Ready for Some Sun?

The 2014 IIUG Informix Conference in Miami, Florida is shaping up to host its biggest turnout ever

The new year is well underway, and plans for the International Informix Users Group (IIUG) 2014 IIUG Informix Conference are in the works. This year’s conference will be in sunny Miami, and I can’t wait. Check out this picture taken February 18, 2014 showing the table outside my back door.

Ready for Some Sun?

The conference website provides details about the new hotel and new location for the conference. The 2014 event is gearing up to host the largest number of attendees ever and is at least expected to sell out the hotel. On the sessions side, most Informix sessions to date are scheduled and will be presented by speakers from all over the world. Although final keynotes and evening events are still in the planning stages, be sure to check back here in a few weeks for updated information.

If you’re interested in attending, register as soon as possible. A report from the hotel on room bookings indicates that the hotel may run short on rooms. I highly recommend that you book now because the area’s alternative hotels can be much more expensive.

The business at hand

As my IBM Data magazine editors recently reminded me, it has been a while since I’ve written an installment for the IIUG User View column. There are a few updates I’d like to share with the community.

Did everyone hear about the NoSQL capabilities that are now part of the recent release of the IBM® Informix® 12.1 database? The strengths of NoSQL databases include rapid development cycles and easy scalability, while traditional SQL databases offer easy-to-use relationships between tables—for instance, integrity constraints—as well as consistency and atomicity. Informix data server provides a unique system in which you don’t have to choose one or the other.

Both models can be mixed in a single application while utilizing the popular MongoDB application programming interface (API) to seamlessly exploit the power of SQL. This capability has distinct advantages that help reduce cost and complexity while enhancing application performance. The Informix solution includes the following two parts:

  • Hybrid storage: The ability to store JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) and relational tables in the same storage engine
  • Hybrid applications: The capability to access both NoSQL and SQL data using either a NoSQL API or a SQL API

Informix is well suited as a relational database that can also easily create new data types—such as spatial and time series—and functions to work with them. As a result, it’s not difficult to implement JSON and Binary JSON (BSON) as native data types that are stored as collections. Informix extends the MongoDB API to allow relational data to be accessed through the same API.

Sharp-eyed readers may notice that I didn’t write the two preceding paragraphs. That information is courtesy of Sally Hartnell, marketing manager of IBM Informix. Yes, I am just learning about NoSQL too. Fortunately, there will be a lot of NoSQL-focused sessions at the 2014 IIUG Informix Conference.

Community matters

Readers of this column may remember the benchmarks our good friend, Eric Vercelletto, did a few years ago on Informix. Well, Vercelletto is at it again with a new website to help Informix developers, DBAs, and organizations find each other. The complaint I hear from many companies is they cannot find Informix talent; and the complaint from Informix developers is they cannot find jobs.

Vercelletto is trying to bring these two parties together. Of course there’s a small fee, but I believe he’s only charging the companies just so he can pay the Internet service provider bill. Check out the Informix Special Worldwide Technicians page.

I notice that the LinkedIn International Informix Users Group has just under 1,000 members. Let’s see if we can get that number over the 1,000 mark—maybe even over 2,000. Join the LinkedIn International Informix Users Group and participate in the discussions.

There is quite a bit more IIUG and Informix world news, and I promise to write again in the next few weeks and provide details about them. In the meantime, please share any thoughts or questions in the comments.

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