Showing posts with label Irish BI SIW. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Irish BI SIW. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

OUG Ireland BI & Tech SIGs June 2013

On 11th and 12th June we will be having our next SIG meetings for BI and Tech. The BI SIG will be on the 11th June in the Oracle offices in East Point. We then move the the Conrad Hotel on the 12th June for the Tech SIG. Here are the agendas for the 2 days.



Tech SIG


These events are open to everyone, are free for members and a small fee for non-members.

To register for these event go to the following links

Friday, December 14, 2012

OUG Ireland 2013–Call for Presentations

The call for presentations at the OUG Ireland Conference is now open. The conference will be on Tuesday 12th March in Dublin city centre.

It is hoped to have at a number of concurrent tracks covering all the main topic areas, including application development, database administration, business intelligence, applications, etc.

If you are interested in submitting a presentation then you need to fill in some of the detail at

OUG Ireland – Submit a Paper

Follow the OUG Ireland conversation on twitter using the tag  #oug_ire

call for papers

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Events for Oracle Users in Ireland–Winter 2012

Over the next couple months there are a number of events happening for Oracle Users in Ireland.

There are a number of OUG Ireland SIG meetings happening. These are:

11th September : Joint SIG meeting of the BI & EPM SIG and the first Tech SIG meeting

12th September : HCM SIG meeting

20th November : BI & EPM SIG.  This will be a full day SIG event.

3rd-5th December : The annual UKOUG Conference in Birmingham. There is usually a good attendance from Ireland at this conference. On the Monday night there will be the focus pubs. Join me at the Ireland table.

Oracle and the Oracle User Group have arrange to have Tom Kyte come to Dublin on 19th September, to give a number of presentations. Check out this link for more details and how to register.

Oracle will be having an Oracle Technology Day in Dublin on 15th November in the Croke Park Conference Centre. They will be talking about Cloud Computing, Mobile Computing, Social Media and Big Data. They are also hoping to include some of the updates and product news that will be announced at Oracle Open World in early October. You will need to register for this event.

Summary of Dates & Events to add to your diary.

11th September : OUG Ireland BI & EPM and Tech SIG meeting

12th September : OUG Ireland HCM SIG meeting

19th September : Tom Kyte in Dublin

15th November : Oracle Technology Day

3rd- 5th December : UKOUG Conference in Birmingham.

Monday, March 12, 2012

My OUG Ireland Conference Presentations

Wednesday 21st March an important for the OUG Ireland as it is the annual conference. This year we are in a new venue, the Dublin Convention Centre, on the river Liffey.

After many, many years of being an attendee of my local conference, this year I will be presenting 2 presentations. Actually, I’ll be presenting one and co-presenting another.

My first presentation, will be an introduction to Oracle Data Miner, which is now part of SQL Developer. I will be talking about the new features and some features that be part of a future presentation. Most of the presentation time will be taken up with a Demonstration of using Oracle Data Miner (ODMr). I will step through a the main steps of data mining using the ODMr tool. The data set that I will be using is based on a University in the UK who wanted to look at how data mining could be used to help them manage student retention/churn.

The second presentation will be lead by Antony Heljula, of Peak Indications, with me co-presenting or butting in on some topics. This presentation will be at a much higher level. This presentation will be aimed at analysts and managers who are looking at data mining and what it can do for them.We will look at what it can be used for, who are the main people, some sample case studies/application areas, data quality issues, etc. There will be a demonstration on how you can incorporate the data mining model, developed in the first presentation, into OBIEE Dashboards. We will be using the same UK University scenario here and we will show how data mining has helped to identify specific types students that could not be identified using other means.

Check out the full conference agenda – here

There are plenty of excellent presentations, with lots of Oracle ACE’s and Oracle ACE Directors.

Some of my other activities on the day will be:

  • Talking to people about writing articles for the Oracle Scene, the user group manage. I’m the deputy editor of Oracle Scene.
  • I’m also deputy chair of the Irish BI & EPM SIG, so I’ll be trying to persuade people take part in and present at future meetings.
  • Finally and perhaps most importantly, I will be meeting other people in the Oracle world here in Ireland. Some of these people I know for 20+ years. Because of busy schedules sometimes the only time we get to catch-up is at the annual conference.

