How Databases Changed The World by Tim DiChiara, Site Editor (

How did the database industry get started? How has it changed the face of business? What were the key milestones, the big obstacles and the lessons learned? I recently came across an interesting panel discussion addressing these very issues, featuring many of the database pioneers and leaders of the last 30 years:

Chris Date
Herb Edelstein
Bob Epstein (Sybase who shared code with Microsoft for remarketing on SQL Server on OS/2 which inevitably lead to the Microsoft SQL Server we know today)
Ken Jacobs (Oracle's Dr. DBA)
Pat Selinger  (DB2 precursor called System R)
Roger Sippl (Informix)
Michael Stonebraker (Ingres, Postgres, and Mariposa)

The event is available via streaming video and was recorded in February at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. After a chatty and lengthy (45 minutes!) introduction only interesting to hardcore insiders, you can see Chris Date waxing eloquent about Ted Codd (complete with quotes from Shakespeare, no less), Herb Edelstein waxing eloquent about Chris Date, and Michael Stonebraker at his geeky best. There's also interesting trivia about the beginnings of SQL, the role of INGRES, why the relational model will stand the test of time and some friendly Oracle and IBM bashing (and Microsoft and Sybase and...). I urge all you data management pros interested in broadening your knowledge of the field to check it out! If you're still not satiated, don't forget about our collection of backgrounders about the DBMS and the data management industry.