Stonebraker's new idea heads to Windows

StreamBase, which sells database software for analyzing real-time data for financial and other applications, is bringing its product to Windows.

This week, the company announced that its software, which already runs on Sun Microsystems's Solaris and Red Hat Linux, will now run on Windows XP and Windows Server 2003.

StreamBase was founded two years ago to commercialize software developed by Michael Stonebraker, a legend in the database business and the brains behind the Postgres database. Stonebraker also launched Ingres in 1980 and Illustra in the early 1990s.

Stonebraker has done it all in database technology: relational, object/relational, and federated systems. StreamBase adds a fourth database model to the list: real-time stream processing.

In essence, the advantage that StreamBase has over plain vanilla relational database systems is speed: Typical software programs query relational databases and analyze largely static data accumulated over time. StreamBase can query information streams that it taps into in real-time, fed from stock market systems and RFID scanners, for instance.

The benefit is that, instead of waiting for a database report to run before noticing trends, companies can see what's happening with stock trades and inventory levels right now. Other applications might include such things as fraud detection, where StreamBase can quickly analyze network traffic and detect patterns.