Oracle’s Database 23c gets vector search to underpin generative AI use cases

Posted by on 20 September, 2023

This post was originally published on this site

Oracle is planning to add vector search capabilities to its database offering, dubbed Database 23c, the company announced at its ongoing annual CloudWorld conference.

These capabilities, dubbed AI Vector Search, include a new vector data type, vector indexes, and vector search SQL operators that enable the Oracle Database to store the semantic content of documents, images, and other unstructured data as vectors, and use these to run fast similarity queries, the company said.

AI Vector Search in Database 23c also supports Retrieval Augmented Generation (RAG), which is a generative AI technique that combines large language models (LLMs) and private business data to deliver responses to natural language questions, it added.

The addition of vector search capabilities to the Oracle database offering will allow enterprises to add an LLM-based natural language interface inside applications built on the Oracle Database and Autonomous Database.

The natural language-based interface, according to the company, enables users of the applications to ask questions about their data without having to write any code.

“Autonomous Database takes an open, flexible API approach to integrating LLMs so that developers can select the best LLM from Oracle or third parties to generate SQL queries to respond to these questions,” Oracle said in a statement.

The company said it will also add generative AI capabilities to Oracle Database tools such as APEX and SQL Developer. These enhancements will allow developers to use natural language to generate applications or generate code for SQL queries.

Additionally, a new integrated workflow and process automation capability has been added to APEX that will allow developers to add different functions to applications, such as invoking actions, triggering approvals, and sending emails.

However, Oracle did not announce the pricing and availability details for any of the new capabilities.

Updates to other database offerings

Other updates to Oracle’s database offerings include the general availability of Database 23c, the next generation of Exadata Exascale, and updates to its Autonomous Database service and GoldenGate 23c.

The next generation of Oracle’s Exadata Exascale, which is system software for databases, according to the company, lowers the cost of running Exadata for cloud databases for developers using smaller configurations.

Updates to Oracle’s Autonomous Database include Oracle’s Globally Distributed Autonomous Database and Elastic Resource Pools.

While the fully managed Globally Distributed Autonomous Database service helps enterprises simplify the development and deployment of shared or distributed application architectures for mission-critical applications, Elastic Resource Pools is designed to enable enterprises to consolidate database instances without any downtime to reduce cost.

For enterprises using Oracle hardware to run databases, the company has introduced Oracle Database Appliance X10.

“The latest release of this database-optimized engineered system provides enhanced end-to-end automation, and up to 50% more performance than the previous generation,” the company said in a statement.

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