Re: Oracle Case Dictionary

From: Thomas B. Cox <>
Date: Sun, 5 Dec 1993 08:48:51 GMT
Message-ID: <> (Richard D Holowczak) writes:
> (Jan Heise) writes:

>>We are looking for anyone with experience using Oracle Case Dictionary 5.0.

> [...] It is expensive for the comercial
> user, and most people are hesitant to take the plunge. What makes
> this even togher is that Oracle wants you to take an $x,000
> intro course just learn about what CASE can do.

Probably this is an "Oracle CASE Workshop." It's five days of hands-on work with the tools.

> I can't figure
> out whether the sales reps are just not knowledgable in CASE

Generally this is correct. I used to work at Oracle. That much is unlikely to have changed.

> or
> if this is a scheme to make money. Either way, I think it
> is hindering the adoption of the product in many companies.

If you think classes are expensive, try ignorance.

One firm I know of bought CASE tools plus all kinds of new hardware and software, and one year later they had *nothing* to show for it. No running code, no working databases, and no useful understanding of how to use the CASE tools. Literally nothing.

Most bottom-up programmers think they can learn CASE tools by fooling around with them. I used to think I could. I got nowhere in two years, then took some good classes, and made major progress.

Most of us program like a self-taught carpenter builds things. But CASE is like structural engineering -- it requires up-front knowledge and discipline as well as programming experience and intelligence. Having just the last two is not enough. I know.

> The reaction I'm getting lately is: "CASE can do THAT!? All I
> know is that it's expensive . . ."

Sure, they are, at $18,000+ per person. But the person costs three or more times that in salary, benefits, and office space. And with the CASE tools I've been on three-person teams that have produced excellent final product in 10 months, while a ten-person team would have taken two years without, and had lower quality. Been there; done that.

> I've been using CASE to model a full blown manufacturing
> application and so far have generated several sub-application
> with about 60 - 70% complete code generation.
> [...] I have a feeling when we move to some of the
> more "mundane" order entry-type areas we may see up to 80%
> complete code generation.

Try 95-100%, if you did your up-front work properly.

I'm in the fit-and-finish stage of delivering a full-life-cycle CASE development project. It's Forms4 Windows clients on Netware to a Solaris/Oracle7 server.

IMHO, your most important challenge in embracing CASE is taking the time to do things right. Every little thing we skimped on in the Strategy stage, every last one, has come back to bite us at a later stage.

Just like engineering: good construction work can only do so much to make up for a bad job with the blueprints, and those fixes cost more than it would have to fix the blueprints in the first place.

Oh, one other bit: always do your first CASE project with someone who has used the CASE tools before, and make them show you everything they do and why.




I own stock in Oracle, and I used to work there.

    Thomas Cox      503-293-8474
Senior Consultant, Moss Consulting Group, Portland, Oregon
Received on Sun Dec 05 1993 - 09:48:51 CET

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