Xperanto represents a significant extension of IBM's DB2 database technology, allowing for federated access to data, regardless of whether the data resides in DB2 or in data management systems from vendors such as Oracle, Sybase and Microsoft.
"Xperanto has the means to access all the data in real time in an efficient way, without requiring the customers to move the data," said IBM distinguished engineer and director of information integration Nelson Mattos.
"We believe this is very significant because for companies to become more efficient and be able to better respond to changes in the marketplace, they need to embrace a technology strategy that reflects the way [businesses] actually work."
IBM believes data management was moving away from the notion of a data system that only managed information that is physically stored, towards an infrastructure that manages, integrates, accesses, and analyses all the information in the enterprise.
Mattos said rival Oracle favours a centralised approach to data management. "That does not allow customers to obtain information on demand because if I'm going to centralise, I need to know what information I need to move into the Oracle system."
Oracle officials, however, said IBM's Xperanto is not offering anything new as far as data federation because both IBM and Oracle already have federated data management capabilities.
"There's not much new there," said Oracle vice-president of distributed database development Benny Souder.
He rejected notions that Oracle requires centralisation. "You can centralise and save money, but sometimes you can't centralise.
"In those cases, we deal with that just fine; we have a complete distributed capability inside the Oracle database."