The Right Tools for the Job

I chose to work for Oracle because I wanted to immerse myself in the Oracle Enterprise Manager product.  It was the right place for me.  It didn’t matter that I had a background as a multi-platform DBA or that I my skill set was deeply involved in optimization of complex, large databases.  I knew it was right for me and I trust my instincts.  Due to research and the opportunities preesented to me, I have a great career, great peers and wonderful bosses.  It was the right choice for me and I ignored a number of people who would have me take their advice on assumptions they had about the situation vs. doing research or asking questions or even a more amazing idea, maybe trust my judgement… 🙂

This also goes for hardware and software.  I am continually surprised how often people, instead of asking questions as to what folks requirements are or what challenges they’ve had with previous equipment or software, just make blind recommendations on what they think is cool or what everyone else tells them is cool.

“You have to have a Mac Pro/Air, anything else is just crap!”

“If you install on anything other than HP-UX, well, you’re just an idiot!”

“I won’t even talk to an MSSQL DBA.  They are just on Windoze!”

No questions as to what someone is trying to accomplish or respect shown to others to find out what they need, what they know or to really get folks the right answer.  This goes for personal technology and hardware.  No respect to folks from other technology areas that are professionals in their own right.  Some are just teasing, but its surprising how many seriously just feel unless they get what everyone else says are cool, they aren’t cool.

I run into this with my own hardware choices.

This is what’s in my personal tech arsenal right now-

  • Asus Windows 15.6 laptop, (for work)
  • Surface Pro 3 (for travel)
  • Mac iPad Air tablet
  • Samsung Note 4 Smartphone
  • Moto 360 Smartwatch

I have had the most ridiculous comments come out of perfectly reasonable and intelligent people’s mouths over all of these products.

“Why wouldn’t you buy a Mac??”

“A Surface Pro 3?  If you didn’t buy a Mac Air, you weren’t thinking…”

“I only use Samsung Tablets.  If you have a Samsung phone, why wouldn’t you have a Samsung Tablet?”  (You can insert the Moto 360 for the Samsung Smartwatch, too… :))

“Why would anyone have a smartwatch?  Stupid technology!”

I use my technology every day, constantly and it has to work for me.  I research products and test them out for an extensive period of time and if something doesn’t work, I learn from my mistakes and take this into consideration on my next purchase.  Even when I sold computers, before entering IT, people would ask me how I made so much money and did so well.  Some, [limited individuals] would tease me and say it was because I was a girl on the sales floor, but even back then, I believed you found out the technology people needed and that’s what you sold them.  If they were satisfied, they came back and/or sent their friends/family to you.

Here’s why I have what I have:

1.  I burn through keyboards.  A laptop keyboard lasts me about 6-9 months-  SERIOUSLY.  I type about 120+ words per minute and I type with a lot of force.

2.  If I build a local demo of OEM, DBaaS and an AWR Warehouse, I can do it on 16G, but I really need 32G to have it run adequately.   I don’t do this very often, but I do need something that can handle it from time to time.

Due to these two requirements, I have the following:

The ASUS with 32G, (Mac did not have a 32G model at the time) was a great deal at $900.  I use it only for work and am using it less these days because the letters are starting to disappear on the keys.  Yeah, beating even this very tough keyboard up.  I gave another great PC, another i7 to my son after 10 months of use.  My son keeps joking about having to use an indellible marker to add the letters back to the keys.

The Surface Pro 3-  It has 16G or memory, 256G SSD with an i5 and honestly, it’s a great little unit that when I burn through a keyboard?  I just BUY A NEW KEYBOARD!  (Nope, can’t do that with a MacAir and if you would like to see what I did to the Asus Zenbook, who’s keyboard is the SAME as the MacAir, I’ll send you a picture of the poor thing… :))  It’s incredibly light, has great bluetooth accessories and travels well, including not having to be removed from my bag at most Airport security queues.

My tablet choice is a Mac iPad Air. It’s a wonderful tablet and I can do most of what I do for work, but there are some aspects that are limited and I can’t fully integrate it with my Oracle tools for work.  I wouldn’t give it up for the world, just as I love my Surface Pro 3, I love my Mac iPad Air tablet.  They are used for different aspects of my day.  If you want to know why I didn’t go Samsung, check out my post on it.  I was highly disappointed with the Samsung Pro.  The tablet’s OS just couldn’t handle 50% of the work tools that Apple’s OS could.

Now for my Samsung Note 4.  I tested out the iPhone 6Plus.  Missed my widgets and really rely on them.  I don’t like Pebble and find the interface for most smartwatches limited in their use vs. what works well for women.  As I’ve said over and over again-  where are women’s smartphones 80% of the time?  They’re in our purse, so for us, a smartwatch needs to be an extension of the phone with clear notifications. The Moto 360 worked with Android and hands down, it was the best watch for me.  I never miss phone calls, always am aware of work emails and important information.  I can also exclude any notifications that aren’t critical to my daily life.

So, where this post ends….

I wonder how far ahead we would be in technology if people stopped recommending what worked for them, (except to give reasons it worked for them, which are much more valuable than, “You need to get <insert brand/software/hardware here>!”) and started asking questions and made recommendations off of what fulfilled those recommendations?

How often do those of us who work in optimization and enhancement enter businesses and find the wrong solution implemented because no one asked questions or listened to requirements?

I would love to see some folks stop blindly following what they hear is cool and just do some research and find out the right technology for them.  Don’t just do it, do the research, folks and allow others to get what is right for them.  If Mac Air is right for you, get it.  If a Samsung tablet is perfect for what you are going to do, then get it.  If you are drooling over a new Windows smartphone, get it!  Talk to a lot of people, read a lot of reviews, test out products, but get what you need.  There’s nothing worse than buying the wrong product and then finding out that you can’t do what you needed to accomplish because someone sold you on what was right for them.

 

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December 29th, 2014 by

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