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Do banks really use strict old-skool transactional RDBMSs? - Mark Atwood
fallenpegasus
fallenpegasus
Do banks really use strict old-skool transactional RDBMSs?
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From: (Anonymous) Date: April 15th, 2009 01:55 pm (UTC) (Link)

Not a convinving argument

Holding out a bank that is using an app written aeons ago in pre-RDBMS days is hardly a good argument for the ability to not use them. While you *can* trust your app to do the right thing, it's far from a best practice. The company in that example just did not have a choice at the time.

"It's an assumption hack because it was assumed that programmers could not be trusted to do it in their applications"

No, it's a rational and sound decision to put important business logic as close to the data as possible, and to make it nigh impossible to do bad things, whether on purpose or accidentally. I wouldn't consider for a moment NOT using a transactional database for my data, no matter how "better than average" my programmers are. The history of computing is littered with the plaintive cries of "We really did think we could do it all in the app..."

One more nitpick:
"But, in their entire history, they've never lost a penny, or an account"
And they would admit it if they did? :)
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: April 15th, 2009 10:20 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Not a convinving argument

"rational and sound decision to put important business logic as close to the data as possible"

Until you try to make it scale.

The CAP Theorem doesn't go away just because because one wishes it so. At scale, ACID is dead. Know it, accept it, live it, love it.

ACID never really existed at all, in the first place.
From: pauldf Date: April 16th, 2009 04:21 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Not a convinving argument

Until you try to make it scale.

Agreed; that's a key point.

RDBMS life is good when you can fit the database you need on a single commodity server. Beyond that, things get interesting.
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: April 15th, 2009 10:22 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: Not a convinving argument

"And they would admit it if they did?"

See my comment about auditors. They are subject to constant and overlapping auditors. If one of them is misses something, another one will catch it.
8 comments or Leave a comment