Thursday, August 04


CouchDB Enlightenment


When I last looked at CouchDB, I somehow completely missed the point of views.  They're not a query mechanism, they're an index definition mechanism.*

If they were a query mechanism, they'd suck.  As an index definition mechanism, though, they do exactly - exactly - what I've been looking for: They look into the record structure and generate appropriate index entries based on any criteria I can think of.  Thus, my need for a compound index on an array and a timestamp is trivially easy to implement.

Just how good CouchDB is beyond that feature I don't know yet, but I'm sure going to find out.

Couple of other points: The last time I was looking I was dubious about using Erlang-based software; my experience with RabbitMQ since then has improved my opinion of Erlang considerably.  And CouchDB uses a consumer-SSD-friendly append-only B-Tree structure for its indexes, making it cheap to deploy a very high-performance system (for small-to-middling databases, i.e. in the tens to hundreds of gigabytes).  And, because it's append-only, you can safely back it up just by copying the files. I do like that.

Oh, and this: The couchdb-python package comes with a view server to allow you to write views in Python instead of JavaScript.  That's kind of significant.

* Well, they're more than that, but that's the key distinction.  Views don't query the data; they define a way to query the data - including the necessary index.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 05:20 AM | No Comments | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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