Why is ALTER faster than UPDATE?

Let’s create a garbage table..

CREATE TABLE foo   AS SELECT x::text FROM generate_series(1,20e6) AS t(x);  Time: 14077.654 ms (00:14.078) 

Now, let’s look at boring UPDATE,

UPDATE foo SET x = 'foo'; Time: 22239.050 ms (00:22.239) 

Compared with ALTER,

ALTER TABLE foo   ALTER COLUMN x   SET DATA TYPE text   USING 'foo'; Time: 9480.027 ms (00:09.480) 

It’s approximately twice as fast.

Is there an item in DND 5e that will cast Alter Self?

The 5th level party I DM for just found a Hat of Disguise. Our Rogue (Thief Archetype) is fascinated by the endless possibilities, but slightly put off by the shortcomings of the Disguise Self spell it casts. She has had a conversation with our spellcasters, and her player has asked me whether they could find an item that would cast the more powerful Alter Self spell. I see much potential for entertaining mayhem in this.

Is there an item that casts Alter Self, say, once a day? Even homebrew? (If I can’t find anything official, I’ll homebrew it anyway.)

I have skimmed through the DMG and only found the Wand of Polymorph, which isn’t quite what we had in mind. The Infiltrator’s Key is way overpowered for this.

How much can changelings alter the length of specific body parts?

Like with disguise self, changelings can alter their total height by 1 foot. So they could make both their legs 1 foot shorter, and that would work. In theory, they could even turn both their legs into little stubs, with a 1-inch-tall torso, as long as they elongate their neck to be about 5 feet long.

But what if a changeling wanted to take on the guise of a certain pirate, who’s missing a single leg? In other words, leave their total height the same and keep one leg the same length, but make the other leg into a little stub. That’s a change of more than 1 foot (erm, so to speak), but it isn’t explicitly a change to their height, since their remaining leg determines how tall they stand.

That much can also be asked about the spell, but changelings add on the twist that the alterations are actual physical changes. So is there any difference in the situations between changing the length of a leg, and changing the length of body parts that don’t contribute to height?

That is to say, is there anything stopping a changeling from growing out 50 feet of hair so the party can cut it off and use it as a rope? Or, similarly, causing their arm/fingers to become 50 feet long to manipulate items from the opposite side of a room? Or causing their tail to grow from 0 inches to 50 feet for no particular reason other than giving me another body part example for presumably the same rule?

And then, what about doing all of the above at the same time?

image included to demonstrate what exactly I mean

Does interrupting ALTER INDEX COALESCE CLEANUP loose the work so far?

In Oracle 12c (12.1) we have a huge partitioned table with interval partitioning. Beside local indexes, there are two global indexes on it. Dropping old partitions with UPDATE INDEXES clause helps the global indexes keeping valid.

Next night, the feature called Asynchronous Global Index Maintenance background job has started an ALTER INDEX xxx COALESCE CLEANUP command, which runs since several days and cleans up the global indexes from orphan entries of dropped partitions.

Unfortunately, we need to recreate the affected index with different parameters, but it’s not possible due to resource busy error because of a shared DML lock (Row-X (SX)) caused by the background job. Since we need to deploy a new release, we need definitely the DDL on the index.

Question: If we kill the session, will the work of past 2 days be lost and job need to restart again from beginning?

Can Alter Self grant you wings to fly?

Alter self can turn your body into anything as long as you basically retain the same body shape. It can even change your weight. Moreover, it can transform you into a member of another race.

So, this spell can, in theory, grant the caster flight in two ways:

  • Turn yourself into an Aarakocra
  • Reduce your weight to a bird’s, and turn your arm into wings

However, this is not explicitly RAW. The spell has the Aquatic Adaptation mode which explicitly grants the caster a swim speed equal to their walking speed; it doesn’t have this for flight. Further, the fly spell is a third level spell, which this use shortcuts to, albeit for one target only.

My question is, would this be a valid use of the spell?

Alter Memory allow me to see Their memories?

While this charm lasts, you can affect the target’s memory of an event that it experienced within the last 24 hours and that lasted no more than 10 minutes. You can permanently eliminate all memory of the event, allow the target to recall the event with perfect clarity and exacting detail, change its memory of the details of the event, or create a memory of some other event.

I have an issue with the wording it implies that I have to know what the event was to alter it. What I am asking is can you use Alter Memory to basically see the event for yourself?

Can the Suggestion and Mass Suggestion spells alter feelings?

In 5e D&D, the Suggestion-style spells can suggest a path of action via charm-like forces. This suggests (ha ha) that it alters the thought and feeling process of the target. Obviously the ramifications for life-coaching are astounding, but let us put that aside for the moment.

