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5/25/2010
03:56 PM
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Sybase IQ Upgrade Takes On Text Analysis

Analytic database handles structured and unstructured data. Federation and loading options improve.

As Sybase's hoped-for acquisition by SAP goes through the usual regulatory hoops, it's business as usual for the database vendor. Today's order of business is the release of Sybase IQ 15.2, an upgrade of the vendor's analytic database that advances text search, data federation and loading performance.

With more than 1,800 customers, including 200 added last year, Sybase IQ is responsible for the double-digit growth the company has reported in its database business. The 15.2 upgrade is aimed at broadening the product's appeal as a platform for simultaneous analysis of structured data and unstructured text. Companies are already correlating text patterns and structured data by way of social-network sentiment analysis, fraud detection, e-discovery and other niche applications. The text-search-capable IQ 15.2 upgrade will give software developers and end-customers an underlying database they can use to run those applications faster, more reliably and at higher scale, according to Sybase.

"We can query the text inside the database rather than in a file system, which is the key to our performance and value," said Joydeep Das, a director of product management at Sybase. "We're partnering with other vendors that can plug in libraries for text mining and text analytics."

Since the product has yet to be released, IQ 15.2 does not have mixed text-and-data analysis reference customers as yet, Sybase said. ISV partners include Kapow Technologies, a Web intelligence and content migration firm that will run its applications on top of the newly text-savvy IQ upgrade.

Data federation, another IQ 15.2 upgrade, lets users query data inside the database as well as in separate operational systems. For example, a company might want to correlate product information from a customer-facing Web site with customer transaction information from a Sybase IQ-powered analytic warehouse. Federation comes in handy when you can't wait to move, or don't want to move, information into the warehouse.

Loading data into databases isn't the problem it used to be in terms of time and bandwidth constraints. To speed this step, IQ 15.2 supports continuous microbatch loading from the Sybase ASE relational database. This new, out-of-the-box capability can load data from ASE within less than one minute to five minutes, depending on data complexity and volumes, with no intermediary software or management steps. Sybase IQ already supported custom change data capture (CDC) integration, a route many users take to support fast loading from Oracle databases.

In yet another IQ 15.2 upgrade, the database now supports Web development languages, including Python, PERL, PHP, ADO.net and OLE-DB, making it easier for developers to work with popular Web analytics tools and applications.

Sybase IQ 15.2 is slated to start shipping June 11. License costs are $36,000 per core on X86 hardware and $54,000 per core on RISC-architecture hardware.

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