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Re: Newbies welcome, or not?

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Date: Mon, 28 Jun 2004 15:02:53 -0400
Message-ID: <>

I have been a silent member on a lot of Oracle lists, and this to me, is the best of all of them. I invariably learn something new from this list, almost everyday. The other lists have had folks debating over count(*) or count(rowid) as being the faster one, and what to do if TEMP tablespace fills up, or how to get around an ORA-1555. These, to me, are newbie questions, and usually, do not make the round of the lists here. And frankly, thats why I like this list better. I dont have to delete any posts.

If I run into a problem, I go through the RTFM, Metalink, google, comp.databases, this list, et all, before I pose a question here. And I expect the same of others. And almost all the list members here do adhere to this. I am sure the folks on this list are not against newbie questions. They are against someone asking it, without working to find a solution themselves.

On the other hand, I also realize, I might have difficulties analyzing a 10046 trace file or a block dump, but Jonathan or Cary or the other folks who I hold in high esteem, could think of this as a newbie question. And I dont want them deleting my posts.

So, I say, newbie questions are welcome, provided they tell us, what they have done to figure out the answer themselves?


                    .com                      To:                                            
                    Sent by:                  cc:                                                                       
                    oracle-l-bounce_at_fre       Subject:     Newbies welcome, or not?                                     
                    06/28/2004 02:21 PM                                                                                 
                    Please respond to                                                                                   

> ANYBODY who would type ANYTHING in as root WITHOUT knowing what it
> does EXACTALLY should not have root access, is not responsable
> enough to have root access and needs to WAKE UP and LEARN the "man"
> good lord, people, what happened to personal responsibility and
> professionalism?

It would seem that many of us have forgotten that Scott Adams gets fodder for Dilbert from real life.

As Mark Powell has pointed out, folks get thrown into the position of DBA and/or Unix admin without much prior experience, and they don't have much say in the matter, short of finding new employment. That is not always an option. They may not yet have a good concept of how unix works, and don't yet appreciate the power of root.

So, are we saying we should not answer newbie questions for folks that don't have a clue, and yet they are required to fill the position?

Even pointing someone to the correct section of the documentation can be extremely useful. I started with Oracle 7.0.12. The documentation was quite a bit smaller than now, but it wasn't always clear which doc I needed.

The docs are now 20k+ pages for all the Oracle online docs. The index and search capabilities are useful, but hardly infallible. Is it too much trouble for us to point someone in the right direction?

How about the less experienced listers? I often ignore simple questions, knowing that this gives an opportunity for junior folks to participate in the list, and help out those that have even less experience than they do.

So, what's the consensus?

Should be welcome folks with little experience, or make it clear that they should come back when they know what they're doing?

My vote is for trying to be helpful, even to those with annoyingly simple questions. If I don't care to answer, I leave it for someone else.


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Received on Mon Jun 28 2004 - 14:05:30 CDT

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