I’ve been looking at several new things lately.
I remember when MySQL first hit the scene, all of us who used “real” databases like Oracle sneered at it. It didn’t have tranasaction control, referential integrity etc, how it coold it even be called a database we thought. Well, it has come a long way. I especailly like the pluggable transaction engine architecture which allows me to plugin the complexity I need only as I need it. This is a cleaner solution than Oracle’s policy of offerig several incompatible products or trying to pretend that the 11g monster is a one size fits all solution.
I’d really like to see a column-store plugin. It would be an easy way try out column stores.
Ruby on Rails
This is a framework I can work with. I’ve seen too many frameworks that just bury me in syntax. The proverbial 400 line Java “Hello World” program problem. Rails certianly enforces a set of restrictions but the benefit is way less code. The remaining code is much more focused on implementing the business rules rather than the syntax to drive the framwork.
Clearly there are limitations especialy noting that it really works best with new applications and doesn’t work nearly so well with legacy data models. You do have to reconsider the conversion costs, if you are making substantial changes to a cumbersome legacy system anyway, a complete rewrite in Rails could be cheaper in the long run.
Also a special mention to WhytheLuckyStiff and his Camping and Shoes projects. For those times when even Rails seems too heavy, something even lighter. Brilliant little frameworks, almost pieces of art in their brevity and simplicity..