>>>uses PICK running on UNIX, using Univers, I think. Does anyone have any
>>>opinions on the wisdom or "non-wisdom" of running PICK on Unix inthis
>>PICK was a good idea at the time it was developed, leading the way for
>>other database systems like itself, but it has grown sorta obsolete.
I think you will find this statement in and of itself obsolete. PICK when
it was originally developed was a great idea for a database system and more
often than not was much easier to use in it's grammer and logic than Oracle
style DBMS's. A couple of the main problems with PICK were:
1) It didn't run on many machines, but on a limited number. PICK was
originally a complete OS, not just a DBMS. This caused some problems as well.
2) Lack of communications. About the only way to transfer data was by doing
tape saves and restores.
3) Lack of extended features and interoperability, such as Graphics, SQL,
interfacing with other products, etc...
However, about 5 years ago, VMark Software (the company who developed UniVerse)
came out with a version of PICK/Prime Information on Unix Platforms. And,
though they have been the leader in PICK-based database/developement systems,
many other PICK companies are moving over to running on Unix based platforms.
In fact, UniVerse currently runs on over 35 different vendors hardware and
over 100 different types of machines. So, it is truly an "open" application.
And in the last year or two, many versions of PICK, most notably UniVerse,
Unidata, and Ultimate (using a modified UniVerse product) have taken great
strides to remove any of the problems it may have had. For example, VMark
Software, with their latest release, will have a networking package, Graphics,
WordPerfect interface, etc... with an SQL interface currently being developed.
Unidata has had an SQL interface for a while. And, since both run on many
Unix boxes, both eliminate many of the previously perceived problems with
PICK. I think you will find that, given the current state of the PICK
marketplace (especially with VMarks UniVerse, Unidata, Ultimate, and Prime
Information Plus), PICK is nowhere near an "obsolete" product, but instead
is a very stable, efficient, open-systems solution to software problems with
great features found in traditional Oracle based DBMS as well as features
those DBMS systems do not supply. You will also find that products of
VMark as well as others are evolving very rapidly and many are offering
lots of new technological advances, such as GUI support, Networking, etc..
You will also find great performance (to the person who had problem with
the Honeywell tape, I have seen complete file restores take less than an
hour on some systems.) and, in some cases, a more "open" environment.
And you will also find 4000+ proven, existing applications. And all this,
usually for much less than other "traditional" DBMS.
>Thanks for your views. I wonder if you could elaborate on the term
>"obsolete." Could you give me some practical implications. Later you
>mention some operational inefficiencies. But what else do you have in
>mind by the term obsolete? Are there, for example, implications for the
>development of imaging applications? Are you saying that newer dbmss,
>like Ingres, are more modern because they are more open, by virtue of
>SQL? And, how would you compare PICK with --say-- Ingres, or some other
>relational dbms? I would appreciate any further comments you may have
>>The biggest problem with PICK that I saw was it's file structure. For some
>>Working with a 9-Track tape drive on the Honeywell system, it took more than
>>72 hours to complete a file restore. Working with a 9-Track tape and the
>>PC version of PICK, it took closer to 5 days. I have had no experience with
>This does sound excessive, to say the least. But could you tell me the
>approximate size of the database in question, so I have a better idea of
>of the scale of this inefficiency.
>Systems Administrator, Princeton University Libraries
David T. Meeks || "To bleed the lyrics for this song,
Software Engineer || to write the rites to right my wrongs.."
VMark Software, Inc. ||