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A recent thread on the OakTable mailing list about company policies got me a little fired up. In reply to my extended rant Cary Millsap suggested I read REWORK.

Let me start by saying I’m not a fan of self-help books and I don’t consider myself a business person, so a book that looks like self-help for businesses just didn’t seem like a good fit. I have little-to-no ambition in terms of the business world or money. Having said that, I play in a world where ambition and money are central, so I figured I’d give it a go.

REWORK distills and debunks many of the myths associated with modern business. For anyone who has worked in the IT industry for a few years, the central messages are not new. You will have thought about a lot of these issues many times, probably while you were in a 3 hour meeting to discuss why you missed a deadline…

I guess I’m in agreement with about 95% of the suggestions in the book and even those I disagree with, I can see the point. If you are running a business, want to run a business, or just trying to understand why the company you work for is so messed up, you should read this book. It’s a bit like group therapy. It’s good to know you are not alone… :)

Big thanks to Cary for the suggestion. I have a couple of mates (who still have some ambition left) who will benefit from it more than me. I’ll be sure to pass it on.



Brown Noise in Written Language

Today’s email brought a loaf of spam with this in it:

[Name withheld] is a world-class developer and provider of leading-edge solutions that help customers optimize the physical infrastructure through simplification, agility, and operational efficiency.

This passage is the informational equivalent of this audio file. If you can read it without feeling sad, sarcastic, vaguely scummy, or bitter about humanity’s perverse unwillingness to combine thought and language in a useful way, then I beg you to read Revising Prose and Rework.


That is all.

Mister Trace

For the past several weeks, my team at Method R have been working hard on a new software tool that we released today. It is an extension for Oracle SQL Developer called Method R Trace. We call it MR Trace for short.

MR Trace is for SQL and PL/SQL developers who care about performance. Every time you execute code from a SQL Developer worksheet, MR Trace automatically copies a carefully scoped trace file to your SQL Developer workstation. There, you can open it with any application you want, just by clicking. You can tag it for easy lookup later. There’s a 3-minute video if you’re interested in seeing what it looks like.