Databases: Hyperbolic Schema Example


In a talk, Margaret Wertheim proudly relates how a craft predominantly practiced by women solved the physical representation of Hyperbolic Geometry.  Click on the image to view a video of the talk.

This got me to thinking about the representation of Hyperbolic Schemas and Hyperbolic Data.

An example of a Hyperbolic Schema is as follows:

Take the name “John”.  “John” can be seen as an word element or as a composite of “J”, “o”, “h”, “n”.

The left side of the brain sees the element, the right brain sees the composite. This applies level after level.  Phrase element and composite of words.  Sentence element and composite of phrases.  Paragraph element and composite of sentences and so on.  The associative database can support both representations.  This give you very powerful editing capabilities at many levels of granularity as well as powerful searches and applications.

Our product does this using the Sentences Associational Database from Lazy Software.  A relational database cannot do this effectively or efficiently.

The Cloud: “Welcome, To the Hotel California”


On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair, Warm smell of Colitas rising up through the air.

Up ahead in the distance, I saw a shimmering light.

In my province, I have begun pushing for a Design Council. However, I am beginning to wonder if I am just calling every problem a nail or creating another stovepipe. Software as a Service, Database as a Service, Science as a Service, Art as a Service, Design as a Service, Engineering as a Service, Manufacturing as a Service, Inventory as a Service, Sales as a Service, Purchases as a Service, Currency as a Service, Accounting as a Service, Service as a Service… all plugged into the huge amorphous global system we call “The Cloud”.

My head grew heavy and my sight grew dim, I had to stop for the night.

We are being frontsourced and backsourced, upsourced and downsourced, leftsourced and rightsourced, insourced and outsourced, yesterdaysourced and tomorrowsourced up the ying yang and out the wazoo. I think the economic crisis may just be the tip of the iceburg. We may be in a deep financial dependency, but we may also be entering a 24/7/365 service dependency where we could relinquish all our corporate and personal control to third parties completely losing our ability to independently execute decisions.

There she stood in the doorway; I heard the mission bell.

And I was thinking to myself, “This could be Heaven or this could be Hell.”

Then she lit up a candle and she showed me the way.

There were voices down the corridor, I thought I heard them say,

“Welcome to the Hotel California. Such a lovely place. Such a lovely face.”

“There’s plenty of room at the Hotel California. Any time of year, You can find it here.”

The Hotel California.  Peter Drucker lit up the candle and called the way “creaming”.  We continually seek work offering higher margins and abandon our lower margin work. Our Service Providers are willing to take up the lower margin work and establish a beach head. Instead of assuming control of our supply and rescuing the lower margin demand we forego them.  The Service Providers keep the beach head and begin undermining us and we surrender the middle margin work and seek even higher margins.  Eventually, we reach the top of the ladder. Either we freeze the state of affairs and impose it downward or we get pushed off the top. How do we impose such a freeze?

Her mind is Tiffany-twisted, She got the Mercedes-Benz.

She got a lot of pretty, pretty boys, That she calls friends.

How they dance in the courtyard, sweet summer sweat.

Some dance to remember, some dance to forget.

Silicon Valley was the center of the Personal Computer revolution.  Berkeley University. Stanford University.  Drugs.  Affluence.  Free sharing of information.  Lots of pretty boys at Xerox PARC and IBM dancing to forget.  Lots of pretty boys at Apple Computer and Microsoft dancing to remember.

So I called up the Captain, “Please bring me my wine.”

He said, “We haven’t had that spirit here Since nineteen sixty-nine.”

The first ARPANET IMP log – a record of the first message ever sent over the ARPANET took place at 10:30PM on October 29, 1969 setting up a message transmission to go from the UCLA SDS Sigma 7 Host computer to the SRI SDS 940 Host computer.

And still those voices are calling from far away.

Wake you up in the middle of the night, Just to hear them say,

“Welcome to the Hotel California. Such a lovely place. Such a lovely face.

They’re livin’ it up at the Hotel California.

What a nice surprise, Bring your alibis.

The Hotel California. Apple, IBM PC, MS DOS, Lotus 123, WordPerfect 5, dBaseIIIPlus, MacIntosh, MAC OS, MS Windows, MS Excel, MS Word, MS Access, Mobile Phones, Internet, AOL, MMUG, NetScape, MS Explorer, Web 1.0, Laptops, Yahoo, Amazon, eBay, Google, Chat, Forums, Blogs, Napster, Linux, Apache, MySQL, pHp, DOOM, Cellphones, Web 2.0, Firefox, iPod, iTunes, MySpace, YouTube, Skype, GoogleEarth, Facebook, Twitter, PirateBay, Wikipedia, WoW, SecondLife, iPhone.  The permanent digital network data repository of religions, organizations, emotions, locations, actions, possessions, professions, obsessions, transactions and reservations that we are voluntarily contributing to daily.  The Service Providers have stipulations in the Terms of Service you agree to permitting them to change the terms at any time without notification.  Recently one Service Provider changed the Terms of Service declaring that they owned all member content with no limitations on its use.  They backed down, but their weapons test was complete.

