[nycphp-talk] MongoDB and others, convince me. :-)

I Dream in PHP hypertextpreprocessor at
Mon Jan 18 03:53:27 EST 2010

Nobody else thought it was very revealing when someone shouted out "I like 
my job" (assumedly a DBA job) as a reason not to use NoSQL?! I love MySQL 
and NoSQL DBs certainly do not fit all projects, but in the ones where it 
does fit it saves a huge amount of development time and makes the 
dedicated-DBA position somewhat obsolete.

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----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Konstantin K" <kkrutoi at>
To: "NYPHP Talk" <talk at>
Sent: Wednesday, December 09, 2009 11:53 PM
Subject: Re: [nycphp-talk] MongoDB and others, convince me. :-)

Funny, but some (valid? fair? not sure) points about NoSQL databases:
accompanying slides:

On Fri, Dec 4, 2009 at 10:36 AM, Peter Becker <peterbsemail at> 
> Here here! I think that context is everything and the points you made are
> spot why this huge interest in non-relational db's now? I'd say
> it in 2 words Web 2.0 (well actually 1 word and 1integer).
> Could Facebook, Twitter and any of the others have any idea of what their 
> db
> should look like or evolve to? I doubt it, and so for these cases where 
> the
> industry is not mature the non-relational makes perfect sense. But for
> mature industries, then organizing the data with clearly defined 
> attributes
> and organization will give the biggest bang for the buck to the business
> who's inevitably using it (and paying the bills).
> It'll be interesting to see as these new industries mature and the next
> generations have a better idea of what they'll be/need to do whether there
> will be a migration away from the non-relational...
> Anyway, just my 2 cents from a neophyte who knows just enough to be
> dangerous.
> Peter
> Gary Mort wrote:
>> Ok, so since someone has been singing the praises of MongoDB, and others
>> have been mentioned, I figured I'd provide a contrarian view and see if 
>> you
>> can convince me otherwise.
>> I'm a big fan of relational databases. Have been using them since I
>> graduated from college in 1993, starting with DB2, followed with 
>> MySQL[and
>> boy was THAT interesting. DB2 was always like 2 years behind all the neat
>> features in other relational databases. Then I went to MySQL and not only
>> did it lack those features, it lacked a lot of what solid, dependable DB2
>> had! And it was on purpose! They deliberately choose to keep MySQL lean
>> and mean and avoid things like foreign keys, stored procedures, and 
>> such.]
>> My experience is that almost any application can be broken up and thought
>> of as tables. Especially in the business world, people naturally think in
>> terms of spreadsheets since the spreadsheet is king there. And a
>> spreadsheet is nothing but a table.
>> And by putting everything in well documented[ha ha!] tables with
>> consistent column and table naming schemes, even power users can use 
>> query
>> tools such as Navicat to build their own queries and reports easily. So 
>> by
>> keeping everything in a well understood industry standard format, we 
>> lower
>> the skill level needed to access and create reports on the underlying 
>> data -
>> always a good thing since I personally hate it when someone asks me to
>> create a report on sales from last year "just like this other one except 
>> we
>> need to include wholesale prices", There is no challenge there, no fun.
>> Just pure grunt work.
>> So all this talk of moving away from SQL makes me nervous. Will cluefull
>> users still be able to envision the data so they can pull reports. Heck,
>> are there even the user friendly point and click tools for them to do
>> so?[Personally I never use the query builder in Navicat and find it 
>> tedious,
>> but I know plenty of power users who CAN do that].
>> To me, it looks like migrating to this new method of storing data will 
>> end
>> up "locking" the business data up in a format that raises the cost to 
>> access
>> the data. It reminds me of the way Magentoo is designed, with those oh so
>> cool tables for storing field values without creating new table fields.
>> Sure, it may make it easier to expand/change the system, but having to do
>> multiple joins to the same dang table to get different pieces of data 
>> makes
>> the data harder to get to for non programmers!
>> My feeling on business data is that business data belongs TO the business
>> creating it. Not to some programmer who is the only one who can access
>> it[or worse, to some company that stores it in a proprietary format and
>> won't allow the data to be exported!] - so at the moment, I'm not seeing
>> that sort of access for data in MongoDB. Command line pseodo queries is
>> not enough, I want to know the data is easy to get out for a power user -
>> not me.
>> --
>> ----
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