Artificial Intelligence (AI) is having a clear impact on databases. Among the major players, Microsoft is applying AI to continuously monitor Azure SQL database workload patterns and apply automatic tuning when it recognizes opportunities to improve the database performance, for example. And Oracle has unveiled the Oracle Autonomous Database Cloud, which uses Machine Learning to enable a database to automatically upgrade, patch, and tune itself while running.
What Are AI Databases?
The rapidly changing nature of the AI space can make it difficult to establish terminology. You often hear terms such as ML, deep learning, and AI used interchangeably when, in fact, they are still-developing techniques under the larger umbrella of AI. As such, Baker said there are two vastly different definitions of what an AI database is depending on who you talk to: one practical and the other more pie-in-the-sky.
Whatever database environments are at play in your enterprise, there is an opportunity to leverage AI as part of a Database Management solution to proactively support security, capacity planning, workload optimization, and performance tuning.
“We realized the requirements for handling large database environments were changing fast, and conventional tools simply weren’t keeping up,” said Rick Oppedisano, president and CEO of Delta Bravo. While monitoring is an absolutely essential foundation for Database Management, database security and predictive capacity planning are critical in managing a large environment, too.
“The cost of monitoring alone for these environments can be prohibitive, let alone trying to address the issues of database security, compliance, or predictive capacity planning – which conventional tools didn’t even address,” he said.
Oppedisano notes that what Microsoft and Oracle are doing – using AI and Machine Learning to ensure their products are configured and being used as designed – is important in reducing technical support calls for configuration-related issues.
“Where we differ is that we focus on each customer’s particular method of using those technologies beyond configuration. We help tune the database to best practices specific to their particular business requirements,” he noted.