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Elocution

From: Paul Ramsey <pramsey(at)refractions(dot)net>
To: pgsql-advocacy(at)postgresql(dot)org
Subject: Elocution
Date: 2002-12-09 19:39:26
Message-ID: 3DF4F16E.3060701@refractions.net (view raw or flat)
Thread:
Lists: pgsql-advocacy
So, here is my parable.

   Should you drive to work in an M1A tank? There are lots of very good 
reasons to do so, prominantly the way driving to work in an M1A tank 
enhances your personal safety. In both freeway incidents and grocery 
store parking lots, it is the fellow driving the M1A tank who comes out 
on top. However, there are lots of reasons not to drive an M1A tank to 
work. The initial aquisition cost of several million dollars is pretty 
hard to swallow.  And even if you can quietly steal one from the local 
Army base, the fuel costs alone will bankrupt you in short order.

   Companies have been running their IT infrastructures on the 
equivalent of M1A tanks for the past several years, and the fuel bill is 
starting ot catch up with them.  The first manifestation of this 
changeover is the way Linux is eating the bottom out of the proprietary 
UNIX market.  Why run your web server on an Ultra 450? It is the finest 
hardware around, but it is not actually *needed* for the application. 
Between commodity hardware and simple failover systems you can achieve 
the same results for far less money. So why not save the money?

   Once you look at how the operating system market is shaking out, the 
next chapter seems blindingly obvious.  Oracle is wonderful software, 
but it is an M1A tank, and its many features are not *required* for most 
applications. Why are people running contact management software on 
Oracle? Why are they running web services on Oracle? Like proprietary 
UNIX, in many installations Oracle is a nice-to-have, not a 
have-to-have. And cost-concious CIOs should be looking with just as much 
focus at their Oracle database budgets as they have recently been 
looking at their proprietary UNIX budgets.

Has a certain simplicity, doesn't it?

-- 
       __
      /
      | Paul Ramsey
      | Refractions Research
      | Email: pramsey(at)refractions(dot)net
      | Phone: (250) 885-0632
      \_


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