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What is Oracle's 'major database innovation'?

A Delphic Sibyl at the Moscone Centre

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On Wednesday next week database users and buyers will behold one of the wonders of the modern world - Larry Ellison live on stage. He'll hold them in the palm of his hand as he talks in an "Extreme. Performance." keynote about something wondrous for the database world.

In the earnings call at the end of Oracle's final quarter of 2008, the Oracle supremo said: "We have a major database innovation that we will announce in September of this year. It is going to be a very big and important announcement for us, so we are not standing still in database."

Various sources have suggested Oracle is going to support solid state drives (SSD) technology to speed up database response in an initiative to do with database acceleration. This is intensified by blog postings of an Oracle server performance guy, Kevin Closson, who has written a paper on SSD performance, being withdrawn and 404'd on access - (here and here.) The old Google cache tactic works quite well though - here and here.

Other people have whispered about Oracle support for grid computing. There have also been hints that advanced compression technology is coming to cut down database storage needs by up to two thirds. Compression, SSD and grid computing all require hardware vendor support.

Interestingly, there is an HP keynote following Larry's with CEO Mark Hurd and EVP Ann Livermore talking about "Transforming Business and Technology Today and Tomorrow. Innovation is the lifeblood of information technology, but businesses are far more selective ... yadda yadda." It sounds straightforward enough but there has been another hint that something significant will be said there too. The whole Larry and Mark and Ann keynote show runs for two hours from 2.30pm. Why is HP doing a two-handed keynote? Will Hurd be doing the sexy big picture stuff with Ann Livermore filling in the details?

Closson used to work for clustered NAS software supplier PolyServe, which HP acquired in February 2007.

On Wednesday September 24th the Moscone centre will become the modern-day equivalent of the Oracle at Delphi, and today's Delphic Sibyl, Larry Ellison, will orate. Watch this space. ®

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