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Issue of October 2003 
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Larry Ellison: Grid Computing is inevitable

It seems like the evolution of computing is bending backwards—way back to 1964. At that time single, mammoth computers were shared by multiple users, under a time-sharing and time-slicing arrangement. Larry Ellison, Chairman and CEO of Oracle used this example to launch Oracle's grid computing initiative.

"The industry has been on a quest to build bigger and bigger mainframes for the last 40 years. We've been chasing the same dream of building the fastest computer in the world," he explained. "After 40 years, now there's an alternative to the one, big server approach. It's enterprise grid computing."

Ellison expounded on the 'one, big server approach' and the issues that have plagued it: limited capacity, high cost, and limited reliability. When the one server goes down, the application also goes down.

The answer, he advocated, is moving to grid computing, a new architecture that connects low-cost computers, storage and networks together to act as one computer, but at a fraction of the cost and with ultimate reliability— there is no single point of failure.

While grid computing has been used in scientific research, it has never been applied to business software, which is Oracle's focus as it rolls out its Oracle 10g Grid Computing software on September 9, 2003.

“It’s capacity on demand. Plug another server into the grid and the application runs faster and more reliably,” said Ellison.

 
     
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