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Richard Hackathorn

Welcome to my blog stream. I am focusing on the business value of low latency data, real-time business intelligence (BI), data warehouse (DW) appliances, use of virtual world technology, ethics of business intelligence and globalization of business intelligence. However, my blog entries may range widely depending on current industry events and personal life changes. So, readers beware!

Please comment on my blogs and share your opinions with the BI/DW community.

About the author >

Dr. Richard Hackathorn is founder and president of Bolder Technology, Inc. He has more than thirty years of experience in the information technology industry as a well-known industry analyst, technology innovator and international educator. He has pioneered many innovations in database management, decision support, client-server computing, database connectivity, associative link analysis, data warehousing, and web farming. Focus areas are: business value of timely data, real-time business intelligence (BI), data warehouse appliances, ethics of business intelligence and globalization of BI.

Richard has published numerous articles in trade and academic publications, presented regularly at leading industry conferences and conducted professional seminars in eighteen countries. He writes regularly for the BeyeNETWORK.com and has a channel for his blog, articles and research studies. He is a member of the IBM Gold Consultants since its inception, the Boulder BI Brain Trust and the Independent Analyst Platform.

Dr. Hackathorn has written three professional texts, entitled Enterprise Database Connectivity, Using the Data Warehouse (with William H. Inmon), and Web Farming for the Data Warehouse.

Editor's Note: More articles and resources are available in Richard's BeyeNETWORK Expert Channel. Be sure to visit today!

October 2007 Archives

In a briefing by Vertica today, I revisit a number of familiar database concepts, such as column-oriented store and data compression. The list of players involved with Vertica is very impressive, from Michael Stonebraker as founder and CTO to Don Haderle as an advisor. However, I wondered how a new DBMS vendor could emerge successfully in a market that is consolidating. The question that kept bugging me was...

What is new about Vertica that was not invented and commercialized decades ago?

It seems that the appropriate analogy is that of taking several old wines and blending them together in a new wine skin. Here are the old wines:

1) Column-oriented store, which is great on query performance but terrible on update/load performance
2) Data compression, which is great on size reduction (10% to 20% of the raw data) but terrible on compress/decompress processing
3) Multiple sort orders, which is great for forming multiple indexes for complex queries but terrible on duplicating data
4) Dual data spaces optimized for reading and writing respectfully, which is great for absorbing an update stream but terrible on the query engine to operate concurrently on two different structures.

Mixed thoroughly together and pour into commodity hardware running Linux. And I must say that the resulting wine was... well... fascinating.

Vertica has been quietly selling product for three quarters and has about 50 customers. Their pricing is solely based on data volume, rather than the number and size of processors. Current partnerships include Business Objects, JasperSoft, Informatica, Talend, and interestingly Hewlett-Packard.

Vertica is a company to watch and expect a launch of a second version sometime next year.

Posted October 22, 2007 1:03 PM
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