Good Vocabulary - For A Better Thinking

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I have always admired the Anchors in BBC and CNN from my childhood days for two important reasons.
1.Their command in the English Language. Ease of use and Fluency.
2. Vocabulary rich Language they
use.

The amount of words we learn every day is like a bell curve. In the early age during the school days we learn new words every day and after a particular saturation point we just abruptly stop this activity. The curve then falls down and me you will also just admire other people for their vocabulary rich conversation. One point I would like to stress here, by saying Vocabulary Rich I am not mentioning using Verbose language, but using the apt words in the places though they are simple words the proper usage makes it more powerful.

Reading and Listening are the two activities which I forgot. These are the two important activities which will make the bell curve go up and down like a Sensex Graph. If you read and listen regularly then you are like a bull market else you will be a bear market.

So to start with, I was not able to read any novels or an Editorial of a newspaper,as I had to refer the dictionary at least thrice to read a paragraph. So I was struggling to cultivate the reading habit as well as to improve the vocabulary.

Then one of my friend suggested the following books to start with, so that we will learn some important most widely used in English in a better way rather than just memorizing the word meanings.
1. Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis
2. 30 Days to a Better English

Reading the above two books properly will arm you with at least 500 to 800 New words. Which will give you an edge to start with reading. These two books present every word in a easy way to us and make us enjoy the words. After reading these two books my appetite to new words has increased, and I am on a constant search everywhere to learn new words.

So if you are by any chance sticking in the bell curve you can start with these two books and prosper like the Indian Equity Market :)


Oracle PL/SQL Developer Certification - No Big Deal

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For the last one and a half years, after joining the company I work with now , one thing was pending in my list. That was Oracle PL/SQL Developer Certification. I am working with Oracle 9i Release 2 and had a great chance to work extensively with PL/SQL and little bit of Database Management Activities. I was told long back about this certification by Mr. Arunkumar who was my mentor in the company, who also gave me insight on the DBA activities.



I had made up my mind two weeks before that I should complete my certification before December 10th. Some how I managed not to skip the deadlines this time and completed by December 6th. I gave my first Exam (1Z0-007) on December 1st and Second (1Z0-147) on December 6th. I wanted to write about this with a main objective to help those who have any plan to write this Certification. The following Steps would be more useful in reaching your target easily.



a. First and Foremost if you have been working with Oracle more than a year (Need not be full time) just go give this at the earliest, no big deal this is.
b. The basic hands on requirement to crack the exam confidently, according to my perception are the following things,

(1) Ease in creating Tables, Views, Procedures, Functions.
(2) Once in a while you should have given Grants , Created Sequences, Indexes and Synonyms
(3) Queried and seen at least once the Oracle Data Dictionary
(At least to understand what it is)

(4) Written some Queries with Joins.
(5) Tried Creating some Packaged Procedures and Functions
(Public and Private) , with a little use of Cursors.

(6) Used some basic oracle functions for computing (Like Count, Sum etc)
(7) Dabbled a little with different Triggers
(8) Knowledge of Dependencies.
(This you can get even if you have programmed in any language)

(9) Hands on with any IDE, Most Preferable will be the command line Interpreter SQL *PLUS.
The above 8 things are Minimum requirements to give the exam with full confidence. So if you have just heard of these just sit for a 10 days of preparation (After Office Hours) with the reference material I can suggest to crack this certification.



c. For the 1Z0-007 exam you can refer this SQL Fundamentals Guide.This covers all the topic for the exam. You can also refer these sample question papers to get some insights on how the questions would be. The most time consuming part to study will be Single Row Functions and Aggregate Functions. You Can rush through this topic by just skimming on the various questions. You can give this exam on-line without going to any pro-metric testing center ( You can call this Open Book :). For the test registration refer this. The Passing score is just 70% , so approximately 39 Questions should be correct out of the 52 Possible. Don't think this is some hilarious task, even I was able to clear 49 out of the 52 possible.



d. After you pass 1Z0-007 exam give the second exam in a time gap of maximum one week, so that you will not lose touch with the preparation. 1Z0-147 - deals with basics of PL/SQL, so to get good understanding about PL/SQL the rescuer is always the PL/SQL Guru. You can read one of his best books of PL/SQL by Oreilly Publication. But for the exam point of view if you want to rush through then refer this syllabus oriented book. This book may be tough for you to read , as I found ,because this was a collection of presentations, which did not give me a continuous flow like Steven Feuristein gives in his book. After attending the exam I could see everything was covered in the syllabus book, so you can have a final look before going to the exam. For 1Z0-147 you can use these model question papers to get some insight on the type of questions :). This Exam can be given at only a Prometric testing center, for locating your nearest testing center check here. The passing score for this is 77%, so approximately 51 questions should be correct out of the possible 66.



e. The total cost of the two exams will be 220 USD. A credit card can help you pay on-line as well as at the testing center.For the certification path refer this oracle education site.



Hope the above 5 points may help you in clearing this small carrier goal, if you have set this in your career path. All the Best for all those who is going to give the exams after reading this :)


Update : (29th Jan 2008)

I could see many hits for this post and some of my friedns where asking for the SQL Fundamentals Guide book also in e-book format as I have given for the 1Z0-147 exam. So you can download from here. Hope this helps all those people who reach here :)

Update : (02nd Jul 2008)
I am not sure whether this is the best post I have written as I am seeing the highest traffic only for this post. If you find this useful please leave a comment on how useful it was so that I can improve in my future post.

Cleared my Level 3 Speech

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Last week , I gave my level 3 speech in Toastmasters. The objective of this level was to Get to the Point.Compared to my last 2 levels one thing I have improved is Time. The First Speech I spoke for 8 minutes and the Second one was for 7 minutes and 45 seconds. This time it was 7 minutes and 36 seconds. The stipulated time is 7 minutes and 30 Seconds. I Have decided to reduce the content little for my subsequent speeches.

The topic which I delivered was "How to Start with a Start up ?"

