The Company

Lacibus

Lacibus Ltd is a small company, currently driven by one person, formed to productize the idea of a web platform whose users work with data, and the providers of the data control access to it.

Now that there is a stable implementation of the core functionality, the company needs more members so that it can fulfill its potential. This is an investment opportunity, career opportunity, or partnership opportunity for the right person or organization. If you are interested, please contact me, either directly by e-mail, or via LinkedIn.

Principal

I am Chris Harding, principal and founder of Lacibus. Here is some information about me, why I started the company, and what I hope it can achieve.

I studied mathematics and gained a PhD in mathematical logic in the days before there were courses in computer science. Since then, I have worked in the IT industry, as a software engineer, team leader, consultant, and consortia forum director, before starting Lacibus.

Being a Forum Director of The Open Group gave me insights into the workings of the industry and the needs of its users. My background in mathematical logic helped me to think of semantic technology solutions. This led to the idea of a triple store, synchronized with external data sources, and with fine-grained access control, but not (here's where my training in pure mathematics shows) linked to the real world by depending on URLs and URIs.

I still enjoyed software development, and started a private project to realise these ideas. After a few false starts, and somewhat to my surprise, I produced a working implementation. I wasn't sure what to call it. One of the people I showed it to suggested "virtual data lake" and the name has stuck. The implementation is posted as an open-source project on Gitlab.

The Soda data content management system is a user interface to virtual data lakes. It is shaped by my experience of using content management systems for consortium web pages. I support open systems, but we live in a commercial world. Soda is a commercial product, to provide revenue that can be used to develop the idea further and promote it.

I have been privileged to be part of an industry that has provided huge value to society, and become an essential part of its infrastructure. This has been demonstrated by the recent Covid pandemic: video calling and on-line shopping were there when we needed them. We take such things for granted now but, thinking back to the first computer I saw, whose party trick was to calculate the prime numbers less than 100 with only two mistakes, the immense achievement of the IT community is very clear.

The growth in power of IT systems is now raising questions of whether it can be used, not just to support society, but also to control it. The IT community has a crucial role to play here, by helping to ensure that technology is used in ways that benefit society as a whole.

Data platforms evolved many years ago, and there have recently been several new approaches. Virtual data lakes are one of these, a simplification made possible by vastly improved storage technology and the universal connectivity of the Internet. They provide a powerful platform for sophisticated data applications, and enable users to use data more effectively. Lacibus is there to deliver these benefits.

Why "Lacibus"?

The Latin word lacus means "opening, hole, pool, lake," and was also the word for a distribution point in the public water supply of ancient Rome. (See Wikipedia). Lacibus is its genitive, dative or ablative plural, meaning "by, with or from lakes" - in our case by, with or from virtual data lakes. 

The analogy with water supply distribution points is closer than the analogy with large, scenic bodies of water. Virtual data lakes are ideally suited as data distribution points, architected to let data flow where it is needed.

Do it with virtual data lakes!     Fiat Lacibus!