March 1, 2023

10:45 am - 11:15 am PST

What’s a Database in 2023?

Over the last several years, databases have undergone a series of enormous transformations. There are now hundreds of different database-shaped things, from traditional warehouses to data lakes to cloud data platforms to much more complicated webs of storage systems and compute engines. There are databases for nearly every vertical, use case, and architecture. What used to be a straightforward question — ”Is that a database?” — can now only be answered in one frustrating way: “Well, it depends…”

This talk explores the different ways to answer this question by first outlining some of the changes in the industry that make defining what a database is so difficult. Then, explaining how this affects what people expect from their databases and the things they want to do with them. And finally, offering some guesses as to what that implies about the future of the database — whatever that word means.


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