I should thanks Vivek for helping me in forming the speech. The resource was from
Paul Graham's Blog.

The basic organization of the speech was based on the below skeleton.

How to Start with a Start up ?

1. Opening - With the Oxford Definition of Start up. (This opening is similar to Second Level, Same with Definition. Must make it up with Level 4)

2. Introduction of the three important Recipes of Successful Start up,

3. Body
a. No Big Idea
Substantiated with examples of Google and Microsoft.
b. Good People
Substantiated with examples of Good People.
(Example Salesman, Programmer and Marketing Manager etc.)
c. Spend Little Money & Produce Things of Lesser Complexity
Substantiated with examples of Stephen Hawkings books and Programming Horrors.

4. Conclusion - If these above ideas are Doable , though Hard , Successful Start up is doable.

Evaluations for the speech :
Positives
++ Interesting Topic
++ Good Diction
++ Good Usage of Examples
Negatives
-- Clasped hands in the beginning & Improper Gestures
-- Overshoot the Stipulated Time by 6 seconds.
-- Short Conclusion

But I was able to clear my speech with those negatives which I will carry forward in the next speeches will try to rectify those errors. To see the draft of my speech refer here. Though my presentation was completely different based on the above skeleton. So it may not match with the draft. This may be helpful if you want an overview on this speech :)

Lakdikapul to Paradise

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Two weeks before I had a chance to visit Hyderabad for the second time. The last time I went to change train to Mumbai a year and a half back. This time I visited to attend my colleagues marriage. I had a good time mainly because this trip was after a long gap in travelling. I got down at Lakdikapul in Hyderabad and travelled most of the time and ended at Paradise to board my return bus.

I need to tell three things about this travel. If you ever want to visit Hyderabad from Mumbai by Bus, I can recommend you to travel by Kesineni Travels. This is not an advertisement, the Volvo bus they provided was really good. I travelled in the last seat up and down but never felt any of the usual horrors of last seat jerks in bus. Also the convenient Internet booking they provide was good.

Next thing I wanted to say was about the Auto rickshaws of Hyderabad. The auto meter run faster than autos. Its strictly not for weak hearts, the auto meters are at damn good speed to show to end up at some high fare :)

The final thing, Horrible traffic. To move between any important place it takes only in hours even if you travel by a rickshaw. I don't know the condition if we travel by local mass transport, I did not get the chance.

Overall the trip was good, had a chance to visit only a shopping mall, to finally watch a 3D movie there. If you ever plan to visit Hyderabad please plan for a longer duration because you must travel a lot in the city a lot.

A moment to Cherish

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I have become so regularly irregular not only in blogging but in all activities. I was not able to streamline activities over the last few months. Now I am on serious mission to be back with my disciplined activities. I had made up mind to post only after I have become disciplined in all respects.
Last month I had a great oppurtunity to meet the PL/SQL guru Steven Feuerstein in person. I also did not miss the oppurtunity to listen to his Best Practices PL/SQL seminar. He was just performing magic with nothing but PL/SQL in front of hundreds of PL/SQL developers. I also had a chance to speak with Quest Softwares Krishnan Thiagarajan, Managing Director for Quest Softwares Asia Pacific region.

Best Practices by Steven Feuristein
Every PL/SQL devloper in India must go through his Best Practices to improve the coding standards. You can downloed all his presentations from here. Don't miss to go through his presentation :)

After a Long Gap

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Work is to earn for our food...But Don't let the work eat you. Slogging for the past one month I was totally kept away from the blog. Today I made up my mind and decided to post before I leave. I wanted to start with a famous Quote of APJ,
"Dream is not what you see in Sleep.Dream is the thing which does not let you Sleep"
Setting priorities in life is very essential, else you will have to miss what you want in life. By the time you realize this you would have lost the Golden Hen. So Please be wary in setting priorities in life and act only by the priority. Don't Let the external forces influence your internal mind. The Mind Stamina will help you reach the Dream you have. Give Importance to your DREAM, after all its your Life and don't get carried away with the expectation of other.
Only one thing I would like to conclude,
                        "Live Your Dream"..
Will be back soon with fantastic brainstorming puzzles :)

Begin with a Bang

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During my preparation for speech at toastmasters, I was struggling to make the opening of the speech. Since the objective of the speech was to Organize, I worked on the transitions and a good opening, body and conclusions.

I stumbled on this article of Kathy Sierra on Better Beginnings. Though she is well known for the Head first Java Series, in her blog she gives very useful tips which we often overlook in our life. In her Better Beginnings post she has wonderfully explained on opening of speeches or articles. The post really helped me in organizing my speech.

Cleared my Level 2 Speech

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Today, I gave my level 2 speech in Toastmasters. The objective of this level is to Organize the speech.Compared to my level 1 speech I felt more confident in delivering a speech. The topic which I delivered today was 'Reveal your Identity in Web 2.0'.

I should thanks Gopal for helping me in forming the skeleton of the speech. My organization of the speech had the following skeleton.

                    Reveal your Identity in Web 2.0

1. Opening - With the Definition of Cyberspace by William Gibson

2. Lead to topic with a small explanation

3. Body

       a. Evolution of the Web 2.0

       b. Web 2.0 - A social phenomenon

       c. Examples and Statistics of Various Web 2.0 like

           Wikipeida, Blogging, Social Networking

4. Conclusion - Summarizing examples 

About my evaluation, the positive was my Voice modulation and transition in the thoughts. Things I need to improve were eye contact, Body Language and little more organization of the body.Today along with me a fellow Toastmaster also gave his level 2 speech. He also cleared it. Finally I got the Best Speaker Award today. You can have a look, at my initial draft of the speech here.

Think Positive

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Finally Google Opens the Door for Group Chats

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For long time I was expecting this from Google.Even my colleague was wrote about this. Finally they have added this in the Google Talk Gadget. You can try that here.

