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Showing entries 1 to 30 of 42 Next 12 Older Entries

Displaying posts with tag: Web/Tech (reset)

IA Ventures - Jobs shout out
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My friends over at IA Ventures are looking both for an Analyst and for an Associate to their team.  If Big Data, New York and start-ups is in your blood then I can’t think of a better VC to be involved in. 

From the IA blog:

"IA Ventures funds early-stage Big Data companies creating competitive advantage through data and we’re looking for two start-up junkies to join our team – one full-time associate / community manager and one full time analyst. Because there are only four of us (we’re a start-up ourselves, in fact), we’ll need you to help us investigate companies, learn about industries, develop investment theses, perform internal operations, organize

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Who/What to acquire next
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Well as predicted, with Aster Data recently being picked up by Teradata most of the key new generation MPP distributed analytics vendors have been acquired (Aster Data, Vertica, Netezza & Greenplum).  This had to happen and was expected to happen.  The MPP Analytics startup “revolution” is over and these technologies will now be integrated into the mainstream.

So what’s next?  As we now, if you are a massive multi-national software company it is a lot less risky to incrementally innovate and leave the development of “game changing” technologies to startups that can be acquired after

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What’s hot in Big Data startups?
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There are so, so many big data platforms in play at the moment it can be confusing for developers to know where to start.  For startups it used to be simple, MySQL, but dust clouds were created when all the NoSQL platforms started to crash the party 18 months or so ago.  But I do see the dust begin to settle and we are starting to see some market “leaders” appear.  A very unscientific approach is to list the technologies I hear about in the “big data startup” world on a daily basis.  These are, in no particular order:

  • MySQL - yes it is still very much hanging in there despite the Oracle acquisition.  MySQL has been helped by technologies such as AWS RDS and Xeround making it more digestible for big data startups who want
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The problem with a full box of big data tools
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NoSQL”, for lack of better name, is a generic term that describes any data management system that does not use SQL as a query interface.  Generally this means any data management system that is non-relational, but the term also has also been stretched as far to include the boundaries of what constitutes a data management system at all (such as Hadoop).

Early on (a couple of years back in NoSQL time) when the term was coined I think the positioning was much more aggressive, but more recently this has been softened so now NoSQL is commonly quoted as meaning of “Not only SQL” or “next generation databases” (whatever that means).  The common message you get now is something along the lines of NoSQL systems are

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Was Stonebraker right?
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Back in 2008 Stonebraker & DeWitt published a paper and associated blog post titled “MapReduce: A major step backwards”.  Their key points being Map Reduce is:

  • A giant step backward in the programming paradigm for large-scale data intensive applications
  • A sub-optimal implementation, in that it uses brute force instead of indexing
  • Not novel at all — it represents a specific implementation of well known techniques developed nearly 25 years ago
  • Missing most of the features that are routinely included in current DBMS
  • Incompatible with all of the tools DBMS




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    VLDB 2010
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    I will be at VLDB 2010 next week.  If anyone on this blog is attending and wants to catch up to discuss start ups and innovation in DB, NoSQL, Big Data etc drop me a line and I will try to meet up.

    Riptano for Cassandra
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    Cassandra is one of the most interesting NoSQL platforms at the moment.  And by most interesting what I really mean is the most clearly justifiable.  Some NoSQL platforms offer new data models, improved query interfaces and/or good single node performance through relaxed consistency models.  As a database guy however, the justification for throwing out the RDBMS baby and bathwater is still difficult at this point as NoSQL platforms tend to be highly focused in one aspect of data management, and very immature in all other areas.  Cassandra is somewhat different as it is more mature in a number of key areas (albeit still immature in others).  Areas that can make Cassandra more justifiable for the right project, when compared with a more  [Read more...]
    Ingres Vectorwise smokes it!
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    I work in all markets of the database industry, from web & startup through the largest and most established enterprises.  And to be completely honest, the name Ingres has not come up in conversation very much at all.  10 years ago maybe more often, but recently not all that much.  But Ingres has been quietly ticking away.  Despite being largely off the radar, they still have a sizable and loyal customer base, global offices and a focused & dedicated management team.  And importantly they have an open source business model which actually appears to be working.

