Sybase Touts Search Prowess

May 27, 2010

Sybase IQ Update Strengthens Database Query, Search Features” is, I suppose, a response of sorts to my opinion that SAP has not made a commitment to search. With TREX and some Endeca support, SAP seems content to rely upon third parties to make content findable within a sprawling SAP construct.

The story trots out an azure chip consultant to dash around the circus ring. I love those azure chip “we” statements. Right. The core of the announcement is that Sybase IQ15.2 can search unstructured content and perform such tricks as term frequency. Yep, that’s text analytics.

The passage that caught my attention was this:

“Sybase IQ is best known for its extreme performance, allowing decision-makers to analyze business trends, predict outcomes, and revise strategies, often in a matter of seconds,” Joydeep Das, Director of Product Management, Data Warehousing and Analytics at Sybase, said in a statement. “With Sybase IQ 15.2, enterprises are now able to analyze previously untapped sources of information, such as web content and email, to deliver smarter answers across structured and unstructured data.”

What is Sybase IQ? I dug through my Overflight file on this product and jotted down these points:

  • This is a column-based database. The column approach stacks data vertically, not in the Excel-like horizontal row format. Arguments between row store and column dudes are esoteric. In a nutshell, certain types of processes are facilitated with the column approach. Keep in mind it is a relational database and some RDBMS jockeys can make row stores into columnar structures.
  • For certain types of data reads are faster. Some data warehouse jockeys swear by the column method. Sun was a cheerleader, but we know what happened to Sun, so that may not be the endorsement it once was. Keep in mind that Sybase itself was acquired after compiling an interesting financial track record, but those offices are cool looking.
  • The company’s definition of data federation confused me. Does Sybase perform a Mark Logic type of function, creating a repository? Does Sybase work like the original Vivisimo federating method? What happens if I need to see the source Sybase has its indexes within its system. I am not sure how IQ queries external databases, makes sure security is observed, and then returns results without getting confused about who provided what and which data item is visible to a particular user. But like many vendors, azure chip folks are happy to parrot “federated”, cash their check, and move on to the next client.
  • You can if you hurry download the Sybase description of IQ’s architectural strength at this link. I checked it on May 26, 2010, and it was valid. Wait too long and the PDF may be unavailable.

With Sybase in a new home, a product in Version 15 will have an opportunity to show how it can grow and contribute to the SAP franchise. With SAP pursuing inorganic growth, the expectations and timeline will be key factors in my opinion. The database sector has some dominant players with upstarts like Google ready to enter the fray. Can Sybase challenge IBM, Microsoft, Oracle, and NoSQL crowd? I hope so.

Stephen E Arnold, May 27, 2010



Comments are closed.

  • Archives

  • Recent Posts

  • Meta