Denis Goddard

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None Such None Such 2011-01-03T14:17:37Z
Updated: 15 hours 22 min ago


Thu, 2006-11-16 00:22
Well, well, well.... apparently I have a "Boston or New Hampshire" accent.
I am QUITE sure it's a "New Hampshire" accent, thank you very much!

The strange thing is... my 2-year old son already has an almost ridiculous New England accent. He says "heyah" for "here", "cah" for "car", and so forth. The weird thing is, we can't figure out how he picked it up. We almost never watch TV, and when we do it's not local news, so the accent didn't come from there. He has had this accent ever since he started talking, just 1-2 months after we moved to Nashua.

Anyways, I'm from Wisconsin but my dad is from England (with a long spell in Canada) and he has a sort of vaguely British accent, which I assume I inherited slightly.

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: Boston

You definitely have a Boston accent, even if you think you don't. Of course, that doesn't mean you are from the Boston area, you may also be from New Hampshire or Maine.

The West
The Midland
North Central
The Northeast
The Inland North
The South
What American accent do you have?
Take More Quizzes

Oracle Develop

Wed, 2006-08-23 21:19
I've offically been a PHB for a long time -- long enough to "ossify" (as one of my old friends back at Cummins Electronics used to put it). I know this because I find myself realizing that it's been so long since I really developed anything in detail, I don't even remember what the new features are in Oracle 10g, let alone 10gR1 or R2... (though of course I'm really looking forward to 11gR2, but that discussion will have to wait!)

As it turns out, in the next week or two, I should be able to turn my attention back -- finally -- to ADE 3.2.3, where I'm doing some rather detailed work on PL/SQL and in the Perl/XS layer. The kind of thing where you have to spend a good hour just loading your brain's cache with the details... get into the zone... and stay there for a solid 10-hour block. What Tom Christiansen called Interface Zen
Ah yes, by god, I do so miss being a programmer!

Anyway, I'm seriously considering attending Oracle Develop 2006. First, Oracle keeps coming up with tools and technologies and I have to say, in my opinion we do a good job of being driven by customer demand. Plus, the Moscone Center expos are one of the few things I really miss about living on the SF Bay peninsula.

This could be seriously fun!

Moving the Politics to; Keeping the Oracle stuff here

Fri, 2006-01-20 21:47
For the past 6 months, I have been maintaining this single blog.
The problem is, there are two rather disparate domains about which that I typically rant:

  1. My work at Oracle Corporation, the software product I work on there, and other geeky Software-related stuff

  2. The Free State Project, New Hampshire politics, and my generally Libertarian opinions

Now, it seems to me, that most of the people interested in my Oracle work really don't give a hoot about my politics. Indeed, one of the beautiful things about the capitalist Free Market system is that it allows people to work together, even when they do not share the same beliefs or opinions.

Moreover, it just seems impolite to broadcast my personal political ideas at people, if all they want to know is what I'm thinking with the latest release of ADE.

That said, I do want to ensure that folks far and wide know all about the Free State Project. I especially want people to know about the excellent progress being made in New Hampshire.

To that end, I have created a new website:

That site is intended to become a portal for information about pro-Liberty goings-on in New Hampshire.
From this point forward, the blog you are now reading will be dedicated to things relating only to ADE, Perl, Oracle, Software Configuration Manamgement, and maybe stuff like how much I miss the gym at Oracle HQ, or how much I love being three timezones ahead of Oracle HQ.

Please, feel free to comment... and to check out, if you're interested in that sort of thing.

Torrent available for download... [non-Oracle]

Fri, 2005-12-30 16:54
Over the past few months, I've put together a DVD image of video clips relating to the Free State Project:
TV news shows, footage of goings-on in New Hampshire, and so forth.

The DVD image is freely available via BitTorrent.

First, you need a BitTorrent client. I've found Azureus to be the best one by a long mile:

Once you've downloaded and installed Azureus (or if you already have a BitTorrent client), just click on:
If the link above doesn't work or the site is down, you can try:

Included in the download is a README.TXT file with info on how to burn DVDs if you've never done this sort of thing before.

This being BitTorrent, the more people that download, the faster it goes for everyone!

If you run into any trouble, or have any feedback, please post a comment here.
I'll answer questions as best I can, and am always looking for suggestions for the next cut of the DVD.

Share and Enjoy!

... so the Maples formed a union, and demanded equal rights
These Oaks are just too greedy, we will make them give us light!
Now there's no more Oak oppression, for they passed a noble Law
and the Trees are all kept equal
by hatchet,
and saw

Myself, Product of a State-Run School System

Tue, 2005-12-13 02:14
Ahhh yes. This is where I was Educated.

On a whim, I googled for my middle school. The school I attended from 1983-1985.
A decade before the Web happened. Of course, they now have a web page with
a "virtual tour." So of course, I poked in to take a look around.

The gem below is a recent creation from that Center of Learning I attended, Aldrich Middle School:

Our assistant Principal [...] is Bilingual. The languages he speaks are English, Spanish, and French.

