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Apache CouchDB hits 0.11.0, drops "alpha" and "beta"

Posted by on March 30, 2010

Today, Noah Slater, release manager of the Apache CouchDB project, announced the release of CouchDB 0.11.0. CouchDB is a document-oriented database and is one of the poster children of the NoSQL movement.

The latest release of CouchDB has a long list of changes, including:

  • Added support for building a Windows installer as part of “make dist”
  • Added optional “raw” binary collation for faster view builds where Unicode collation is not important
  • Improved view information objects
  • Improved speed and concurrency of config lookups
  • Various improvements to the Futon UI

CouchDB 0.11.0 is the first release of the software that does not carry the “alpha” or “beta” tag. Whether this means the product can be considered production-ready is up to you, but the CouchDB wiki lists quite a number of projects already using the software.

I recently sat down and started playing with CouchDB, trying to wrap my head around this new way of “doing databases.” The CouchDB Wiki is a good place to start, although I found that it seems to presume a decent amount of prior knowledge (a definite hindrance to me, since I lack some of that prior knowledge!).

There’s also an online version of O’Reilly’s CouchDB: The Definitive Guide, and I found this useful to get myself started—although you should note that a few places were a tad out-of-date relative to the latest release (at least, that’s how it appeared to me). Nothing critical, though.

If you haven’t yet tried CouchDB, I recommend you do so; it’s definitely a different way of doing things than traditional relational databases, and it takes some getting used to, but it feels very natural after a while. Of course, it’s not necessarily going to outright replace your existing SQL-based data stores, but for the right project, it’ll surely be useful.

You can download CouchDB 0.11.0 from the CouchDB downloads page. You’ll also find a list of the changes incorporated in 0.11.0 there.

Carl works for Michigan State University's National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory as an Applications Programmer. A Zend Certified Engineer, Carl uses PHP in creative ways to solve some of the lab's interesting software problems. He's interested in PHP, human-computer interaction, and all manner of "shiny new things."
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