9 NoSQL Pioneers Who Modernized Data Management - InformationWeek

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8/30/2015
12:06 PM
Charles Babcock
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9 NoSQL Pioneers Who Modernized Data Management

The folks profiled here are tackling data management for the Internet Age, helping us all understand what can be done with a mass of unstructured information. See how their work has transformed the way we handle databases.
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Salvatore Sanfilippo 
Salvatore Sanfilippo developed the Redis in-memory, NoSQL system for use in connection with his two small technology businesses. The code took on a life of its own, a community formed around it, and Sanfilippo, accustomed to working on code from his home on Sicily, was pressured to start a company around Redis. He declined, wanting to reserve some time to spend with his family. 
In March 2010, Sanfilippo joined the payroll of VMware, then later the VMware-spinoff Pivotal, to continue contributing to Redis. He was a frequent contributor of tools for extracting data, among other things.
In explaining his decision to write Redis, he told European online publication Eu-startups.com, in January 2011 that he had previously tried to get MySQL to do things that it was not good at doing. 'Why there is no database that is able to natively handle natural ordering of items, that is, I put things inside with this order, so it should be fast to get the latest N items. After this consideration, I started coding a prototype of the system, and shared the first beta on Hacker News, receiving good feedback.' 
Derek Collison, chief architect of VMware's cloud division, noted in his own blog at the time: 'Many Redis customers have already experienced the tremendous benefit of storing select pieces of data within Redis for fast access... Some have used Redis exclusively, forgoing a relational database all together.' 
On June 25, 2015, Redis Labs in Mountain View, Calif., the largest company to grow up around Redis, announced that Sanfilippo was joining the firm as lead developer of the open source Redis system. 'I'll be able to work as I do currently, spending all my time in the open source side of the project,' Sanfilippo wrote on his blog, Antirez. Redis is currently ranked at No. 10 in popularity among all database systems by Database Engines. Only two other NoSQL systems, Cassandra and MongoDB, make it into the top 10. The other systems in the top 10 are relational database systems, including Oracle, MySQL, and SQL Server in the No. 1, 2, and 3 spots, respectively. 
(Image: Redis)

Salvatore Sanfilippo

Salvatore Sanfilippo developed the Redis in-memory, NoSQL system for use in connection with his two small technology businesses. The code took on a life of its own, a community formed around it, and Sanfilippo, accustomed to working on code from his home on Sicily, was pressured to start a company around Redis. He declined, wanting to reserve some time to spend with his family.

In March 2010, Sanfilippo joined the payroll of VMware, then later the VMware-spinoff Pivotal, to continue contributing to Redis. He was a frequent contributor of tools for extracting data, among other things.

In explaining his decision to write Redis, he told European online publication Eu-startups.com, in January 2011 that he had previously tried to get MySQL to do things that it was not good at doing. "Why there is no database that is able to natively handle natural ordering of items, that is, I put things inside with this order, so it should be fast to get the latest N items. After this consideration, I started coding a prototype of the system, and shared the first beta on Hacker News, receiving good feedback."

Derek Collison, chief architect of VMware's cloud division, noted in his own blog at the time: "Many Redis customers have already experienced the tremendous benefit of storing select pieces of data within Redis for fast access... Some have used Redis exclusively, forgoing a relational database all together."

On June 25, 2015, Redis Labs in Mountain View, Calif., the largest company to grow up around Redis, announced that Sanfilippo was joining the firm as lead developer of the open source Redis system. "I'll be able to work as I do currently, spending all my time in the open source side of the project," Sanfilippo wrote on his blog, Antirez. Redis is currently ranked at No. 10 in popularity among all database systems by Database Engines. Only two other NoSQL systems, Cassandra and MongoDB, make it into the top 10. The other systems in the top 10 are relational database systems, including Oracle, MySQL, and SQL Server in the No. 1, 2, and 3 spots, respectively.

(Image: Redis)

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Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
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9/4/2015 | 6:25:03 PM
How about Chris Lindblad as the 10th?
A nominee that's come in as the tenth pioneer is Chris Lindblad, co-founder of MarkLogic predecessor Cerisent in 2001. It became MarkLogic in 2005 with headquarters in San Carlos, Calif. He is the former chief architect of the Ultraseek search engine at Infoseek; Ultraseek is now part of Autonomy. Lindblad still works as chief of development at the firm. MarkLogic is a document-oriented database that evolved out of XML database roots, which can also conduct relational's ACID transactions. The BBC used MarkLogic for its 2012 Olympic Data Services. So is Chris a NoSQL pioneer or a combined database system pioneer? Any votes for Chris Lindblad?

 

 
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
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9/4/2015 | 5:53:11 PM
Altiscale CEO describes Cutting's sense of system design
This comment came in from Raymie Stata, who hired Doug Cutting at Yahoo at the time Stata was chief architect of algorithmic search. (He's now CEO of Hadoop company, Altiscale.) "What I appreciate about Doug is that he has a great design sense--relatively few programmers have that--and yet he's also very practical (and prodigious), so he gets things done fast.  Lucene and Avro demonstrate Doug's originality and creativity, and the result is clean but practical systems that have become very popular. The case of Hadoop is different: his good design sense told him that the Google guys did a great job and that there wasn't much sense in trying to improve upon that. He stated this quite explicitly. While those around them (some inside Yahoo!, some out) were busy trying to improve upon the MapReduce paradigm, Doug used Google's paper as the blueprint and (with Mike Cafarella) cranked out the initial implementation amazingly fast. This was important, because it turned out that the important engineering was more about building an implementation that could scale, rather than improving upon the abstraction. It's unusual for a single developer to have two 'smash hits' in Open Source (Lucene and Hadoop). I chalk that up to Doug's combination of design sense and practicality." - Raymie Stata, CEO of Altiscale

 

 
Charlie Babcock
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Charlie Babcock,
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8/31/2015 | 4:22:55 PM
NoSQL system builders are not necessarily data scientists
Asksqn, Few NoSQL pioneers would ever claim to be data scientists. They're system builders for big data purposes, not data scientists working with big data. But you might try Lisa Morgan's: 6 Characteristics of Data Drive Rock Stars. http://www.informationweek.com/big-data/big-data-analytics/6-characteristics-of-data-driven-rock-stars/d/d-id/1320502

 
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