Impala docs now included in CDH 5 library

With the release of CDH 5.0.0 and Impala 1.3.0, now for the first time the Impala docs are embedded alongside the CDH Installation Guide, Security Guide, and other CDH docs. This integration makes it easier to link back and forth both ways, and also will help readers find Impala-related content when they search within the CDH 5 library. Here's the full layout of the CDH 5.0.0 library. Notice

Impala Doc Reorg – January 2014

When Impala started, many of the early adopters were experts in HiveQL, so the Impala documentation assumed some familiarity with Hive SQL syntax and behavior. The Impala SQL reference info was relatively low-volume, more of a quick reference. Now there's more functionality to talk about, and more users are starting with Impala straight from an RDBMS background and need the full details from the

My history with Big Data

Before I joined Cloudera, I hadn't had much formal experience with Big Data. But I had crossed paths with one of its major use cases before, so I found it easy to pick up the mindset. My previous big project involved a relational database hooked up to a web server. (more...)

Documentation for Cloudera Impala 1.0

The Cloudera docs have been undergoing some reorganization lately. That applies double to the Impala documentation, which moved from beta to GA status and has been restructured at the same time. For posterity (and a little Googlerank mojo), here's the current layout of the Impala docs in mid-May 2013: Cloudera (more...)

New Job for John

Hello readers of my infrequent blog posts! I have started a new job, working on documentation for Cloudera, specifically for the Impala project, which is bringing fast interactive SQL to the Hadoop ecosystem. Read the Impala documentation. Download the Impala software. Get the QuickStart VM to play around with a (more...)

Error Handling: Or, How to Start an Argument Among Programmers

Lately I see a lot of discussions come up about error handling. For example: Dr. Dobbs "The Scourge of Error Handling" covering mainly C-descended languages; this blog post stemming from OTN discussions of Oracle exception handling in PL/SQL. I've been on both sides of the fence (cowboy coder and database programmer) so I'll offer my take. I'll write mostly from the perspective of PL/SQL stored

Separate docs for MySQL Connectors

The MySQL documentation section has always had this Topic Guides page containing links to the docs for the various MySQL Connectors -- the official database drivers for various languages and programming technologies. That is the most convenient way to get the information for each Connector in PDF form, rather than downloading the entire Ref Man PDF. For HTML, it was more of a shortcut, because

InnoDB Plugin Doc

The InnoDB Plugin manual is now available on the MySQL web site.

More on Single-Action UIs

In my post Deconstructing the iPod Shuffle UI, I talked a bit about the notion of a limited UI where you really only do one thing -- in that case, click the button on the headphones.Every now and then, I rediscover the infrared remote that goes with my iMac, and realize that for many mundane tasks, the remote does everything I need. (Mira lets me assign different actions for the remote button for

Snow Leopard upgrade

I finally upgraded the main iMac to Snow Leopard. For the first time ever, an upgrade actually resulted in more free space, an extra 6 GB worth. The main features that I notice are fairly minor -- the ability to view stacks on the dock using a normal icon instead of the smashed-together icons of the apps in the folder; the ability to have the time announced every 15, 30, or 60 minutes by the

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Ten Years Gone

I've been pretty quiet lately, because I'm in a transitional period. After 10 years on documentation for Oracle Database and other enterprise server products, I'm switching to the InnoDB group that already works with MySQL. New development environments, new customers, it's an exciting time!A decade seems to be the right timeframe for me. It was 10 years at IBM before that. Check back in 2019, I'm

Deconstructing "Everything is UNIX"

From Linux magazine, an article by Jeremy Zawodny: Everything is UNIX.For me, this is an example of the "Miller meme" from Repo Man. "Suppose you're thinkin' about a plate o' shrimp. Suddenly someone'll say, like, "plate," or "shrimp," or "plate o' shrimp" out of the blue, no explanation." You go through life thinking you'll find something better than UNIX. The man pages still have the same bad

The Humble PL/SQL Dot

Like many other languages, PL/SQL has its own "dot notation". If we assume that most people can intuit or easily look up things like the syntax for '''IF/THEN/ELSIF''', that means that first-timer users might quickly run into dots and want to understand their significance.The authoritative docs on the dots is in the Oracle Database 11g PL/SQL Language Reference, in particular Appendix B, How PL/

vi, Still Relevant

I thought this was a good summary of why vi (or more accurately vim) is still a good choice for editing today:Why, oh WHY, do those #?@! nutheads use vi?One trick I learned from this article that I hadn't known: keep the cursor on the same line, but position that line at the top, middle, or bottom of the script via 'zt', 'zz', and 'zb' respectively. I am always ending up with the cursor at the

The Humble PL/SQL Exception (Part 1a) – The Structure of Stored Subprograms

As I said in my previous post, The Humble PL/SQL Exception (Part 1) - The Disappearing RETURN, there are a lot of nuances surrounding exception handling. That post attracted some comments that I thought deserved a followup post rather than just another comment in response.oraclenerd said (excerpted):I'm going to have to disagree with you on the internal procedure (in the declaration section)

The Humble PL/SQL Exception (Part 1) – The Disappearing RETURN

Exception handling in PL/SQL is a big subject, with a lot of nuances. Still, you have to start somewhere. Let's take one simple use case for exceptions, and see if it leads to some thoughts about best practices. (Hopefully, this is not the last post in this particular series.)One common pattern I find in PL/SQL procedures is a series of tests early on...if not_supposed_to_even_be_here() then

When Backwards Compatibility Goes Too Far

I couldn't help but notice this new article, about holdovers from the earliest days of DOS and even CP/M still showing up in Windows-based development:Zombie Operating Systems and ASP.NET MVCPersonally, I really enjoyed working on the IBM C/C++ compiler back in the day, targeting Windows 95. They licensed the Borland resource editor and I adapted the RTF-format online help, with no RTF specs,

Deconstructing the iPod Shuffle UI

The new buttonless iPod Shuffle, which moves all the controls onto the headphone cord, is taken to task in this article:The new iPod shuffle: Button, button, who's got the button?Now, I'm a recent purchaser of the previous Shuffle model, and intuitively I prefer the Play/Pause/Forward/Back/Up/Down controls of that previous model. But I like to take contrarian positions sometimes too, so let me

Comic-Based Communication

These days, there are as many styles of documentation as there are of programming. Structured docs (waterfall model), topic-based writing (object-oriented development), less formal styles based around wikis (agile coding). Another one that I haven't seen given a name, is what I think of as comic-based communication.If you grew up with comic books, fingers poised next to "continued on 3rd page",