Developer of the Year

This month’s Oracle magazine doled out a bunch of awards. One of them was the PL/SQL Developer of the Year. This year the honor went to Alex De Vergori. He is a database architect for Betfair in London, England.

Alex works on a betting engine with 250k lines of code. It is distributed among computers located around the world. It uses Oracle RAC, as well as Oracle Coherence. There is a middle tier written in Java. The front end uses Ajax. The system processes 5 million transactions a day on average. At peak times it crunches 1000 transactions a second.

I wondered what it took to become PL/SQL developer of the year. Alex stated that you needed an attention to detail. You also need to be passionate and take pride in your software. Somehow I think you might also need to be working with the latest Oracle technologies. To tell you the truth, I have not even heard of Coherence before reading about this award.

Looking back on my own PL/SQL programming career, my biggest year was when I implemented a subsystem of our loads software. It was written mostly in PL/SQL, with a little UNIX Korn shell and a SQL script or two. The production code had about 6k lines of code. However I also coded up a unit test harness that was 5k lines of code by itself.

This may not seem like an abundance of code. The hard part was determining the requirements for the coding. That took so long that the schedule only gave me 4 days to code the whole thing. Let’s just say I knocked out a lot of code that compiled. And it ran super fast. There were a number of trouble tickets written against my code. They all got resolved.

So what should I do? Nominate myself for the award next year? Maybe I should try to contribute to Oracle magazine. No. I think I will just keep posting to my blog here. In fact, perhaps I should give out my own award. What do you think about the “2008 Top Oracle PL/SQL Blogger” award? I hate to tell you this, but the winner is me.