Hope they will soon implement in the Google talk client also :)

Bizarre Client Requests

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Yesterday, I had a meeting with client to discuss about a new Change Request in the present System. The client we met were really reasonable in their requirements. Though they were not completely bizarre with the requirements they were not completely clear.

I came across coincidentally with an article which gave a better examples on bizarre client requests.You can read that here. You would really enjoy reading it, if you had any client interactions before.

Live Blog with Windows Live Writer

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Today I downloaded Windows Live Writer.Its really a cool tool which I was expecting for comfortable blogging. The interface will tell you the speciality of Microsoft. It looks like this.


If you want to give a try, download from this site. This requires Windows Installer 3.1 and .Net framework to be present in your system. As usual its a windows way of bloating things :)

Sivaji : The Real Boss

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I am an ardent fan of Rajinikanth, or rather an aficionado of him. He is well known for his style and innate humor in his dialogues. In Sivaji, the recent release, he has made us totally forget the fact that he is 61 years old. I witnessed a fine blend of Rajinikanth's Style, Shankar's Creativity and A.R.Rahman's Music.

Editing was the only area which requires lots of improvement in this film. The transition was so abrupt at many places. But for all the Rajinikanth's fans, this movie is a feast after a long time.

You can download the songs of the movie here, and post a comment here on how you enjoyed the music :)

Oracle 11g To Be Unvieled

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Finally, the wait is going to end for all the Oracle lovers.. It has been officially announced by Oracle Corporation, Oracle Database 11g to be released on July 11th at New York. If you want to take part in the launch, register here.

Blog Post on Blogs

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I read lots of feeds, share them, comment them or write about them in this blog. So I decided to write a post on the various blogs I read. I have listed some of my favorite blogs which had fed me with a huge load of information. Its not of any order that I have listed.


The Official Google Blog - For people who admire the Silent Deals and New Release of the Google, this is a feast.


Google Operating System - This gives you everything about Google, even if you are criticizing, praising or ranting, it will be present already here.


TCS Innovations - It does not matter where you are, it’s who you are and what you can. These TCSrs are really proving it. They discuss on latest trends.


Coding Horror - For a Programmer, Code should not be a Horror, reading this will make you understand the nuances, importance of coding. Not only coding, Jeff Atwood talks on everything related to computer.


Feurer Thoughts - Steven Feuerstein is a person who does everything with PL/SQL and does only PL/SQL. But in this blog, he speaks everything other than PL/SQL, and sometimes PL/SQL posts slips here also.


Jonathan Schwarts - He is a man I admire. Being the CEO of SUN, I don’t know how he is getting time to write such a wonderful blog. Its worth reading.


Creating Passionate Users - Kathy Sierra, known among the Java Programming Community, writes this blog in her style like Head first series. But now she has not posted anything after a big controversy which I said earlier.


Raganwald - Reginald Braithwaite writes on passionate programming with very good substantiations on every idea. Don’t miss his delicious feeds.


Scott H Young - To rejuvenate your spirits and to bounce back when you go down, this blog is vital for you. Scott, being an university student writes on topics usually discussed by saints and monks.


The Oracle-Base – Tim Hall, an oracle expert, explains every enhancement in new releases of oracle. You can expect something other than oracle from him in this blog.


TechCrunch – This should be called as Web2.0 News, to get updated on any news about websites follow the posts of Michel Arrington.


Seth Godin - I call him as Internet Guru + Marketing maverick. I love his insights; his eyes are able to grab the power behind every image he sees.


The Corridor - Will writes most of the articles in cricinfo. In this blog he writes very beautiful comments on every cricket match that’s happening in the world.


Worse Than Failure – This is a group blog for Programming. I like their short parables on programming which they frequently post. Don’t miss their CodeSOD, even your dirty code may come in that.


Telecom OSS-BSS – Since I am working in a telecom OSS-BSS system, this blog feeds me with the latest trends in Telecom domain. Every new tool introduces will be reviewed here.



Oracle Scratchpad - Jonathan Lewis can help you how to maximize the use of oracle and how to get the maximum out of a database.

Tom Kyte – Though I write this at the last, this is my all time favorite blog. He is my guru of oracle. I love his flamboyance in writing at the same time noble in presenting.

Cleared my Level 1 Speech

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Today, I gave my Level1 speech Toastmasters. I started preparing for the speech 2 days before, I got it reviewed, I practiced the speech in home more than 20 times and even timed it every time. But today the session was at 3 PM, by 2 Pm I started feeling nervous. I felt a huge load on me, finally when the introduced me my heart beat was pacing like anything. I stood in front of the audience and had a deep breath once, that was the end of my nervousness.

I prepared for 5 1/2 minutes, but I spoke for 7 1/2 minutes. When I started to speak, there was a sudden gush of new thought which actually fitted in place, so I ended up in using the complete time allocated to me. You can download my initial version of the speech here.

My speech evaluator stressed on two points. He appreciated my confidence and voice modulation in the speech. For improvements , I was pacing a lot and I need to curtail my movements a little which distracts the listener.

I will improve in my next project Level 2, which deals with Organizing The Speech.

Curtain Raiser to Oracle 11g

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Today I attended a session on "Introduction to Oracle Database 11g- The Innovation Continues". Before attending the session I was so curious on 11g enhancement, as I was when I attended the 10g workshop. I was sitting among OCP 10g Certified DBAs of 7-8 years experience who have hands-on right from Oracle 7i - 10gR2 .


I felt like a tyro who has toyed with oracle for the last one year. But this session handled by a Senior Consultant from Oracle Corporation was full of insights. I thought it would be great if I share the presentation with all, you can download the same.

One thing was on attending this, now I know what all cannot be done with 9i/10g :). Done miss the Presentation, do have a look on it.

