FoundationDB


Website: foundationdb.com
Twitter: @FoundationDB
Founders: Dave Rosenthal, Dave Scherer, Nick Lavezzo

Overview

FoundationDB is an ACID compliant database company that supports multi-model databases for SQL and NoSQL. The company provides data storage technology that allows engineers and companies to focus on issues other than building their data stack. FoundationDB's database technology combines the advantages of modern NoSQL databases with ACID transactions - ACID stands for “atomicity, consistency, isolation, durability.”  These properties ensure that when a user changes database, the changes are recorded reliably and permanently or they are rejected completely. [3]  The database scales across a distributed infrastructure without the worry of a single point of failure, making it easier to scale. [1]  FoundationDB supports millions of fully-transactional operations per second on a distributed cluster of commodity servers. It also supports a diverse set of applications and data models through simple layers which map different data models onto FoundationDB’s ordered keys and values. [4]

History

Headquartered in Tyson's Corner, VA, FoundationDB was founded in 2009 by Nick Lavezzo, Dave Rosenthal, and Dave Scherer. The team's previous company, Visual Sciences, was acquired by Omniture for around $60 million in 2008. The founders first thought to build FoundationDB they observed a lack of innovation in databases as developers were forced to choose between existing NoSQL and SQL databases. After a year of initial coding, the founders created a new database that borrows from both types of databases. SQL databases, which have transactional integrity, are hard to scale. NoSQL databases are scalable, but have lost a lot of their transactional integrity. This means that developers have to compromise some of their needs when choosing a database. To build a database that is scalable and maintains transactional integrity, the creators made their database fully ACID compliant, which enabled many clients to read and write the same data at the same time. [2]  By integrating what they call "YesACID," FoundationDB's database is industrial strength, scalable, and fault tolerant. [1]

Acquisitions

In 2013, FoundationDB acquired its first startup, Akiban, a company whose SQL engine is built around the same abstraction FoundationDB's substrate used. Clients need relational and non-relational, as well as SQL and non-SQL capabilities, and Akiban’s SQL capabilities are directly applicable to distributed systems and the world of NoSQL because it operates on top of objects. Akiban CEO Ori Hernnstadt and the rest of the company’s key technical people will stay on the team. [6]


References

  1. Alex Williams "FoundationDB - Not Your Standard NoSQL Database" TechCrunch September 10, 2012

  2. Christina Farr "SQL or NoSQL: FoundationDB launches a 'best of both worlds' database" VentureBeat March 4, 2013

  3. Klint Finley "Database House Wants You to Stop Dropping ACID" Wired March 4, 2013

  4. Gery Menegaz "FoundationDB releases new NoSQL data platform" ZDNet March 5, 2013

  5. Joab Jackson "FoundationDB aims to consolidate NoSQL" InfoWorld March 6, 2013

  6. Barb Darrow "FoundationDB buys Akiban to wed NoSQL and SQL worldsGigaom July 17, 2013

  7. Jon Evans "FoundationDB And The New NoSQL" TechCrunch December 13, 2014