Oracle Scratchpad

June 17, 2011

Author, author!

Filed under: Advertisements — Jonathan Lewis @ 3:57 pm BST Jun 17,2011

It’s official – I’m writing a new book for Apress.

The working title is: “A look at the internal mechanics of the important bits of Oracle for people who aren’t planning to become rocket scientists but who do want to do a little more than just push buttons in OEM”. (I’m still working on making the title a little more catchy.)

Target publication time – some time in November.


  1. The title seems a bit long :) you might need to be a rocket scientist to understand just the tile.

    Anyway that’s an awesome news, do you have the schedule date already ?


    Comment by JC Dauchy — June 17, 2011 @ 3:59 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

    • The way I see it, anyone who can’t get to the end of the title won’t want to read the book ;)

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 17, 2011 @ 9:33 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

      • I don`t think the readers(fan like me) would have problems but the publisher.
        It is kinda challenging for them to try to put such a long title on a cover of a book :P

        Though, it doesn`t matter what it is the title, it is your name sells the books, not the title anyway.

        Comment by phoenixbai — August 5, 2011 @ 6:08 am BST Aug 5,2011 | Reply

  2. I`m rereading now your book “Cost-Based Oracle Fundamentals”. You promised there that you would write two other books. Is this new book one of them?

    Comment by Yuri — June 17, 2011 @ 4:04 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  3. Jonathan –

    Would you consider this book as ” Cost Based Oracle Fundamentals – Part 2 ” ?

    Comment by Zahir M — June 17, 2011 @ 4:08 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  4. Finally, looking forward to it! I hope it is like a v2.0 of “Practical Oracle8i: Building Efficient Databases”, which is a great book that I still find very useful.

    Comment by Madhu Sreeram — June 17, 2011 @ 4:13 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  5. And I guess “… for dummies” is trademarked and therefore out of bounds? For “Oracle for dummies” is the most succint translation of that title I can come up with.

    Seriously – “dummies” being people who only know how to push buttons in OEM – if a dummy wants to learn more, they should read the book.
    I think you can then skip the part about rocket scientists, since there is some serious distance between dummies and rocket scientists.

    I’m also curious about which books you would consider for people who want to become rocket scientists? Me, I’d count your “Cost-based Oracle Fundamentals”, Cary’s chapter on Queueing Theory, and Lex de Haan’s “Applied Mathematics for database professionals” in that category. Does it get more advanced than that?

    Comment by Flado — June 17, 2011 @ 4:33 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

    • Flado,

      I really dislike the “for dummies” label, and I don’t think I’d be able to write for anyone who fell into the category that that suggests to me. This book will, I hope, be written with the same type of narrative structure of the last two, and it will, I hope, be clean and well-directed so that people who are already prepared to spend a little time thinking about what’s going on inside Oracle will follow it comfortably, even if it takes a little concentration.

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 17, 2011 @ 9:42 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

      • Oh. I never knew “dummy” meant “unintelligent” – just ignorant. I see your point now, with a little help from the Wiktionary:
        dummy (plural dummies)
        1. A silent person; a person who does not talk.
        2. An unintelligent person.

        At least I seem to have gotten the meaning of “rocket scientist” right – so what would end up in an Oracle book for rocket scientists?

        Comment by Flado — June 17, 2011 @ 10:13 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  6. Can’t wait to get my hands on this new Book. Good Luck!


    Comment by Suman — June 17, 2011 @ 4:37 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  7. This seems to be the GREATEST news of the year so far.

    Comment by VINEET RANJAN — June 17, 2011 @ 4:58 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  8. Awesome idea – I was thinking, if you didn’t write CBOF for dummies, someone should. I beat my copy of CBOF to a pulp but that was because I was working on VSTs in DB Optimizer. Otherwise, in a normal life, I probably would have only succeeded in reading a couple of chapters.

    Comment by Kyle Hailey — June 17, 2011 @ 9:11 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

    • Kyle,

      Since the time I wrote the book, so much more good stuff has appeared on the Internet that someone probably could write a “CBO for Dummies” type of book without producing the type of garbage that people like Richard Foote and Cary Millsap and Tom Kyte have been fighting for the last ten years or so. The only problem is the volume of data that it would nice to include.

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 17, 2011 @ 9:49 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

  9. I like the working title. (And I always liked the .sig someone had “Yes, as a matter of fact I am a rocket scientist.”)

