Don't short Oracle stock yet, but if HP doesn't make every wrong move with Trafodion, Oracle might get severe price pressure in the only place where it can't handle it well, long term.

Not to worry, this is HP - Oracle can probably breathe easy. Only one thing can stop this transactional, relational DB, and that's a lack of meaningful corporate POCs. Whew, that was close. No problem there, Oracle! If it seems like I'm challenging HP to up their game here, I am. They are leaving serious money on the table, IMHO.

Trafodion has a superb road show if it comes to your town. Rohit Jain is HP's Community Manager. Thanks to Lynn Bender for getting the word out.


20 years and 250 million went into developing HP's own version of what Oracle offers as its relational, transactional database. 58 patents, even 65+ people working on it currently. And it's all open sourced, as of last summer. But that's not the big news, the big news is it runs on top of HBase, which brings it all the pricing and data powers of Hadoop.

Massive data sets? No Problem. Mix of structured and unstructured data? No Problem. Your company wants cheap and scalable and still maintain transactions? No Problem. Oh, and you want to run heavy analytics right on top of this transactional data without importing it into Hadoop first? Heh! We got it covered!

Combinatorial Explosion of Databases In Your Enterprise?

Up to now, big data and NoSQL have been about acceptable compromises. "If you'd be willing to compromise on some less important features, we will give you super powerful features in other areas that make up for it." Oracle snarls, but companies want those other features at those favorable price points. The resulting combinatorial explosion of technologies has been nothing short of earth shattering - at least in corporate terms. Large corporations just don't do stuff like that. Except, this time they did, en masse.

So now, just when everyone was accepting the fact that you have to maintain 20 different persistence technologies to live in this new world of data analytics, all of a sudden you don't? Could this be true? And the best part is that the shop that is contributing the technology seems clueless about how to cash in, so you can just slurp it up and go your merry way. Be sure to put some feature requests on the ticket system, that's open too.

Lot of Broken Track on This Rail System

If you're looking for corporate or technological train wrecks to entertain you in your cubicle, there's plenty of opportunity here. Problem is that HP - ever the engineering shop, seems to be on top of things, so that youtube video of that train wreck might never appear. They won't push it fast enough to cause a big wreck, alas.

If you're still eager to watch for the train wreck, look here for some potential broken track:

  • The Spark integration still hasn't been delivered.
  • The Trafodion tables have their own kind of overlay specialness which make it weirder to interface to than pure HBase.
  • Your table scan speed might be as slow as HBase itself.
  • Pure HBase might still be 25% faster.
  • Stuff like that. Oracle laughs at such trifles, in it's own product line.

Compromises Were Made

Critics will scoff, just as they did before the corporate world went nuts abandoning the RDBMS for every new NoSQL technology under the sun. Even enterprise fearmongers have been powerless against the price pressure of big data. "You are being compromised!" the fearmongers warned, at every turn. Once again, Trafodion too will prove them right. This ain't Oracle.

Enterprise will accept the compromises, just as they have in the past. There's too much money and processing power at stake.

Remember That Guy Who Wouldn't Experiment?

Remember that guy who just couldn't be convinced? He was asked to migrate from an RDBMS to NoSQL years ago, but he just wouldn't do it? He still has enough corporate turf to protect to get away with being resistant to change?

Now he might not have to. Weird huh? Things have a funny way of coming around. Now the guy can maintain his turf, unchanged, and still get all the benefits of this new world of analytics and scalability. Oh, and not send half of his annual budget to Oracle, either.

He even gets a little extra buzz from playing with the cool kids "Hey! I'm running on Hadoop, now". The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Go Hadoop!

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