Mirrors on the ceiling, Pink champagne on ice.

And she said, “We are all just Prisoners here, of our own device.”

Worldwide data centres with petabytes of personal data connected by fiber optic spinal cords ready to be sliced and diced by domestic and foreign government agencies, corporations, criminals, theives and cyberterrorists looking for gold in the data mine.

And in their master’s chambers, They gathered for the feast.

They stab it with their steely knives, but they just can’t kill the beast.

Perhaps all these records will not matter to the Always On Generation or to the Zippies.  Since everyone’s sins are online no one can be held accountable or no one could be hired.  Or everyone could be held accountable and the Republics fall and we enter the Dark Age of a new Dictator Emperor, followed by a God Emperor, followed by a Pope Emperor all with sound legalistic documentation of the inquisitions.  This is what happened to the Roman Republic and Roman Europe.  Big Brother reigned for 1300 years.

Last thing I remember, I was running for the door.

I had to find the passage back To the place I was before.

“Relax”, said the night man, “We are programmed to receive.”

“You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”

As you drive down that dark desert information highway, look in the rearview mirror, because 1300 years of history might be catching up with us.

Thank you for checking in.

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Netular Technology versus Psuedo-Netular Technology


I have been having a very interesting discussion on having expressed my opinion about current information technology and the netular  information technology I would like to see.

The people who have been exchanging their views with me cannot see the forest for the trees.  One is offended that I do not rave about all the social transitions the technologies are offering.  Another spews buzzwords like a chainsaw.  Another assumes my opinion is a product of my impatience for the convergence of the existing technologies.

Einstein once said he would spend a majority of his time defining a problem and a fraction of his time solving it.  A majority of the time on information technology is spent solving and a fraction actually taken to understand.  The consequence is most of the solutions out there are not designed, they are hastily assembled patchworks that because of the inertia of being first on the field are only replaced by further patches.

Our entire system of networks is built upon a foundation of linear and tabular architecture that is present in our CPUs, memory, storage, data structures, programming languages, organization, locations, events and goals.  In reality we are only dabbling in networks and doing an abysmal job of using them to their full effect.  We don’t understand them.

Marshall McLuhan said that when a new media is created the first thing we do is pump old media through it.  That is what we are doing now.  We are taking every form of old media we have and pushing it through the internet.  There is not a single case where we have successfully departed from linear and tabular old media.  I have looked at all the current technology, I have used it, I understand its internals and I stand by what I say.

We need a fundamental change in the way information technology works otherwise we are going to continue with an undesigned brute force attempt to solve our problems without ever understanding them.  The outcome will not be progress, but the perpetuation of flat earth thinking.

Linear and tabular thought are responsible for many of the problems we have in the world.  The biggest is the inability to fully appreciate the uniqueness of everything and everyone in this world.  The supreme example of this has been the long history of Religion, Genocide, Slavery, Nationalism, Imperialism, Racism, Eugenics, Fascism, Nazism, Communism, Marxism, Capitalism and Socialism.  All of them fail us because they depended on linear and tabular models of thought that denied the respect of the individuality of all experience.  True netular thought has the potential to challenge all of these misconceptions.  I think it is appropriate that this transition is on the horizon with the rise of globalism.  I doubt it will be a peaceful transition.

Actually, the insights into the underlying order in networks has made quite a bit of progress. One of the leaders in this area is Albert-Beszlos Barabasi who authored the book “Linked” . Another researcher Kwabena Boahen made a fascinating presentation at TED . There is also the work of Simon Williams that has come up with a new associative database architecture as well as a commercial product, Sentences.

It is time for everyone to fundamentally change the way they think.

Databases: 50 years of stupidity


Database conventions are not best practices.  Database naming conventions are based on random ontological concepts.  Ideas about what constitutes an entity are misdirected.  Programmers know nothing about what a class or an object is or how to name them.  Hierarchical, Relational and Network databases have maintained a persistent and ignorant set of practices that the information technology intelligencia have followed mindlessly.  What we have after 50 years is a brute force patchwork of bad design practices and mediocre engineering that continues to work within the same set of assumptions.  It’s a product of the inertia of intellectual lethargy that dominates not just the technological world, but the world that uses technology in general.  Workers are too busy being inefficient and ineffective to improve their business practices.  They jump at silver bullet solutions that promise results without change.

