In an interview with UK’s The Register, IBM Director of Strategy and Marketing for database software and system Bernie Sprang reveals how application developers, not DBAs, are now influencing changes in the new versions of DB2.  According to Sprang, in order to build web and big data apps, new features such as Graph Stores will extend DB2 with capabilities not found in standard relational databases.   When IBM added XML to DB2 with XQuery 10 years ago, it was the application developers that needed ‘a simpler structure to do things in a different way’.  The DBAs said: ‘I don’t want to put XML in my relational database’.

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 SPARQLquery 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.

With the buzz of Big Data and NoSQL, IBM is listening to the “conversation” and looking into new languages and frameworks.  Sprang believes that ‘DB2 can serve as a stable platform for the newer technologies.  “We’ve seen this over and over again.” ‘

New technologies come out, new ways to do things, and the advanced guard are looking for rapid deployment and flexibility and an easy of trying things out. When it comes to running [your] own business, then you start worrying about high availability, security, reliability… My answer is, if we already have those things and it’s easier and quicker to add a new technology on top that’s a more scalable and robust system – we will do that.

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