DB2 Leader Joins Ants In Database March

    May 2, 2006
    WebProNews Staff

If the reports can be believed, former IBM DB2 leader Don Haderle may be advising the next challenger to Oracle, Microsoft, and even IBM.

All the little ants are marching
Red and black antennae waving
They all do it the same
-- is there anyone who doesn't know this is from a Dave Matthews song?

Rewind to 1978. Dave Matthews is eleven years old, and probably keeping other kids from stepping on ants. Don Haderle was moving from working on IBM S/370 data management to another project, called EAGLE.

By 1983, EAGLE became DB2, and shipped in beta to customers. Six years later, DB2 sales began to fly like their original namesake. (And bring a Steve Miller song to mind as well.)

Fast forward to the year 2006. The Dave Matthews Band goes on tour starting in late May. Haderle is going back to work, after a fashion. CNet noted in a report how Haderle ended his year-long retirement in March for something more fun – serving as a technical advisor to ANTs Software (ANTS.)

The company has created a data server that reportedly runs at very high speeds. “You want to slide something underneath the existing system that will enable it to perform three times as fast without having to upgrade all the hardware and software and enable you to gradually move off those platforms,” Haderle said in the article.

Back in March, Haderle told eWeek that if a company like ANTs had a “couple billion dollars” invested in the 50-person startup, it could eventually rival the Oracle-Microsoft-IBM trio.

ANTs didn’t receive a couple of billion, but they did announce receiving $9 million through a private offering of common stock.

With new financing and some experienced advice, it will be interesting to see where ANTs and Haderle wind up in the future. Perhaps IBM will show interest, and Haderle can retire from Big Blue for a second time.

UPDATE!: A couple of readers noted points of interest that I missed. Waldo Jaquith pointed out that Dave Matthews late father, John, was at IBM; he worked as a physicist. And an unnamed reader indicated that Haderle is still an IBM “Fellow” so he’s never really left Big Blue entirely.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.