My boss has just informed me that I am on a committee which is supposed to
select a DBMS for use in all of our hospitals around the country. Since I
will have a lot of learning to do if I am going to help make an intelligent
decision, I thought I would start by asking for some advice. I am interested
in the following:
(1) In general, how would you go about evaluating a DBMS? Is there a good
published guide to the subject?
(2) What do you think about the following criteria which have been handed to
the committee by higher-ups? (I confess that I don't even know what all the
buzzwords mean! Yet.)
-- Common data dictionary. Provides standardization of language and data
elements. Must be flexible and have ability to be changed.
-- Query language / ad hoc report writer / statistics / forms
-- Fourth generation language.
-- cross multiple mainframes
-- program generator
-- development processing
-- linkage to lower level languages
-- compiler (hardware specific)
-- interface out/in with standard file techniques for file transfer
(e.g. Lotus, dBase II/III/+, R Base V, Informix, SQL, etc.)
-- Total compatibility across hardware. [They don't say this, but they
want it to at least work in Vax/VMS and Unix System V environments.]
-- Friendly/flexible user input interface (MacIntosh type)
-- Graphics/images/animation as a data element
-- Full network support / distributed processing
-- Fast < 3 second screen-to-screen response
-- Security levels (to be data element level)
-- Shadowing capabilities
-- Interface with statistical package
(3) What are the pros and cons of the following candidates?
Focus IBM-SQL IDS-2 Informix
Ingres Mantis Nomad Oracle
As usual, please post responses of widespread general interest to the net;
please send more specific comments directly to me and I will summarize.
--- Prentiss Riddle ("Aprendiz de todo, maestro de nada.")
--- Opinions expressed are not necessarily those of Shriners Burns Institute.