If you would like to talk to me about the topics covered in the presentations or about any of the about activities, look out for me during the day. I will be at the (free) drinks reception at the end of the day, so you can talk to me then. If that does not suit, then drop me an email and we can arrange to meet up.

Friday, January 6, 2012

ODM 11gR2–Real-time scoring of data

In my previous posts I gave sample code of how you can use your ODM model to score new data.

Applying an ODM Model to new data in Oracle – Part 2

Applying an ODM Model to new data in Oracle – Part 1

The examples given in this previous post were based on the new data being in a table.

In some scenarios you may not have the data you want to score in table. For example you want to score data as it is being recorded and before it gets committed to the database.

The format of the command to use is

prediction(ODM_MODEL_NAME USING <list of values to be used and what the mode attribute they map to>)

prediction_probability(ODM_Model_Name, Target Value, USING <list of values to be used and what model attribute they map to>)

So we can list the model attributes we want to use instead of using the USING *  as we did in the previous blog posts

Using the same sample data that I used in my previous posts the command would be:

Select prediction(clas_decision_tree
20 as age,
'NeverM' as cust_marital_status,
'HS-grad' as education,
1 as household_size,
2 as yrs_residence,
1 as y_box_games) as scored_value
from dual;


Select prediction_probability(clas_decision_tree, 0
20 as age,
'NeverM' as cust_marital_status,
'HS-grad' as education,
1 as household_size,
2 as yrs_residence,
1 as y_box_games) as probability_value
from dual;


So we get the same result as we got in our previous examples.

Depending of what data we have gathered we may or may not have all the values for each of the attributes used in the model. In this case we can submit a subset of the values to the function and still get a result.

Select prediction(clas_decision_tree
20 as age,
'NeverM' as cust_marital_status,
'HS-grad' as education) as scored_value2
from dual;


Select prediction_probability(clas_decision_tree, 0
20 as age,
'NeverM' as cust_marital_status,
'HS-grad' as education) as probability_value2
from dual;


Again we get the same results.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Ireland table at Focus Pub tonight

Today (Monday 5th Dec) is the first day of the UKOUG Conference in Birmingham.

Tonight we have the Focus Pubs session starting at 8:45pm. This year we have a Ireland table for all of the Irish people at the conference to gather at and to meet.

I’ll be there so drop along and say hello.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Applying an ODM Model to new data in Oracle – Part 2

This is the second of a two part blog posting on using an Oracle Data Mining model to apply it to or score new data. The first part looked at how you can score data the DBMS_DATA_MINING.APPLY procedure for scoring data batch type process.

This second part looks at how you can apply or score the new data, using our ODM model, in a real-time mode, scoring a single record at a time.


The PREDICTION SQL function can be used in many different ways. The following examples illustrate the main ways of using it. Again we will be using the same data set with data in our (NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE) table.

The syntax of the function is

PREDICTION ( model_name, USING attribute_list);

Example 1 – Real-time Prediction Calculation

In this example we will select a record and calculate its predicted value. The function will return the predicted value with the highest probability

SELECT cust_id, prediction(clas_decision_tree using *)
WHERE cust_id = 103001;

---------- ------------------------------------
    103001                                    0

So a predicted class value is 0 (zero) and this has a higher probability than a class value of 1.

We can compare and check this results with the result that was produced using the DBMS_DATA_MINING.APPLY function (see previous blog post).

SQL> select * from new_data_scored
  2  where cust_id = 103001;

---------- ---------- -----------
    103001          0           1
    103001          1           0

Here we can see that the class value of 0 has a probability of 1 (100%) and the class value of 1 has a probability of 0 (0%).

Example 2 – Selecting top 10 Customers with Class value of 1

For this we are selecting from our NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE table. We want to find the records that have a class value of 1 and has the highest probability. We only want to return the first 10 of these

SELECT cust_id
WHERE PREDICTION(clas_decision_tree using *) = 1
AND       rownum <=10;


Example 3 – Selecting records based on Prediction value and Probability

For this example we want to find our from what Countries do the customer come from where the Prediction is 0 (wont take up offer) and the Probability of this occurring being 1 (100%). This example introduces the PREDICTION_PROBABILITY function. This function allows use to use the probability strength of the prediction.

select country_name, count(*)
from   new_data_to_score
where  prediction(clas_decision_tree using *) = 0
and    prediction_probability (clas_decision_tree using *) = 1
group by country_name
order by count(*) asc;

