Wednesday, February 11, 2015

New Generation Databases

2015 will be a milestone year for RTS when we will scale new heights in product development and in delivering quality solutions. It gets me really excited to share information about an upcoming technology that I am passionate about- “new generation databases”.

We all know about databases – a very interesting piece of technology, to store large amounts of information – textual, numeric, pictures, even videos – that can support on demand retrieval and usage at a later time. Traditional databases like Oracle, MSSQL Server etc. provide long-term data storage to computer software – everything from mobile phone apps to a large enterprise application involving many interconnected computers. They can handle many operations (such as filtering and sorting data, logging, roll back, secure processing of data in a multi user environment,etc.) at the database end.
However there is a big constraint. In order to set up these traditional databases, we need to have professional expertise in SQL (Structured Query Language). SQL as a language is different from the language in which applications are developed, so an extra effort is required to achieve that seamless integration between the application code and the database itself.

A solution to this has come in the form of new generation (no/new sql) databases which explore a new way of storing data. Objects and information are stored more directly – using library functions and objects from the language used to develop applications. An age old notion has been challenged that only “relational databases should be used”, making them immensely popular among the developer community.

New generation (no/new sql) databases are designed in a way such that maximum processing is handled by the application. Like traditional database solutions they do not apply many restrictions on how to store data. They just save what is provided by the application making them highly optimized for data storage and retrieval thus providing excellent performance. The best part, because most of it is open source, is no hefty licence fees or yearly renewals are required , resulting in significant cost savings.

Key Strengths of No/New SQL Databases:

·         Can be used to store highly variable data structures, and even unstructured data.
·         Accessible from the language as used in the application
·         Fast storage and retrieval

But do our new generation databases suit every application? No, not as of now.
They are good in scenarios where  less number of users make very large changes to data at different times, where success of “transactions” may not be guaranteed
or when a high level of isolation between the data storage and the running applications is not desired.

If there is problem, there is a solution also.
Using an entirely new level of innovation and engagement, a mix of relational and new generation (No/New SQL) databases is already being implemented across the technology world with great success.
Combining the best from relational databases (Stability, Security and Suitability) with the best from new generation databases (Speed, Savings and Schema less) many organizations have transformed the way they experience technology.
In coming times, in order to develop data rich applications, as No/New SQL solutions become more mature and popular, they would certainly provide an increasingly logical choice for application development and business growth.

Please share your views on how you feel No/New SQL databases will impact our choice for databases in future.              

Puneet Malhotra