The Secret of Informix: Stuart Litel

PS : This is republished blopost from Mastering Data Management

During our recent interview with International Informix User Group (IIUG) president Stuart Litel, he shared the best-kept secret about Informix. Working with Informix since the mid-1980s, Stuart is well-qualified to share such secrets. But we’ll get to that in a bit.

Stuart first encountered Informix when he was hired by Sheraton to replace the worldwide Sheraton reservation service. During testing, the team discovered that “this thing called Informix” worked best. Overnight, Sheraton became the world’s largest non-governmental user of Informix.

IBM’s 2001 acquisition of Informix changed the game, adding resources that have made Informix even more stable and useful. Stuart points to the prevalence of releases offering new features as a huge reason that users choose – and stick with – Informix.

“We buy technical products for technical reasons, or to solve a technical problem,” he explained, noting that he’s never met a person who left Informix for technical reasons – which says a lot. Informix is “too stable for its own good,” Stuart said, joking that the biggest job of an Informix DBA is to search the internet. “When a person gets a hold of [Informix] and has used it for awhile, they really dread using another database product.”

As president of IIUG, Stuart spoke highly of the users, saying, “The people who use it are a testament to the product.” He’s currently very busy preparing for the April IIUG Conference, which will be the biggest ever, and the first time the conference will be in San Diego. Stuart praised the host hotel’s wifi – it even works by the pool – and food.

But more importantly, the larger hotel will allow for more sessions. Organizers have added two educational tracks, bringing the total to seven tracks with over 80 sessions. Stuart is especially enthusiastic about David Barnes’ keynote on Big Data. David is Program Director, Strategy and Emerging Technologies with IBM.

Join Stuart and IIUG April 22-25 in San Diego for the IIUG Conference. While you’re there, get certified and attend the hands-on labs.

Oh, and what was Stuart’s best-kept secret about Informix? “It works.”

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