Database people have never understood data.  Programmers have never understood data.  They have instead tried to please everybody’s ontological misconceptions with grotesque architecture and then shoehorn it all into a physical processor that is about as progressive and efficient as the internal combustion engine.  Eco-nut technologists like to use buzzwords like “organic” to describe the chaotic crap they are producing on the web.  It isn’t organic, its a massive slum composed of any piece of detritus the occupants can build with surrounding a district of monolithic towers of gross excess and shameless waste.  Google’s motto is “Don’t be evil.”  Has any company ever considered having the motto, “Be good”?  The more I work with corporations the more I recognize that goodness is discouraged and evil is whatever the corporation says it is.  If you work for anyone you are part of a Milgram experiment and you are delivering those electric shocks everyday under the direction of psychopaths.  The merit you get promoted for is based on your willingness to flip those switches more than anyone else.  Having a conscience is deemed unprofessional and grounds for termination.

This is the environment within which real innovation has to work.

Hungarian Backwords Notation, a naming convention by Charles Simonyi, has been abused and bastardized by programmers and database administrators with no understanding of semantics, which is most of them.  Consequently, it has been rejected by a large portion of the IT community.  Not even Microsoft knew what it had.  I fought with Simonyi’s concept for years and applied it in several working applications successfully against massive resistance.  The more I worked with it the more I realized that Object Oriented Programming was based on a completely false ontology.  The metaphors were completely wrong.  And the Unified Modeling Language entrenched the misconceptions even further.  Information technology is spawning increasing complexity without any appreciation for underlying order.  The order was datatypes.  There are only a handful of Classes and they are datatypes. The English are backwards, not the Hungarians.

If the world was looked at as a collection of datatype classes the entire philosophy of data and programming and systems would have to change.  Objects do not have properties, properties have objects.  And there are only a handful of properties.  I’ve realized this and it has changed my perspective of data design forever.  Throw away your OOP and your Data Model textbooks.  They’re crap.  Google, Apple and Microsoft are not the future.  Einstein had a better grip on reality than Turing ever did.  The typical mind, including the IT mind, still thinks elephants are bigger than the moon.

Related Links:

Big Brother and the Pope-Emperor


I am continuing my reading of Critical Path by R. Buckminster Fuller and I am finding that his thinking regarding history in many ways correlates with my own.

Scientio: I Know

Buckminster does not have a good explanation for pre-human history, but he does have a good explanation for human history.  I think he inaccurately rejects the origin of mankind in Africa, however he makes a very sound argument based on the likely origin of the Bronze Age geologically.  The prime geological location where copper and tin could have been accidentally mixed to create bronze is in Thailand on the Chao Phraya River.


At the mouth of the Chao Phraya River lies Bangkok and Buckminster speculates that ship building also originated in Bangkok as strong non-rusting bronze is an essential metal in assembling wooden ships.  The Bangkok builders of the dhow vessels have a history extending back 10,000 years.  With shipping came the need for navigation and the development of astronomy and trigonometry to do so.  This made Navigators the the high priests of their societies and the first to understand the secret of Earth as a circumnavigable sphere.


The Babylonians in 3000 B.C. developed a spherical geometry of 360 divisions, but would not correlate it with time’s 360 divisions.  In 410 B.C. the Pythagorean Philolaeus was the first in recorded history to describe Earth as a spherical entity revolving around a central, perhaps galactic, fire with a spherical Sun and spherical planets.  In 350 B.C. Pythagorean Heraclides conceived the Earth as a sphere spinning west to east, but in a geocentric universe.  A Greek, Aristarchus in 200 B.C. conceived of a heliocentric system with around which the planets revolved, the moon revolved around the earth and the stars fixed in the heavens.  In 200 B.C. Eratosthenes calculated the circumference of the Earth to within 1.5 percent accuracy.  It is believed that Eratosthenes had knowledge of a west to east circumnavigation of the Earth by the Phoenicians around 200 B.C. and produced a map not knowing in the abscence of magnetic compasses, sextants and chronometers that the reports included the Americas.  But here science would end.

A singularity was evolving into a pluralarity.  At first lifespans were barely 20 years and existence so miserable that heaven was only for the Navigator-Emperors in the East and the Astronomer-Emperors in the West.  Life was too harsh and technology too limited to accommodate anyone else’s entry into heaven and the first Babylonian ziggurats, Egyptian pyramids and astronomical observatories of India, Mesopotamia, Crete, Egypt, England were built.  The infrastructure created to build the first pyramids improved the quality of life for the next generation and emperors and their entourages were entombed in even larger pyramids.  With the infrastructure again improved it became possible to entomb the nobles. With the next round of infrastructure improvements it became possible to entomb the middle class.  Carved mausoleums and burial urns became part of Greek and Roman middle class culture.  Pythagoras in the West and Buddha in the East began spreading the word of universal enlightenment, entombment and a Heaven open to all.  The priesthoods of the world had gone from serving 1 percent of humanity to 99 percent of humanity.  At the same time the Greek Republic and Roman Republic were abolishing their monarchies, then their nobility.  An age of the individuals was emerging.  Human society was encountering a pluralarity.  Then the powers of Rome seized control.


