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Jonathan Lacefield, Director of Customer Experience and Graph Solutions at DataStax

How to Tap Into the Power of a NoSQL Database

By Jonathan Lacefield, Director of Customer Experience and Graph Solutions at DataStaxMarch 5, 2019

Businesses have been relying on relational database management systems (RDBMS) to store, process, and analyze their data for decades. These systems have been around since the 1970s and were created for a world where virtually all data was structured (e.g., names and ZIP codes).

However, today’s data comes in many more forms and also comes much faster and heavier. To unlock the full potential of this high-volume, high-variability data, organizations simply cannot continue to rely solely on relational databases. A new kind of database is required.

This is why we’ve seen the emergence and increased adoption of NoSQL databases in recent years.

While NoSQL databases currently account for just 3% of the $46 billion database market, forward-thinking companies are increasingly migrating to them to future-proof their operations.

The Case for NoSQL Databases

Why are today’s leading companies moving to NoSQL databases?

For starters, NoSQL databases are perfect for running application deployments in hybrid or multi cloud environments because of their flexibility in handling data and easy scalability.

NoSQL databases help organizations better understand the relationships between all of the data they have in their possession—not just the structured data.

This enables them to target their customers more effectively, identify opportunities they might have otherwise missed, and detect problems as they materialize—or even before they occur—which sure beats waiting until something terrible happens and being forced to respond from a defensive position.

NoSQL databases also help companies lower their operating costs. Whereas RDBMS generally run on expensive servers, leading NoSQL databases can be delivered through the cloud, leveraging inexpensive commodity hardware. This makes it easier for companies to find room in their budgets to store and process large swaths of data.

What’s more, NoSQL databases provide the elastic scalability today’s leading organizations require. If an ecommerce site isn’t working properly because there are more concurrent users than the underlying database can handle, customers will be frustrated. If an internal app stalls for the same reason, employee productivity will grind to a halt. Because they scale outward instead of upward, NoSQL databases can accommodate traffic spikes with ease—ensuring optimal user experiences and productive employees.

NoSQL databases are also much easier to manage compared to RDBMS, requiring companies to devote fewer internal resources to their operation. Engineers and architects might still have to tweak things here and there, but they are nowhere near as resource-intensive as traditional RDBMS.

Finally, NoSQL databases that incorporate graph technology are ideal for fraud detection, maintaining compliance with often burdensome and complicated regulations, and keeping customer data safe.

Getting Started With NoSQL Databases

By now you may be sold on the transformative promise of NoSQL.

But how exactly do you get started?

It’s easier than you might think.

We built DataStax Enterprise (DSE), the always-on, active everywhere database designed for hybrid cloud environments, to help organizations realize their full potential by leveraging powerful technology created for the modern world.

DSE was designed to be deployed on any infrastructure, so you’ll be able to use the database on whatever hardware your business currently relies on.

DSE uses a masterless,  active everywhere architecture to ensure high availability without requiring you to invest in failover solutions. It also provides data autonomy—meaning you can take your data with you wherever you go instead of being locked in to a vendor’s solution—and enables you to manage workloads across data centers and cloud environments, increasing efficiency even more.

In today’s data-driven world, companies that refuse to migrate to modern database solutions will be left in the dust. On the flipside, those that are powered by NoSQL databases will be able to move faster, more affordably, and with more data and insights at their disposal

Whitepaper: Architect’s Guide to NoSQL

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