    I wrote last year that their "behind the

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    NoSQL Buzz
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    I have noticed a definite increase in NoSQL buzz over the last few months.  This is partly confirmed by Google Trends, this service shows data relating to how search topics rank:


    The last couple of months has seen a dramatic rise in both the number of searches and also the number of news items relating to NoSQL. 

    But the traditionalists need not yet fret, interest in NoSQL is yet but a blip on the data management radar, as demonstrated by this compairson between NoSQL and MySQL search rankings:


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    What is Big Data?
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    Image by Aranda\Lasch via Flickr

    One of my favorite terms at the moment is “Big Data”.  While all terms are by nature subjective, in this post I will try and explain what Big Data means to me.

    So what is Big Data?

    Big Data is the “modern scale” at which we are defining or data usage challenges.  Big Data begins at the point where need to seriously start thinking about the technologies used to drive our information needs.

    While Big Data as a term seems to refer to volume this isn’t the case.  Many existing technologies have little problem physically handling large volumes (TB or PB) of data.  Instead the Big Data



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    End is in sight for Oracle & Sun
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    Image via Wikipedia

    Oracle has published their promises which have reportedly gone a long way to appeasing the EU, so the likely outcome is the takeover of Sun will be approved in January.

    My own personal opinion has been the anti-competitive stance really didn’t hold much water.  Reading Oracle’s promises, none appear very extreme (largely agreeing to maintain the status quo) which would lead you to question why it has taken so long to sort out.  But importantly for getting this resolved they are a concession by Oracle and a win for the EU.



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    Is Cassandra winning the NoSQL race?
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    Cassandra is fast emerging as one of the key NoSQL databases.  While we often express that the point of NoSQL is to offer more choice than an “RDBMS” hammer for every nail, there are practical reasons why a small number of stack technologies gain dominance and others circle on the sidelines.


    Cassandra has already ticked many of the boxes needed to shoot it into the stratosphere as a widely used, default database platform.  Especially so in the web world where high scalability, high availability, open source and being proven by a bigger fish all matter.  Specifically Cassandra has:
    • The ability to scale across many nodes
    • The ability to scale to many hundreds of


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    Analytics at Twitter
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    Last week I spent some time speaking with Kevin Weil, head of analytics at Twitter. Twitter, from a technology perspective, has had a bit of a hard time due to their stability issues in their early days.  Kevin was keen to point out that he feels this was due to the incomparable growth Twitter was experiencing at the time and their constant struggle to keep up.  Kevin was also keen to show that Twitter prides themselves on striving for engineering excellence, the creation & contribution to new technologies and generally assisting in pushing the boundaries forward.  Our conversation naturally centered on analytics at Twitter.

    Twitter, like many web 2.0 apps, started life as a MySQL based RBDMS application.  Today, Twitter is still

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    Disappointed for MySQL
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    Image by Getty Images via Daylife

    Like many I was disappointed, yet not surprised, that the EC formally logged their objection to Oracle’s acquisition of Sun on account of MySQL a few days back.  And we also hear today that Oracle will be stating their position in Brussels on the 25th of this month.  To me this case has odd from the onset and as it goes on it is just getting odder.  And of course this all seems to be occuring at immense cost to Sun, Oracle and MySQL themselves.

    There are several reasons why this is odd.  One of the key

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    Back from Blogging Hiatus - Update 3
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    Image by Nathan Lanier via Flickr

    << Back from Blogging Hiatus - Update 2

    Ingres

    No specific announcements from Ingres other than I think the VectorWise stuff is progressing well.

