Feeds

IBM database strategy chief on DB2: Devs are people too

Big Blue looks beyond DBAs for input on features

Maximizing your infrastructure through virtualization

Developers are exerting greater influence on new versions of IBM’s DB2 database, according to one of Big Blue's information management strategy chiefs.

Bernie Spang, director of strategy and marketing for database software and systems, said while IBM has historically consulted DBAs on new features they’d like in IBM’s mighty database, that has changed.

In an interview with El Reg, Spang said IBM is now taking a more balanced approach. “It’s not shifted from one to the other, it’s got to be both,” he told us.

Driving the change is a need to make DB2 more comfortable for developers building web and big data apps that suck on the DB2 data store.

One recent consequence of the shifting approach was the addition of tripled graph-store capabilities for graph analytics in DB2 10.1, which was released in April.

Graph stores find connections between data, so you don’t have to search through piles of relational tables or raw info using Hadoop. Graphs are popular with social networks like Facebook and LinkedIn trying to establish connections between individuals on their sites.

Looking ahead, Spang called key-value pairs a “hot area”. This might be one possibility for future inclusion in DB2.

“It’s going to be driven by the application developers, that’s what’s pushing this, which is different historically – historically we’ve spoken to the DBAs,” Spang said of the recent and future changes.

“I got asked in one interview: ‘Did the DBAs ask for the RDF triple store?’ No, the DBAs didn’t ask for that, it’s for those who want a simpler structure to do things in a different way,” the strategy boss said.

“It was same with XML,” he said. IBM announced XML in DB2 10 years ago with XQuery – the programming language to query XML.

Spang continued: “The DBAs said: ‘I don’t want to put XML in my relational database' and we said: 'Right – we are giving you the same software, it’s just a different structure.' It’s a way for the app developers to find ways that are going to be faster, simpler easier for them.”

Support for XML gave DB2 and its associated tools the ability to combine structured and unstructured data, with the ability to search the data’s metadata.

IBM’s feeling its way on new capabilities like RDF data store in DB2.

Graph data is stored using the Resource Definition Framework (RDF) and queried using the SPARQL query language to look for triple patterns, conjunctions, disjunctions and optional patterns.

“We will bring it [RDF] in, see how it goes, and if this turns out to be a relatively small niche or a passing fad, because the next thing comes along and supersedes it, we will evolve,” Spang said.

Reducing security risks from open source software

Next page: Risky business

More from The Register

next story
HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
Don't panic though – Apple's backdoor is not wide open to all, guru tells us
Do YOU work at Microsoft? Um. Are you SURE about that?
Nokia and marketing types first to get the bullet, says report
Microsoft takes on Chromebook with low-cost Windows laptops
Redmond's chief salesman: We're taking 'hard' decisions
Cheer up, Nokia fans. It can start making mobes again in 18 months
The real winner of the Nokia sale is *drumroll* ... Nokia
EU dons gloves, pokes Google's deals with Android mobe makers
El Reg cops a squint at investigatory letters
Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS
Google is only now fixing ancient, energy-sapping bug
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.