Alchemists versus Datasheet Mashuper

Tim Bray made some really interesting statements regarding the usage of databases at his website. And Dan asks what´s wrong with the standards used in unix for years and what´s the point in reinventing the wheel again and again. I think the problem is, that we have two schools in “How to create an information system architecture”: One school are the alchemists. They amalagamate a technical solution out of a vast set of very old and bleeding edge technologies. And the longe the architect is in business the more refined and efficient his solution will be. And then there are the Datasheet Mashupers. They look at a requirement “Oh, 100 TB, much I/O per second”, look at their collection of datasheets and choose a system. And to answer the question in Dan´s article: I think it´s the same with WS-Standard and WS-Security. A datasheet for WS-Standard would state “No Security”, it wouldn´t state “But you can easly add it with SSL”. So you have to implement the security in the protocol itself. And at the end there is one problem with being an alchemist: You need a vast knowledge and you need even more self-confidence to go the path without the guidance of datasheets. And such people are a more and more rare species in IT. Generalists in IT are a dying breed as more and more specialists mounting the stages of IT architecture.