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

1. make the site publically available, stop hiding information and
ancillary tools (like whatever your new redback replacement is) behind
maintenance/registration.  Make these available publically
2. Offer a semi-crippled version of U2 that is usable in production
(size limit, connection marshaller, processor/memory limits, etc) for
3 . Drop per-seat licensing
4. Change maintenance to support contracts and allow users to
patch/update within their current version.

-----Original Message-----
From: u2-users-boun...@listserver.u2ug.org
[mailto:u2-users-boun...@listserver.u2ug.org] On Behalf Of Daniel
Sent: Thursday, July 14, 2011 10:04 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?


From: Dan McGrath
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

So, when comparing U2 applications, let us be real here. We are not
exactly talking telnet anymore

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

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
. 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

http://mashable.com/2010/10/07/mongodb-foursquare/ &

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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