Scaling the Cassandra Summit

Scaling the Cassandra Summit

Posted on September 17, 2014 0 Comments

No one said data management was easy, especially when it comes to using that data for mobile application development. There’s a reason data-focused IT professions are in higher demand in 2014. But, what if you could leave data access and API management up to someone else, and attain near real-time connectivity to data in the cloud or even behind a firewall? That’s what Progress DataDirect gives to you, enabling access to a broad spectrum of cloud and enterprise data using ODBC, JDBC, or a standardized REST API from your application. The ability to access a wide variety of data sources through a unified interface can satisfy a range of requirements for enterprise mobile applications.

If you’re a regular blog reader, you probably already know that Progress DataDirect was a sponsor of Cassandra Summit (hosted by DataStax), which took place last week in San Francisco. The event drew about 2,300 attendees – mostly developer types that were interested in learning more about mobile data access. Progress DataDirect had a small booth and demoed an early version of our ODBC driver for Cassandra.

Our DataDirect driver for Cassandra is architected to normalize data for extraordinary results. Typically, in vast scalable databases such as Cassandra and MongoDB, “flattened” data refers to a database where you have a single (or few) very large table. “Normalized” data refers to organizing the data into well-structured, related tables. Normalizing typically reduces duplication of values across rows in a table by pulling the values into a separate table and relating to it by ID.

The result is much faster queries and data access times when consuming the large amounts of data contained in Cassandra clusters in a straightforward manner, while leveraging existing skills and concepts using ODBC or JDBC. While other connectors might flatten Cassandra data into one massive table that is difficult and unnatural, Progress DataDirect normalizes Cassandra data into relational views that are natural to relational applications.

I had an interesting discussion with a vendor at the conference that was developing a number of applications for mobile devices. They are working with us and DataStax to figure out the optimal data access method from their mobile applications to several data sources, including but not limited to Cassandra. The solution has to retain the security aspects of the data with encryption and user authentication. Additionally, it has to avoid data replication – which causes latency – whereby the synchronization cannot possibly keep the data up to date.

This is just one example of how Cassandra used today. Other real-world examples include any company dealing with high-volume, high velocity data capture and analysis, distributed applications expecting elastic scaling, or media streaming of astronomical amounts of data (think of Sony PlayStation’s worldwide network of gamers).

I had a great time learning about other use cases for Cassandra, telling the crowd about the Progress DataDirect ODBC driver for Cassandra and getting to know DataStax – a really cool company that we look forward to working with further in the future. Did you attend the event and have insights I missed here? Comment below or reach out @DataDirect_News!

Jeff Reser

View all posts from Jeff Reser on the Progress blog. Connect with us about all things application development and deployment, data integration and digital business.


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