NoSQL to start selling a graph database for enterprises
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February 4, 2015
Earlier this morning, NoSQL database start up DataStax said it plans to start developing and selling a
graph database for large businesses.
To be sure, DataStax is also expected to confirm that it has acquired Aurelius, whose team is behind
the Apache-licensed Titan distributed graph database for Cassandra.
As is almost always the case, financial terms were not revealed at this point. DataStax said the
Aurelius people would help build something called the DataStax Enterprise Graph-– a new graph database
built on top of DataStax Enterprise.
These are, for the most part, products that are new to most people, and the company says it will integrate
them with Cassandra, the Apache-open-source NoSQL distributed storage system used by DataStax, and with DSE
Search and Analytics.
The ASF-Cassandra project was born of the NoSQL distributed storage system of Facebook and is built on
Google’s Big Table platform and Amazon’s Dynamo system.
NoSQL databases emerged from web giants such as Facebook and Twitter and were pitched at large businesses in 2014.
Next to emerge were graph databases-- systems that claim to understand the relationships between entities
using unique identifiers.
To be sure, graph databases differ from relational databases in that they dispense with rows and columns
to store and query data, and thereby establish relationships and answer queries.
Such databases work by assigning a unique identifier to a node – such as a person – and a set of edges that
link up nodes to each other, such as love of a certain type of music.
Links are then expressed as key/value pairs. Like most things on this planet, they are built to
compute across massive server clusters, even different data centres running on commodity servers.
The concept is that graph databases are supposed to work faster and are presumed to be more flexible
than relational databases.
They are also used by social networks including Linked In to find connections between members, the
CIA to identify links between members of terrorist networks, and financial services to detect online fraud.
For example, the system can query graphs containing hundreds of billions of vertices and edges distributed across a
multi-machine cluster. It's claimed that the system can run an unlimited number of concurrent connections
with the addition of new machines to a cluster.
It works with H-Base and Berkeley DB plus Cassandra for back-end data storage, Elastic Search, Hadoop and
No-SQL has also claimed that Titan supports Atomicity, Consistency, Isolation and Durability (ACID) – a
big stumbling block for throwing NoSQL at the enterprise segment.
Specifically, ACID is a feature of relational databases that many in NoSQL threw out but are slowly
clawing their way back in various systems somehow.
Titan features connection pooling with failover for deployment across servers, clusters and data centres
with metrics for management.
DataStax says its resulting Titan-based solution will be a database that can be used in recommendation
engines, as a component of identity and access management systems, in network impact analysis, logistics, network
and device management.
Naturally, it can also be used in financial fraud detection, a neat feature that law enforcement
officials love to work with.
Founded in 2010, DataStax claims about 390 current enterprise customers, including Netflix, with Aurelius’s
customers incuding Cisco and Los Alamos National Laboratory, the historical home of the U.S. nuclear bomb that Albert Einstein
helped develop in the early 40s.
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