Wednesday, July 14, 2010

DEBS 2010 -- first day of the main conference

The first day of the main conference yesterday ended in an organ recital in the King's College Chapel, seen in the picture, magic place - people keep talking about being in Hogwarts. The conference itself started with the first keynote by Mike Franklin who shared his experience both from his work in Berkeley and in his start-up Truviso. Mike's main motivation is to extend database technology to react in a continuous way in addition to the traditional batch way of analytics, and view batch as a special case of the continuous. The talk was a kind of "lite sell pitch", but had some good points, like the observation that a start-up can take a known technology and try to use it for new types of applications (which is what Turviso does), or devise a new technology and tries to attack existing applications better, but it is very difficult to do both at the same time (new technology and new applications). I think that the event processing area indeed tries to do both.

There were some other talks, mostly by graduate students. One of the interesting observations (not a new observation to me), that there is a lot of energy in this community to re-invent wheels, in different variations. I think that one of the good results in the database community of the relational model was that a large part of the research community took it as a basis and constructed the research on top of it, and people did not try to re-invent databases from scratch for every thesis. In event processing we are still not there, and IMHO the area will have more substantial results, if the research efforts will be more focused on advancing the state-of-the-art instead of re-inventing most and advancing a little bit (in the best case). Today we'll have follow-up meeting to the Dagstuhl seminar, and the research grand challenge we are discussing is aimed to that matter.

In the late afternoon there were a fast abstract session, where I gave a short (8 minutes, 4 slides) talk on the interactions between business rules and event processing (I'll write about this subject some other time), and then a session of demos and posters, with a couple of follow-ups for me.

More -later. The second day of the main conference is about to start.

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