COUNTRY_NAME                               COUNT(*)
---------------------------------------- ----------
Brazil                                            1
China                                             1
Saudi Arabia                                      1
Australia                                         1
Turkey                                            1
New Zealand                                       1
Italy                                             5
Argentina                                        12
United States of America                        293

The examples that I have give above are only the basic examples of using the PREDICTION function. There are a number of other uses that include using the PREDICTION_COST, PREDICTION_SET, PREDICTION_DETAILS. Examples of these will be covered in a later blog post

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Oracle Ireland: Data Centre Transformation Event 7th December

Oracle in Ireland is hosting a session called Data Centre Transformation on 7th December (9:30-13:00), in the Guinness Storehouse, St James Gate, Dublin 8.

The agenda for this session is

9:00 Registration & Coffee
10:00 The 21st Century Data Centre, Delivered by Oracle Solaris – Mike Ramchand
10:30 Oracle Enterprise Manager 12c – John Caulfield, Solutions Director
11:00 Oracle Virtualised Systems (VM 3.0) – Dave Patterson, Oracle Hardware
11:30 Coffee Break
12:00 Transformative Oracle Storage Solutions – Neil Caughey, Oracle Storage Business Unit
12:30 Extreme Performance with Oracle Exadata and Exalogic – Brian Grant, Oracle Exalogic Business Development Manager

To book your place on this event email

Or register by following this web link.

I wont be at this event as I’ll be presenting in the afternoon at the UKOUG conference in Birmingham.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Applying an ODM Model to new data in Oracle – Part 1

This is the first of a two part blog posting on using an Oracle Data Mining model to apply it to or score new data.  This first part looks at the how you can score data using the DBMS_DATA_MINING.APPLY procedure in a batch type process.

The second part will be posted in a couple of days and will look how you can apply or score the new data, using our ODM model, in a real-time mode, scoring a single record at a time.


Instead of applying the model to data as it is captured, you may need to apply a model to a large number of records at the same time. To perform this bulk processing we can use the APPLY procedure that is part of the DBMS_DATA_MINING package. The format of the procedure is

      model_name           IN VARCHAR2,
      data_table_name      IN VARCHAR2,
      case_id_column_name  IN VARCHAR2,
      result_table_name    IN VARCHAR2,
      data_schema_name     IN VARCHAR2 DEFAULT NULL);

Parameter Name Description
Model_Name The name of your data mining model
Data_Table_Name The source data for the model. This can be a tree or view.
Case_Id_Column_Name The attribute that give uniqueness for each record. This could be the Primary Key or if the PK contains more than one column then a new attribute is needed
Result_Table_Name The name of the table where the results will be stored
Data_Schema_Name The schema name for the source data

The main condition for applying the model is that the source table (DATA_TABLE_NAME) needs to have the same structure as the table that was used when creating the model.

Also the data needs to be prepossessed in the same way as the training data to ensure that the data in each attribute/feature has the same formatting.

When you use the APPLY procedure it does not update the original data/table, but creates a new table (RESULT_TABLE_NAME) with a structure that is dependent on what the underlying DM algorithm is. The following gives the Result Table description for the main DM algorithms:

For a Classification algorithms

case_id      VARCHAR2/NUMBER
prediction   NUMBER / VARCHAR2  -- depending a target data type
probability  NUMBER

For Regression

case_id     VARCHAR2/NUMBER
prediction  NUMBER

For Clustering

case_id      VARCHAR2/NUMBER
cluster_id   NUMBER
probability  NUMBER

Example / Case Study

My last few blog posts on ODM have covered most of the APIs for building and transferring models. We will be using the same data set in these posts. The following code uses the same data and models to illustrate how we can use the DBMS_DATA_MINING.APPLY procedure to perform a bulk scoring of data.

In my previous post we used the EXPORT and IMPORT procedures to move a model from one database (Test) to another database (Production). The following examples uses the model in Production to score new data. I have setup a sample of data (NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE) from the SH schema using the same set of attributes as was used to create the model (MINING_DATA_BUILD_V). This data set contains 1500 records.

