The History of Databases: A Podcast with Spencer Kimball of Cockroach Labs

In this edition of the Early Adopter Podcast, Dan Woods speaks with Spencer Kimball of Cockroach Labs about the history of the modern database market. The conversation covered the beginnings of databases, how they’ve evolved, and where they are right now. Kimball offered an interesting explanation of the history and development of SQL databases and other data storage systems. SQL databases did not spring form the head of Zeus. There was a long line of innovation that led to them. And in fact, they’re not as nearly uniform as one would think. By analyzing the design choices involved in SQL databases, an understanding can be gained about what may be a better data storage strategy for the modern world. You can read a Q&A of the conversation here.

The conversation covers the following topics:

  • 3:00 – Why Kimball founded Cockroach Labs
  • 12:30 – The ongoing evolution of databases
  • 23:00 – The need for choosing compromises with databases
  • 34:30 – The underlying problems in most business databases
  • 45:30 – Why Google found location was important for databases

Listen to the full podcast here: