Ten-hut! Triple-power NoSQL store passes Apache parade

US Navy photo by katz via Shutterstock
US Navy photo by katz via Shutterstock

A massively scalable open-source database project already powering a fleet of US Navy drones has found its feet with the Apache Software Foundation.

The Rya triple-store NoSQL data store has been granted top-level status by ASF having been initiated in the group’s community Labs for use in telecommunication sciences and hitting incubator status in 2015. As a top-level project, Rya has proven to the ASF that it has a working community and that it is governed according to the ASF’s processes and principles.

The US Naval Academy that supports Rya welcomed the ranking.

“We are very excited to reach this important milestone showing the maturity of the project and of the community around it,” the vice president of Apache Rya and Associate Professor of Computer Science at the US Naval Academy Adina Crainiceanu said in a statement

Databases like Rya store data in “triples” – subject, predicate, object – rather than using the traditional relational structure. However, they are also different to NoSQL that has flourished in opposition to relational, in that these systems can process trillions of queries a second and are capable of working with inferencing, therefore making them of use in analytics.

The triple-data format is relatively simple and flexible to use, making it good for expressing diverse data sets such as connections on social media, financial transactions and a range of other big-data applications including petabyte scale graph modelling.

Rya is capable of storing billions of linked information sets and of returning answers in under a second. The system has been built on top of Apache’s Accumolo – the distributed key-value store based on Google’s Bigtable – and features a MongoDB back end. Its use of storage, indexing schemes and query processing means Rya can scale to billions of triples across multiple nodes, according to ASF.

Besides US Navy drones, Rya has in its short life already been employed in what the force has called “advanced tactical communications” that use manned-unmanned teaming and in support of what it reckoned were “swarms” of small robots. Rya is also being used AI projects.