[VPM] March 21 meeting

Darren Duncan darren at DarrenDuncan.net
Tue Mar 14 22:56:31 PST 2006

At 07:49 -0800 10/3/06, Peter Scott wrote:
>Suggestions for meeting topic?  Seems like a good time to revisit some
>of the basics, perhaps?

If no one else wants to step up and lead, then I believe this is a 
good time for me to give a talk on my Rosetta DBMS project.  While I 
will cover some basics for the uninitiated, people who already use 
databases (whether MySQL or Oracle or whatever) will get more out of 
it; but lots of people use databases.

The "Rosetta" DBMS framework, available in twin Perl 6 and Perl 5 
versions, is a powerful but elegant system, which makes it easy to 
create and use relational databases in a very reliable, portable, and 
efficient way.  It is implemented as a virtual machine, and has its 
own command language called "Rosetta D".  The Rosetta virtual machine 
and command language are intended to be significant improvements over 
conventional database products and the SQL language, both in 
reliability and expressiveness (but the conventionals are 
emulatable).  One of its features is that you can manipulate a 
database's schema using the same language you use to manipulate its 
data, by updating the database's system catalog.  The project has 
drawn significant interest from members of the Perl and database 
communities, though it still remains unknown to most people.

This presentation / discussion will introduce Rosetta, saying how it 
works and how to use it, and discussing some of my design decisions. 
I will also discuss some relational database theory and practice in 

The presentation format is that I will present orally and draw 
diagrams on the white board, and there can be group discussion.  I do 
not have any handouts, nor any computer slide show, nor any executing 
code; those will have to wait for some future month.

While you can not use Rosetta yet, due to its being pre-alpha, you 
can read some of its in-progress design documents at 
http://svn.openfoundry.org/pugs/ext/Rosetta/ (Perl 6) or at 
http://svn.utsl.gen.nz/trunk/Rosetta/ (Perl 5).  Within those 
directories, the most recently updated and significant documents are 
lib/Rosetta.pm (scroll down half-way to the DESCRIPTION pod), and 
lib/Rosetta/Language.pod (the top half is new and good to read, the 
bottom half is old and less valuable).  Regardless, everything I 
speak and draw at the meeting itself will be up to date.

-- Darren Duncan

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