Tables References & Referenced By

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We create many tables in a schema with lot of Constraints among them. The linking constraint Foreign Key which exists among tables will sometime create spaghetti schema. Consider a schema with 4 tables as show in the ER diagram below. (You can download the script for creating these tables and constrains)


It may be some times required to fetch the foreign key relationship between tables to identify the Parent-Child relationship. To identify those you can use the following queries will be handy for you. This query uses the sys user’s constraint definition tables for the database.
To Identify the Tables referencing the Given Table:
select ro.name table_name,
substr(initcap(cc.column_name), 1, 30) column_name, cc.position,
cn.name constraint_name, ru.name owner
from sys.obj$ o, sys.user$ u, sys.con$ cn, sys.cdef$ c, sys.obj$ ro,
dba_cons_columns cc, sys.con$ rcn, sys.user$ ru
where o.owner# = u.user#
and u.name = '&&SCHEMANAME'
and o.name = '&&TABLENAME'
and c.robj# = o.obj#
and c.con# = cn.con#
and ro.obj# = c.obj#
and cc.owner = u.name
and cc.table_name = o.name
and rcn.con# = c.rcon#
and cn.owner# = ru.user#
and c.type# = 4
and cc.constraint_name = rcn.name
order by u.name, ro.name, cn.name, cc.position;
To Identify the Tables referred by the Given Table:
select a.table_name, initcap(b.column_name) column_name, b.position,
a.constraint_name, a.owner
from (select ao.name table_name,
au.name owner,
bcn.name constraint_name,
decode(ac.type#, 4,
decode(ac.refact, 1, 'CASCADE', 2, 'SET NULL', 'NO ACTION'),
null) delete_rule,
bo.name tn
from sys.cdef$ bc, sys.con$ bcn, sys.obj$ bo, sys.user$ bu,
sys.con$ brc, sys.user$ bru, sys.obj$ bro,
sys.cdef$ ac, sys.con$ acn, sys.obj$ ao, sys.user$ au
where bc.con# = bcn.con#
and bc.obj# = bo.obj#
and bo.owner# = bu.user#
and bu.name = '&&SCHEMANAME'
and bo.name = '&&TABLENAME'
and bc.rcon# = brc.con#(+)
and brc.owner# = bru.user#(+)
and bc.robj# = bro.obj#(+)
and ac.con# = bc.rcon#
and ac.con# = acn.con#
and ao.obj# = ac.obj#
and ao.owner# = au.user#
and ac.type# in (2,3)) a,
dba_cons_columns b
where b.table_name = a.tn
and b.constraint_name = a.constraint_name
order by a.table_name, a.constraint_name, b.position;
Hope this is useful for you at times :)

Exploit the Bulk Bind of PL/SQL

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After a long time, let me write a bit of Oracle this week. Improve the performance of multi-row SQL operations with bulk/array processing in PL/SQL. For code snippets of the form


cursor emp_cur is
select employee_id
from employee where department_id = dept_in;

begin
for rec in emp_cur loop
update employee set salary = salary + 1000
where employee_id = rec.employee_id;
end loop;
end;

Bulk processing of PL/SQL can be used to improve its performance to greater levels. Use the FORALL and BULKCOLLECT of PL/SQL that will scale the application. The code snippet can be changed to
select employee_id
bulk collect into collection_var
from employee where department_id = dept_in;

begin
forall i in collection_var.first .. collection_var.last
update employee set salary = salary + 1000
where employee_id = collection_var(i);
end;

The context switch happening in executing PL/SQL and SQL code is reduced in this. The Save Exceptions and SQL%BULK_EXCEPTION is another good introduction on excellent exception handling on these bulk processing.

Back to Basics

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I think many of my friends out there who spent time with me in group studies will never forget this Big book which we had in our engineering syllabus. When I read this book in my sophomore days it imparted a very little knowledge to me.

We always gave importance to C, C++ and finally the Lingua Franca JAVA. Our talent was judged based on how well one can code in any one of the above with importance in the given order. Here in these we write the code, see the results pat ourselves on our success. So this was the best part of our engineering syllabus.

Then came the concepts that had a second round of importance Theoretical Computer Series - Advanced Data Structures, Algorithm Analysis, Theory of computation and Discrete Mathematics. If one explains these concepts well he would be called as a technical Buff. They were considered amongst us as the one who will be giving the next generation of new algorithms and new Languages.

Next , “It’s already done. We need to know the concepts alone – series” - Database Management Concepts, System Software and Operating Systems. These were only improve our knowledge on the computer field, but since we did not try any thing to implement in this more than a Cross compiler which I did as my placement project.

Finally, Artificial Intelligence and Natural Language Processing series – The ultimate abstract concepts where we enjoyed sometimes by laughing at Turing tests and cried sometimes at evaluations in NLP.

But now, in the four grouping I gave, I am working with the third one. I am not working with C, C++ or Java. Rather I am not writing any algorithms. My last algorithm which I wrote was for my Fractal Image Compression using Fractal dimension. This has been selected in one of the International journals, will soon give the info once it is published.

I am not in Powerset to give some AI or NLP solutions. Now I work with database, database and database only. I try to write good number of Sqls and PL/SQL statement every day.

But after working with database almost a year made me read this Database concepts book. Lots of insights I had. So many concepts now are so clear to me. Right from Relational Algebra & Query Evaluation to Transaction & Concurrency control every thing strikes clear to me. The Edgar Codds 12 rules had been my favorite and still remain the same.

I am feeling better after having one revision on my basic study material. You may also give it a try :)

Programming Commitment

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As a programmer, I feel every one who program must have their own commitment in job to the maximum. There are people like this not only as contractor but also as experience professionals who add up their experience profile always and update their technologies knowledge profile with whatever technology the project has instead of what they work on. They merely try to exist in the new assignment, by the time their Incompetency strips they are already on their way to be as senior tech lead or architect in any one of the numerous software startups.

After all this ending up as senior software architect like this in some big Servicing companies. Finally the developer's will be put in an impression that the architect has coded more than millions of lines. I did not stick to the point that all architects must sit and write programs, they must have some relevant knowledge on programming, which will really help them in giving better solution, and sure they can get efficient work from developers.

Where is the Software Monopoly Shifting Now?

