "please avoid" for native-speakers. I didn't realize it could sound as an "order", I will remember it in the future. Thanks again!
-------------

Alberto, I'm surprised you didn't ask Renee the obvious question - namely, "How does one express a polite request then?"

I think someone should file a doc bug with Merriam-Webster, if we non-native [American] English speakers cannot trust their dictionary...
:-)

Mon Jul 25, 07:30:00 AM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

Can we all agree to not use theword "minion", and stick to "goon" or "henchman" in future?

Mon Jul 25, 12:58:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Bill S. said....

That's so plebeian. I'd much prefer one of:
apostle, bootlicker, cohort, disciple, freak, lackey, parasite, proselyte, stooge, sycophant, toady, vassal, votary, worshipper, yes man, zealot

;-D

For those who require speed as well as accuracy:

http://tinyurl.com/bhxv7

Mon Jul 25, 01:38:00 PM EDT  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

Well Bill, if you want to suggest that Tom has parasites ... is that crossing the line into "personal life"?

Mon Jul 25, 04:18:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Tim... said....

I prefer "cronies" :)

One look at this thread and you know that Howard is correct about people focusing on the minutest detail, rather than the big picture.

The human race is destined to fail :)

Cheers

Tim...

Tue Jul 26, 08:18:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Bill S. said....

[quote]tim said...
The human race is destined to fail :)

Cheers

Tim... [/quote]

Nah, Tim - it's just deferred success ;-D

Tue Jul 26, 08:38:00 AM EDT  

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