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Colin White

I like the various blogs associated with my many hobbies and even those to do with work. I find them very useful and I was excited when the Business Intelligence Network invited me to write my very own blog. At last I now have somewhere to park all the various tidbits that I know are useful, but I am not sure what to do with. I am interested in a wide range of information technologies and so you might find my thoughts will bounce around a bit. I hope these thoughts will provoke some interesting discussions.

About the author >

Colin White is the founder of BI Research and president of DataBase Associates Inc. As an analyst, educator and writer, he is well known for his in-depth knowledge of data management, information integration, and business intelligence technologies and how they can be used for building the smart and agile business. With many years of IT experience, he has consulted for dozens of companies throughout the world and is a frequent speaker at leading IT events. Colin has written numerous articles and papers on deploying new and evolving information technologies for business benefit and is a regular contributor to several leading print- and web-based industry journals. For ten years he was the conference chair of the Shared Insights Portals, Content Management, and Collaboration conference. He was also the conference director of the DB/EXPO trade show and conference.

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

February 2009 Archives

Aster Data Systems has announced the Aster nCluster Cloud Edition. The Aster nCluster is an analytical database system for supporting very large relational databases. Aster joins companies such as Vertica and Kognitio in providing data warehousing capabilities on a cloud computing platform. Aster supports both the Amazon and AppNextus cloud computing environments.

This announcement demonstrates the growing demand for analytical processing from companies that have a significant presence in the web marketplace. One of the users of the CloudEdition, for example, is Didit, a web ad marketing company. These types of companies need to analyze huge amounts of web-related data.

One interesting aspect of Aster is its support for MapReduce, which is a growing trend by database companies Greenplum has MapReduce support and IBM is working on supporting it (System S research project). MapReduce provides a framework for massive parallel processing and is used by a number of web-centric companies such as Google. A key distinguishing feature for Aster is that it supports custom SQL functions that exploit MapReduce. MapReduce capabilities could become a key differentiator in high volume cloud computing data warehousing environments.  

You can find out more about the use of MapReduce in database systems in an article I published on the BeyeNetwork entitled "Are Relational Database Systems Keeping Up with the Information Processing Needs of Companies?"

Given my database background, it's exciting to see that database products are moving away from being commodity items are now offering some important distinguishing features.

Posted February 10, 2009 8:45 AM
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