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Starting from search to indexing every individuals web history, Google is proliferating at an unimaginable rate. The software giant of the 90's is trying hard to maintain its monopoly with its live search to Silverlight. Is the giant's dominance has really fallen down as they have said its dead.

There are people who are really looking ahead and started to think about their career decisions. But this means the software monopoly is something happening always like they have mentioned from IBM , Microsoft took over and now is it not shifting towards the Google. Though there is a lot of hype on Web 2.0 bubble, still lot of successful start up are devoured by the mountain valley giant from photo sharing to video sharing startups. Many consider Google is one of the main reason behind the fall of Microsoft monopoly, but it looks like Google will be the monopoly for the next web based software development. Still the Monopoly will be there, every new startup will be struggle to exist or get sold to any one of the defunct Monopoly giants like IBM , AOL or the ruling giant like Microsoft or Google. This presentation by Seth Godin discuss the success strategy of Google, which made me think on the above lines.

Contact Me Using Contactify

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You can contact me at this link. That will be forwarded to my mail box. Cool way to protect spams :)

Simple But Powerful Solution

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Generating CSV files from tables is a task which we do many a times. But as I said Oracle 10g gives many features , this is really cool, simple solution using xml and regular expressions in a single query.

Withouth specifying the column names is the good point to note :)

Oracle 10g My Favorites So Far

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I am in a Oracle 10g developer’s workshop. In these two days some interesting things in Oracle 10g which I found are,

  • Automatic SQL Tuning in Oracle Database 10g using the DBMS_SQLTUNE. On good illustrations you can use this.
  • Resumable timeout, this really saves most of the time in redoing things due to a small mistake we failed to notice. At least for me it will save loads of time on schema imports. You must have a deep look into this.
  • File Transfers, using oracle this will really make database programming stronger.
  • Conditional Compilation will really make debugging easier (Inherits A ‘C’ Language #ifdef Feature).
  • Pattern Matching, this regular expression will give some Java edge.

To try out new features of 10g, you can always request a workspace from oracle at this place.

Feed For A Feed

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Google Reader, The best Feed reader which I have used strikes again with a new option to share our interesting feeds. The provide a public web page for the feeds which I share. You can visit my shared feed in this link. They also provide feeds for the same page like this.

Many blogs I find commenting on commenter’s comments on commenting comments commenting on commenters. The same way feed for a feed for a feed :)

Madam Curie = Radium came

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Anagrams, one of the beauty of English language. I have always admired the intricacies of English language like analogy, anagram,metaphors and lot more.I wanted to share some Interesting & Beautiful anagrams which I liked. These are not given in any order, its listed for readers pleasure.

  1. Virginia Tech campus = Civic US nightmare, Pa

  2. The London Olympic games = Logical to spend money? H'm.

  3. Allied Force = Oil-led farce

  4. Year Two Thousand = A Year to Shut Down

  5. World Trade Center = Lewd Terror Act; End.

  6. Microsoft Word = I Comfort Words.

  7. Enron Corporation = Horror! note panic tone!

  8. Schoolmaster = The classroom

  9. Eleven plus two = Twelve plus one **

  10. Silicon Graphics = A Long Chip Crisis

**As for as I have seen this is the only Number Word Anagram

The Ultimate 4 Anagrams:
  1. From Hamlet by Shakespeare: To be or not to be: that is the question, whether tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. =
    In one of the Bard's best-thought-of tragedies, our insistent hero, Hamlet, queries on two fronts about how life turns rotten.

  2. "That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind." Neil A. Armstrong = A thin man ran; makes a large stride; left planet, pins flag on moon! On to Mars!

  3. New York Times = Monkeys Write

  4. Why shouldn't America go re-elect President Clinton in Ninety-Six? = He has a prime or cunning tendency to wildly solicit Internet sex.

You can also post in comments on anagrams which you like.

Who will choose IRB

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When I heard this news that Qualcomm , one of the top wireless telecommunications
communications chooses Intec Convergent billing, I was a bit worried. Its not because that they have not chosen Infinys Rating & Billing(Formerly Geneva), a convergent billing solution by Convergys.

I have been working with Infinys Rating & Billing for the last one year, whenever some big company choose some other convergent billing solution I will have curiosity on why those companies choose those solutions. But this is the latest news, so I just want to post it here this time that I am curious to know the features Qualcomm looked on Intec's Single e-View.

Application Designing is The Fundamental but Crucial Task

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Once in my post I mentioned about Software Versioning, which is real need in Software Industry. Programming is only a first step, and we don't work in the stone age of programming where only one person programs the complete requirement.

Today collaborated programming is what in practices. We work as a team for developing a same requirement. To effectively maintain the programs written by different people version control systems like Clearcase , SourceSafe came into use.These configuration management tools came to make programmers life easier.

But every action has an opposite reaction; a new problem came up on integration of VCS usage with the programming. Whenever we make changes, it required a check-out and check-in. Since editors were not convenient to program where we are bound to make typographical errors on function names and syntax, then raised the IDEs and RCPs as the assistants with inbuilt dynamic help features, compilers and debuggers in it.

The IDEs also incorporated the features to use the VCS more effectively. Checkouts on touch of the file, Check-in on save and many more features to make our life simpler in programming, to concentrate only on logic. But there exists still configuration management problem in many places as head aches of the projects like the build break-up mentioned in this post.

I started of with this post, because of a discussion which I had sometime back on having database only for storing data, in which I felt the ease of use in IDEs had made them take some wrong design decisions. Allured by the new fancy frameworks we leave out designs. Frameworks and IDEs alone will not solve scalability and performance problems. Design of the application will solve that.

Frameworks helps in rendering a good application with a structured and organized code, but if a simple search page will take 3–4 minutes what good the framework does. Even unorganized codes give a better performance, which one would we choose. Since hard-coding is required in some places we make the code very complex instead of a simple code. So giving importance to a good design is very important and we should not get carried away with new up coming technologies. Looking for solutions which would suit our need is important, rather than making our Application change according to new technology or frame work.

