“Appleantization” as blueprint for Oracle’s DWA

When I was last year in Boston in Netezza seeing all high performant NPS systems and buying the same day iPhone and MacMini I told to myself: well this is the great day- I have seen the most sophisticated large appliance – (Netezza NPS) and I own also most advanced smallest appliance in the world – Apple iPhone –all this in one day. “We believe the best user experience is when all the pieces in the system are engineered to work together.” Larry Ellison said in recent interview. Apple and Netezza knew this from the beginning – they need to design and control hardware to be able to perform much more faster than traditional concept on general purpose HW. Oracle realized this as well and entered hardware last year with Oracle Exadata based on HP hardware, however reaching only 10 time faster boost in performance. But it looks like Oracle is very serious about the concept of integrated HW and SW Appliance – recent announcement of Oracle acquiring Sun might have probably tremendous impact on the whole DWA (Data Warehouse Appliance) market. Now with Oracle taking Sun with its hardware division, operating system, Oracle has got finally all pieces to build up from ground to up database machine.

Curiously enough Greenplun – yet another player in DWA market is using Sun Fire X4500 for its DWA. That will soon mean Greenplun is “powered by Oracle” J . Also Greenplun was classified by Gartner magic quadrant as “Visionary” for 2008 . With Oracle – Greenplun ‘partnership’ this might possibly bring Greenplun upper to “Leaders” quadrant. Sun itself with MySQL was positioned in niche players in DWA Magic Quadrant. All of that will push Oracle in the leaders quadrant more close to the top player “Terradata”.

what Mr. Ellison said in interview about plans with Sun here:

…"we are definitely not going to exit the hardware
business. While most hardware businesses are low-margin,
companies like Apple and Cisco enjoy very high-margins because
they do a good job of designing their hardware and software to
work together. If a company designs both hardware and software,
it can build much better systems than if they only design the
software. That's why Apple's iPhone is so much better than
Microsoft phones."


"..Some of our competitors, Teradata
and Netezza for example, were delivering pre-configured
hardware/software systems, while we were just delivering
software. The combination of hardware and software has
significant performance advantages for data warehousing
applications. We had to respond with our own hardware/software
combination, the Exadata database machine. Oracle's Exadata
database machine runs data warehousing applications much faster
-- at least ten-times faster than Oracle software running on
conventional hardware. All the hardware and software pieces,
database to disk, are included. You just plug it in and go -- no
systems integration required."

Netezza to compete with iPhone appliance

Netezza announced today availability of their revolutionary mobile device “iQuery”. “Netezza is redefining database”.

Quoted from press release: The Netezza iQuery is a fully integrated, portable, data collection device with five terabytes of queryable storage that allows users to collect and store data for ‘on the go’ analysis. Analytic functions are supplied to iQuery through downloadable applications — called “applytics” –which provide solutions to common dilemmas such as ‘should I wear a coat today’, ‘will the price of bread fall in my supermarket’ or ‘should I talk to that interesting looking person at the bar.’ When docked, iQuery connects to the Internet to search social media websites and other information providers to bring back options quickly and help decisions be reached with a minimum of debate and discussion

Definitely LOL for the 1st April , Netezza smart marketing always positively surprises me. http://www.netezza.com/data-warehouse-appliance-products/iquery.aspx

Appliantization at NUC 2008

 I have heard first time the term “Appliantization” from Justin Lindsey a CTO of Netezza at Netezza User Conference 2008, September, Orlando. I must admit I love this term, especially since I was involved with virtual appliance concept for geospatial. At Intergraph I was evaluating Netezza Performance Server with gaining fascinating results –  truly the peroformance runs in ranges you read in Netezza marketing materials – that is 10-100 times faster than equivalent general purpose database.  Gartner put Netezza into leaders sections in their magic quadrant for 2008, Netezza has quite good support for spatial types and spatial operations in their database and with UDXes you can turn the machine into domain focused Data Warehouse Appliance. 

More about Netezza Spatial  : http://www.netezza.com/data-warehouse-appliance-products/spatial-analytics.aspx

But let’s start from the beginning…

“One size fits all” approach doesn’t fit for high performance.

  Computing Appliances are equipment with a specialized laser focus on solving targetted IT problems. In contrast to general purpose hardware and software solutions, computing appliances leverage a high level of coherence or fidelity between wired hardware and software pieces. Appliances hide the technical complexity of a system and expose the simplicity of the system. According to the Gartner definition an appliance is “a prepackaged or preconfigured balanced set of hardware, software, service and support, sold as a unit with built-in redundancy for high availability.”

Recently in the data warehouse market, new appliances have emerged with support for geospatial data, processing and present revolution (and disruptive) technology. These new appliances provide a performance boost by tackling the way large amounts of geospatial data can be effectively processed. These performance boosts are reaching orders of magnitude in comparison to general purpose database counterparts like Oracle.

 Geospatially empowered Data Warehouse Appliances (DWA) with Massively Parallel Processing (MPP) architecture can scale out into the hundreds of terabytes, have capabilities to perform spatial queries in seconds instead of minutes or hours, and provide to the user new levels of experience with the affordable instant geospatial analytics.

 With a huge volume of geospatially related data, there are many technical reasons to tune and assemble hardware with software and encapsulate all the complexity together into a self-contained ‘simple’ appliance with standard endpoints for interfacing. These self-contained appliances are easier to maintain and manage keeping the total cost of ownership lower than their general purpose counterparts.
2008 will be known as the year of “Appliantization.” In the data warehousing domain, appliances such as Netezza NPS, Oracle Exadata or Microsoft’s code-named project “Madison” (confluence of DataAllegro and SQL Server) are enabling technologies for high performance spatial analysis.

 Simplicity is managed complexity and computing appliances just do this