Credo: I Believe


From 200 B.C. to 200 A.D. the knowledge of a spherical world became of importance to the incumbent powers as the Roman Dictator-Emperor came into existence.  Scientific thought began to be crushed if it contradicted the goals of the State.  In 47 B.C. the Alexadrean library, the largest database of the previous thousands of years of recorded history, 700,000 volumes, saw 40,000 volumes burned by the first Dictator-Emperor during a seige.  In 27 A.D. the last vestiges of the Roman Republic were erased with the Roman Senate granting the God-Emperor his power.  By 200 A.D.  humanity would face another enduring singularity.


Around 200 A.D. Ptolemy created the first latitude and longitude map of Eurasia and North Africa.  However, at this time the Roman Pope-Emperor Church-State was being formed and a spherical world was a threat to its logic.  What was needed was a parallel Heaven, Earth, Hell system surrounded by the unknown.  A meta-physical martyr God from a cult was harnessed by a physical Pope-Emperor utility.  All contacts with God were available through the utility for a fee.  Confession and Inquisition were created to detect and correct anyone “attempting to set in order the facts of their own experiences.”  The Alexandrean library would be burned by Pope-Emperors in 272 A.D. and 391 A.D. and then totally destroyed by the Muslims in 642 A.D.  The world of George Orwell’s 1984 existed from 200 A.D. to 1500 A.D. working diligently to eliminate any recorded contradiction between “science” and “theology”.


Big Brother, the martyr God, and the Pope-Emperor reigned like a boot stomping on the face of humanity for 1300 years.

The Universe: Seven Nodes, Six Dimensions

EDITOR’S NOTE:  Since I have written this I have come to recognize limitations in this and related perspectives that led them to be cul-de-sacs.  My more recent work can be found here: The Czerepak Framework

After considerable struggle with the data it became clear to me that I was not dealing with a table in the normal sense.  I could not reconcile a data cube with the seven dimensions I had discovered.  Then it occurred to me that I was not dealing with a cube at all.  I was dealing with a simpler solid, the octahedron.  The octahedron has six dimensions (spokes) and seven vertexes.

This gives us a Hauy Construction (this figure is an eight degree):

Using my new taxonomy gives us the following views:




The age of the cube is over.  Welcome to the age of the Octahedral Hauy Construction.

dBforums: Design, Develop, Administer

I have been a participating member of for years, but I have overlooked promoting it here. dBforums is an excellent resource for discussing database server software; data access, manipulation and batch languages; PC based database applications; and general database subjects.  Every major product is covered by the forums.

I am particularly fond of the gang that hangs around the database concepts and design forum. I have participated in many design discussions there. I remember once helping a Malaysian DBA with the design of a database for a DNA sampling device. The members are diverse and the help talented.


TouchGraph: Search Goes Visual

I’ve just come from one of the most fantastic visual research tools I have ever come across. Touchgraph gives you visually in one page, what Google, Amazon and Facebook cannot deliver in pages of text. A clear understanding of how websites, books and people are related based on your search criteria at a glance. The TouchGraph product can also be customized to interact with your databases to reveal patterns in your data that text and traditional graphical tools cannot capture or represent.  I would love to see this hooked up to my corporate data warehouse.

This is a brilliant tool and I find it highly addictive. We need more graphical tools like this to help us to break out of the constraints of columns, rows, lines, bars and pies.

It would be nice to see WordPress integrate this into viewing their tags and search.


Surrogate Key Best Practice

Surrogate keys (unintelligent keys) are an excellent way to preserve the referential integrity of your database and avoid the need for cascading updates of natural keys if they are changed. However, simply using surrogate key is not always enough.

One of the most common best practices for databases designed with surrogate keys is: Any independent table with a surrogate primary key should have a corresponding natural key with uniqueness enforced. When uniqueness is not enforced duplicate rows are possible and your referential integrity is lost.

For example, consider the table below:


In the student table the primary key is a surrogate key, but uniqueness is enforced stringently by protecting the full name of the student and his birthdate as a unique composite natural key.

Another context for protecting surrogate key referential integrity is by protecting the uniqueness of foreign key combinations where uniqueness would be enforced if the table were dependent. For example consider the tables below:


Note how the enrollment table has a surrogate primary key, however uniqueness is protected by the unique natural key index on the two foreign keys.

If you use surrogate keys and natural keys together when you design your database, you will avoid the pitfalls of duplicate rows in your data.