Much of society &/or culture spends a vast amount on chemicals that do little more than alter state of being (alcohol, cigarettes, coffee are only the socially-expected ‘tip of the iceberg’). Indeed, 5e D&D has spells that change the minds of people – but it does not explicitly explain how this changes the impacted person’s feelings. For example, a depressed person experiencing Charm is still depressed, but they feel a bit more friendly towards a specific person should they fail their saving throw.

If there is a RAW explanation or example for how (Mass) Suggestion spells &/or effects change feelings beyond thought-action mechanics it changes how the spell impacts the game. Imagine marketing this suggestion-magic as a drug, a valuable resource with NO withdrawal – and minimal risk of addiction. An entire industry would logically exist for any bard, wizard or sorcerer with access to this second level spell.

What would be even more interesting is if this feeling-manipulation could be used to solve psychological barriers. Imagine telling a target ‘You will figure out the inner-dialogue on how to be confident… and free of anxiety… in the next two to eight hours.’ If psychological states can be over-suggested (meta-suggested?) then this suggestion-impact could even allow a fresh saving throw for all mind-impacting spells.

  • Fear &/ or frightened condition: ‘You are NOT afraid! Your course of action is to stop trembling and function normally.’

  • Charmed &/or effects: ‘You do not find that vampire charming.’

  • Possession: ‘You will cast out that ghost – they are not you! Resist!’

  • Song of Harpies: ‘This is not your kind of music, you prefer violin concertos. Do not listen to her!’

At higher levels of Mass Suggestion this would function without concentration. If this mental suggestion-force were allowed it would provide resistance or even immunity to specific magic &/or spells pending the wording of the original (suggest) spell.

In short: Can Suggestion-style magic create specific states of being whilst suggesting an action? Is feeling a state of being considered an action? If so, does this extend into saving throws and resistances against other mind-controlling magic?

Can Alter Reality give you arbitrarily high stats?

I’ve recently noticed a key line in the text of Alter Reality.

The deity can render a magical or supernatural effect permanent.

It seems obvious to me that this should allow for a non-Pun Pun method of attaining an arbitrarily high amount of points in each ability score, but none come to me.

My first idea was to exploit Epic Spellcasting’s Fortify seed and give myself a +5 bonus of every type that I can think of, but I have stacking concerns and this does not meet my “arbitrarily high” criterion. What other options are there?

Can a druid who has pre-cast Alter Self change the appearance of a creature they Wild Shape into?

As title suggests, I’m wondering about the flexibility of alter self.

If a druid has alter self active and Wild Shapes into a goat, could they use the change appearance option of alter self to look like a sheep instead? What about a Medium cow?

What about if they Wild Shape into a giant spider, then alter self into an octopus?

I’m aware they wouldn’t get any stat changes for any of these appearance changes.

Since I suspect this will be up to DM interpretation, a good answer may include the designer’s intent in their answer, in an attempt to address my more specific questions in the question body.

The change appearance option is as follows:

Change Appearance.¬†You transform your appearance. You decide what you look like, including your height, weight, facial features, sound of your voice, hair length, coloration, and distinguishing characteristics, if any. You can make yourself appear as a member of another race, though none of your statistics change. You also can’t appear as a creature of a different size than you, and your basic shape stays the same; if you’re bipedal, you can’t use this spell to become quadrupedal, for instance. At any time for the duration of the spell, you can use your action to change your appearance in this way again.

How does the Natural Weapons option of the Alter Self spell affect a Longtooth Shifter’s Shifting Feature?

I play an Eldritch Knight Longtooth Shifter who’s about to get 2nd level spells. I was looking at Alter Self (which I realize I can’t get until a level later anyway because of its school) and I was curious about how it interacted with my Shifting feature.

[Longtooth] Shifting Feature. While shifted, you can use your elongated fangs to make an unarmed strike as a bonus action. If you hit with your fangs, you deal piercing damage equal to 1d6 + your Strength modifier, instead of the bludgeoning damage normal for an unarmed strike.

So my shifting feature grants me an unarmed strike attack as a bonus action using elongated fangs. Looking at Alter Self:

Natural Weapons. You grow claws, fangs, spines, horns, or a different natural weapon of your choice. Your unarmed strikes deal 1d6 bludgeoning, piercing, or slashing damage, as appropriate to the natural weapon you chose, and you are proficient with your unarmed strikes. Finally, the natural weapon is magic and you have a +1 bonus to the attack and damage rolls you make using it.

If I cast this spell using this option and choose to “grow fangs” while shifted, does the bonus unarmed strike have a +1 bonus because of Alter Self?