The Data Warrior

Changing the world, one data model at a time. How can I help you?

An Irish Blessing (for my friends at #OUG_IRE)

Maybe a day or so late (for St Patrick’s Day) but a bunch of my Oracle pals (#ACEs and #ACEDs) are all over in Dublin at an Oracle User Group event (#oug_ire on Twitter) so this seemed appropriate. Looks like they are having a good event (based on the tweets), with a fun evening to boot.

This is an old, traditional blessing. I found it in a box of papers while doing some spring cleaning yesterday.

For all my friends in or visiting Ireland this week:

May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow,
And may trouble avoid you wherever you go.
May the road rise up to meet you,
May the wind be at your back,
May the sun shine down upon your face,
And the rain fall soft upon your fields,
Until we meet again,
May God hold you in the hollow of his hand.

See y’all in Florida at #KScope15

Kent

The Data Warrior

Better Data Modeling: The Book

Trying to be as productive as possible during my infrequent down time, I just published another Kindle book with some of my best tips for Oracle Data Modeler. it is called Better Data Modeling: Tips for Enhancing Your Use of Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler.

If you are one of the 3.5 million users (or so) who have downloaded this tool, and you want to know my little secrets for getting the most out of SQL Developer Data Modeler (#SQLDevModeler), this book if for you.

If you were an Oracle Designer user and are looking for a replacement data modeling tool, or you are using one of the other mainstream, expensive modeling tools and want a more cost effective alternative, then you owe it to yourself to look at Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler (SDDM). Oracle Data Modeler has been around for over five years now and is up to version 4.1. It really is an industrial strength data modeling tool that can be used for any data modeling task you need to tackle.

SQL Developer Data Modeler (SDDM) is a fully functional tool provided for FREE by Oracle. It has many features built in that can be leveraged to capture the design of an existing (probably undocumented) database or you can use it to design a new database, even a data warehouse from scratch. There are a load of great features. This book will show you my favorite features along with detailed step by step instructions (with screen shots) on how to use them.

Tips include:

  • How to easily color code your diagrams
  • How to make hundreds of views really fast
  • How to find missing foreign keys
  • How to find missing unique keys
  • How to connect to a SQL Server database (if you must…)

As a bonus, there are two appendices with my run down on common data modeling mistakes and my famous rant on why you need foreign keys in your data warehouse.

So if you don’t use Oracle Data Modeler yet, read my book to see why you should.

If you do use it, I hope this little book will make you even more productive than you already are!

Model on!

Kent

The Data Warrior

P.S. After you read the book, please leave a review on Amazon to help other folks decide if the book is for them.

End Your Data Modeling Pain

Tired of hand drawn data models, or models drawn in Visio or even PowerPoint?

Still limping along on an old Oracle Designer repository?

Can’t afford the license for your current modeling tool anymore?

Or maybe your shop has no documented data model diagrams at all (horrors!).

Well, if you were an Oracle Designer user and are looking for a replacement data modeling tool, or you are using one of the other mainstream, expensive modeling tools and want a more cost effective alternative, then you owe it to yourself (and your organization) to look at Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler (SDDM). Data Modeler has been around for over five years now and is up to version 4.1. It really is an industrial strength data modeling tool that can be used for any data modeling task you need to tackle.

As I have mentioned before (many times) in this blog, SQL Developer Data Modeler (SDDM) is a fully functional modeling tool provided for FREE by Oracle. It has many features built in that can be leveraged to capture the design of an existing (probably undocumented) database and re-engineer it or you can use it to design a new database, even a data warehouse from scratch. There are features to apply standards, and then generate DDL to implement your newly standardized design. You can even use one logical model to develop multiple physical models that can be deployed to different RDBMS (like Oracle, SQL Server, and DB2). You even have options on the type of notation used in the diagrams (i.e., Barker, IE, etc.).

Unfortunately there are no comprehensive, end-to-end classes that can teach you how to really get started with SDDM and can point you to some of the awesome features and show you how they work.

Not until NOW!

Announcing my new online class: Introduction to Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler.

This course will start from a totally blank page and walk you through all the major features and options of the tool to show you how to design build and deploy a database. I provide lots of examples and tips on how to do all this so that you can quickly be productive (while you watch!).

In this class, I will introduce you to the tool and show you how to use some of the cool features I use almost daily. I will provide step-by-step instructions on how to use these features. The class includes both lectures with screen shots and hands on demos of the tool (recorded live by me). Hint: some of my best tips are in the demos.

In this course you will see:

  • How to create new objects (entities, attributes, relationships) from a blank page
  • How to reverse engineer and document existing databases
  • How to reverse engineer logical models from physical to get a clean ERD
  • How to reconcile an existing data model to the database or the database to a model
  • How to generate a script to change an existing database

Tips, tricks and features I demonstrate include:

  • Modifying the delivered reporting templates
  • How (and when) to use the abbreviations utility
  • How to use and apply domains
  • How to create and applying object naming templates
  • How to add audit columns to every table in a model
  • How to add custom design rules for model quality checks
  • How to use the built in quality checks
  • How to use the newest find and extract feature to enable updating table and column comments by end users
  • How to generate a simple data dictionary

As an added bonus, in addition to step by step slides, and the demos, I have included a zip file with example output, templates, and DDL scripts that I created during the demos. You will be able to download these to your machine to try the exercises yourself.

If you have questions along the way, our modern learning management system (LMS) lets you enter your questions in the course comments whenever you want. I will get an immediate email notification so I can promptly answer your questions.

