Just been discussing OLAP with a colleague and was reminded of Codd’s Rules. Looked up Codd on Wikipedia and it claims the origin of the name SQL is as follows:

…they did not use Codd’s own Alpha language but created a non-relational one, SEQUEL. Even so, SEQUEL was so superior to pre-relational systems that it was copied, based on pre-launch papers presented at conferences, by Larry Ellison in his Oracle Database, which actually reached market before SQL/DS — due to the then-already proprietary status of the original moniker, SEQUEL had been renamed SQL.


I have to confess I didn’t know that’s how the name originated (assuming Wikipedia is correct). But it makes perfect sense to me: when I started working on databases it was with Comshare’s ADL, a “proper” relational database language, or so my boss informed me. Years later when I started to work with SQL I couldn’t believe how crap it was in comparison. “How on earth did this become and industry standard”, I thought at the time (and still do TBH). ADL was based around manipulating tables on a stack. For example, to do a join you did:

read tableA
read tableB
out(matched, unmatched1, unmatched2) 

It was a data *manipulation* language – rather than a reporting language like SQL – which made it ideal for our business at that time (housing statistics). I wish something like that had prevailed instead of crappy SQL.