    Maybe keep it as a subtitle for a catchy title like:

    I Don’t Want You To Be Happy, I Want the Database To Work

    Oracle Bumfights

    I Never Promised You A Martin Gardner

    Practical Oracle: To Infinity and Beyond

    Mythbusters: Operation Oracle

    A Byte To Remember

    Beneath The Planet Of The Oracle

    Baselines Are From Venus, Profiles Are From Mars

    Coffee, Tea, or Mutex

    One Flew Over the Optimizers’ Nest

    Ellison Bless You, Dr. Jacobs

    Tweet This Book

    The Stray Traces Of Western North America

    So Long, And Thanks For All the Histograms


    Fast Equals True

    Surely You’re Joking, Mr. Lewis

    The /Help (see NY Times bestseller list)

    Even Performance Specialists Sing The Blues

    But I Saw It On The Internet

    Life Of Oracle

    I Was Supposed To Be Coding But This Was More Fun

    Comment by joel garry — June 17, 2011 @ 9:51 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

    • Joel,

      How long did it take you to come up with that list !

      “Practical Oracle: To Infinity and Beyond”
      I had actually toyed with the idea of “Practical Oracle: to 11g and beyond”.

      “Baselines Are From Venus, Profiles Are From Mars”
      Wrong way round – baselines tell you what to do, profiles help you do your best.

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 17, 2011 @ 9:59 pm BST Jun 17,2011 | Reply

      • When I get in the zone, there is no time :-)

        Actually, it was about 13 minutes, much of it pondering what obvious things I was missing. I could have come up with more and tidied up some (I meant to put in some html li commands but couldn’t remember offhand how wordpress handles them, and the tardis reference was supposed to link to Dr. Who explaining how it could be larger on the inside), but the answer to the unrelated work problem my brain had earlier locked up on came to me. Googling something like “catchy titles” made for a quick start.

        Don’t the ones from Venus tell you what to do? :-)

        I like “Push It Harder,” reminds me of Fudds First Law of Opposition.

        Comment by joel garry — June 20, 2011 @ 9:27 pm BST Jun 20,2011 | Reply

  10. Jonathan,

    This will be my Christmas Gift. Looking forward to your new book.


    Comment by Aswath Rao — June 18, 2011 @ 2:42 am BST Jun 18,2011 | Reply

  11. This is probably going to be the most anticipated book for me and for the entire community sir. Can’t wait to get it !


    Comment by amansharma81 — June 18, 2011 @ 5:48 am BST Jun 18,2011 | Reply

  12. 期待..

    I am looking forward to read this book !!

    Comment by jametong — June 18, 2011 @ 6:09 am BST Jun 18,2011 | Reply

  13. About the title:

    Push it harder!
    (internal mechanics of Oracle for people that don’t want to just push buttons in OEM)

    A bit shorten and a bit more catchy (specially the first line ;-) )

    Comment by lascoltodelvenerdi — June 18, 2011 @ 12:27 pm BST Jun 18,2011 | Reply

  14. That is great news – I look forward to reading the book.

    I thought that I would offer a couple of possible book titles:
    “Oracle DBA Fundamentals: It’s Not Rocket Science, Just a Really Big C Program”

    “The Life of the Oracle Database: From Mount to ORA-600”

    “Statistics in the Oracle Database: They’re Not Just Used to Create Pretty Charts”

    “Just the Facts: From Button Pusher to Oracle Database Administrator”

    “What’s that Mean?: The Critical Essentials for the Average Oracle Database Administrator”

    “Oracle DBA: It’s Not Magic, Just Logic”

    “Oracle Database by Jonathan Lewis: A Book that Promises No Cartoon Drawings, No Hand-waving, and No Facts that were Disproven 10 Years Ago”

    Just for the sake of curiosity, does your response in this thread provide a clue about the material that will be found in the book?

    Comment by Charles Hooper — June 18, 2011 @ 1:13 pm BST Jun 18,2011 | Reply

    • Charles,

      The response to that thread is probably a pretty good clue – it could have been a comment taken from Chapter 6 of the draft.

      “… No Facts that were Disproven 10 Years Ago”
      You mean
      “… No Claims that were Disproven 10 Years Ago”

      “Oracle DBA Fundamentals…”
      It was a bit of an error to use that work in the last title, quite a lot of people thought “fundamental” was a synonym of “easy”.

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 19, 2011 @ 8:39 am BST Jun 19,2011 | Reply

  15. I think in todays world where most of the marketing is done online, you should consider a book title that increases the chances of a good google hit and forget being able to read it:
    “internal mechanics Oracle people rocket scientists push buttons OEM”
    This makes it shorter and will save ink thus increasing profit.

    Comment by Darryl Griffiths — June 19, 2011 @ 8:31 am BST Jun 19,2011 | Reply

    • Darryl,

      Do I detect a hint of cynicism there. Are you the type of person who goes around submitting conference abstracts with titles like:
      “Super secret internal best practice tips and tricks for optimizing Oracle performance”

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — June 19, 2011 @ 8:42 am BST Jun 19,2011 | Reply

      • Absolutely not. Why take the time to type that up when I can just link to the guy that does ;-)
        I just think that you should optimise (ize) on the advertising a little.
        Googleise (ize) the title of the book to increase hits when people are searching google for the answer to their problem(s)/life.
        Maybe we should have a discussion on how searching google has changed people’s minds to think like the Oracle CBO. I do it, I’m sure you do too. I remove all the fuzzy words and try to type my query in a way that might make sense to google, and not how it might have been written on the desired resultant page(s). I’m optimising the query.