Unlike typical user group presentations, where I can only scratch the surface or show a few tricks, this course contains over four and a half hours of content broken up into bite-sized modules so you can easily digest the detailed information. If it does not make sense, you can simply play the same segment over again and even follow along on using your own install of SDDM.

By the end of the course you will be able to effectively use Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler for all your data modeling tasks.

So head over to Learn Data Vault and check out the preview video of the class, then sign up and learn. Use my special offer code of GRAZIANO10S to get 10% off.

See you online!

Kent

The Data Warrior

P.S. The current price of the course is the initial sale price. I am not sure when the price will go up but Dan and Sanjay tell me that I set the price too low and they will have to raise it in the near future. So, I would sign up now, before that price goes up.

Meet me in Austin?

Late breaking news (aka I forgot to post this earlier)!

I will be speaking at the first meeting of the Austin Oracle Users Group for 2015. It will be this coming Friday February 27, 2015 starting at 11:00 AM. I will give an intro talk on Oracle SQL Developer Data Modeler (the FREE data modeling tool from Oracle).

So if you ever wanted to find out if this is the data modeling tool for you, join me in Austin and find out first hand.

After my talk there will be a free lunch, followed by a talk on “Leave the Crowd: Join the Cloud” by Lakshmi Sampath, ERP Cloud Evangelist and Brent Grech, VP, Fusion Applications, Global Sales Engineering, Oracle.

I plan to stick around for that talk too!

The meeting will be held at the Oracle offices at 9600 North MOPAC, Plaza II, Suite 700.

So please RSVP and let them know you are coming.

If you want to meet up after the session, leave me a comment below, or drop me a line.

See you soon!

Kent

The Data Warrior

P.S. If you are in the Austin area and have not joined, please join the LinkedIn group for AOUG here: https://www.linkedin.com/groups?home=&gid=4308479

The 12 Steps to Faster Data Warehouse Success

Announcement!

I have exciting news!

With the help of my good friend Dan Linstedt (of LearnDataVault.com fame), we have just launched my first online training video based on my very popular white paper and talk: Agile Methods and Data Warehousing: How to Deliver Faster.

Most of you will agree that data warehousing and business intelligence projects take too long to deliver tangible results. I am sure all you project and program managers wish it was not true.

Often by the time a solution is in place, the business needs have changed.

With all the talk about Agile development methods, including SCRUM and Extreme Programming, the question arises as to how these approaches can be used to deliver data warehouse and business intelligence projects faster. This new online course will look at the 12 principles behind the Agile Manifesto and see how they can be applied in the context of a data warehouse project. Then I will talk about some of the specific agile techniques I have used with great success on my projects over the last 15 years. The goal is to determine a method or methods to get a more rapid (2-4 week) delivery of portions of an enterprise data warehouse architecture.

The last time I gave this talk, in Helsinki, Finland at Harmony 2014, I had standing room only and ended up being rated the 2nd best speaker at the event (pretty cool!). It was so popular that the UK Oracle Users Group asked me to write an article on the same topic for their international newsletter.

Since many of you don’t get the chance to travel to events like this (or may have missed my session), you can now see my talk online, at your convenience, for much less than the cost of a conference fee (and the airfare to get there!). We just filmed it last week, after I completed my most recent agile data warehouse engagement, so it contains some new insights and stories that even the folks in Helsinki did not get to hear.

As a bonus, once you have finished the course, you will be able to download a free copy of the detailed article I wrote for UKOUG.

If you have questions during or after the course, you can post them right there in the training portal where I will answer them. So in addition to the training course and the white paper, you also get interactive access to me!

How do I sign up?

So how do you sign up for this new class and how much does it cost?

Well, the full price for course will be $199, but for those of  you who read my blog, I have a special Valentines Day Special offer: if you are one of the first 50 people to purchase the class between now and midnight February 15, 2015, you get a full 50% off the retail price.

So that is $99.50 for over an hour of valuable content PLUS a copy of my white paper (and access to ask me your burning questions).

Use the coupon code: GRAZIANO50

You can buy it now by going to the all new Learn Data Vault training portal now.

On the site you see the class description, outline, and my introductory video, along with the “Buy Now!” button.

So hurry and cash in my special gift to you before the time is up (remember after 2/15/15 it will be $199).

Applying Agile

For those of you who had no idea there were 12 Principles behind the Agile Manifesto, let me tell you about one that I think is vitally important: Principle #6

The most efficient and effective method of conveying information to and within a development team is face-to-face conversation.

This means the team works best when co-located so they can easily talk to each other during the day.

HINT: If not co-located, you need to be sure you have an adequate instant messaging system in place to facilitate their daily interaction. And that the team agrees to use it!

In addition, another best practice is to hold Team Huddles every morning. In the class, I give a lot of details about huddles and how they work, but the main point is that the team needs to meet briefly once a day (usually the morning) to make sure they are all one the same page as to what they are all working on.

I can tell you for a fact, that the daily huddles and ongoing interaction is definitely a critical success factor in adopting agile practices for your data warehouse team. I have seen great success where this was implemented properly and I have also seen lots of issues when the team did not communicate daily. There is no better recipe for disaster than to have your data architect building the wrong view when the report writer is trying to finalize the output with the user. Yikes!

So, if you want to learn how to apply the 12 Principle of Agile to become more successful in delivering usable results to your data warehouse and BI program, please go over to the training site and sign up from my class.

Here’s to your success!

Kent

The Data Warrior

P.S. Don’t forget to sign up before 2/15/15 with coupon code GRAZIANO50 to get 50% off the full price.

 

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