by Angela Guess
Dr. Michael Stonebraker warned attendees of the NoSQL Now! Conference that “Users who eschew traditional relational databases in favor of the newly emerging NoSQL databases might be ‘throwing the baby out with the bath water’… Instead, SQL (Structured Query Language) can be adopted to newer systems with a few technical adjustments, giving it the full flexibility of NoSQL systems.” Stonebraker called this approach NewSQL.
The article adds, “While Stonebraker’s company itself offers NewSQL-based database software, his advocacy for this new architecture does carry more weight than the typical vendor pitch. Stonebraker was the chief architect for both the Ingres and Postgres databases, and has contributed to many others. He also co-founded column-oriented database company Vertica, which Hewlett-Packard purchased in February.”
It continues, “SQL-based relational database systems are indeed as moribund as NoSQL advocates charge, he argued. But this is the fault of the database vendors themselves, not SQL. Calling traditional relational systems ‘elephants,’ he noted ‘Elephants are not slow because they support SQL.’ Most of the commercial relational database software packages have been on the market for 30 years or more, Stonebraker charged. They weren’t designed for today’s automated, data-heavy transactional environments. They’ve acquired decade’s worth of questionable new features, often referred to as bloat. ‘Oracle doesn’t scale,’ he said. ‘If you don’t need performance it doesn’t matter, but if you do need performance [traditional SQL-based systems] don’t deliver.’”