The latest installment in the datacentre mysteries – in which Hadoop has long been the prime suspect for writing off the relational database (RDB) – is out now. With fox-like cunning, [the NoSQL movement] devised a plan so that traditional databases could be slowly migrated onto this new model, without anyone noticing.

And they would have got way with it too, if it wasn’t for a young startup, SQLstream, sticking its nose in where it doesn’t belong. Damian Black, its CEO, might have accidentally disrupted the perfect disposal of RDB, by creating a real time analytical system that doesn’t need to number crunch big data. Instead, it intercepts live data streams, in real time, and creates insights from them a lot quicker. If they used it to analyse tweets about traffic jams, for example, they could avoid hundreds of millions of snarl ups on the motorway by tipping people off quicker than those ludicrous outdated ‘information’ notices they have on all our major trunk roads.

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