I suppose I should add a disclaimer that I am obviously biased against anything Oracle does, but I will start by praising them for:
- Recognising that the Hadoop platform is both a threat and an opportunity.
- Doing something about it.
- Not rewriting everything from scratch under the auspices of some JCP committee.
Point #3 is very different from how Sun would work: they'd see something nice and try and suck it into the "Java Community Program", which would either get it all overweight from the weight that Standards Bodies apply to technology (EJB3 vs Hibernate), stall it until it becomes irrelevant (most things), or ruin a good idea by proposing a complete rewrite (Restlet vs JAX-RS). Overspecify the API, underspecify the failure modes and only provide access to the test suite if you agree to all of Sun's (and now Oracle's) demands.
No, they didn't go there. Which makes me worry: what is their plan. I don't see Larry taking to the idea of "putting all the data that belongs to companies and storing it a filesystem and processing platform that I don't own". I wonder if the current Hadoop+R announcement is a plan to get in to the game, but not all of it.
Or it could just be that they realised that if they invited Apache to join some committee on the topic they'd get laughed at.
Sometime soon I will look at the H/W specs and wonder why that was so overspecified. Not today.
What I will say that irritated me about Oracle World's announcements was not Larry Ellison, it was Mark Hurd saying snide things about HP how Oracle's technologies were better. If that's the case, given the time to market of new systems, isn't a critique of Hurd himself? That's Mark "money spent on R&D is money wasted" Hurd? That's Mark whose focus on the next quarter meant that anything long term wasn't anything he believed in? That is Mark Hurd whose appointed CIO came from Walmart, and viewed any "unofficial" IT expenditure as something to clamp down on? Those of us doing agile and advanced stuff: complex software projects ended up using Tools that weren't approved: IntelliJ IDEA, JUnit tests, Linux desktops, Hudson running CI. The tooling we set up to get things done were the complete antithesis of the CIO's world view of one single locked down windows image for the entire company, a choice of two machines: "the approved laptop" and "the approved desktop". Any bit of the company that got something done had to go under the radar and do things without Hurd and his close friends noticing.
That's what annoyed me
(Artwork: something in Eastville. Not by Banksy, before anyone asks)