Feeds

SQL fights back against NoSQL's big data cred with SQL/MDA spec

The empire strikes back with multi-dimensional arrays

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

With the growing popularity of big-data tools like NoSQL databases and Hadoop, it might have looked like SQL could be in line to be moved on from “venerable” tag to “obsolete”, but last week, the ISO SQL working group agreed to start work on SQL/MDA (multi-dimensional array) specs.

The people behind SQL have decided it's time to get serious (really, really serious) about big (as in really, really big) multidimensional datasets, and have kicked off an effort to extend the standard, adding the new capabilities needed by spatial, scientific, engineering and medical users.

As spatial publication GIM International notes, SQL doesn't offer an elegant way to handle the kinds of arrays generated by scientific big data. For example, meteorology might maintain four-dimensional data sets covering location, altitude and time, and those kinds of arrays are held and processed in other environments, even if the data stores are then referenced in an SQL database.

Similarly, data collected by big sensor networks can easily become multi-dimensional – and even if the volume data isn't out of this world, the multi-dimensional nature of data sets puts them beyond SQL.

A separate effort, called Rasdaman (a scalable multi-dimensional array analytics server) has been working for some time to apply an SQL-like query language to array databases. Rasdaman's backer, Peter Baumann of Jacobs University Bremen in Germany, put forward the proposal now adopted by the ISO.

Rasdaman, GIM says, has showed impressive results: “In a recent technology demonstration, more than 1,000 computers collaborated in a cloud to jointly compute the result of a single database query. This ‘distributed query processing’ means a massive speed increase, and research challenges on multi-Petabyte data cubes can be answered that were previously unsolvable,” the outlet writes.

Rasdaman has also shown good adoption in the open source GIS world, being adopted by the ubiquitous GDAL (Geospatial Data Abstraction Library) as a library component, and with MapServer integration in beta. ®

Gartner critical capabilities for enterprise endpoint backup

More from The Register

next story
Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE
Tim Berners-Lee isn't happy, but we should be
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
'Stop dissing Google or quit': OK, I quit, says Code Club co-founder
And now a message from our sponsors: 'STFU or else'
Microsoft boots 1,500 dodgy apps from the Windows Store
DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! DEVELOPERS! Naughty, misleading developers!
Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can
No, not with swearing, but by controlling the release cycle
Scratched PC-dispatch patch patched, hatched in batch rematch
Windows security update fixed after triggering blue screens (and screams) of death
This is how I set about making a fortune with my own startup
Would you leave your well-paid job to chase your dream?
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?