Ah, early morning. Obviously I missed some clean up... Sorry all 

-----Original Message-----
From: u2-users-boun...@listserver.u2ug.org 
[mailto:u2-users-boun...@listserver.u2ug.org] On Behalf Of Daniel McGrath
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 9:04 AM
To: U2 Users List (u2-users@listserver.u2ug.org)
Subject: [U2] Why Pick U2?



_____________________________________________
From: Jackie Burhans
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 8:55 AM
To: Daniel McGrath; Dave Peters
Cc: Vinnie Smith
Subject: RE: Post


Very thorough response. Minor edits below in red. One suggested cut noted like 
this {xxx} One question--can you and Dave give some thoughts to conferences you 
might like to attend over the coming year. I'll talk with Susie about funding 
for that.

Jackie Burhans
Director, U2 Partner Enablement
Rocket Software
4600 S. Ulster Street **Suite 1100 **Denver, CO 80237 * USA
Tel: +1.720.475.8016 * Fax: +1.617.630.7392
Email: jburh...@rs.com<mailto:jburh...@rs.com>
Web: www.rocketsoftware.com/u2<http://www.rocketsoftware.com/u2>

-----Original Message-----
From: Daniel McGrath
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 8:07 AM
To: Jackie Burhans
Cc: Vinnie Smith
Subject: FW: Post

Morning Jackie,

I wrote this last night after reviewing all the messages to take a list of 
points out of them. Are you able to review it and see if you are okay with it 
or if there is anything you want added, changed or removed?

Thanks,
Dan

From: Dan McGrath 
[mailto:danmcg...@gmail.com]<mailto:[mailto:danmcg...@gmail.com]>
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 12:27 AM
To: Daniel McGrath
Subject: Post

Hi all,

I have been reading all these posts, but I haven't had time to really respond 
until now.

First, let me introduce myself to those who don't know me already. I've just 
moved to Denver and started working as a Product Manager for U2 with Rocket 
Software. Prior to this I worked as a Systems Architect for a financial 
institute where we used UniData, UniVerse, *SQL, .NET, PHP, Windows & UNIX 
among other technologies. While I don't read Techmeme, I do read a lot of tech 
sites and I am somewhat active on Q&A sites (see my StackExchange profile: 
http://goo.gl/iLsPJ - Short link because the long one is UGLY). I've probably 
attended > 10 conferences in the last year alone, including the World Computer 
Congress, so I do try to get out amongst what is happening in the industry as 
the whole.

There have been many valid points and issues raised in this discussion. At this 
point I think I should clarify: If you compare U2 to the feature list of all 
the other databases out there - aggregated - it would lose. Replace U2 with any 
database in the previous statement and it would also be true. Cherry-picking 
individual features from one database to compare them, then cherry-picking from 
completely different database when counter-points are raised is not exactly a 
technically sound (or fair) way to do comparisons.

Obviously, U2 will not cover EVERY use case. As was said earlier: "Always...use 
the right tool, for the right job...one size doesn't fit all, etc., etc. "

Another point is that when comparing U2 to other mature technologies, such as 
MsSQL, don't compare it based on experiences with applications written on top 
of U2 from 1980. If you want to do that, please compare it to similar 
applications that where originally written for SQL-86. Not that I discredit 
those U2 apps. Not by a long shot - this is the first positive point I raise 
for U2 for why I would pick it.

1) Applications from 1980 are still healthily running today on the latest 
Linux, UNIX & Windows 7 systems and still with support. If I was investing a 
lot of money into an 'enterprise' system, I don't see why you would overlook 
that fact. You want to guarantee that you can keep your system running for the 
next 10, 20, 30 years, even if you don't have the money to re-architect in 
between; not many others give you that.

So, when comparing U2 applications, let us be real here. We are not exactly 
talking telnet anymore 
(http://www.rocketsoftware.com/u2/u2/products/datavu/resources/datasheets/datavu-datasheet.pdf).

So, if I was building an Enterprise grade solution that required 24/7 uptime, 
automatic data encryption, replication, ACID compliance I have some other 
interesting reasons to use U2.

2) You can modify your business logic and change your data schema(ta) all while 
your system is online with almost no impact. Due to how the tables are 
structured (essentially hash tables) modifying the schema can have no impact to 
as little impact as the overhead of written the extra data. It does not need to 
go an restructure the entire table to apply the change. Down time = money lost. 
People have come to expect 'maintenance windows'. I've worked with an Internet 
Banking system that had an SQL driven front-end that interfaced with a U2 
driven back-end. Changes required on the back-end? No problem, Bob's your uncle 
(or your dad, as per a person I met recently...) We only needed outages when 
changing something related to SQL.

Then comes performance, as others have mentioned before.

