As I continue researching the NoSQL database movement for a series of articles I am writing for DATAVERSITY, I am struck how the differences between the different types of NoSQL data stores can blend together.
Since NoSQL is more of a marketing term than one with a sharply-defined technical meaning, it is no surprise to find difficulty in placing different NoSQL databases nicely into discreet categories. For instance, an analysis of the Document databases world reveals that many of them are essentially Key-value data stores with the ability to store the “value” as a document containing an object marked up in JSON or XML.
Merging Graph and Document Databases
OrientDB is a great example of two flavors of NoSQL combining in one product. This database combines Document data store functionality with the speed of a Graph database when it comes to handling the relationships within the data.
Couchbase is yet another example of this blurring between NoSQL types. Formed by the folks behind the popular open source Document database, CouchDB, and memory cache giants, membase, Couchbase naturally features strengths from both types of data stores.
Don’t get me wrong, this blurring is a good thing, as it allows the customer more choice, as well as a chance to get a product more suited to their needs, when searching for a database vendor. It makes me think of the proverbial SNL skit advertising a combination floor wax and dessert topping!