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Displaying posts with tag: de-normalization (reset)
Dynamic de-normalization of attributes stored in key-value pair tables

Dear Kettlers,

A couple of years ago I wrote a post about key/value tables and how they can ruin the day of any honest person that wants to create BI solutions.  The obvious advice I gave back then was to not use those tables in the first place if you’re serious about a BI solution.  And if you have to, do some denormalization.

However, there are occasions where you need to query a source system and get some report going on them.  Let’s take a look at an example :

mysql> select * from person;
| id | name  | lastname |
|  1 | Lex   | Luthor   |
|  2 | Clark | Kent     |
|  3 | Lois  | Lane     |
3 rows in set (0.00 sec)

mysql> select * from person_attribute;
| id | person_id | attr_key      | attr_value | …
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How Todd Hoff learned to stop worrying and use lots of disk space to scale

Todd Hoff, who apparently learned a hell of a lot during a short stint at Yahoo followed by some startups has an extremely well-written and edutaining article about how scaling to a million or more users requires jettisoning more or less everything we know and love about relational modeling.

Even though he uses bigtable (Google’s distributed hash storage system) as his example, in reality this approach works well with relational datastores like MySQL and Oracle too, you just have to think about your data differently and use the databases differently. So I’m including this article in the MySQL and Oracle categories because I think it would be of interest.

Here’s a taste of …

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