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Yearly Archives: 2014

Twisted Strings : Enforcing Password Strength

password TVgameIn this post, I aim to depict some practical utilizations of assorted Oracle string functions as an antidote to bland, often pointless examples given in SQL documentation. Security and reliable user authentication is ever in the news these days, and many studies confirm that most users continue to choose facile and predictable userids and/or passwords. This article summarizes recent user habits and hacker trends regarding passwords with some basic recommendations, while these two illustrate some of the most common (thus insecure) passwords.     Continue…

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Pivot Queries : Then & Now

Back around the era of Oracle 6 or 7, I had an intuition that a certain type of query could be written within the limits of SQL*Plus syntax, but wasn’t quite clear as to how. I was doing some ad-hoc DBA work for a development database once a week or so, and wished to get a handle on who was doing what how frequently in terms of object creation. I envisioned a tabular matrix tallying kinds of objects by user with the aim of watching the changes over time. After doing some legwork exploring the sys.obj$ table and hitting upon using DECODE to trap specific object/user pairs into desired columns, I came up with this:     Continue…

Layering in R for Oracle Data

NZ kiwi #1

NZ kiwi #1

The GGPLOT2 package for R, developed by Hadley Wickham, is preferred by many for it’s greater flexibility and range of graphing options. Here’s a tutorial explaining it’s capabilities and here’s the online documentation for the package.     Continue…

Visualizing Oracle data: Tree Maps

tree of languages, indo-european

tree of languages, indo-european


I recently wrote about the R statistics and graphics platform, and introduced it as a way to do further analytics or visualizations for data from Oracle databases. This article will take a look at a graphical idea called tree maps. They are an extension of the more basic visualization technique: heat maps.     Continue…

Oracle Highest Ranked DB Engine?

DB-engines.com database buzz ranking for march 2014 -- click to enlarge

DB-engines.com database buzz ranking for march 2014

The DB-engines.com website, which measures how germane almost 200 separate databases are in the current marketplace (including the market of ideas) has had Oracle ranked #1 for many consecutive months now. Their online graphic seems to depict a world in which Oracle is dominant, and by a large margin. What is even more impressive is that the #2-ranked engine is MySQL, also an Oracle product these days, followed by #3-ranked SQL Server from Microsoft. The gap between these three front-runners and the rest of the pack is considerable.     Continue…

R with Oracle

r1The data presentation graphic at right, and many of those sprinkled throughout this article (click them for better resolutions), are highlights from an enthusiast’s gallery which have been produced by the R statistical software package. R is an open-source programming language and environment which has gained much popularity among academics who want to apply statistical methods     Continue…

Deletion Insurance

If you have some experience, the topic of deleting consequential data automatically brings to mind optional safety measures in case things go wrong. The recent article concerning data deduplication is a good example. What if — I didn’t test my DELETE code enough and a snafu occurs? What if — I have to retrieve some or all of the deleted rows after the fact? What if — I want to keep the deleted rows (or partial rows) available on the side for inspection for awhile?     Continue…