Oracle FAQ Your Portal to the Oracle Knowledge Grid

Home -> Community -> Usenet -> c.d.o.server -> Re: Career questions: databases

Re: Career questions: databases

From: hpuxrac <>
Date: Sat, 30 Jun 2007 14:56:07 -0700
Message-ID: <>

On Jun 30, 4:39 pm, dreamznatcher <> wrote:

> > > Hello,
> > > I'm considering a career switch to a more database-related job, but
> > > need help on a few questions and issues. I'm a Computer Engineering
> > > graduate and have always felt most comfortable creating database-
> > > driven applications, preferably for web portals.
> > > [My questions:]
> > > 1. What are the most viable career options for me out there? What
> > > profile do I fit in?

In the United States where I am, there appears to be some fairly strong demand for computer professionals with strong oracle skills. With the success that oracle is enjoying in the commercial marketplace people that can integrate oracle authored applications as well as custom solutions based on oracle database technology appear to have a good chance for sucess in the long run.

> > > 2. What is the current job market/salary situation for database
> > > professionals? With my current skills, what kind of job might I end up
> > > with?

Varies by how much work experience you have. The oracle dba marketplace is typically one that is not easy for people to break into without relevant work experience but the overall demand factor may be changing that.

> > > 3. What are the stuff I should focus/learn to advance my skills
> > > optimally?

Real database design experience which integrates theoretical knowledge with practical solutions. Lots of time spent doing and working through ERD based projects.

As unfortunate as it sounds, often you learn the most from mistakes that you make during the design process. Many of us have been around long enough and made enough mistakes ( regrettably ) that experience starts sounding alarms when the design has problems.

Many of us make the same mistake more than once. Hopefully by the time you get around to the third time you may still be headed toward a bad decision but at least you may be getting nervous about it.road to disaster.


> Hello everyone,
> (Mr Morgan and rkc on
> I've mailed you about this a little while ago (I actually wanted to
> post it but had clicked on "Reply to author"), but don't want to
> bother you further on this and through your mailbox, so I'm posting
> this here again.
> Yes, I am extremely sorry for appearing so naive and having such ill
> taste, but I tried to express my situation as honestly as possible and
> unfortunately that's what I came up with. I do agree with you on the
> use of the word "proficient" -- one truly cannot be that skilled in
> anything these days. All I wanted to say was that I know a bit of
> those stuff, enough to get my work done, and not in standards
> considerably horrible by any means.

Umm proficiency is something that is gained over the years and by years of relevant experience not months.

I don't recall anyone calling you horrible.

> I don't claim that I'm bullet-proof in any of the scripting languages
> or web stuff I've mentioned. But I do know that I can conceptualize
> (including front-end design and dealing with constraints and integrity
> issues) complex database-shouldered systems

Conceptualizing designs is a good starting point. But it is easy to start talking and get excited without doing enough homework in any given area.

ERD is what it is all about for relational systems. The entities, the attributes, the relationships between entities, and the type of relationships ( one to one, many to one, many to many ). Subtyping and supertyping.

Complex systems have a whole bunch of entities. ERP systems are complex. CRM systems are moderately complicated. It's not the same thing.

> (here's one for you: I
> often fiddle with the idea of creating a singular application that can
> integrate and manage all the possible tasks, divisions and departments
> of an organization on the scale of the EU or UN in their totality)
> pretty fast (fast, e.g. I was working on this project that would
> handle $30M in the national reserve, an application that would reduce
> stagnancy of stored cash in the banking network by branching out to
> web portals that would circulate revenue. The idea is far more
> complicated than can be stated in a few lines, and was slated to be
> reviewed by the Finance Ministry. If anyone of you follow the current
> political scenario of Bangladesh, you'd know drastic political changes
> are going about here, and the project got lost amidst more realistic
> problems in the backdrop of a country where computer literacy accounts
> for less than one percent. Getting back to the time factor, the whole
> thing only took me 2 days to chalk out, including drafting the
> interfaces.) I'm no expert, but whenever I took a database related
> course in my university, literally half of the CSC department would
> crash in to watch the demonstrations. Teachers and students would
> repeatedly inquire about my project throughout the semester, and the
> whole faculty has repeatedly asked me to get serious in this business.
> These are the kind of things that have got me inspired and pushed the
> humble, stupid likes of me far enough to be seeking for your advice.

Not trying to be pessimistic but what do you mean by "chalk out". Two days doesn't sound like near enough time to even get close to thinking you have a complete ERD of the relevant entities involved.

You also have a complete design of relevant interfaces in 2 days?

To me at least, in 2 days you might have done some serious thinking about this area and just started to realize how complicated it might be.

That's a whole lot different from having a good database design as well as a set of business requirements.

> As I've mentioned, I come from Bangladesh. Lots of problems abound in
> the tech domain here: lack of books and information, near-zero
> advanced expertise in specialized fields, sluggish bandwidth, fund
> crises, lack of support from the government, a dearth of firsts.
> Therefore, questions I might be asking might actually appear more
> stupid in your context than ours.
> By posting this post (the original one and this), I didn't and don't
> intend to appear smart, or show off (I very definitely know how
> illiterate I am in this area), or pull anyone's leg, etc. I started it
> because I am just an average mid-career guy who feels he has a knack
> for something and would like to pursue it, despite all odds if
> necessary, and just want to know what the odds are in advance and from
> people who are most certainly more knowledgable than I am.

Start with the basic texts in the database design world. You need to vary between ones that are application based and include sample designs and the theoretical ones.

Do you know that the theoretical ones are? I can get to work on monday and pick some of the best titles and books but if you take a look at amazon and search on "database design" you can probably get a good idea.

> No offence, and thank you to everyone in all earnest.
> dzn-

Best of luck. Received on Sat Jun 30 2007 - 16:56:07 CDT

Original text of this message