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Google's Cloud Spanner To Settle the Relational vs NoSQL Debate?

Cloud Spanner is a new proposition for database as a service that emphatically offers "Relational with NoSQL scaling". Will Google come to dominate yet another market?

Once upon a time there was only one kind of database management system, the RDBMS, "R" for relational. Despite its resilience and trustworthiness, it had its shortcomings; it did not scale well, and the relational model it served proved inadequate in the dawn of the Big Data era for handling massive amounts of schema-less, unstructured data.
For this and a few other reasons, a new breed of DBMS's emerged, one that could handle the avalanche of big data, based on the notion of the key-value pair, and doing so by scaling horizontally. But, in order to become versatile, this new breed of management systems had to forgo the safety of the ACID and the cosiness of SQL, both long term partners of the relational model.

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