The Boulder BI Brain Trust


Calpont Visits the BBBT



The team from Calpont came to the BBBT on Friday to discuss their DBMS product – InfiniDB.  The group included:

  • Jeff Vogel – President & CEO
  • Robin Schumacher – VP, Products
  • John Weber – VP, Marketing & Business Operations
  • Jim Tommaney – Chief Product Architect

Product Fits and Starts

Calpont has had several different company starts since its beginning in 2000.  It was interesting to see the evolution from proprietary hardware to Open Source software only solution.

That being said, the product release plans for 2010 seem to be well organized and following the stated goals of their business and marketing plan.

All Things to All People?

As I said as part of the BBBT Twitter Stream, I liked several parts of the Calpont positioning messaging relating the differentiation between row-based and columnar-based DBMS platforms for both functionality and market positioning.  However, the technology messaging seemed to stray from this positioning to an “all things to all people” message.  It seemed that InfiniDB was being positioned as something that could handle all challenges regardless of situation.

This could have been the result of the early stages of the InfiniDB messaging or the nature of the BBBT forum.  In any event, I feel that this needs to be clarified in the future for InfiniDB to find its footing in the market.

Telecom Applications

As with most of the columnar DBMS providers, I find great use for columnar DBMS platforms in the telecommunications space.  The nature and amount of data in telecommunications is particularly well suited to the columnar DBMS technology.  For Calpont’s InfiniDB, I see the same promise.

I see challenges in maturity and product development before InfiniDB can be accepted into the official telecom data centers where other DBMS products generally hold sway and political clout. 

However, in Calpont’s stated efforts to begin at grass roots level(s) with their InfiniDB Community edition, I see openings and potential placement within the various business organizations of telecoms.  The “shadow IT” departments may come to the rescue via unofficial ( read “rogue”…  ) and official proof of concept initiatives.

In Conclusion

As many of my BBBT colleagues stated via Twitter and in person, Calpont has a promising offering with InfiniDB.  But there is work to be done in relation to refining the messaging for some of their stated target markets and linking their technology to that messaging.

Overall, I like columnar DBMS technologies for their promised and actual performance.  I look forward to hearing more in the future about how Calpont matches their intentions with performance to differentiation their solution from others in the marketplace.


Update April 26 – Also check out Jos van Dongen’s comments on Calpont and InfinDB.  Good analysis and insight.



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