    To me Ingres is a bit of a dark horse.  They are open source and doing reasonable revenues.  And they are active in the enterprise market (something MySQL hasn’t really achieved).  But they remain largely

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    Back from Hiatus - Summary Update 2
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    Back from Hiatus - Summary Update 1

    GoodData

    GoodData has launched and they are providing a cloud based analytics platform for use in integration with online apps.  Starting with some initial focus on SalesForce data, but working hard on expanding the list of ISV’s who choose to provide their customers analytics via GoodData.

    GoodData was started by “good guy” Czech serial entrepreneur Roman Stanek (NetBeans) and has just raised funds from Andressen Horowitz and appointed Time O’Reilly to the board.  GoodData is interesting because it is simple, accessible and available on demand.  Still early days


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    The Danger of blocking the Oracle/Sun deal
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    Image via Wikipedia

    FYI - the thoughts here have been gathered from conversations with several individuals, including an interesting conversation yesterday.  As these conversations were off the record I won’t name names here but thanks to those people.

    I love open source software and I am a big supporter of many companies that produce open source offerings.  Here I am not going to debate if Oracle acquiring MySQL will be better for MySQL or not as that has been done to

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    DBMS Links of the Week
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    Image by plαdys via Flickr

    The following is a list of interesting DBMS related links for the week:

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    OLTP back into focus
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    I haven’t blogged in over a month now.  This is for a number of reasons.  Firstly I have been flat out with various activities.  This included a trip to VLDB in Lyon mid month.  Secondly, a lot of the companies I have spoken with this month aren’t ready to speak publically so hence no blog posts resulting from these sorts of discussions.

    However there has been a wiff of a change in the air in terms of focus that is interesting and worth highlighting.  After years of lots of innovation around data analytics, OLTP is starting to make a comeback in terms of reclaiming some of the limelight.  Much more on this between now and the end of the year, but a couple things to watch:

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    VectorWise
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    I was fortunate enough to speak with Marcin Zukowski earlier about VectorWise.  If you missed it, VectorWise came out of stealth mode a day or two ago.  The have announced a joint partnership with Ingres and essentially are claiming impressive analytic RDBMS performance gains on conventional hardware.

    To start with, a key message that I think needs to be communicated here is that this is not a product announcement.  Ingres and VectorWise have announced a partnership in which they of course plan to build products together, today those products are still in the works.

    VectorWise is a spin out of


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    Maria Update
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    Image by Sebastian Bergmann via Flickr

    I had a quick chat with Michael Widenius today.  He is on vacation so tried to keep the call short.  Essentially spoke about two topics, Oracle & an update on Maria.

    The Monty Program has 15 staff now.  Their focus is getting the MariaDB branch of MySQL ready for release, I understand they have a target of next month (August) for this release.  The Maria storage engine has been delayed for the time being with the focus

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    The NoSQL community needs to engage the DBA’s
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    The NoSQL movement has been gaining some steam lately, with discussion forums and mailing lists popping up all around the web.  Despite having a career that has been centered on the RDBMS, I have made no secret that I think we have gone too far down with our RDBMS for everything mindset.  I think we need to add a few more tools back into our data toolbox. 

    Today, 99.5% of new data centric developments started will use a RDBMS by default.  Maybe .5 of a % will consider using something as obtuse as a NoSQL platform.  By experience I know the majority of people discussing NoSQL platforms today are web developers.  In

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    HamsterDB
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    This post was a bit of a test to see if I could write a serious post about a database platform called Hamster.  I think I just made it :)

    With all the noise over key/value stores recently, we should keep in mind that this technology isn’t exactly new.  It is being applied to new problems, but many of the foundations have been around for decades.  Probably the oldest of them all, Berkley DB came into existence during the mid ‘80’s and now has over 200 million deployments (according to the Oracle web site).

