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Amazon Web Services launches SimpleDB Beta

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Amazon continues to expand its web services (cloud computing) offerings. They have just introduced Amazon SimpleDB, a new kind of data base that will help transform their current suite of cloud computing offerings – S3 storage and EC2 computing for example – into a live cloud environment. The Amazon SimpleDB is built on top of Erlang, and is optimized for large data sets, and is schemaless.

Simple DB is a web service for running queries on structured data in real time. Traditionally, this type of functionality has been accomplished with a clustered relational database that requires a sizable upfront investment, brings more complexity than is typically needed, and often requires a DBA to maintain and administer. In contrast, Amazon SimpleDB is easy to use and provides the core functionality of a database – real-time lookup and simple querying of structured data – without the operational complexity. Amazon SimpleDB requires no schema, automatically indexes your data and provides a simple API for storage and access. [More information is available here.]

My database nerd friends have been secretly telling me that this is what make Amazon Web Services seriously disruptive. It is built taking into account the realties of today’s web applications, and thus can help make web applications truly scale.

15 Responses to “Amazon Web Services launches SimpleDB Beta”

  1. Though its not a complete RDBMS but still you can perform all kinds of operations which a normal RDBMS can do. The same can be said about Poseidon database which is also a schemaless database based on the concept of “subject – verb – object” packed along with the Brainwave platform which is a complete development and deployment suit.

  2. Very interesting!- If you can get a real person to pick up the phone and help you if there’s a problem instead of having to get a major law firm track one down in the event of a problem, or if it does not cost you 10 times what it could have if you’d installed your own software, and maintained it yourself, I’d say what a great offering

  3. @Brian: You need to be insane if you think that you can offer these “plumbing” services better by yourself. And with Amazonians, you deal with real people with emotions, commitment and pride of their services. Something you can’t say when dealing with the Google (Ad) Machine.

  4. @Brian, the fact you can not imagine creative application for AWS without hard SLA does not mean it has no application at all – there are some companies who found and use it already. If you’re in doubt, google for “smugmug aws pdf” and hit first link (should be PDF presentation).

    p.s. looks like I had been able to avoid rude comments.

  5. You’d need to be insane to trust your Web site’s large-scale dataset to Amazon. Until they come out with a for-fee, guaranteed pick-up-the-phone enterprise technical support offering, it’s a huge risk. The service can go down and the only way to deal with these guys is via a little 200-character max Web form, or post on their public forum and hope other users can help you.