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If you believe TechCrunch - and that's a big IF - Google is on the verge of unveiling a web-based database service along the lines of Amazon's SimpleDB.

On Friday, TechCrunch reported that the world's largest ad broker is about to publicly webify an internal database tool known as BigTable, citing "a source with knowledge of the launch." And yesterday, Michael Arrington decided the launch will happen this evening at Google's "Campfire One" developer event.

"Multiple people have forwarded email invitations to me for the event, where Google promises they’ll be 'unveiling another exciting technology' to the developer community," Arrington wrote.

At Campfire One, Google-friendly developers gather to "talk shop, share some news, and eat S'mores." The last time they gathered, back in November, Google unveiled OpenSocial, a set of common APIs for social networking sites other than Facebook.

For the moment, BigTable is an internal Google database tool built atop GFS, the company's cluster-computing-based file system. But Arrington is sure that Google will turn it into a web service, offering access to developers across the planet. Amazon does something similar with SimpleDB, part of its Amazon Web Services (AWS).

With AWS, the world's largest online retailer offers on-demand access to processing power and storage as well as its fledgling database platform. And perhaps Google is getting jealous. But we can't say for sure. The company wouldn't respond to our requests for comment. ®

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