#285 — December 20, 2019

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Database Weekly

Welcome to the final DB Weekly of the year — thanks for all of your continued support, emails, and submissions.

To close things out, until we return on January 10, we're going to reflect back on what happened across the entire year in the database world, as well as , we like to reflect back upon what happened across the entire year as well as share what the top 10 most clicked links were :-)

— Peter Cooper and the Cooperpress team

First, we're going to look at the top ten most popular links of the year before closing out with the biggest releases and developments in the database world over 2019.

🏆 The Top 10 Links This Year

    as clicked by you!
  1. What Happened to Hadoop — Hadoop was often called ‘the next big thing’ in enterprise IT, until it wasn’t. A former write for Gigaom takes a high level look at the trends that pushed Hadoop out of the spotlight.
  2. Understanding Database Sharding — Goes over what sharding is, some of its main benefits and drawbacks, and also a few common sharding approaches.
  3. dbadiagram.io: A Free Database Designer for Developers and Analysts — An easy online tool to help you draw your database relationship diagrams and flow quickly using a simple DSL language.
  4. Comparing Database Types: How Database Types Evolved to Meet Different Needs — NoSQL, relational, NewSQL, graph, and more.. Many types of databases exist, each with their own benefits. This post compares different approaches and what makes each one tick.

Programming the SQL Way with Common Table Expression — Bruce Momjian discusses common table expressions (CTEs) and the ability to allow queries to be more imperative. View the on-demand webinar.

EnterpriseDB sponsor

  1. The Database Software Market: The Long-Awaited Shake-Up — A white-paper produced by the research arm of an investment bank that attempts to review the world of databases and derive some conclusions as to where things are headed.
  2. Was MongoDB Ever the Right Choice? — If you’re looking for a place to rant and rave about MongoDB, this isn’t it. As an innovation in the database world, MongoDB has received a lot of criticism over the years but the problems it solves are important, says the author.
  3. We Can Do Better Than SQL — Back in April we featured EdgeDB, an interesting new database that aims to break the relational/document-oriented schism with its own enhanced flavor of SQL. Here, they looked at the history of SQL, its strengths and weaknesses, and why they felt their variant is a true evolution. They haven't blogged for some time though, so it all remains to be seen.
  4. Inside Fortnite's Massive Data Analytics Pipeline — How the wildly popular multiplayer game keeps all the data to keep it running together.
  5. Is Amazon's DocumentDB Really Just PostgreSQL? — Amazon just announced DocumentDB, a MongoDB-compatible document database, but under the covers there are a number of hints that point to it actually being Postgres…
  6. 12 Common Mistakes and Missed Optimization Opportunities in SQL — A lengthy list of SQL “dos and don’ts” covering topics like timezones, ranges, formatting queries, and unions.

💻 Jobs

Senior Support Engineer - Severalnines (EU Timezone) — We're looking for a great engineer to join our support team to help people who use our flagship product, ClusterControl.


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🎉 Top Database Developments in 2019

Amazon launched a lot of stuff

Amazon Released DocumentDB, a Document Database with 'MongoDB Compatibility' — AWS kicked off 2019 by competing with MongoDB’s own Atlas service by offering DocumentDB, a scalable, highly available, and fully managed document database service that supports MongoDB workloads. GeekWire reported on the background to the story.

Amazon Web Services, Inc.

AWS Unveiled a New, 'Open' Distribution of Elasticsearch — Not content with going after MongoDB's breakfast, AWS turned to Elasticsearch (a popular document-oriented search and analytics engine/database) by offering a new, purely open source distribution of it after concerns regarding recent additions of more proprietary features to the main project.

Jeff Barr

PartiQL: A Universal, SQL-Compatible Query LanguagePartiQL is a new query language that extends SQL to be able to support non-relational, schemaless and other data formats too. One of its creators also created SQL++ (which saw implementation via Couchbase’s N1QL).

Papakonstantinou, Goo, et al.

Graph database fans to get their own query standard

A New Query Language for Graph Databases to Become International Standard — GQL is set to be the first new ISO-standardized database language since SQL and Neo4j were, perhaps unsurprisingly, strongly behind it.


The Easiest Way to Use MongoDB? It’s Studio 3T. Try It Today — Code translation in a click? Easy SQL to MongoDB Migration? We’ve got it - and more. Get your 30-day trial today to see.

Studio 3T sponsor

AI continues to merge into databases

Huawei Launched GaussDB, an 'AI-Backed Database' — The Chinese company better known for cellphones entered the enterprise market with a database aiming to ‘redefine data infrastructure through a Data + Intelligence strategy’. Bringing 'self-tuning' and AI features to databases continues to grow (even on mainstream databases like SQL Server) and while Huawei may not lead in the space, we'll see much more of this in 2020.


New database systems continued to be released

AresDB: Uber’s Go and GPU-Powered Real-Time Analytics Engine — It uses GPUs to enable real-time data processing in parallel.

Jian Shen

ksqlDB: An Event Streaming Database for for Stream Processing Applications — A scalable, real-time event streaming database for Apache Kafka that makes stream processing accessible via a familiar SQL syntax.

Confluent Inc.

TerminusDB: A New Open Source Graph Database — Billing itself as a database ‘built for data people’, Terminus is a model-driven graph database built in Prolog(!) GitHub repo.


CovenantSQL: An SQLite-Powered Byzantine-Fault Tolerant Distributed Relational Database — Written in Go, Covenant, also known as CQL, promotes itself as an alternative to Amazon’s Quantum Ledger Database.


Existing database systems continued to get better

MongoDB 4.2 Released — The popular document-oriented database took another step forward with support for distributed ACID transactions, on-demand materialized views, wildcard indexes, and retryable reads and writes (for handling transient cluster failures). Client-side field-level encryption also made an appearance.

Eliot Horowitz (MongoDB)

PostgreSQL 12 Released — Just a year on from Postgres 11 came version 12 of the popular RDBMS. Key enhancements included SQL/JSON support, generated columns, and significant performance improvements (particularly with indexes and partitioned tables). This issue of Postgres Weekly had a great roundup.

PostgreSQL Global Development Group

SQL Server 2019 Became Generally Available — The newest major version of SQL Server placed a focus on security with extended ‘always encrypted’ support, the T-SQL language was extended (particularly in regards to communicating with other, third party databases), and ‘Intelligent Query Processing’ brought new ways to optimize queries for performance.


SQLite 3.30.x Released — SQLite is such an unsung workhorse of the entire software ecosystem and continues to get better all the time. The latest significant release added support for the FILTER clause on aggregate functions and more.


Yugabyte DB 2.0 GA: A 'Jepsen Tested', High-Performance Distributed SQL DBMS — A Google Spanner-inspired, cloud-native, distributed, open source SQL database that aims to be Postgres compatible.

Kannan Muthukkaruppan

RethinkDB 2.4.0 Released — A very last minute addition to close out the year nicely! :-)

Christina Keelan & Gábor Boros

Other people did roundups too

2019: A Big Data Year in Review — Datanami reflects on 10 big data trends they said ‘to watch in 2019’ by looking at what actually unfolded.


Big News In Databases – Fall 2019 — Industry veteran Markus Winand often does quarterly looks back at the biggest database news of the past quarter. This is his fall 2019 update. We’ve covered many of these items but Markus adds an extra level of depth and insight you might appreciate.

Markus Winand