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Measures and Rules Expand / Collapse
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Posted Saturday, February 6, 2010 11:50 AM


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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Measures and Rules

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"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood..." Theodore Roosevelt
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Post #861142
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 6:35 AM


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Great Article.

Each person must assess their own needs and responses when considering "cookie cutter" numbers. As much as we would like to believe, we are not a one size fits all creature. But we like to think that way. The human body is infinitely more complex than a database, but the same rule applies. Too often after implementing a cookie cutter number, people/DBAs only question the number if things go badly, and there is nothing wrong with that, but that doesn't mean it is the wrong number for everybody else. We hope that the "experts" know what they are talking about, and mostly they do. That is not to say that through research you can not come up with a better number for the situations you are in.


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Post #861606
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 6:52 AM
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It's interesting (and common) that the diatribe against the original article is turned into a gender flame war.

The initial point of Paulos argument (and indeed some of his excellent books) is how misleading our gut instincts can be about statistics (leave it to that commenter to decide that he is derogoagory toward women).

This same kind of discussion has occurred in other areas of medical screening too (hint: similar advice was given for other non gender related diseases as well), and in our "precautionary prinicple" driven society, the gut reaction is often wrong, and sometimes counter productive.

When it comes to understanding the nuances of statistics, should I listen to a top mathematician in the field or a law professor... hmmm which to choose?


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Post #861621
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 7:00 AM


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Tobar (2/8/2010)
Great Article.

Each person must assess their own needs and responses when considering "cookie cutter" numbers. As much as we would like to believe, we are not a one size fits all creature. But we like to think that way. The human body is infinitely more complex than a database, but the same rule applies. Too often after implementing a cookie cutter number, people/DBAs only question the number if things go badly, and there is nothing wrong with that, but that doesn't mean it is the wrong number for everybody else. We hope that the "experts" know what they are talking about, and mostly they do. That is not to say that through research you can not come up with a better number for the situations you are in.


Thanks, and I agree with you. If you really dig, probably, each and every measurement is unique to a given situation, but the variation may be very slight, so does it matter that your disk queue length is 4.5 or 5 before you start get a little concerned? But sometimes, those measurements can vary wildly from one situationn to another. The more you know, the better you'll be able to understand if the measurement applies in your situation. The problem is, there's a lot to know.


----------------------------------------------------
"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood..." Theodore Roosevelt
The Scary DBA
Author of: SQL Server 2012 Query Performance Tuning
SQL Server 2008 Query Performance Tuning Distilled
and
SQL Server Execution Plans

Product Evangelist for Red Gate Software
Post #861629
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 7:47 AM


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Great editorial Grant!

This reminded me of the demise of my checklist. I used to think database tuning was a matter of checking off items on my checklist, in order, as I made corrections. I believed this until some of my changes took a server to its knees.

Investigation revealed the checklist wasn't the problem - my faith in it was the problem.

I'd built the checklist from experience. I went back to that experience and instead documented the methodology I'd used to gather measurements and create tests. This methodology replaced my checklist.

:{> Andy


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Post #861679
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 8:04 AM


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Andy Leonard (2/8/2010)
Great editorial Grant!

This reminded me of the demise of my checklist. I used to think database tuning was a matter of checking off items on my checklist, in order, as I made corrections. I believed this until some of my changes took a server to its knees.

Investigation revealed the checklist wasn't the problem - my faith in it was the problem.

I'd built the checklist from experience. I went back to that experience and instead documented the methodology I'd used to gather measurements and create tests. This methodology replaced my checklist.

:{> Andy


Now that sounds like a great presentation. When are you giving it?


----------------------------------------------------
"The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood..." Theodore Roosevelt
The Scary DBA
Author of: SQL Server 2012 Query Performance Tuning
SQL Server 2008 Query Performance Tuning Distilled
and
SQL Server Execution Plans

Product Evangelist for Red Gate Software
Post #861699
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 10:36 AM


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Grant Fritchey (2/8/2010)

Now that sounds like a great presentation. When are you giving it?


I love you man!

:{>


Andy Leonard
CSO, Linchpin People
Follow me on Twitter: @AndyLeonard
Post #861870
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 10:50 AM


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Standard measures and rules of that sort are of incredible value (in most cases) to people who are first learning a subject. Once one really knows the subject and understands it, one can violate the "rules", because one understands enough to do so in a positive way.

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Post #861889
Posted Monday, February 8, 2010 11:11 AM


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Great Editorial. You bring up a very simple point that we try to make daily. There are measures out there that are guides. The guide is a starting point and you must test to find what works best in your environment. That too may change over time - so as Andy said - it is really the methodology that one needs to implement to make sure the measures and guides established for their environment are correct.



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