Commenting is Now Easy

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Reading and Adding a comment in blogs has become very easy for me from the day I installed this Firefox plug-in for Blogger by Google. It is really convenient to glance the comments as well as adding my comments.

You can give it a try, you will surely enjoy that.

The Universal Popularity

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Today in Toastmasters club I was the Joke Master. Since this was my first session and the first role I am playing in Toastmasters, I was quite nervous. I prepared (cooked :) a joke and practiced the presentation twice in home yesterday. I have never felt so nervous for this, as we used crack jokes always from our sophomore days among our friends. Cracking a joke was not at all a big thing, but today it was different.

I had to deliver in the time limit given, and also I was on centre stage where all the people are watching warily at me. Finally I presented today, I was very happy when people really laughed for the joke when I completed it. I have posted the joke below , you can also enjoy the same :)

Frank and Prank walk into a fast food joint one afternoon to get lunch. Frank orders and the cashier gives him his meal. Prank goes up to order and the cashier greets him with "Hello Prank! How are you? Hey everybody! Prank's here!" Everybody in the restaurant comes up and says hello to Prank. After everyone has greeted him, Frank and Prank sit down and begin to eat.

"Prank, you're pretty popular!" says Frank. "I'm the most popular man in the world," says Prank.

"Now Prank," says Frank, you’re pretty popular but you're not the most popular man in the world."

"Oh yeah," Prank replies "I'll bet you a thousand dollars that I'm friends with anybody you can name!"

"That so?" answers Frank, "How about the President of the United States?"

"Let's go!" says Prank.

The two fly to Washington and knock on the front door of the White House. The president answers "Prank! How are you doing? I haven't seen you in ages!" The three go play a round of golf and then leave.

"That was luck!" says Frank, "Two thousand says your not friends with the Queen of England!"

"Let's go!" says Prank.

The two fly to Buckingham Palace and, sure enough, are greeted by the Queen. ''Hello Prank my boy! What have you been up to these days?" They enter the palace and have some tea and leave.

Frustrated, Frank says, "Double or nothing, you don't know the Pope!"

"Benny!" says Prank, "Let's go!"

When they get to the Vatican, Prank instructs Frank to wait outside and Prank will come out on the balcony with his arm around the Pope. After a while, a crowd gathers to hear the Pope speak. And as told by Prank, when the Pope came out, Prank's arm was wrapped around him. Prank looks down from the balcony and see's Frank passed out on the ground. He rushes down and wakes him up.

"Frank! Frank! Wake up!" Frank opens his eyes and says, "Prank. You're the most popular man in the world."

"I told you that, Frank," says Prank, "but you didn't faint when I knew the President! You didn't faint when I knew the Queen!"

"Well I was shocked that you knew the Pope," says Frank. "But I just couldn't take it when the guy next to me tapped me on the shoulder and said "Who's that up there with Prank?"

Still the Segregation in Browsers Exists

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Today, I was doing the so called load testing, along with my colleagues in my project. But this screen turned me off. Why cant applications be compatible with all kind of browsers. The basic work done by Netscape or an IE or fire-fox in fetching pages will be same.

Why can't then application use features common across browsers, as many things are getting standardized day-by- day. These basic things must be kept in mind while developing a web application.


I think every on must have a look on developing application simpler , but effective one.

Officiate yourself the Office 2007 Experience

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I read about MS Office 2007 a long time back, and was fervently waiting to work with this new release by Microsoft. It was not because I am obsessed with Microsoft like Google, but for the curiosity about the new Software Release.

They are providing a free online trial; you can follow this link and try yourself.

  • You need Admin rights (If you are trying this in office) since Citrix Plug-in will be installed, for accessing remote desktop
  • You need to register yourself there (either using Live Mail ID (Hotmail :) or any other Email ID) Then have a good time with the special effect masters’ great work

The new features which I found interestingwere the Office 2007 Button on the left top corner which is similar to start menu of MS Office, and he Menu based user interface is replaced with a Ribbon based interface (Shown below).

Still a multitude of enhancements like Collaboration using Microsoft Share point Server, are present, which I am still trying to figure out.You can also give a try.

Join with me for a Toast

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Yesterday, after a very long time, I attended Toastmaster’s session. This session was really interesting, I enjoyed every moment there. This was a special session, each of us where provided with a jumble of 12 x 12 alphabets to find out the hidden words in 2 minutes. After the 2 minutes we need to speak for 2 minutes using the words we deciphered from the jumble. I found out around 5 words which were all fairy tale words like goblin, maple syrup, costumes, banking & World Series. I spoke about my own version of Harry Potter as the word Goblin reminded me of the Green Goblin who govern the Gringots Bank of World Series Harry Potter, well known for their weird costumes and maple syrup drinking habits (This is an one line game I played now: ).

This time I found Toastmasters very useful because of one reason. The first time I went with a mindset that Toastmasters club is also going to be yet another Rotaract. But this time my intentions were not like that, I really wanted to improve my communication skills. The expected was given at the right moment yesterday. This Toastmasters Club is yet another commendable initiative by TCS Maitree like Global Village.

I have joined the club today, though the membership cost was around two thousand for one year including my joining fee. I will get much more than that is my expectation. Money is not every thing, rightly pointed in this.

Missed the Obvious

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Learning with passion is what I wanted to do. In the past ten months in programming with SQL and PL/SQL, I spend sometime always for AskTom, Steven Feuerstein's Oracle PL/SQL programmming, Oracle-Base by Tim and other Oracle Ace Blogs.

Last week I came across this post by Tim in his oracle-base blog. I realized many things on that when yesterday i was trying an Insert statement in oracle for inserting in more than one table. When i Googled my requirement of inserting in more than one table, the Oracle Documentation just banged in right front of me as topmost search result. The multi-table insert where lucidly explained in the documentation. Though I always like reading out for many advance concepts in oracle it was something very basic which I have missed, which was given right in the first page.

Now My Commandment is : "Thou shall not miss reading the Oracle Documentation"

Its not a Pipe Dream...

