Component-oriented technologies (such as Java 2 Enterprise Edition and .Net Framework) and the hierarchical XML data format have natural synergies with databases that allow developers to store complex objects in their original formats.
These synergies are boosting the fortunes of databases that have engine-level support for nonrelational data types.
InterSystems hybrid object-relational database, Caché 5, slated to start shipping this week, is working to expand its place in the market. This major update adds high-performance bit-map indices, a new query API based on Simple Object Access Protocol, XML data import and export capabilities, and support for Enterprise JavaBean bean-managed persistence.
The bit-map index system allows a bit-map index block to be updated without locking, which permits faster updates in transactional applications, something that should appeal to the companys financial services customers.
The database is also popular in health care fields because of the complex data types used there.
"Were, in the grand scheme of things, a relatively small company," said Paul Grabscheid, vice president of strategic planning at InterSystems, in Cambridge, Mass. "For us to be successful, we have to be a specialist: high performance, great scalability for transaction processing—the more complex the application, the better."