As Microsoft is steaming away with it's plans of total commoditization of the BI market with Yukon and all the associated externalities (although AMD sees to giving a hand it their 64 bit platform), the BI vendors seem to be moving to the commodity OS by excelence.
We live in interesting times indeed.
As a someone who has been watching curiously BI from the top of the fence,i think we are reaching an inflection point (although not a tipping point, at least not yet) in a few years someone who can't do some sort of BI (be it multi dimensional modelling or or just querying or any BI variation, like i said i'm just a spectator :-)) will be viewed the same way as people who can't do any kind of relational thingies these days. :-)
[update] Found this light comparison between the Yukon OLAP features and Oracle the ones found in Oracle. My take on the article? MS is aiming for ease of use , while oracle is aiming for scalability and total unification of OLAP and Relational offering through SQL extensions.
Anyway, BI is just one of the things, on the pile of skills (a very big one that is) to grasp in the near future. Glad i'm not a Brain Surgeon :-)
Death marching sucks to say the least.
Now that it's saturday, i'm catching up on feeds reading.
There seems to be 2 new entrants on the open source database arena. Ingres from CA and Cloudscape from IBM (handed over to Apache Foundation).
I don't know the exact footprint (disk wise),but it's being touted as small (i've read somewhere 2 Mb).
We need something similar for the .Net world (Sql Server 2005 Lite disk footprint seems large to me). I mean, what would be really neat, is a small purely managed (preferably included in the framework itself) relational database engine that can be embedded in .Net applications.
Just imagine the benefits that Smart Clients could reap, by having at their disposal a small relational database engine for storage.