Classes started this week for the spring semester at Boston College where I am teaching a class on marketing analytics to MBA students at the Carroll School of Management. The class makes heavy use of Gordon's book, Data Analysis Using SQL and Excel and the data that accompanies it. Since the local database is Oracle, I have at long last added Oracle load scripts to the book's companion page.
Due to laziness, my method of creating the Oracle script was to use the existing MySQL script and edit bits that didn't work in Oracle. As it happens, the MySQL scripts worked pretty much as-is to load the tab-delimited data into Oracle tables using Oracle's sqlldr utility. One case that did not work taught me something about the danger of mixing tab-delimited data with input formats in sqlldr. Even though it has nothing to do with data mining, as a public service, that will be the topic of my next post.
Preview: Something that works perfectly well when your field delimiter is comma, fails mysteriously when it is tab.