Name                                 Null?    Type
------------------------------------ -------- ------------
CUST_ID                              NOT NULL NUMBER
CUST_GENDER                          NOT NULL CHAR(1)
AGE                                           NUMBER
CUST_MARITAL_STATUS                           VARCHAR2(20)
COUNTRY_NAME                         NOT NULL VARCHAR2(40)
CUST_INCOME_LEVEL                             VARCHAR2(30)
EDUCATION                                     VARCHAR2(21)
OCCUPATION                                    VARCHAR2(21)
HOUSEHOLD_SIZE                                VARCHAR2(21)
YRS_RESIDENCE                                 NUMBER
AFFINITY_CARD                                 NUMBER(10)
BULK_PACK_DISKETTES                           NUMBER(10)
FLAT_PANEL_MONITOR                            NUMBER(10)
HOME_THEATER_PACKAGE                          NUMBER(10)
BOOKKEEPING_APPLICATION                       NUMBER(10)
PRINTER_SUPPLIES                              NUMBER(10)
Y_BOX_GAMES                                   NUMBER(10)
OS_DOC_SET_KANJI                              NUMBER(10)

SQL> select count(*) from new_data_to_score;


The next step is to run the the DBMS_DATA_MINING.APPLY procedure. The parameters that we need to feed into this procedure are

Parameter Name Description
Model_Name CLAS_DECISION_TREE  -- we imported this model from our test database
Case_Id_Column_Name CUST_ID  -- this is the PK
Result_Table_Name NEW_DATA_SCORED   -- new table that will be created that contains the Prediction and Probability.

The NEW_DATA_SCORED table will contain 2 records for each record in the source data (NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE). For each record in NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE we will have one record for the each of the Target Values (O or 1) and the probability for each target value. So for our NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE, which contains 1,500 records, we will get 3,000 records in the NEW_DATA_SCORED table.

To apply the model to the new data we run:

  model_name => 'CLAS_DECISION_TREE',
  data_table_name => 'NEW_DATA_TO_SCORE',
  case_id_column_name => 'CUST_ID',
  result_table_name => 'NEW_DATA_SCORED');

This takes 1 second to run on my laptop, so this apply/scoring of new data is really quick.

The new table NEW_DATA_SCORED has the following description

Name                            Null?    Type
------------------------------- -------- -------
CUST_ID                         NOT NULL NUMBER
PREDICTION                               NUMBER
PROBABILITY                              NUMBER

SQL> select count(*) from NEW_DATA_SCORED;


We can now look at the prediction and the probabilities

SQL> select * from NEW_DATA_SCORED where rownum <=12;

---------- ---------- -----------
    103001          0           1
    103001          1           0
    103002          0  .956521739
    103002          1  .043478261
    103003          0  .673387097
    103003          1  .326612903
    103004          0  .673387097
    103004          1  .326612903
    103005          1  .767241379
    103005          0  .232758621
    103006          0           1
    103006          1           0

12 rows selected.

How Many Sleeps to Santa

to_date('25/12/2011','DD/MM/YYYY') - trunc(sysdate) "How Many Sleep to Santa"
from dual;

How Many Sleep to Santa

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Call for Presentations : OUG Ireland Conference 2012

The call for presentations for the annual Oracle User Group Ireland conference has been posted in last few days.
The conference is planned for March 2012 and the venue will be picked over the next few weeks.
I’m on organising committee this year. It is hoped to have a number of parallel streams covering core Database Technology, BI (&EPM), Development (including Fusion).
If you are interested in presenting a short presentation of approx. 45 minutes (including time for questions), then you will need to submit your Topic and Abstract using the following link :
The conference is not limited to presenters from Ireland and it is hoped to get a number of well known Oracle experts and Oracle ACEs to come to Dublin for the day.
What kind of topics are of interest. Well pretty much anything Oracle. We have all come across something interesting in our jobs that we could share, be it using a particular technique, new features, sharing experiences, best practices, product demos, etc
I’ve already submitted a presentation on Oracle Data Miner.
There is a Twitter hash tag for the Oracle Conference #oug_ire2012.  So add this to your Twitter tool to follow developments and announcements about the conference.
If you have any question about the conference drop me a email.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My UKOUG Conference 2011 Schedule

UK Oracle User Group Conference 2011

The UKOUG conference will be in a couple of weeks. I have my flights and hotel booked, and I’ve just finished selecting my agenda of presentations. I really enjoy this conference as it serves many purposes including, finding new directions Oracle is taking, new product features, some upskilling/training, confirming that the approaches that I have been using on projects are valid, getting lots of hints and tips, etc.

