31 July 2010

Believe and Not Doubt?!

    Long time ago while reviewing a PowerPoint presentation on Oracle performance troubleshooting, on one of the pages was written with big letters something like “Believe and not doubt!”, this in the context of the knowledge transmitted from guru to other professionals. I do not believe in the approach of following blindly the techniques and knowledge of other professionals, and the professional path can’t be resembled entirely with the spiritual path in which mind itself is said to be the barrier of proceeding further on the way. One reason for my advice of not following blindly other professionals it that knowledge is relative, highly dependent on experience and understanding, no human holding the ultimate knowledge in a domain of any type. Even if the world of databases in particular, respectively of computer science in general, is highly conceptualized, full of mathematical models used to describe it, though ignoring the fact that all of them are just an approximation, the reality is that real-life problems are in fact reduced to optimization problems, the solution to a problem resuming in finding the optimal solution based on a whole range of parameters. The same applies also to performance troubleshooting when we have to balance between performance and usability, flexibility, maintenance, security, reusability and whatever might come around.

    Please note that I’m saying “not following blindly”, this doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t listen and follow the advices of other professionals, on contrary, I recommend to sip their knowledge and words of wisdom, though try to understand the reasons behind the techniques used, primarily try to understand the benefits and downsides of each technique or feature, understand why, how, when, where, who and by what means. Without understanding these aspects, the information presented can’t rise to the level of knowledge and therefore it won’t reach the potential value it might have for you and other professionals. In addition by understanding the various contexts in which the techniques and features apply and shouldn’t be used, you could step on the road to becoming wise, though there is a long road until there. Anyway, that’s already philosophy, but you have to take into account that nobody was born wise, and even the wise people make mistakes but they learn out of them. No matter if you are beginner or an experienced professional, each could learn from each other, there is enough domains and knowledge in the world for everybody.

    Don’t be confused of the various contradictions and interpretations met in the world, the truth is relative, and you’ll often hear experts saying simply “it depends…” - is just a syntagma to highlight the complexity of things, the dependence of the solution on the various parameters. Even if you don’t agree with others’ perspective be indulgent with them and yourself, there are various opinions/beliefs, balance their points of view and yours, somewhere in the middle is the true…

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