Sales Reps–Please Don’t BS Me, Alright?

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Today is my morning of big data storage events, I’m attending two from two different vendors in about four hours. One down so far, and it was pretty good, until…

I’ve bashed sales reps before (on twitter and on this blog), I’ve even offered lists of things not to do. Well today’s presentation was on par with some of the best I’ve seen. I was engaged, and we had a good discussion of the architecture of Hadoop, and the kind of data applications where it really sense. I was engaged, and wasn’t bashing the vendor on twitter like I sometimes do.

But Then,

The vendor had a slide with the Hadoop ecosystem up–there are a lot of components there. And they aren’t all needed. I though a really good comparison would be to SQL Server, we don’t always need replication or analysis services installed, but if we want to have a database we need the engine. Hadoop is a lot like that–you can get by with just a few components out of the total stack.

At that moment the presenter mentioned SQL Server, and I thought, great this will be a really great example. Then he asked “What is the core engine to SQL Server?” (The right answer I think is Sybase, then it was rewritten for 2005, iirc, someone correct me if I’m way off) He eventually responded with “Jet Database” using the example that you can install SQL Server without installing Jet. As far as I can tell and from my twitter queries, SQL has never run on jet, but Jet may run on SQL Server now.

Anyway, the trivia isn’t the point–if you are quoting a fact in your presentation, be certain of it, and if you aren’t either don’t use that fact, or clarify, saying “I think this to be the truth, but I’m open to facts”. After this, A) I didn’t trust the speaker’s credibility and B) I was distracted trying to confirm the fact the Jet was never a part of SQL Server.

I guess I can add one more thing for sales reps not to do–don’t make $&%# up, you may have a subject matter expert in the room, and you will look like an idiot.

4 thoughts on “Sales Reps–Please Don’t BS Me, Alright?

  1. Karen Lopez (@datachick)

    For those of you who might not know, the Jet DB engine is what MS Access uses…

    So Joey, do you think he said this because he was trying to make SQL Server look like a toy? Or do you think it was just about not knowing? I see this a lot in the NoSQL world. Telling people that SQL Server can’t handle more than a dozen GB of data, or saying that data constraints aren’t good, or that queries over a 100 rows can’t perform well. It’s just BS that makes me wonder what’s wrong with “their” product that they have to make up facts to make it look better.

    1. jdanton1

      I honestly think he was clueless. Said vendor does a good chunk of their business selling storage for SQL Servers (and Oracle) to mid-size customers. I have felt the relational bashing from some of the other NoSQL only vendors, though and it’s really off putting. A hammer isn’t the right tool for every job.

  2. Bill

    SQL Server 6.5 was the last version to use 2KB pages and Sybase’s catalog (and on-disk structures), and it was the last version MS was contractually obligated to be compatible with Sybase. SQL Server 7.0 was the big departure for the core engine: Much of the system catalog was replaced, 8KB pages were introduced, IAM/GAM/SGAM pages were introduced (and the percentage of doubly-linked db pages were thankfully decimated), tracing’s narrative was replaced with tabular result set, etc.

  3. DW

    There are actually 2 Microsoft Jet database engines – Red and Blue (before the airline). Jet Red is what Access uses, and Jet Blue is an ISAM engine used by Exchange, AD, and a bunch of internal processes.


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