Not long ago, data was stored in physical files that were archived into racks of folders filling up entire rooms in the offices of large corporations. Then came computers, and the go to technique for storage changed to flat file databases. But times have changed again now, and things are more complicated than ever before.
Today, SQL databases have become an integral part of the IT infrastructure of any organization. For example, MySQL, an RDBMS based SQL implementation for the web, now powers very large-scale websites like Google, Facebook, Twitter and even YouTube. With this said, MySQL is the world’s most popular database and remains so because of its open source nature.
Technology changes rapidly and now the new buzzword in the database arena is NoSQL. What is NoSQL, you might wonder? It is a database technology different from MySQL, primarily because it doesn’t involve the Structured Query Language.
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Every summer about this time of year, the Earth passes through the orbital path of the Swift-Tuttle comet. That might sound a little alarming, but don’t worry—the closest we’re likely to come to the comet itself will be 1 million miles, and astronomers calculate that won’t be until 3044. (Still, a near miss by cosmic standards.) But bits and pieces that have broken off from the tail of the comet do collide with the Earth’s atmosphere, creating one of the most reliable and spectacular star shows of the year: the Perseid meteor shower, so called because the meteors, as they streak across the sky, seem to originate from the constellation Perseus.
This year the shower was intense, with as many as 100 separate shooting stars—cosmic matter burning up in the Earth’s atmosphere—tearing across the sky per minute. (An average meteor shower might have as few as one shooting stars per…
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