I just HAD to share that.

Edited Dec 26, 2005 to fix an Element of Style oversight.

A few random recent notes

Mon, 2005-11-14 17:39
ADE Stuff
Well, the ADE 3.2.0 rollout happened, and was quite smooth indeed.
Sure, we have made 5 patches since then, and have some serious fixes that need to go in to make a Patch#6,
but by and large most people were not severely impacted.
Given that this was the largest ADE release ever, and indeed is the largest Bing-Bang single change we ever anticipate making, I'll go ahead and call it a smashing success! :)
Jiri did an awesome job sweating the details; Kevin's QA team did an awesome job testing it; Rahul made some awesome tools to manage the rollout; the Support team did an awesome job handling the issues.

Now the IDC folks seem to have a solid grip on the 3.2 branch, and finally, at long last, the HQ team is slogging through PL/SQL APIs for SCM10/ADE4.0
I'll be at HQ for a few seeks starting Nov 29th. I'm looking forward to getting my hands all over the whiteboard, and doing some good detailed design work.

NH/FSP Stuff
So much is happening! My friend Seth ran for School Board, and a bunch of us campaigned for him. He lost, but not by much, and some other FSP folks won their races, so cool.
I'm looking forward to hooking up with the SF Porcs while I'm in California, and hearing their tales of higher taxes and reduced freedoms just in the few months I've been gone.
Sandy (aka "Friday") is also a recent escapee from the People's Republic of California, she has been keeping a blog:

This weekend I'll be doing some Bill Triage -- enumarating which bills currently before the New Hampshire legislators are pro-liberty, and which are anti-liberty. With that list, we'll be lobbying both the legislature and the voters accordingly.

Now that I live in Concord, I'm looking forward to attending some of the legislative committee meetings. I also hope to testify before some of the committes, as a landowner and taxpayer :)

Gardner Goldsmith is one amazing guy. I absolutely love his radio show Against The Grain, it's quickly becoming an even bigger favorite than Free Talk Live!
Check it out:
Oooh, and check out the Free Talk Live map, it's pretty cool:

OK, back to work!

Happy Halloween

Mon, 2005-10-31 05:00
ADE 3.2.0 went live, I closed the purchase of a duplex in Concord New Hampshire, and the Motley Fool says Oracle is a good buy.

A Happy Halloween so far. I may even wear my Star Trek uniform to work.

We'll see how spooky it looks in a few hours, when thousands of HQ developers start pounding on ADE 3.2.0!

Continuous Improvement vs. Delayed Perfection

Sun, 2005-09-25 13:10
Sometimes I get basted for the shortcomings of ADE. Sometimes, basted quite mercilessly. I accept such partially because, after all, I am The Guy Responsible.

But even more so, I accept it because I doubt that ADE's present limitations bother anyone more than they bother me.
I believe I know exactly what is wrong with ADE, both in terms of its current technical architecture, in and terms of the organization needed to properly develop and support it.

It's been a many-year battle to get to the point we're at today. The Proper Architecture is finally -- finally! -- actively being developed, under the name of ADE 4.0 and SCM10. I wish we could have worked on that architecture 7 years ago! The proper organizational structure first started coming together about this time last year, and now, with our Support and QA teams in Bangalore, with well-thought out and well-documented processes, and the with tools of Wiki and iSupport to support those processes, we're able to move forward.

Before coming to work at Oracle, I spent about 5 years working at Cummins Engine. Indeed, a few of the people now on my team (Purush, Rahul) worked with me at Cummins. Cummins was a great place, and I learned a lot there. A big part of what made it great was the attention to Total Quality. I won't bother explaining the full tenets of this religion here, but suffice to say, it's something that I see lacking inside Oracle. Well, my team and I are working to change that, by following Total Quality principles ourselves.

A great tenet of this "Total Quality" religion is:
Continuous improvement is preferable over indefinitely delayed Perfection
In other words, keep making things better with actions now, don't plan for a perfect world in some indefinite future. I have come to realize the wisdom of this philosophy, in everything from software to politics to marriage. I believe that ADE is at a tipping point, that ADE 3.2 will be a huge improvement, and that ADE 4.0 will be even better -- and very close to what I always wanted ADE to be.

Anyway, I didn't want to blather about all that, I wanted to share a rather enlightening little snippet from the Wall Street journal:

As engineers began cooperating and Mr. Srivastava's team worked
overtime to refine the tools, the quality of the code flowing into
Longhorn began to improve. The time to create a new "build" fell to
just a few days, allowing a faster cycle of writing and testing new

These guys take a few days to build their product -- and it's considered a major step forward?
Ooooh baby, I am so glad I am an investor in ORCL, and that I've invested my time in developing ADE!

Thanks for forwarding this to me, Jiri! :)

Where is Oracle?

Sat, 2005-08-13 16:34
I spent about 8 years working at Oracle Headquarters in Redwood Shores, California.
Actually, I almost took a job working for Oracle as a consultant in Columbus, Ohio; it was a tough decision. The consulting job offered more money, and Ohio is closer to my family in the midwest.