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I always adore Google for whatever they do from, Docs to Reader , or their April fool day hoaxes like Google Romance to Google Tisp ,I love it for their creativity, simplicity and elegance. But Pipes by Yahoo is really wonderful experience.

Last week Vivek & me combined all our blogs to create a single feed using Yahoo pipes. Man! the interface is really rocking! Our mesh looked like this

For subscribing for this Unified Mesh, you can use this feed.

From Italian Pasta to Russian Salad!

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I have read about multi-cuisine food in many novels but for the first time I tasted it in Global Village ‘007 program organized by TCS Maitree. 42 people from 18 different countries took part in it. This was an initiative to bring the TCSers from different country under one roof.

Banyan Park is a workplace everyone will envy. I enjoyed its scenic beauty along with a cloud of bats present over there. The program was also colorful when people from China to Colombia danced for Doom & Daler Mehandi’s album.

Finally, the food served, baffled me on what to eat and how much to eat. I ate from French pastries to Brazilian chocolates & Italian Pastas. Candidly speaking I turned a glutton for that evening as I used to be.The only stall I did not go was the Indian food, since they served Pav Baaji & Dabeli was served there, which is very common in Mumbai.

The closing part of the program was a presentation on India, by the people from these countries. That showed their respect India, really moved me.

I came home with my heart and tummy filled. A commendable program by TCS.

Shocking Revelations

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After the revelation that Bob Woolmer, the Pakistani coach was murdered, I felt very bad about the present state of the cricket. They started murdering the Game by a crude weapon called Match Fixing. Now it has gone one step to murder not only the game but also the people involved. I still remember the day when I watched my first cricket match on March 25 1992, finals of Pakistan & England. Though I was not clear on the rules and name of the players at that time, the Crystal Trophy which Imran Khan was holding is still frozen in my mind.



Though I started to follow the game only from 1996 world cup, when these many tournament like today were not played. I admired this game for the passion with people play and as well as watch.But I lost my interest considerably in the game when this happened in the year 2000.I was blown away by the news,when cricketers like Ajay Jadeja, who I admired the most, was also one among them.After that year , though I watch cricket occasionally, I did not enjoy the game and I was not inspired by the game. Even today I need to watch cricket because of one reason that we are surrounded by majority of people who love the game. To be social sometimes it is required.



This World Cup I was keeping an eye only to be aware of current affairs, as I always want to feed my passion for knowing things. But the death of the Pakistani Coach is the next blow to the game that has happened after match fixing.



The revelation is not only on cricket I wanted to mention, but also one of ignominious revelation, that Government of India does not have any official record about the contribution of the most prominent leaders of Indian Independence movement, Subash Chandra Bose. I was perplexed when I read about this. Is this not a disgrace us ?

Could Blogging Be Dangerous

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I am very new to this blogosphere. I started to blogg when I found blog is one of the best ways in express our positive thoughts which will be my annual annals. Inspite of being a record it will be open for others and could be of some use to few people.

Kathy Sierra is the author of Head First series of Java books, also one of the good female programmers.I have always admired her blog on 'Creating Passionate Users'. But this post by her really made feel bad about people in the world who always are in a wild search to curtail the growth of the other people.

Hope things will change,for a better tommorow.

Ad Hominem

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I stumbled today on this term 'Ad Hominem' argument. It was quite interesting, since most of the time we face this in our work environments in the form Design reviewer or as code reviewer or finally as appraiser. They try to attack the person rather than on the subject where it started.. they some time divert from reviewing the code to reviewing the coder....

That was rightly pointed in Jeff Atwood blog on the Top 10 Commandments of Egoless Programming , it was really interesting...you can shell some time on it..I am sure you will enjoy it..
Critique code instead of people— be kind to the coder, not to the code.
Program and Programmer are different...!

An impetus for Change – "Thank God its Friday"

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I used to feel exasperated because of work sometimes and would be eagerly waiting Friday evenings, so that I can take a break. I relax for the weekend and would start the cycle again. Job for me, used to be a 9 – 10 hour slot of weekdays and most of the times it stretches more than that till 15 or 16 hours when the situation demands. I have felt stress because of this extra strain and would feel like running away from this. But most of the programmers would face the same pressure when deadlines demand.

Fish, by Stephen Ludin & Co is a must read for people who feel sick to work, lost energy to engage or passion for performance in work.The authors have paralleled a famous fish market (Pike Place Fish Market) and a financial corporation on the factors of energy, enthusiasm, passion and attitude to work.

They elaborate on how a notorious department known for its indolence in work into the most productive department of the company. He explains how we can make people work and make them understand how we can also enjoy work. This gives a new perspective to work – Work with fun and enjoy work.

Independence Vs Persistent Nagging

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The analogy on oracle join and the behavior of immediate superior by Tom was really cool.
See this.

Your boss could micromanage you and tell you bit by bit what to do. And a lot of it would seem repetitive to you. By the time you were done - you would see that there was a really efficient way to accomplish what you just did in a fraction of the time - HAD YOU BEEN TOLD what the goal was, not how to do it.

Really Cool & I felt it was right !

A Perfect Digg

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This has nothing to do about the crazy but witty Digg.com. I religiously read Seth Godin's Blog, after I was allured so much on his Permission Marketing. His recent post on Digging it out of the ground about a grouping on the Fortune 100 Companies left me in deep contemplation.

The Market Capitalization of Indian ITES and other BPO based companies will blow away many of the Indian Manufacturing Companies.Though, there are many Indian Companies devouring with huge deals like the Tata-Corus, Novalis-Hindalco, Mittal-Arcelor, all fall in one category the Product Manufacturing sector. Is this happening because there is a real need in consolidation in these sector or to withstand to the drastic shift towards the service oriented industry.

Any way expecting a Financialy Robust India in Future. For now, hope the Finance Ministry will first take some stringent steps to curtail the rampant inflation.