    HamsterDB, while not having the same pedigree of Berkley, has been steadily worked on by

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    HadoopDB discussion with Daniel Abadi
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    I spoke to Daniel Abadi this morning about his HadoopDB announcement that came out a couple of days back.  I am sure this has been a busy time for Daniel and his team over in Yale as HadoopDB has been getting a lot of interest which I am sure will continue to build.

    Some notes from our discussion:

    • HadoopDB is primarily focused on high scalability and the required availability at scale.  Daniel questions current MPP’s ability to truly scale past 100 nodes whereas Hadoop has real examples on 3000+ nodes.
    • HadoopDB like many MPP analytical database platforms

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    Could MySQL be pigeon holed by Oracle love?
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    Image by weboo via Flickr

    A while ago, about 16 years ago now, I had a desktop computer.  It wasn’t a PC.  It was an Acorn.  It had an ARM processor in it.  Despite the rest of the world starting going crazy for the new Pentium chip, the Acorn with its ARM processor could run rings about it in terms of computing power.  And it was simple and easy to use, I used to write applications in assembly code for it (and it didn't have a fan!).

    Not too long after that Acorn went under, Arm was already off on

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    Forrester's EDM Wave
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    Forrester put out its Enterprise Data Management Q2 2009 report a few days ago, you can buy it from Forrester but it also seems to now be available for free from Microsoft here.  I don’t actively seek out these reports as they usually just re-enforce common knowledge (this one was no exception), however as it turned up I managed to find some time on the weekend for a quick read through.

    Few surprises in this report, but some key mentions are:

    • DBMS market expected to grow 8% annually
    • IBM, Microsoft & Oracle own 88% of the DBMS market (by revenue)
    • Current market estimated at $27 billion, $32 billion by 2013
    • IBM,
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    Groovy Baby, Yeah
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    (yeah, this company is going to have to get used to the Austin Powers references.)

    Groovy Corp put out a press release last night that starts the official launch of their SQL Switch relational database platform.

    I have been speaking with Groovy for a few months, and while the press release is a bit noisy there is actually some interesting stuff in it.

    First, an overview

    • They are an in memory RDBMS
    • They have worked with Intel to architect from the ground up for large multi processor concurrency
    • Initially they are launching as a multi-core appliance
    • They claim

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    Positioning your Database Start Up for Data Warehousing
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    Image via Wikipedia

    BI/Data Warehousing is an easier market to enter for new database platform vendors.  This is for a few reasons.  Firstly, most BI deployments are custom built projects for each organization.  This means the ability to pick and choose various layers of the stack is much greater. 

    Secondly, BI/DW projects success/failure metrics are often tied to database platform driven properties – performance, scalability, load times etc.  The ability to stray outside any existing database platform “standards” to choose a platform that better meets key

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    Positioning your Database Start Up for Enterprise OLTP
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    Image by RaghuP via Flickr

    It is important to realize that there is less diversity in the enterprise OLTP market than at any point in the last 20 years.  Essentially this market has been boiled down to Oracle, SQL Server & DB2 (with few isolated exceptions).   Most new deployments are typically using one of the first two options.  The lack of diversity has created a stalemate or chicken &

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    How to Position your Database Start Up
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    I have been speaking with a lot or new database vendors over the last 12 months and this has prompted me to revisit a post I wrote mid last year.  The basic premise of this post is that your strategy, and the group of people you’re selling to, largely depends on the market sector you are focusing on (Enterprise OLTP, BI/DW, Cloud & Web 2.0).

    A database platform by itself is a largely pointless piece of software.  The only way value is produced from a database platform is through the applications that interact with it.  Therefore the only way to be a successful database platform is by making others successful and motivated to use your platform.

    Ok, so as a database platform vendor how do you enter this market then? Well there are a few strategies.  Due to the length of this article I have broken it up into Enterprise OLTP, Enterprise Data Warehousing and Cloud & Web 2.0

    Showing entries 1 to 30 of 42 Next 12 Older Entries

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