Monday, November 29, 2004

It's so easy

I'm learning Oracle, financed by my current firm. Befor ethe anti-Microsoft (and pro-everything else, of course) begin attacking me for this post, I have to say this is not a post against Oracle, far from it. SQLPlus command console is bad as a toothache, but that's not the objective of this post.

The curious thing about this course is the teacher. The guy is a clear example of a tendence I'm beginning to notice in colleagues, forum people and technical geek-types in general. Lacking a more scientific term for it, I call this trend (which surely doesn't even exists and it's only a byproduct of my paranoid mind) like this: blame-it-on-Windows, or bioW for short.

Just in the first class of the course, when we were setting everything up for it, the Oracle listener needed for connecting to one of the test servers was failing. I must say that the machines we're using for the course are the same machines we usually use for work, all of them with Windows XP, even the machines that are to function as servers for the course are Windows XP boxes. Well, all the listener troubles we're meet with the same exact answer from our funny teacher: That's what it happens when you install Oracle on Windows XP, something not recommended by them(untrue). You don't have this trouble in Linux.

I'm OK with that. Really. Opinions are like asses and everyone has at least one; even more, everyone has the rigth to have one, no matter how wrong it is. What I'm not OK with is using an opinion as a dogma, or disguising your lack of knowledge with such nonsense. He should have said I don't know how to use Oracle under Windows XP. Setup Linux partitions on every box or I can't work. Today he's gone as far as saying (and even my anti-Windows colleagues (which are majority, by the way) have blushed hearing this) that the number of concurrent users to a shared network folder on Windows XP depends on the number of licenses purchased of that Windows. He hasn't even blushed. He also said that he imparted a course on which Windows XP deleted an Oracle's password file and they have to create it from scratch, time and time again. I swear to you I've been with different flavors of Windows for the last ten years and as far as I know the guys at Redmond have not discovered artificial intelligence: the computer or the OS don't delete files on their own, de motu propio. And the guy just keeps talking: if the database fails it's the fault of the user or Windows. Literally.

But let's come back to Oracle, and just for the kick of it, let's say we believe my teacher and that Oracle don't works that good with Windows XP. And XP is to blame? A firm develops a software that, as far as I remember, doesn't state anywhere it is Linux specific or only for server flavors of Windows (if that was the case, why having client tools?). Then the software does not perform as expected, and the OS is to blame? That's like saying that the Packers can never win a game in Washington. The environment can affect the final result, granted, buty a winning team (and a really expensive one) should be able to work on every possible field. Just the same with software.

And I'm afraid this guy is not alone in his opinions. I'm afraid that the vast majority of Linux advocates (which by default are Windows enemies, something I can't understand) areholding to the easy mantra of since Windows is a piece of crap, this (change this for anything) does not perform as expected.

And just now it's been discovered spyware in Firefox. And vulnerabilities in JVM.

Looks like, after all, nobody's perfect.

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