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This history of Informix is told from the founder's point of view and his personal experience. He talks about the Silicon Valley of the late 1970s, the "fire in the valley" days, and the feeling that history was going to be made and that computer scientists would be playing a major role in these changes. The relational database revolution, the flourishing success of the PC packaged software industry, and the Unix server victories are the backdrop for this story. Like all stories about a young company, it is about people and what drives entrepreneurs to take oversized chances and accept the risks involved.