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Threat to NoSQL Database?

This question was posted on LinkedIn:

During my research I came across a new database technology called ‘NuoDB’. It seems to share many attributes of NoSQL databases and still maintain a SQL query interface. It uses a key value store as its data storage engine. It also promises the performance and scale of NoSQL databases.

Enterprises that have not yet embraced NoSQL, will be inclined to try this option before going NoSQL way in my opinion. Mainly because it does not require them to change their database interface layer drastically and also because NoSQL databases have not moved towards a standards based query interface yet.

For an outsider this comment might look extremely valid. I mean who in his right mind would give away all the expertise and tools and history of SQL for something like NoSQL?

But the real answer is in the details. “It seems to share many attributes of NoSQL databases” . Ask yourself what are these shared attributes:

  1. what is the supported data model? The relational model advantages have been discussed over and over for the last 30 years. But there are alternative data models that bring different
  2. what is the persistence model? Is it disk based, memory based, cluster based? IS it durable?
  3. what is the distribution model? Is it master-slave or master-master or peer-to-peer or masterless?
  4. what are the scalability characteristics of the system?
  5. what are the elasticity characteristics of the system?

In the only comment worth reading, Stefan Edlich correctly points to the tons of NewSQL solutions. Before asking if these systems “pose a threat” to NoSQL databases, I’d firstly ask if they are at least a threat to the existing relational databases first. And the answer is no.

Sid Anand wrote in the State of NoSQL 2012 post:

Many of the NoSQL vendors view the “battle of NoSQL” to be akin to the RDBMS battle of the 80s, a winner-take-all battle. In the NoSQL world, it is by no means a winner-take-all battle. Distributed Systems are about compromises.

I’d go even further and say that data storage is not anymore a winner-takes-all battle. Actually it’s not even a zero-sum game. We are living the polyglot persistence age.

Original title and link: Threat to NoSQL Database? (NoSQL database©myNoSQL)