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NoSQL Distilled: A Brief Guide to the Emerging World of Polyglot Persistence

NoSQL Distilled: A Brief Guide to the Emerging World of Polyglot Persistence [Kindle Edition]

Pramod J. Sadalage , Martin Fowler
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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Product Description

Product Description

The need to handle increasingly larger data volumes is one factor driving the adoption of a new class of nonrelational “NoSQL” databases. Advocates of NoSQL databases claim they can be used to build systems that are more performant, scale better, and are easier to program.


NoSQL Distilled is a concise but thorough introduction to this rapidly emerging technology. Pramod J. Sadalage and Martin Fowler explain how NoSQL databases work and the ways that they may be a superior alternative to a traditional RDBMS. The authors provide a fast-paced guide to the concepts you need to know in order to evaluate whether NoSQL databases are right for your needs and, if so, which technologies you should explore further.


The first part of the book concentrates on core concepts, including schemaless data models, aggregates, new distribution models, the CAP theorem, and map-reduce. In the second part, the authors explore architectural and design issues associated with implementing NoSQL. They also present realistic use cases that demonstrate NoSQL databases at work and feature representative examples using Riak, MongoDB, Cassandra, and Neo4j.


In addition, by drawing on Pramod Sadalage’s pioneering work, NoSQL Distilled shows how to implement evolutionary design with schema migration: an essential technique for applying NoSQL databases. The book concludes by describing how NoSQL is ushering in a new age of Polyglot Persistence, where multiple data-storage worlds coexist, and architects can choose the technology best optimized for each type of data access.


About the Author

Pramod J. Sadalage, Principal Consultant at ThoughtWorks, enjoys the rare role of bridging the divide between database professionals and application developers. He regularly consults with clients who have particularly challenging data needs requiring new technologies and techniques. He developed pioneering techniques that allowed relational databases to be designed in an evolutionary manner based on version-controlled schema migrations. With Scott Ambler, he coauthored Refactoring Databases(Addison-Wesley, 2006).


Martin Fowler, Chief Scientist at ThoughtWorks, focuses on better ways to design software systems and improve developer productivity. His books include Patterns of Enterprise Application Architecture; UML Distilled, Third Edition; Domain-Specific Languages (with Rebecca Parsons); and Refactoring: Improving the Design of Existing Code (with Kent Beck, John Brant, and William Opdyke). All are published by Addison-Wesley.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 5965 KB
  • Print Length: 192 pages
  • Simultaneous Device Usage: Up to 5 simultaneous devices, per publisher limits
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 1 edition (8 Aug 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0090J3SYW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #44,667 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
By knurl
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am at a loss to explain how NoSQL Distilled: A Brief Guide to the Emerging World of Polyglot Persistence received so many positive reviews. The early chapters are reasonably well written, but the book gets much worse as it goes on, and the descriptions of the various database options are almost content-free and are highly repetitive, covering in each database chapter the exact same strengths and limitations common to all NoSQL databases, and furthermore repeating what was said in early summary chapters on key-value, document and graph DB stores. All of these chapters could have been massively redacted. Terms are introduced with no definition or context, leaving the reader to guess at what they might mean. The book is riddled with spelling and grammatical mistakes, making it even harder to understand.

I was glad that the text brought out some of the more complicated concepts such as the CAP theorem and the use of quorum, but the way that they describe a balance between consistency and availability was sloppily done and very confusing in sections. The code injections seems totally useless and distracting--perhaps these are in there just so that the cover can boast "real code inside". The code snippets are so small as to be useless, and the book does not really have the depth to lead a new NoSQL programmer through an educational journey. At times the book seems to rapidly alternate between assuming that you don't understand the code samples, and that you're an expert on them, which is very frustrating.

Overall, this book could have benefitted from someone (an educational consultant?) who could have improved it as a learning text, and it could have benefitted from a more careful editor. It's nowhere near worth the list price of £25.99... I would suggest maybe £4.99 since it reads more like a short treatise rather than an exhaustive coverage of NoSQL.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good objective coverage with practical advice 18 Oct 2012
Before reading this book I hadn't realised how much I was missing in the nosql space - this book has definitely solved that problem!

The book is well written and fairly concise in explaining the background of databases, the emergence of nosql, the different types of nosql database and how they are used. I do feel that the book could have been a little more 'distilled' as some things feel like they're explained more than once, but in general this is not a problem. It not only gives really practical advice on usage scenarios for each of the options, but also explains why this advice is given.

Another thing that was useful is when the books gets into more detail about specific implementations - there wasn't a lot of this, but its exactly the right amount you'd want from a 'distilled' book. One particular highlight for me was the coverage of graph databases - its something I knew nothing about and wasn't looking for, but I've found it extremely useful.

On completing the book I feel a have a decent coverage of the different technologies in the nosql space, and am ready to take a deeper look at more specific technologies.

Really good book!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Overview 3 May 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is a solid introduction to NoSQL data stores. This book inspired me to explore this world further with very positive results. It definitely expanded my horizon on the topic. It's not a large book so it's depth is limited, but it's a very good starting point, hopefully it will help you pick the right direction for you.
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Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book NoSQL Distilled is a useful and compact guide when trying to navigate the NoSQL jungle out there.

The subtitle: A Brief Guide to the Emerging World of Polyglot Persistence says much about the content and how the authors envisions the future of data storage. NoSQL Distilled by Martin Fowler and Pramod J. Sadalage (2013) is divided into two parts. The first treats the concepts that are important when considering choosing a NoSQL database. The second part is focused on how to implement a data storage system with NoSQL.

The book works fine for someone with little prior knowledge of NoSQL, but is still a fruitful read for those with more background knowledge. The text is easy to navigate and it is easy to skip the material that might not be of importance to the reader. The book starts by describing the value of traditional SQL databases with focus on transactions and the advantage of the standardization that SQL brings to the these databases. The object-relational impedance mismatch is described and is seen as one of the driving forces behind the NoSQL movement. The other highlighted force behind NoSQL is horizontal scalability to be able to handle larger amounts of data.

The book is good and I really enjoyed reading it. But there is one, nearly unforgivable, mistake. The book does not cover consistent hashing. Consistent hashing is used by Riak, Cassandra, Memcached and is fundamental to achieving reads and writes that scales horizontally and linearly.

A more detailed review is available from [...]
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