Feeds

Gurus answer MapReduce young turks

Database blues and grays

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

The two database gurus whose blog produced a storm of protest over their criticism of Google's MapReduce technology last month have hit back with a robust defense.

In their latest joint posting Michael Stonebraker and David DeWitt have respond to four specific issues raised by their critics: that MapReduce is not a database and, therefore, should not be judged as such, that MapReduce is scalable, that MapReduce is cheap, and - finally - that the two are merely "the old guard" defending traditional database management (DBMS) technology.

They claim that the original critique never said that MapReduce is a database - only that it is capable of performing some of the same tasks - specifically the analysis of large datasets. It is, therefore, legitimate to make the comparison between the two and conclude that "most things that are possible in MapReduce are also possible in a SQL engine".

On the scalability of MapReduce, Stonebraker and DeWitt note that the jury is still out on this and "as far as we are aware there are no published papers that study the scalability of MapReduce in a controlled scientific fashion". They also dismiss the claim that DBMS is expensive compared to MapReduce - pointing out open source alternatives to expensive commercial products.

Finally, they admit to being "gray beards" who "have seen a lot of ideas come and go" but add that gray beards and young turks should not be adversaries.

The initial response to Stonebraker and DeWitt's defense indicates that the argument looks set to continue. While a few commenters have reacted positively, the majority remain unconvinced.®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?