3) U2 allows you to denormalize the data until your denormalizing thirst has 
been quenched - while still being able to effectively handle it. Not that I am 
advocated being silly here. Following some basic rules you can denormalize away 
join tables and STILL structure your data in a relational manner. If you really 
wish, you can even access it via SQL with a schema tool automatically creating 
fake join tables so it can be cleanly handling in the SQL world as well.

Something that is overlooked when comparing databases is the application engine 
that ties in with it. Some people choose to then compare this application 
engine to .NET, Erlang or whatever happens to be the flavor of the week. This 
is a fallacy as this isn't what you should be using it for.

I'll bring up a classic example where U2 trumps when used appropriately. During 
earlier days of StackOverflow (since this was brought up earlier by Rob), Jeff 
Atwood pondered about how they could automatically run background tasks that 
they didn't want run at the time of user interaction to their website 
(http://blog.stackoverflow.com/2008/07/easy-background-tasks-in-aspnet/). Most 
people in the U2 world would wonder why that required an entire blog post. It 
has its own app engine!

4) Create a PHANTOM, have it sleep and wake as required and do whatever it 
needed to: QED. U2 makes things easy. While it can be fun to think up novel 
ways to perform certain tasks, really, they shouldn't require you to be that 
creative in the first place. U2 gives you flexibility ON your database without 
having to think, without needing excessive pieces floating around.

U2 allows you to have your Business Logic in your database. After all, what 
happens more often, re-writing a front end or completely replacing your data 
source. If you said data source, I put it to you that you either have an 
unusual use case, or you are doing it wrong.

5) By allowing your business logic to reside with the database, you make it 
easier to enforce your business logic no matter how many different front-ends 
you want to hook or no matter how many different systems you want to integrate 
to. U2 gives you a way to get your business logic defined, readable and running 
with minimal fuss.

At this point, I'd like to address some points from the non-technical side. 
After already being in over 5 hours of meetings with users this week, with at 
least another 4 hours tomorrow, I would like to respectfully disagree with the 
statements about users not talking to us and us not listening to users. Do we 
want more feedback from a wider audience, of course! Constructive feedback, 
insights, oversights, all welcome and encouraged. Drop us an email, find us on 
twitter (http://twitter.com/RocketU2), come start a conversation on LinkedIn 
(http://linkedin.com/groups/Rocket-U2-3997577) or even FaceBook if that's your 
preferred method (http://www.facebook.com/RocketU2).

The other issue is around licensing. Yes, we are a business. I like eating and 
having a roof over my head and our customers like having a company that can 
still over support and spend money on R&D, so unfortunately, we cannot just 
give away all our software for free. Yes, there are changes that can make 
licensing better. Yes, we are working on additional licensing options. If our 
current licensing arrangements prevent you from working with us, contact us! We 
don't bite. If there is something we can do to enable you to work with us, it 
is in our best interest to find a solution too.

Okay, back from the non-technical interlude, let's talk about flexibility 
anything. It has already been alluded to in a previous email, but I'll state it 
again.

6) Not only can you use U2 in a relational manner, complete with SQL access, 
but since its core data structure are hash tables, if you want to use it just 
as a key-value store look no further. If you want to run it is a key-value 
store in memory (aka Memcache), mount a RAMDisk and place the file there. 
Voila. No need to configure separate systems, as flexible as you want it to be. 
You can even replicate from it to multiple other servers if you want. Want it 
encrypted too? Done!

"I know I sound like a MongoDB fanboy, but I think it's a straight-up U2 
killer. I challenge anyone to find an area where U2 beats it."

Sorry, but as great as MongoDB is, you just cannot compare it with the maturity 
of U2. Are you suggesting that a CTO/CIO would put his job on the line and run 
their core banking system or their manufacturing plant or their major 
distribution centers on MongoDB? It just isn't appropriate.

http://mashable.com/2010/10/07/mongodb-foursquare/ & 
http://stackoverflow.com/questions/3487456/mongodb-are-reliability-issues-significant-still

As another side note, we are actively scaling up our teams. I'm a new hire, 
someone else started just before me, we have another starting very soon and are 
active looking to fill a variety of other new roles, so rest at ease, Rocket 
Software is investing in the R&D of these products and there are many exciting 
things coming down the pipeline.

This isn't a "we are going to do everything you say", but it is a chance to 
definitively say what you want, why you want it and how to product could 
improve to make it a more attractive offering to you. So, enough of me typing. 
I put David Jordan's previous post to you all.

"If Rocket asked you what you want, what would you say"

Feel free to respond here or if you prefer, email me at 
u2as...@rs.com<mailto:u2as...@rs.com>; your thoughts & opinions are valuable to 
us.

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