Popping to the Skillsmatter freebie evening sessions is one of the best ways of getting an introduction in to any open source project that I know of (particularly if you are in London)
The one I visited last night was for MongoDB which LDC are looking at in our general search to see which of the newer generation of NoSQL dbs we like best (yes yes i know they all have different usages cases but it nice to have a favourite that you spend a bit more time with), this “do” consists of a quick 45 min to 1 hour session (the content was from a 1.5 hour to 2 hour session) ,question time afterwards, and then pub time after that (with sponsored drinkies), a nice thing to pack your head with at the end of the day.
We were given a introduction of what happens on traditional relational db applications when they reach the serious levels and their limitations. and then how to design a NoSQL db from scratch to scale to a complete monster, the room was full of people who REALLY wanted to know stuff, but Alvin Richards (Senior Director of Enterprise Engineering at 10gen) REALLY knew his stuff and answered all comers with nary a pause. (and gave out freebies)
items handled were :
- Fail over and recovery (i love the arbiters)
- Scaling (indexing still seems to cause the same bloody problems)
- Safe writes (i was pleased to see that this is in mongodb as well as Cassandra)
Thankfully Skillsmatter post the videos from all their talks online and you can see this one here (its well worth your time)