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What is the ‘Unconference’?

Posted by John Hallas on November 12, 2012

It’s that time of the year again and UKOUG 2012 beckons. The full schedule of talks can be seen at If going it is a help to the organisers to select  your itinerary in advance as then each session can be scheduled to be in a hall that can accommodate all the attendees who have expressed interest and nobody is disappointed.

I  have selected my sessions already and I think the one I am looking forward to the most is hearing is one by Carlos Sierra entitled ‘How to create in 5 minutes a SQL Tuning Test Case using SQLTXPLAIN’. I also note that I have selected ‘How to create test cases’ with Jonathan Lewis earlier on same day (Monday 3rd December).

Which neatly links into the main point of this post – to highlight the ‘Unconference’  taking place on the Wednesday (5th December). Ignore the rather off-putting photograph that shows the back of  a few (mostly balding) heads seemingly cramped into a corner and recognise the event for what it is. It provides an opportunity to present a short (15 minutes) or longer (35 minutes) talk on any subject. The slots can be booked at the registration desk from Monday morning on a first-come first-served basis. It is an ideal opportunity to give a short talk to fellow specialists before stepping up to a bigger audience at a SIG or the conference next year. It also gives attendees the chance to present on a more specific aspect of a subject that can be fitted into a small chunk but does not provide sufficient depth to fill the normal 45 minute slots.

So where does the link to Jonathan Lewis fit in – well I will be assisting him to run the day and we look forward to seeing lots of short informal talks on the day. See the link above for more details and Jonathan has posted a similar note

Hopefully I will see you there on the day and if you read my blog please feel free to introduce yourself.

PS For those who have asked, I will not be presenting this year. I did put something forward but if I had been on the selection panel I would not have chosen the talk as it was very specific  around the difficulties of applying true role separation in 11GR2 and especially on HP-UX. In fact I never completed the prep for it and will not be pursuing that one. My company has decided to abandon the idea of trying to have different owners for the Grid and RDBMS software as it is quite obvious that Oracle do not truly support the policy and their documentation is both contradictory and inconsistent on the matter.

PPS I noted that we had an Oracle SR last week where the consultant quoted my blog as a response to the question we had raised.


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