Robert X. Cringely is a columnist for PBS – you know, the worldwide authority on hot information technology issues.  You might recognize some of their other experts like Norm Abrams and Big Bird.  Cringely’s just like them, only with less name recognition.

In his latest blog, Cringely explains how cloud computing is going to make databases disappear altogether. Cloud services are going to be so fast that traditional things like SQL Server and Oracle won’t matter anymore.

It’s a really interesting opinion, but you know how it is – there’s two sides to every story.  I’d like to see a larger panel of opinions.  Maybe he could get Rick Steves and Ray Suarez to do a roundtable panel.  Maybe toss in some folks from Masterpiece Theater.

(Note to self: it’s my own fault for reading Cringely’s column in the first place.  He’s like the Enquirer of IT.)

Brent Ozar
I make Microsoft SQL Server faster and more reliable. I love teaching, travel, and laughing.

I’m mostly a figurehead here at Brent Ozar Unlimited. My true skills are menu advice, interpretive dance, and reading Wikipedia.
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  1. I agree that the cloud will alter the landscape (did you notie the pun?) But it will be of a migration of some database into the cloud, not a drop databases global command.

  2. I would like to know what Bert And Ernie have to say on the matter.

  3. I am tell you that the dba is an endangered species. I got the low down from the snufalufagus.

  4. I remember reading his column back in the day in InfoWorld… Used to have some interesting tidbits. I guess he’s gone a bit off the deep end at this point.

  5. Oh my, the database cloud has cast a very dark shadow over us. Doom and gloom abound, we are an endangered species.

  6. I’ll never understand why everyone considers the database as a necessary evil rather than as a “partner” in developing state-of-the-art infrastructure.

    I’d also like to ask Mr Cringley where the hell he thinks all this data will get stored as it “floats amongst the clouds”….. spreadsheets? XML files? Riiiiiiiiight.

  7. I think this is hogwash, and will swing back the other way. The “could computing” idea doesn’t deal well with one issue – a companies ownership of their own data. If I had an ERP system or any mission critical system, I would want some serious SLA considerations before giving it up. Will the idea get rid of some of the smaller, less business-critical systems? Yes. Will it eliminate the DBA (Oracle, DB2, SQL Server, whatever) for a company that depends on its data and wants to ensure it isn’t compromised. Nope.

  8. Mmmm, looks like Cringley discovered SOA. Even Amazon offers a DB in the cloud (they are even adding SQL Server this year) At my job there are plenty of developers who don’t interact with the DB at all, there are services (WCF and XML Webservices) for them to use, so yes to the the DB is also dead (probably better because who wants people like that creating 249 (since they can) non clustered indexes on every table (more now in SQL Server 2008)
    Or creating tables so wide that you need 20 oages of A4 paper to print out the design for 1 table

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