Kamran Agayev's Oracle Blog

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Exclusive Interview with Alex Nuijten

Posted by Kamran Agayev A. on September 8th, 2010

  Alex Nuijten started of as an Oracle Developer mainly with Oracle Forms, Reports and Designer but fell in love with SQL and PL/SQL. Next to his consultancy work he also writes articles for an Oracle related magazine, blogs on the AMIS Technology Blog and his own blog, conducts training classes and is a regular presentor at National and International conferences. Alex is a frequent contributor at the Oracle Technology Network forum for SQL and PL/SQL.

Could u please provide answer to the following questions as follows:

  • Brief information about yourself and your family

I’m a database developer and expertise lead database development with AMIS in The Netherlands.
Married with Rian, two children – Tim 9 and Lara 6.


  • Your education

I am a Physical Therapist.


  • Your experience with Oracle. When you started first? Has it been interest of your side or just a coincidence?

Oracle was coincidence. I worked (as a Physical Therapist) and lived in the Florida, US, for about 5 years and when we moved back to The Netherlands I decided to change careers. The company that hired me offered to train me in Oracle, and that’s what I’ve been doing ever since.

  • What was the motive behind to prefer Oracle? Who you have been influenced by?

Oracle is what I have done ever since I changed careers. There are so many people that have influenced me within the Oracle area.


  • What would your preference of profession if not Oracle?

Haven’t really considered changing careers again, I still love what I do.

  • What motivates you in your job?

The technology. Trying out new features. Learning new things.


  • Do you give lectures on Oracle?

Yes, conferences at which I am presenting are usually up on my blog ( http://nuijten.blogspot.com ).
Besides the conferences I also do training classes for AMIS and Oracle University.


  • Have you authored any book in Oracle?

No, I haven’t. However I am a regular writer for Optimize, a Dutch magazine for Oracle professionals.
I have been a technical reviewer of Steven Feuerstein’s Oracle PL/SQL Programming (5th edition) book though. Funny to mention that in the acknowledgement section, he misspelled my last name…  :)


  • Do you manage with your time as to read books on Oracle? What is the name of the book that you read recently?

 Before I go to sleep I always read. The last book I reread was “Pro Oracle Application Express” by John Scott and Scott Spendolini.


  • What do you think on OTN forums?

I think the OTN forums is a great resource. A lot of knowledgeable people there, and a lot of fun.  

  • Do you refer to the documentation? And how often does it happen?

Very often. Tahiti.oracle.com is one of my bookmarked websites. Before answering questions on OTN, I tend to look it up in the documentation first.


  • What is the biggest mistake you have ever made during your DBA career?

I’m not a DBA 😉
But as a developer I deleted a table on a production database, right after the “COMMIT” the phone started ringing… “What happened to this data?” Flashback is a great feature


  • What was your greatest achievement as an Oracle DBA?

I’m still not a DBA… J I guess my greatest achievement is that I still enjoy my work a lot. I always go to my work with a big smile on my face.

  • What is your priority to manage the challenges you face?

I tend to take one step at a time and take things as they come along.


  • How would you describe the essence of your success? According to your definition of success, how successful have you been so far?

“the essence of your success”…. Wow… I don’t know, I just do what I love to do and apparently that is appreciated by some.


  • What are your best skills which make you differ from others?

I guess I always want to try out new things, be involved.

  • What’s your major weakness?

Procrastination. You can procrastinate almost anything, except procrastination.

  • Have you ever lost your spirit? If so, what has been the reason and how have you overcome it?

If you ever lose the spirit, it’s time to find something else to do… something that you do enjoy and get energy from that.


  • What is the next success you would like to attain and your efforts to this end?

 I am still very happy with being awarded Ace Director.


  • How do you balance your daily life with your career?

Things seem to work out. I don’t doing anything special to balance things out.


  • Please describe your one day summary of activities?

At the moment I’m busy preparing my presentation for Oracle Open World, which I will do with my colleague Lucas Jellema.
Most of the time I am consulting at a client side just like everybody else and sometimes I might be teaching, visiting a conference and check out the OTN forums.


  • How many hours do you work and sleep in a day?

About 7 hours of sleep.

  • Where and how do you spend your daily, weekly and annual holidays?

I enjoy going camping. Preferably if the weather is nice, as long as it’s not raining it’s alright.

  • Do you think about Oracle during vacations?

Yes, I always take an Oracle book with me as well as my laptop.


  • Do you have time or motivation to go in for any sports? If yes, which kind of sport do you go in for?

I try to go for a run once or twice a week. When the weather is nice I enjoy inline skating.

  • What’s your favorite meal and non-alcoholic drink?

There are so many delicious things. I love a good barbecue, smoked ribs (most restaurants boil them,… yuck). Sushi is also something you can wake me up for. It depends on the meal what I will have to drink. Non-alcoholic: water.

  • What foreign languages do you know?

English, little bit of German, very little French, little Spanish. My mother tongue is Dutch.

  • What’s your average typing speed?

Don’t know. Fast enough I guess.

  • Have you ever get involved in politics?


  • What are your hobbies? 

Reading, watching TV, playing with Oracle


  • How do you spend your free time?

Reading, watching TV, playing with Oracle, going to the soccer matches with my son’s team. Going to the Track and Field games with the kids.


  • What’s your biggest ambition?

Never really think about that sort of thing.

  • What would be your advice to the beginners in Oracle?

Always check what people are saying to you. Things change over time. Learn how to use the Oracle documentation.

  • Would you like your children to follow in your footsteps or take a different path in life?

My son wants to be either a Professional Soccer player or a Track and Field Athlete. My daughter wants to be a teacher.

  • Do you have any followers of you?

According to my blog (http://nuijten.blogspot.com) I have 9 followers… :)

When someone leaves a comment, good or bad, I always enjoy it.

  • What is your vision on the future of Oracle?

Oracle will keep expanding and will stay the best Database in the world.


  • Could you please take a photo in your office near to your desktop?


One Response to “Exclusive Interview with Alex Nuijten”

  1. Exclusive Interview with Alex Nuijten « Kamran Agayev's Oracle Blog | Today Headlines Says:

    […] to train me in Oracle, and that’s what I’ve been … Read the rest here:  Exclusive Interview with Alex Nuijten « Kamran Agayev's Oracle Blog Share […]

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