In the end, though, it was a no-brainer; I wanted to be in Development, and especially in the specific area of Configuration Management, and that job was in California.
Having made that decision, the first few years it seemed easy; Redwood Shores is the center of the Oracle universe -- the place to be!

Now, I work extremely closely with a team of (brilliant, by the way) engineers in Thames Valley Park, in England.
Also, half my team are in Bangalore (aka India Development Center, aka "IDC"). Last but not least, I made some friends in the Adelaide, Australia office (including one with an OraBlog).

Anyway... meeting times with TVP and IDC were always a hassle when I worked in California. There really is no convenient time between these 3 nearly equidistant geographical points!

Now I have spent the past 2 months working in Oracle's New England Development Center (NEDC) in Nashua, New Hampshire.
I can honestly say, from the standpoint of working with people in England and India, New England is a far, far more advantageous place to be. The 3 timezones offset from California mean I have several hours each day where the British and Indians are reasonably available. As everyone is connected via Oracle RTC (Oracle's chat program), it's quite easy to interact with everyone.

I would say to anyone that's working with folks in Bangalore or Britain -- you ought to have a look at New England. Aside from being a really nice place in its own right, the timezones are quite favorable.

For the next week I'll be back in Redwood Shores, visiting my boss, my team at Headquarters, making presentations, etc.
No doubt, I will also be eating as much Indian cuisine as I can get my hands on -- there are precious few Indian restaurants here in Nashua.

Laws of Economics

Sun, 2005-07-31 14:15
I was listening to (a podcast of) this show and it tickled some things I've been thinking about a lot lately.

First, the laws of Economics are as valid and as real any any law of physics.
I mean this quite literally. The most well-understood economic laws are
those in idealized situations: millions of people, all acting (too) perfectly reasonably.
This is no different than the fact that Newton's Laws only hold for moles of atoms, all acting like little marbles.

Another notion I've been noodling lately is that the flow of currency through the world's people is
extraordinarliy similar in concept to the assignment of resources by an operating system.
It's not the agent that controls what happens; but it does describe how it happens.
Economics is literally the Operating System for Planet Earth.

As such, it behooves one to learn a little about Economics.
So, My plugs:

There's some more of my rant at a post on the abovementioned show's forum.

OK, back to working on this ADE Enhancement :-)

Hotel California

Tue, 2005-07-26 14:08
I just gotta say, I am so happy to be living in New Hampshire!

Aside from no state income tax, and way more trees and greenspace that California had,
the Live Free or Die state is attracting nationwide attention for the "Lost Liberty Hotel".
There was a great segment on Hannity & Colmes the other day.
Check it out!

Okay, I gotta get back to programming now...

TLA Clarifications

Mon, 2005-07-18 09:08

It has been brought to my attention that I used (and will continue to use) the term "SCM" in my blog, and that this TLA has two meanings: Oracle Supply Chain Management, and Oracle Software Configuration Manager.
Please take note: I always mean the latter, and never the former. I'm deeply involved with Oracle's Software Configuration Management system, and have nothing at all to do with Supply Chain stuff. By the way, no, I had nothing to do with choosing this name, though I confess I think it's pretty cool to work on a product whose acronym is pronouncable as "Scum".

Another common acronym in my namespace: ADE. That stands for Advanced Development Environment. No, I didn't choose this name either. ADE is the name given to the Perl-based front-end of the SCM system. My plan is to get rid of it, by which I mean, to move all (or the vast majority of) the code from the client side into middleware and server-side logic. SCM10 will take us about 75% of the way to that goal. ADE was originally envisioned by Dr. Alan Demers as a way to minimize the impact of the fact that ClearCase (which we used at the time) kept crashing. I took Al's ball and ran with it -- ADE became the technology to migrate all of our SCM data out of ClearCase and into an Oracle database. Which brings us to...

ODE, in the context of SCM and ADE, stands for "Oracle Development Environment". I would really like to get rid of "SCM" and instead use "ODE", but for some reason or other the people who make these decisions aren't with me on that one :-)
Anyway, "ODE" has come to mean, the specific database instance that holds the SCM data for Server Technologies.

Well, There's a bit of Oracle TLA trivia for ya. If you want to hear way more about all the above at length at any time, buy me a few beers and I'll be happy to yammer at length.


Tue, 2005-07-12 10:55
Make it so!

So... here's a blog. My own blog.
Oye am thonthorstrok, thing mud.

I thought for a bit about having a separate Blog for work (Oracle) and personal stuff.
But really, I know I'll be lucky to keep up with just one blog.

To adulterate Benjamin Franklin: "A blog... if you can keep it"

Plenty more to say, but I need to focus on work now: getting ADE 3.2 Beta tidied up,
and planning out how to transition development of 3.2 to Bangalore, while getting the
US Dev Team trained up and ready to work on SCM10 (the Next Big Thing!)