One thing that I always try to do and I strongly everyone (in particular first timers) to do is to go to 1 session everyday that is on a topic or product that you know (nearly) nothing about.  You might discover that you know more than you think or you may learn something new that can be feed into some project on your return or over the next 12 months.

My agenda for the conference currently looks Very busy and in between these session, there is the exhibition hall, meetings with old and new friends, meetings with product/business unit managers, asking people to write articles for Oracle Scene, checking out possible presenters to come to Ireland for our conference in March 2012, etc.  Then there is my presentation on the Wednesday afternoon.


I’ll miss most of the Oak Table event on the Sunday but I hope to make it in time for

16:40-17:30 : Performance & High Availability Panel Session


9:20-9:50 : Keynote by Mark Sunday, Oracle (H1)
10:00-10:45 : The Future of BI & Oracle roadmap, Mike Durran, Oracle (H5)
11:05-12:05 : Implementing Interactive Maps with OBIEE 11g, Antony Heljula, Peak Indicators (H10A)
12:15-13:15 : OBI 11g Analysis & Reporting New Features, Mark Rittman (8A)
14:30-15:15 : Master Data Management – What is it & how to make it work – Robert Barnett, Hub Solutions Designs (H10A)
16:20-17:35 : Dummies Guide to Oracle ADF, Grant Ronald, Oracle, (Media Suite)
16:35-18:30 : The DB Time Performance Method, Graham Wood, Oracle (H8A)
17:45-18:30 : Performance & Stability with Oracle 11g SQL Plan Management, Doug Burns (H1)
17:45-18:30 : Experiences in Virtualization, Michael Doherty (H10A)
19:45-20:45 : Exhibition Welcome Drinks
20:45-Late : Focus Pubs


9:00-11:00 : Next Generation BI Architectures Masterclass, Andrew Bond, Oracle (H10B)
10:10-10:55 : Who’s afraid of Analytic Functions, Alex Nuijten, Maxima (H5)
11:15-12:15 : Analysing Your Data with Analytic Functions, Carl Dudley, (H9)
11:25-13:25 : Using a Physical Standby to Minimize Downtime for DB Release or Server Change, Michael Abbey, Pythian (Media Suite)
14:40-15:25 : How note to make the headlines, Mark Clewett, Hitachi (H10A)
14:40-15:25 : APEX Back to Basics, Paul Broughton, APEX Evangelists (H9)
15:35-16:20 : Can People be identified in the database, Pete Finnigan (H1)
16:40-18:35 : OTN Hands-on Workshop, Todd Trichler, Oracle (H8A)
17:50-18:35 : SQL Developer Data Modeler as a replacement for Oracle Designer, Paul Bainbridge, Fujitsu, (H8B)
18:45-19:45 : Keynote : Future of Enterprise Software and Oracle, Ray Wang, Constellation Research (H1)
20:00-Late : Evening Social & Networking


9:00-10:00 : Oracle 11g Database: Automatic Parallelism, Joel Goodman, Oracle (H9)
9:00-10:00 : Big Data: Learn how to predict the future, Keith Laker, Oracle (H8B)
10:10-10:55 : All about indexes – What to index, when and how, Mark Bobak, ProQuest (H5)
11:20-12:30 : Using Application Express to Build Highly Accessible Products, Anthony Rayner, Oracle (H8A)
12:30-13:30 : Practical uses for APEX Dictionary, John Scott, APEX Evangelists (H8A)
15:20-16:05 : How to deploy you Oracle Data Miner 11g R2 Workflows in a Live Environment – Me  (H7B)
16:15-17:00 : Next Generation Data Warehousing, Kulvinder Hari, Oracle (H8A)
16:15-17:00 : Beyond RTFM and WTF Message Moments. Introducing a new standard: Oracle Fusion Applications User Assistance, Ultan O’Broin (Executive Room 7)

I know I have some overlapping sessions, but I will decide on the date which of these I will attend.

As you an see I will be following the BI stream mainly, with a few sessions on the Database and Development streams too.

This year there is a smart phone app help us organise our agenda, meetings, etc, The only downside is that the app does not import the agenda that I created on the website. So I have to do it again. Maybe for next year they will have an import agenda feature.