        Slip me a fiver (~8 dollars) and I’ll write a review on Amazon for the new book (once I’ve bought it and read it of course).
        I can see it now: “This book changed my life…”, “I used to be good at SQL Server until I discovered this book and found Oracle…”, “I didn’t know how confusing the Matrix film was to Oracle guys until I got this book…”. Maybe not the last one.

        I struggle to find the buttons in OEM, does anyone know a good book on how to use it? ;-)

        Comment by Darryl Griffiths — June 19, 2011 @ 8:36 pm BST Jun 19,2011 | Reply

  16. I am eagerly waiting for your new book…:-)

    Comment by Rajabaskar Thangaraj — June 20, 2011 @ 3:51 am BST Jun 20,2011 | Reply

  17. Oracle Internals – The Top World Leading Expert`s Definitive (or Ultimate) Reference.

    Comment by Jan — June 20, 2011 @ 12:28 pm BST Jun 20,2011 | Reply

  18. This is very good news. Your Practical 8i book is easily the best book on oracle – ever. (And the CBO book was not that far behind).

    You can keep the same title :-) Now get back to finishing the next chapter!

    Comment by Krish — June 20, 2011 @ 7:51 pm BST Jun 20,2011 | Reply

  19. my title suggestion:

    Understanding the basics of the Oracle DBMS

    subtitles (printed diagonally across the cover)
    – Building your own in-depth knowledge to be a better DBA and developer.
    – A true scientist and gifted Oracle teacher shares his experience, insight and opinion build over decades and helps you to think in stead of pushing ‘buttons’.

    Comment by Erik Ykema — June 23, 2011 @ 6:20 pm BST Jun 23,2011 | Reply

  20. […] Jonathan Lewis is writing another book. What a good news of […]

    Pingback by Log Buffer #226, A Carnival of the Vanities for DBAs | The Pythian Blog — June 24, 2011 @ 8:17 am BST Jun 24,2011 | Reply

  21. November? Of this year? You must be joking.

    Seriously though, I’m going to miss the blog posts. But with the Apress read along as you go Alpha Program, at least we can get updates while your working on it.


    Comment by Kerry Osborne — June 26, 2011 @ 8:15 pm BST Jun 26,2011 | Reply

  22. Oracle for non-Dummies?

    Comment by Colin 't Hart — June 29, 2011 @ 8:35 am BST Jun 29,2011 | Reply

  23. […] just noticed that Jonathan Lewis has announced that he’s writing a new Oracle (fundamental) internals book, due to be out in […]

    Pingback by Tech Reviewer, Tech Reviewer! ;-) | Tanel Poder's blog: IT & Mobile for Geeks and Pros — June 29, 2011 @ 10:32 am BST Jun 29,2011 | Reply

  24. Great stuff. Looking forward to it !

    By the way, the CBO fundamentals – Vol 2 is Paused or not started ? ;)


    Comment by Amardeep Sidhu — July 1, 2011 @ 6:13 am BST Jul 1,2011 | Reply

  25. ::: Great News from a Great Person :::

    Comment by parthibann — July 3, 2011 @ 3:45 pm BST Jul 3,2011 | Reply

  26. So this is the title “Oracle Core: Essential Internals for Troubleshooting”

    as per

    Comment by Amardeep Sidhu — July 4, 2011 @ 10:28 am BST Jul 4,2011 | Reply

  27. Sir, is this title for the book finally ?
    Oracle Core: Essential Internals for Troubleshooting

    Could you please see that ALPHA version is available for this book ?

    Comment by Bix — July 5, 2011 @ 3:57 pm BST Jul 5,2011 | Reply

  28. […] Check out the details here. […]

    Pingback by Jonathan Lewis Has A New Book Coming Soon …. | Rants & Raves – The Blog! — July 20, 2011 @ 9:26 am BST Jul 20,2011 | Reply

  29. How about this for a working title:

    “A Consistent Read: The Important Bits of Oracle, Explained”

    Comment by dfitzjarrell — July 20, 2011 @ 7:12 pm BST Jul 20,2011 | Reply

    • David,

      I like that – especially the implications of “consistent”. That’s a very important aspect of the book, which is making it very difficult to write. Ensuring that the material is self-consistent (in the normal English sense of the word) is very important.

      Comment by Jonathan Lewis — July 25, 2011 @ 9:00 am BST Jul 25,2011 | Reply

  30. Hi Jonathan

    Is this book getting released on Oct 24, 2011? … More or less, only 20 days left … OMG …
    … Waiting eagerly …

    Thanks and regards

    Comment by parthibann — October 1, 2011 @ 8:31 pm BST Oct 1,2011 | Reply

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