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And what you should use instead

Imagine that you’re a principal at a small K-8 school who’s looking to hire a new teacher. As you have less than 20 teachers, you have to ensure that each person you hire can teach any of the grades. Adding to the complications, you’ve recently lost one of your best teachers, someone with 15 years of experience, and a mentor to many of the more junior teachers. How can you replace her?

After some thought, you craft what you think is a creative approach to interviewing. When the candidates show up, you will ask them to teach a lesson drawn from the K-8 curriculum. As you want to ensure that the candidate is well-rounded, you’ll hold off telling them about which lesson you want taught until the beginning of the interview. If they nail this, you infer that they’ll be able to easily teach anything, as they’ve clearly performed well under pressure, on a randomly selected topic. …


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Sometimes, you want things fast…really fast!

Taking on the competition, one query at at time

When you build a database system for performance (as one always should) you’re bound to get competitive questions. This is especially true if you make objective claims about the system’s performance.

When we built Db2 Event Store, we targeted 1 million inserts per second for each of the nodes of the cluster (with scalability to 100s of nodes). …


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Look at this lonely laptop. So sad because it’s missing its best friend — Db2!

You’ve got MacOS, you want Db2, let’s do this.

I recently wrote an article on installing Db2 on your coffee break, which you can find here. What’s perhaps lost in that article, is that this is now the easiest and only way to install Db2 on your MacOS device.

With that in mind, if you’ve got a MacOS device, and you want to install Db2, you’re only 5 minutes away from your happy place.


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What basketball teaches us about IoT databases

When Lew Alcindor arrived at UCLA in 1965, he already had a winning pedigree. After losing only 6 games in his four high school years (out of more than 100 played) and winning more than 70 consecutive, he wasn’t the average college freshman. Add to that his height (7'2") and athletic ability, and UCLA had a reason to be excited. That being said, the university had the #1 ranked team in the country, and had won the championship the last two years in a row, so for Alcindor to stand out, he’d have to be extra special.

Due to NCAA regulations at the time, Alcindor was prohibited from playing on the varsity team when he arrived and instead, led the freshman team. But when the freshman team, midway through the year, was given the opportunity to play the varsity team in an exhibition game, the Alcindor lead freshmen beat the varsity team by 15 points — yes, the freshman team beat the national champions by 15 points. Alcindor was extra special, and he was just getting started. …


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Grabbing a coffee? Install Db2 while you’re away

How to install Db2 11.5 on Windows, MacOS or Linux with a single command, in less than 5 minutes

Today IBM released Db2 11.5. While the release is stacked with new functionality, my single favorite feature is the dramatically improved install experience — it’s now possible to install Db2 on Mac, Linux or Windows with a single command, in less than 5 minutes. To put that another way, if you’re about to grab a coffee, start the install now and it’ll be ready by the time you get back.

A short aside — These instructions assume you have Docker installed on your machine. …


What it means, and why it’s important for databases

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If you follow trends in the database industry, you will have noticed that the separation of compute and storage has become a hot topic over the last several years. The ability to separate compute and storage allows database software increased availability and scalability, and has the potential to dramatically reduce costs— benefits which are driving the movement’s momentum. Before diving into the benefits however, it’s best to first level-set on what is meant by separating compute and storage.

“Separating compute and storage” involves designing databases systems such that all persistent data is stored on remote, network attached storage. …


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Four reasons why pursuing what you love may not be a good idea

I’ve heard my share of bad career advice over the years, but no single piece of advice bothers me as much as the old adage:

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life”

While the quote’s origin is contested, its promise is unambiguous — find your dream job, and everything will be smooth sailing until your eventual retirement.

Why do I think this is such bad advice? Here are the top 4 reasons:

  1. You may not be good enough at what you love

When I was a kid there was nothing I loved more than playing baseball. Every day when I woke up, I’d count the minutes until I could play baseball. My friends and I would play baseball before school, at all three recesses, and for hours after school. During the summer, we’d play all day every day. I went to professional baseball games often, and baseball development camp for several summers. …


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I’ve been very fortunate in my life. I was born in a first world country, into a family with means, and was taught at an early age to value hard work and education. However, even with these amazing gifts, which were mostly bestowed upon me at birth, the successes I’ve enjoyed in life were not guaranteed.

Instead, at numerous points along the way, there were people who took a keen interest in my life, and helped guide me. They taught me about responsibility, efficiency, effective communication, and other things that I never learned in my “formal” education. …


Addressing complexity in a decades old architecture

“Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler. “ — Albert Einstein

I loathe complexity. I didn’t always, but as I get older I seem to tolerate it less and less. Whether it’s banging up against my brain’s ability to overcome the magic number or seeing the beauty in Occam’s Razor, and what it produces, reducing complexity has for a long time been one of my main missions in life. …

About

Adam Storm

Adam has been developing and designing complex software systems for the last 15+ years. He is also a son, brother, husband and father.

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