New UKOUG mobile app – Launched October 2011

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Tom Kyte Seminar Day–Dublin

On Wednesday 2nd December, I attended a full day of presentations given by Tom Kyte of Oracle ( Tom covered a number of topics and these included some of his Oracle Open World presentations.

The topics that were covered included

  • 5 things about SQL (OOW11)
  • Database Option Packs
  • 5 things about PL/SQL (OOW11)
  • Q&A Ask Tom Session

All of these presentations can be downloaded from Tom’s website

Tom wont be presenting at the annual UKOUG conference in December, but he is hoping to be there next year (2012).


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Book Donation by Oracle

Today I received two boxes, containing 48 books of

The Performance Management Revolution by Howard Dresner


These books have been kindly donated by Duncan Fitter, UK Business Development Director at Oracle.

I will be distributing these books to my MSc Data Mining students over the next week.

Thanks Duncan and Oracle

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Oracle Events in Ireland (Q4 2011)

Over the coming months (Q4 2011) there are a number of Oracle related events being run in Ireland. The schedule for these is below with the relevant links to the agenda webpages or to where you can book your place.


The OUG BI SIG meetings you can book your place with the UKOUG.
Venue Address - Dublin:
Oracle Block H, East Point Business Park, Dublin 3
Venue Address - Belfast:
The Mount Conference Center, 2 Woodstock Link, Belfast BT6 8DD
For questions about logistics please contact the marketing team on
If you have any question about the content please contact:
If you know of any other events that are not listed, let me know and I’ll update the list

Monday, September 19, 2011

Oak Table Event in Dec 2011

This year the Annual UKOUG event will be in Birmingham (again) from the 5th to 7th December.

This year there is a slight difference to the usual schedule. On Sunday 4th December there is an Oak Table event, with two parallel tracks. It has all the well known experts presenting at this event.

If I had the time turner from Harry Potter, I would be able to go to all the sessions.

Presenters include Morgens Norgaard, Johnathan Lewis, Frits Hoogland, Martin Widlake, Christian Antognini, Connor McDonald, James Morle and Wolfgang Breitling.

This is an impressive line up and hopefully the UKOUG will run a similar event in 2012.

Check out of the full agenda at

This is one event that I would love to go to but unfortunately I wont be able to make it.  I’ll be attending the Annual UKOUG conference alright, and I have already booked my airline tickets. But there are no flights from Dublin that will get me to Birmingham on time. I would need to fly to Birmingham on the Saturday, involving another hotel night and another night away from the family.

The best I’m hoping for is to get to the ICC in time for the Panel Session on Performance and High Availability. 

Depending on weather and travel delays I might even miss this last session.  If I do, I can always meet up with everyone in the pub on the Sunday evening for a chat.

Maybe next year.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Oracle Scene–Next Submission Date 26th Aug

The Winter edition of the UKOUG Oracle Scene magazine is now looking for articles to be submitted for consideration.

The due date for the article submission is Friday 26 August. So you have just over 2 weeks to put together your article.

Lots of people have asked me what kind of articles are you looking for. The simple answer is anything as long as it is Oracle related. The following list should give you some ideas:

  • Technical article
  • Application article
  • Business articles
  • Tool article
  • SIG meetings, new, updates and plans
  • New features
  • Something that you discovered
  • Your likes, dislikes or anything relating to Oracle
  • Oracle Book reviews
  • Oracle Conference reviews
  • etc

So you can see anything goes really.

How long should an article be ?   It can be any length really. Anything from 1/4 page to a full 5 page article, and anything in between.

Selection of Articles Process

All submitted articles are assessed by a review panel, comprised of volunteers from a variety of businesses and specialties. The review panel rates the articles and makes comments where appropriate.

An editorial meeting takes place after the submissions have been rated. The articles are assessed and the review panel’s scoring and comments are taken into account. The editorial team makes the final decision as to which articles will be selected for publication, or to be held over for a future edition. You will be notified of the result as soon as this process has been completed.

You will be contacted near the publication date by the publishing company for you to review to print version of your article.

Submitting your Article

Check out the Article Formatting Guidelines before submitting.

All pictures and images should be 300dpi.

