June 24, 2011

Forthcoming Oracle appliances

Edit: I checked with Oracle, and it’s indeed TimesTen that’s supposed to be the basis of this new appliance, as per a comment below. That would be less cool, alas.

Oracle seems to have said on yesterday’s conference call Oracle OpenWorld (first week in October) will feature appliances based on Tangosol and Hadoop. As I post this, the Seeking Alpha transcript of Oracle’s call is riddled with typos. Bolded comments below are by me. 

Well, we’re planning to add a couple of appliances and announcing them this fall. One appliance, that should surprise you is a large memory addition to Exadata for analytics and memory, so we continue to invest. We thought that would — we’ve been the leader of in-memory database technology ever since we bought Tungsten. I presume that’s a typo for “Tangosol”. And it sort of denigrates Oracle TimesTen. And that’s for both for transactions and for preprocessing. We are, as memories become cheaper and larger scale, we’ve changed as much of our algorithms and this in-memory analytics accelerator is going to be, again, coming out and we’ll be announcing it in the fall at Oracle OpenWorld.

That part, especially in connection with the last sentence of the next quote, sounds almost as if Tangosol will be positioned as a kind of memory-centric object-oriented DBMS, albeit with Oracle as its persistence layer. Well, I favor both in-memory and object-oriented DBMS, and especially the intersection of those two categories. So in principle this could be a very cool product. Exploiting that coolness, however, may require one heck of a missionary sell.

In addition, attaching to our Exalogic box, there’s a lot of misunderstanding about what’s a dupe is, and is it a replacement for database. I presume “a dupe” is a typo for “Hadoop”. So the dupe is not a replacement for database. It’s an adjunct to the database, which we think, is very, very important. It really is a tool for Java programmers. And we’re the world leader in Java technology and we are building a big data accelerator to attach to our Exalogic box, which comes out also this fall. The big data accelerator includes some of the standard open source heavy software, HTFF, the heavy file system and a number of other pieces, but also some Oracle components that we think can dramatically speed up the entire math-produced process. I presume that’s a series of typos for “HDFS” and “MapReduce“. And will be particularly attractive to Java programmers who are the ones, who asked for — aspire to do. There are some interesting applications they do, ETL is one. Log processing is another. Those last two sentences are more evidence for the theory that this is about Hadoop. Besides, I spoke with somebody who listened to the call. 🙂 We’re going to have a lot of those features, functions and prebuilt applications in our big data accelerator. So, Oracle has always followed database technology trends, whether it’s object databases, in-memory databases and kept up with this technology and some, quite often led on innovation.

And that part sounds as if Oracle will announce a Hadoop appliance, positioning it more as a Java software accelerator than a place to store cheap data. Be the positioning as it may, my objections to the idea of a Hadoop appliance still stand, although Amr Awadallah’s counterarguments make sense as well.


8 Responses to “Forthcoming Oracle appliances”

  1. Observations on Oracle pricing | DBMS 2 : DataBase Management System Services on June 24th, 2011 1:46 am

    […] couple of months ago, Oracle asked me to pull some observations on pricing until after the earnings call that just occurred, and I grudgingly acquiesced. In the interim, more information on Oracle pricing […]

  2. Dave on June 24th, 2011 1:58 am

    Interesting. I would guess Tungsten more likely a typo of TimesTen

  3. Curt Monash on June 24th, 2011 4:51 am

    Yikes. That’s an excellent point!

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