Re: Big Data analytics with Hadoop

From: Mladen Gogala <>
Date: Tue, 17 Jul 2012 12:02:14 +0000 (UTC)
Message-ID: <>

On Mon, 16 Jul 2012 08:59:26 -0700, joel garry wrote:

> Well, I think one thing they are trying to do is data mining, separating
> the very small wheat from the very large chaff. Far be it for me to get
> in their way. It's just so far away from what I do it's hard to
> understand why anyone would care. But it's easy to understand:
> anything that is near the bottom of an s-curve in growth has a lot of
> exciting opportunities. Dumbass marketers and other leaches try to sell
> to us inappropriately. Well-proven technologies get decremented too
> fast. That's the thing we must fight.

We must fight? I'm a lover, not a fighter. Fortunately, the model that was formally invented by Ted Codd and Chris Date is still the most appropriate for business purposes. It's based on accounting. Database tables map directly into accounting tables. Object tables do not. XML doesn't do that. Tables, look-up tables and indexes correspond perfectly with the business objects known to any CPA. Techies trying to invent "the next big thing" may have technologically sound ideas but are out of touch with the business. The infamous ACID rules, whose very relaxed application has made MongoDB so fast, can be described as follows:

  1. If my check is not covered, the transaction will produce no effects (Atomicity)
  2. When I write a check, neither my account will be debited, nor the check receiver's account will be credited, before the transaction is complete. (Consistency)
  3. The books will only be updated when the transaction is complete. Any transaction can only see the state of the books as it was when it has begun. (Isolation)
  4. The books will be complete and accurate. No transaction data will be lost. (Durability).

Those infamous rules are, as a matter of fact, basic accounting rules. The techie innovations must satisfy one crucial request, in addition to being sexy to programmers: they must map well into the existing business model. NoSQL, with its speed, coming from relaxing things like locking and rollback, is usually used for data warehousing, where it has its place. Using it to conduct business transactions, in an OLTP system, would be suicidal. That's the secret behind RDBMS longevity and survival. It's the same as B-52: contrived and designed in 1946, there is still nothing better. There is nothing to fight. A CIO or two may go for a fad, but only on test machine and with a test implementation. Nobody will risk a business. Oracle will still dominate the server rooms and the only force that might push it out of there is DB2, if IBM gets serious about selling DB2 on Linux.

Received on Tue Jul 17 2012 - 07:02:14 CDT

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