MongoDB is not your daddy’s database, and you probably didn’t learn it in college.
But chances are good if you work just about anywhere in the next few years, you’ll find it there. Ok, maybe not everywhere, but at least in 75 percent of enterprises, said Dwight Merriman, the company’s chairman.
If that sounds ambitious, it’s reasonably well-grounded. Consider there have been more than 7 million downloads of the Open Source database, that 10,000 plus are participating “in the product” in meetups, user groups and such, and that the company has over 500 partners including some pretty notable vendors like IBM, Teradata and SAP, as well as other up and comers like Cloudera, Pentaho and Red Hat.
MongoDB has come from its initial release in 2009 to become the fifth largest database in the world according to DB-Engines, just behind PostgreSQL, MySQL, Microsoft SQL Server and Oracle.
What’s its goal? “We want to become the leading database in the world,” says Merriman. “But that will take time.”
Big, Bigger, Biggest
And while he is hesitant to say how much time, by the looks of the line of developers, administrators and business managers waiting to get into MongoDB World in New York City, it may not be too long. Think about it: 1,800 participants from 30 countries at its very first user conference.
As one attendee said, “Wow, this is big. I expected a wedding crowd, but this is like an Apple event.”
Though MongoDB CEO Max Schireson made it clear in his morning keynote that the company’s goal is not to annihilate the competition, he did imply that the database will become so useful that it will grow more quickly than existing vendors and outrank them. That’s already happened with DB2, Microsoft Access, SQLite, Sybase and many others that have been around for a decade or more.
Besides, Schireson said in his morning keynote, yesterday’s structured databases weren’t built for today’s world where the iOT is generating data at an exponentially faster rate than people, where servers that cost 5k are unaffordable given the number needed to work with today’s volume of data, and where businesses of most any kind, can’t wait a year or more for solutions to be developed.
"Today a 'big' application has millions of users engaging constantly through their mobile phones," Schireson says. "It’s not enough just to consummate a transaction. We expect to be able to build applications in months that used to take years, and we have to be able to update them weekly, daily, or even hourly."
Who’s using MongoDB? All sorts of companies and organizations ranging from financial firms like Citigroup, to dating sites like eHarmony, to the City of Chicago to research institutes that are trying to do things like discover the cure for cancer.
MongoDB’s popularity will likely to grow even faster in the future because they’re making it easy and more affordable for Enterprises and developers to start and to keep using it by making it available in the Cloud.
It has been on AWS (where 40 percent to 50 percent of users access it) and IBM’s SoftLayer for quite some time and this morning they announced managed services partnerships with two other large vendors, Microsoft Azure and Google Compute Engine.
This will, no doubt, bring in new users.
It’s a smart move by MongoDB and it falls in line with their overall strategy of giving its customers choice.
And finally, while it’s tempting to taunt Oracle with a “we’re rising meteorically and you’re losing customers left and right,” we’re not going to do it.
“It’s not a zero sum game,” these words are repeated here over and over again.
Different kinds of databases are needed for different kinds of problems was the sentiment in the keynote.
But even so, yesterday’s databases can’t be used to solve the problems or harness the opportunities of today’s data driven world.