Barking Syndrome

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My good friend Gopal sent me a manuscript of his recent speech ,which he delivered in his Corporate club.The Speech was well planned, filled with proper analogies and also motivating.Certain points in the speech were really Captivating.

One thing was the Barking & Appreciation Syndrome. The Barking Syndrome is what we face most of the time in IT industry from immediate superior. It could be due to stringent deadlines or compliance or anything no matter what it is. The alternative appreciation syndrome which he suggested was a valid point to be taken home.

And about one of the analogy he used, Kamsa & Krishna made me really laugh for some time. My question was simply this, After hearing the prophecy that Devaki and Vasudeva's baby is going to kill him, then why did he put them in the same cell :)

Most of the time people dig their grave themselves.

Power of Association

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The Association technique for memorising is phenomenal. This is one of the best techniques for memorising any thing under the sun. Associating unknown with the know things in a creative way.
When I heard two people discussing on the usage of two sentences " Power went off / Current went off". Immediately a spark in my mind which reminded me of the relation between Current and Power.

Power = Voltage X Current

I am still able to remember this without any confusion, only because of the associated learning I did in my school days. It was Power = Very Important. I could quote many things which we learn by association with some easy known things in a creative way. This is method must be taught to all the children from their elementary school, which will really help them to memorise things easily, quickly and hold on to it forever in their life. This also will improve creativity amog the children. Even now we can use the same method in memorising the names of different people.
Though the amount of information stored in the hard disks of different servers all over the world cannot be memorised, but some essential information which are often missed out required in building successful relationships like name and bithdays can be memorised and recalled with this association technique. Just associate the name of a person with some creative picture in your mind for 5 seconds, Thats it...You will remember forever :)

Selection Vs Execution

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The old Gavaskar and Bradman days are over, where shot selection was important. But today it is shot execution which matters like Gilchrist and Gibbs.

I started the post with cricket as an analogy only, I really don't want to talk any more about cricket after the nasty defeat yesterday.

Now in every industry due to the horrible competition, we are forced to perform all the time and not select the best oppurtunity. There was once 10,000 people came gave CAT for IIMs , but now its 1.5 lakh people give every year. Though there are so much of variations in choices, there are huge number of people competing for the same. The days has become like, though you are intelligent,.

This reminds me of a famous Tamil song by JP Chandrababu,
"All Intelligent people Don't Succeed, All Successful people need not be Intelligent."

Not Measurable = Not Controllable

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Metrics and Quality go hand in hand. That was one of the many good learnings I had in the TCS Integrated Quality Management System Training @ SEEPZ. This reminds me of a quote
"If you don't know where you are , A map is Useless".
Being in TCS for the last 9 months, this was the first time I felt the planning in TCS was so farsighted. The Vision, mission, and the goal sheets from CEO to team members like us are perfectly cascaded. But most of the people who attended the training were showing all means of discomfort and boredom in their faces. They were not interested about the system with which they are working for more than 40% of a day.I think knowing about the process and policies of the company we are working is a must, and we must make use of the benefits provided.


But for me the two days of training gave me lots of input on Quality and Security perspective of a IT Servicing Company. I am also trying to implement the same in my day-to-day work to help the company achieving its vision.

A Tribute to Sheldon

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Amidst the world cup exhilaration and the pandemonium due to the rampant inflation and stock market fall I missed to make a post on this. This should have been posted a month ago, but better late than never.
I never had the habit of reading until my sophomore days. Even I was one among the crowd who used to comment others for their reading habits as bookworms and bibliophiles. I was annoyed many a times when my friends used to sit with bulky novels which were authored by some weird names. But ingenuously speaking it was the fear of English which withheld me from reading those novels.
Once I had a bet with my friend Gopal, on reading the ‘Master of The Game’, written by Sidney Sheldon. The bet was to complete the book. Though I had the fear of verbose language in it, I was determined to read that, due to the bet. I completed the book in four days. But that did not stop me; I read all his 18 books in the next six months.
After I started reading novels, the next thing was critics and comments on various authors. For Sidney Sheldon there were loads of criticism among some of my friends that his works are too much feministic, sensual and simple. But for me though it was like that, his English was not too verbose and also at the same time not slipshod. You don’t have to master a dictionary to follow what he wrote.
He had no profound philosophy to promote. He wrote about lives of people, mostly ordinary - their highs and lows, their kindness and meanness, dreams and disappointments. I have seen many of the college girls religiously reading Sheldon’s novels, because most women felt they were their own stories. He had many bestsellers in his kitty though they were not approved by critics. He did not bother for critics; He was bothered only on readers. “The Naked Face” – Sheldon’s first novel which was scorned by book reviewers sold 21,000 copies in hardcover. The novel found a mass market in paperback, reportedly selling 3.1 million.
I consider “The Master of the Game” as his Magnum opus, not since I read that as my first book, it was an excellent narration for six generations. I would rank his works in the following order.

  1. Master of the Game

  2. If Tomorrow Comes

  3. Bloodline

  4. Rage of Angels

  5. Morning, Noon and Night

  6. The Naked Face

  7. A Stranger in the Mirror

  8. The Best Laid Plans

  9. Tell Me Your Dreams

  10. Windmills of the Gods

  11. The Sands of Time

  12. The Doomsday Conspiracy

  13. The Stars Shine Down

  14. Nothing Lasts Forever

  15. The Sky is Falling

  16. Are You Afraid of the Dark?

  17. The Other Side of Midnight

  18. Memories of Midnight

Sheldon once quoted that - I try to write my books so the reader can’t put them down. I try to construct them so when the reader gets to the end of a chapter, he or she has to read just one more chapter. It’s the technique of the old Saturday afternoon serial : leave the guy hanging on the edge of the cliff at the end of the chapter.
Today I am reading 2 to 3 books every month; this habit has to be attributed to this master story teller, who may not have taught me moral thoughts but had induced a vigorous reading habit in me. He has implanted a habit in me.
I eulogize for him today as one among the millions of Sheldon readers, we miss you!