Include a 100(max) word Bio and your photo

Email your article and images to


Brendan Tierney

Deputy Editor

Monday, July 18, 2011

VirtaThon Presentation

Today I gave my VirtaThon presentation on the new Oracle Data Miner 11gR2 tool.

It was an interesting experience as VirtaThon was a virtual conference. The organisation and administration of the conference was excellent.

I had over 25 participants for my presentation, including Carolyn Hamm who has written a book on using Oracle Data Miner 10g.  She seemed to enjoy my presentation as she was asking for more at the end, but we had run out of time.

The presentation was an unusual but interesting experience. All the participants were muted, so I could not hear anyone or be asked questions as the presentation progressed. I was not able to judge the body language or facial expressions, for me to work out how the presentation was going.

I was sitting in my living room when giving the presentation and spent almost an hour talking to myself. At time the concentration levels dipped and I have to refocus and used some visualisation to help me concentrate.

The presentation was divided into 2 parts. The first part was a presentation consisting of some background to ODM, how to get setup and running with ODM, and finally a discussion of some of the new features. This first part took approx. 30 minutes which surprised me as during my rehearsals it was talking 16 minutes. The second part of the presentation was a demo of using ODM to create a workflow, generating a classification model and then applying this model to some new data. During my rehearsals this was taking approx. 40 minutes.

I only had 50-55 minutes for my VirtaThon presentation so after my presentation I had 20-25 minutes for the demo. So I had to get through the demo quickly and I had to cut out a discussion of how the data exploration functionality in ODM can be used to get an insight into the data before you start using the data mining features. I will put together a blog post and video of this in a couple of weeks time that will explain it in more detail.

I managed to finish at 49 minutes, which left 6 minutes for questions. There was only a couple of questions, plenty of Thank You’s along with Good Presentation, which is always good to hear.

Thank you to everyone who attended the presentation and to the organisers of VirtaThon.

Brendan Tierney

Friday, July 15, 2011

My Presentation at VirtaThon 2011

I will be giving a presentation on the Oracle Data Miner New Features at the online conference VirtaThon, on Monday 18th July.

VirtaThon is a FREE 6 day conference with 2 parallel sessions with world leading speakers on Oracle Java and MySQL. 

Previously attendance at the conference cost $100, which was good value considering the quality of the speakers. But this year it is Free.

The VirtaThon conference runs from 16th July to 21st July

The schedule is available at

To sign up to attend some or all of the sessions go to

Attend4FREE! Jul 16-21: 6 Days of Expert+ Sessions #VirtaThon The Online Conference for the Oracle, Java & MySQL Domains

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My first Oracle Scene planning meeting

I had my first meeting, as a deputy editor, with the Oracle Scene team on Tuesday 12th July. The meeting was organised by Suzanne Gaunt, who is leaving the UKOUG on Friday. She will be sadly missed. Lavinia and Karina are taking over the role of producing the magazine.

Also at the meeting was Neil Jarvis, the editor, and Gillian and Philip Adams from, who look after the whole production of the magazine.

The main topic of discussion was the production process for the magazine and an outline of the timelines involved.

There was some discussions on how to improve the magazine with new material. Some of the suggestions included

  • From the editors section to be added back in. This is a half page from each of the deputy editors. For myself this will be an introduction/bio in the next edition
  • Ask the editors section, where the readers can submit questions to the editorial team for them to attempt to answer and hopefully in a humorous way
  • Articles from the different regions and SIGs. This is to allow the user group to get to know what the other parts of the group are up to
  • A Blog summary. This will be a round up of some of the blogs from user group community
  • Introduce a competition in each edition
  • Unusual Photo competitions
  • Book reviews, which maybe Book giveaways from the publishers

In addition to these suggestions the main content of articles from the user community. Everyone is invited to write an article. It does not matter how long or short it is. The main idea is for you to share some of your knowledge. An article can be of any length, for example it could be 1/4 page, 1/2 page, 1, 2, 3 or 5 pages.

Have you come across a new or unusual feature, did you do something interesting with a feature, how and why you implemented it, case studies, new tools, etc.

So articles could be technical or non-technical, or on anything that might be of interest to the user community.

The next deadline for submitting articles is 26th August and with all deadlines it is good to submit early!

The finished magazine will be ready for distribution around the end of October.

If you have any suggestions of changes, additions, articles or adverting, let me know.