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Gmane

From: Jim Starkey <jstarkey-er+xwuBy7D5Wk0Htik3J/w <at> public.gmane.org>
Subject: Re: NEW Low-Hanging-Fruit Blueprint - Object Identifiers to use SQL Standard
Newsgroups: gmane.comp.db.drizzle.general
Date: Sunday 3rd May 2009 19:40:12 UTC (over 9 years ago)
At the risk of boring everyone to death, I'd like to explain a bit more 
about why I continue to push a standard I don't like.

In the computer world, like many others, there comes a time where a 
technology is good enough.  At that point, something better has a very 
high bar to acceptance.  Yes, this leads to less than optimal standards, 
but a good enough standard allows folks to concentrate on newer and more 
interesting stuff.  Lotus 1-2-3 was good, but not good enough.  Excel, 
on the other hand, is widely regarded as good enough, sufficiently good 
that competing against it is pointless.  X-11 is another example.  X-10 
wasn't good enough, X-11 is.  Sun's News and display postscript were 
both better than X-11, but not sufficiently better to bother with.

When the marketplace speaks, one should either listen or prepare for a 
life a deep frustration.

SQL is clearly good enough.  It had all sorts of competitors, all of 
which are nearly forgotten.  SQL won more or less fair and square -- 
there were multiple implementations of SQL, mostly incompatible, a 
couple of implementations of QUEL, a couple of implementations of the 
DEC/Interbase language, and any number of forgotten one-offs.

Due to pressure from users, the various SQL implementations have 
gradually coalesced around an official standard.  The process was ugly 
and rigged, but the world spoke very clearly that it wanted a standard 
database language, and those products that wished to ignore the standard 
would be punished.

MySQL has an idea that it sets it own standard.  This is not only 
horseshit, but blatantly anti-democratic horseshit.  It is the same 
horseshit that Oracle and Ingres tried to pull with non-standard SQL and 
QUEL -- languages that they controlled and the rest of the world be damned.

The MySQL attitude toward SQL is stupid, ignorant, short sighted, 
arrogant, and just plain wrong.  Interoperability with the rest of the 
world is important because it lets people use database software to solve 
one set of problems so they can concentrate on other sets of problems.  
Throwing roadblocks in front of users that both impede acceptance of 
drizzle or MySQL and, not incidentally, prevent users from converting to 
other systems, is profoundly unfortunate.

So, drizzle, join the world or thumb your nose at it and go your own 
way.  But please don't  proclaim out of one side of your mouth that you 
are a SQL database system and out the other that you aren't willing to 
go beyond lip service to the standard.

When you have semantics beyond the standard, by all means go your own 
way.  Innovation should not be stifled by a standard.  But if the only 
motivation for divergence from the standard is to show the world that 
you're smarter than everyone else (or, in the case of MySQL, too dumb to 
fix it), give it up and get a life.

Let the counter-rants begin.


-- 
Jim Starkey
President, NimbusDB, Inc.
978 526-1376


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