Gone are the days of atwelve-to-eighteen-month development cycle. These days’ small teams operate in agile sprints, iterating quickly and pushing code every week or two. The applications that once used to serve as a finite audience are now getting delivered as services that must be always-on, accessible from various different devices and scaled globally to millions of users. Furthermore, relational databases are not at all designed to handle the scale and agility challenges nor are they created to take advantage of the commodity storage and processing power available these days.

Moreover, a common problem which is often faced by developers is that application schemas invariably evolve. Business requirements and needs change at much faster pace compared to before. Designing a schema for 6 months that will serve the application for the next 3 years is not practical anymore. Developers have been working with applications that create massive volumes of new, rapidly changing data and that too different types — structured, semi-structured, unstructured and polymorphic data.

Compared to relational databases, NoSQL databases are undoubtedly more scalable and also provide excellent performance and their data model caters several issues that the relational model is not designed to address.

Choosing a document-oriented database

Meet Azure DocumentDB

Azure DocumentDB is a NoSQL document database service specifically designed from the ground up to natively support JSON and JavaScript directly inside the database engine. DocumentDB is said to have combined the database functionality of NoSQL with the transactional capabilities of relational databases. It seamlessly runs on the Azure cloud hosting service, providing basic document storage capabilities plus transaction semantics and query processing, which are two features commonly found in relational database systems.

The solution is Non-relational, no schema forced, Predictable throughput, Low Latency and Flexible query and ideally suited for organizations that require a simple back-end database for mobile or web application storage. It automatically indexes all JSON documents added to the database, then allows you to use familiar SQL syntax to query them without specifying the schema or secondary indices up front. With DocumentDB, users can build modern, scalable, mobile and web applications with a unique combination of robust querying and transactional data processing.

The Benefits of NoSQL DocumentDB:

• Built for simplicity, scale and performance
• Ad-hoc Queries with familiar SQL Syntax
• JavaScript execution within database
• Elastically scalable throughput and storage
• Familiar SQL querying over a flexible schema
• Automatic indexing of every document property
• Low latency reads and writes for high scale gaming, social, IoT and other app scenarios

A Deep Dive into NoSQL Pool

As computing continues its move to the cloud, more and more applications are benefiting from this approach. As a matter of fact, a cloud platform that doesn’t offer a document database today is probably considered outdated. DocumentDB is a relatively simple and scalable database—it’s a NoSQL technology—that also provides more advanced data management capabilities such as an SQL-based query language, stored procedures, user-defined functions (UDF) and atomic transactions. The flexibility of not being locked into a schema makes it quite a solution.

We recently hosted a webinar onAzure DocumentDB. View the recording here to gain more understanding.