Archive for February, 2011

Software FAIL eulogy

February 1, 2011

This is in response to Dare Osbanjo article about failed software technologies.

Great summary article.

I agree with the WARNING of the article, in terms of considering the adoption of new technology.
However, academically, I’d point out that the technology that supplanted the hyped tech was not necessarily a better solution, just an easier one. I.e. the problems remained in some form. I’m not necessarily defending the older solution, just pointing out that the solving of these problems is necessarily an evolutionary process. Sometimes early adoption puts you two steps ahead, sometimes late adoption does.
With regards to NoSql… I’ve used Db4o and Google’s BigTable (two examples in this space). Neither offer a heavenly solution as opposed to traditional relational databases. Both have advantages, from scalability, to queryability… and both have disadvantages when you inevitably come across ” but all I want to do is…” scenarios.
I suspect that the current frustrating choice of what to adopt here is an indication that yet a better solution exists. Until you can simply and effectively ask for ‘half an object’ from an object database, relational databases will have one upper hand… the solution probably requires new concepts added to typed languages… which will create it’s own set of problems.
Having said all this, I do feel that SQL is long overdue to get replaced by something, even if Relational databases are here to stay for a while.

Technology is both frustrating andĀ invigorating precisely because it is both a solver and creator of problems.