Targeting the Best of Both Worlds with Next-generation SQL Databases

Conventional relational databases and recently-developed NoSQL databases have led some enterprises to an impasse. They want to scale the systems that are handling their data. However, an RDBMS used to guarantee transaction integrity is difficult to expand. NoSQL systems, although scalable, typically do not offer full transaction integrity via the ACID properties discussed in earlier posts. The latest solution in the SQL/NoSQL saga—next-generation SQL databases—may have the answer.

Topics: Big Data Data Management database rdbms NoSQL SQL ESG Lab

NoSQL - The Great Escape from SQL and Normalization

For the last decade or so, data and data structures have been moving at the speed of the web. They change rapidly to keep pace with end-users and markets that are in constant flux. The data model is volatile and will continue to be as more and more unstructured data (images, videos, social media content, online purchase histories, and more) is generated. The solution of the pre-Internet era, meaning the RDBMS, can’t keep up. Enter the NoSQL database—a solution for handling data with highly variable formats in massive quantities at lightning speeds.

Topics: Big Data Data Management database rdbms NoSQL SQL ESG Lab

Why Won’t the RDBMS Go Away?

The relational database management system was a breakthrough when it first appeared about 40 years ago. A relational database puts power into a user’s hands. Few assumptions are needed about how data is related or how it is to be extracted. Data can then be viewed in a variety of ways, each one illustrating different connections or correlations. This power, history, and a little user inertia have led to the RDBMS being implanted and used in practically every sector of business today. Well-known RDBMS product examples are IBM DB2, Microsoft SQL Server, and Oracle databases.

Topics: Big Data Data Management database rdbms NoSQL SQL ESG Lab

Today’s Database Landscape at a 50,000 Foot Level

We all know the drill—data is exploding in size, but it’s not just the volume of data that is wreaking havoc on organizations. It’s how quickly it’s growing, how many different forms it can take, and how it’s constantly changing. And that’s just scratching the surface. How can the potential of data truly be harnessed? The database technologies for organizing the data that we generate and manipulate continue to morph and multiply. The hugely successful relational database management systems (RDBMSs) continue to soldier on using principles now over 40 years old, while newer database technologies have come along and been widely adopted to address specific needs in the data storage, management, and analytics space. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be going through the evolution of database technology at a 50,000 foot level to highlight the old and the new, how they’re used today, and what vendors to keep an eye on.

Topics: Big Data Data Management database rdbms NoSQL SQL ESG Lab

Larry Ellison's Softwar: The War to End All Wars?

Larry Ellison is the last of the accomplished first generation founder/CEOs to step down. Larry and Oracle’s impact in IT has been remarkable and will persist for years to come. Although IBM was responsible for developing the relationship architecture that made relational databases tick (Codd and Date), Larry and Oracle emerged as the most successful vendor of RDBMS products. IBM, Informix, Sybase, and Oracle competed intensely during the 1990s and marketing messages sometimes got personal. Whether or not nature or nurture was the driving force behind Larry is hard to say but the result was that Oracle established market leadership thorough a combination of continuous product innovation and faster cycle times. The impact was that Oracle rose to become the largest RDBMS vendor in the world.

Oracle continues to drive high levels of innovation into its database which has allowed the company to remain differentiated as the relational market matured while simultaneously justifying a price premium for their product. While Oracle has become a company that customers love to hate, data management is so mission critical to every organization that data management products have an incredible stickiness. This combined with the fact that it’s hard to get sacked by recommending Oracle has helped Oracle gain an amazing amount of account control. As Oracle’s database business began throwing off an increasing amount of cash, this has helped Oracle expand into a variety of related markets through internal development and acquisition. However, this expansion has not been easy. Oracle’s efforts to build an application server largely failed resulting in the acquisition of BEA and their market leading product. While this is a story that would be played out repeatedly regarding technology, Oracle marketing must be given significant credit for focusing attention on the positives. Larry’s obsession with being #1 and making sure there was appropriate market awareness around these facts and claims is legendary. But it’s hard to argue with the results.

Topics: Application Development & Deployment Enterprise Software database Oracle rdbms

NoSQL is Here and Now

The NoSQL Now! conference at the San Jose Convention Center, efficiently hosted by Dataversity, swam with rather new to extremely new data management and analytics offerings, some of which I will write about subsequently. But here are four underlying themes and general observations garnered from the conference:

Topics: Enterprise Software Data Management database rdbms NoSQL Data Analytics

Sailing Beyond RDBMS: C* and DataStax Full Steam Ahead for Enterprise Big Data and Real-Time

What is this C*, yet another derivative of the C programming language? No, C* is the insider's short-cut for Cassandra, the Apache top-level open source database project that has gathered enough steam to draw over 800 attendees, up from 125 two years ago, last week to Santa Clara for the third annual Cassandra Summit, hosted by DataStax. Here's a nice synopsis of the summit. For those of you not yet initiated, however, what follows summarizes the open source Cassandra movement and the DataStax commercially supported version of Cassandra.

Topics: Cloud Computing Big Data End-User Computing Enterprise Software Data Management database rdbms NoSQL Data Analytics Content Management Search Cassandra DataStax Archiving