On My Watch

Friday, March 19, 2010

Chorus, Atoms and Chairman

Is this the new nomenclature for cloud computing, specifically databases for the cloud? No more records, transaction managers and the like. In one of the more interesting sessions I have seen, yesterday's presentation at MIT by Jim Starkey and Nimbus DB described his vision of a cloud database.


In NimbusDB speak, a chorus is (I think) a set of Peer-to-Peer database nodes all exchanging metadata messages about their data. The db is based on adding the network layer, along with memory, disk etc, to the pyramid of data access resources linking a set of nodes on the network.

Atoms are 50k chunks of data (Why not 64K?) for both metadata and application data.

The Chairman is responsible for managing read and write permissions to the atoms.

I definitely buy the theory and, having recently finished an book on Einstein, appreciate the references to Relativity. Not all database transactions (e.g. some reads) require immediate consistence. Eventual consistency (as long as eventual is within application specific tolerance windows) but not immediate. But I also have questions - specifically about time stamps, impact of version unavailability, whether chairman have live synchronized backups and performance impact of message chatter.

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