[OT] large db question about no joins

Daniel Fetchinson fetchinson at googlemail.com
Fri Apr 17 03:26:21 CEST 2009

>> [off but interesting topic]
> <cut>
>> What would be the corresponding database layout that would scale and I
>> could get the total number of legs in the zoo or total number of
>> animals in the zoo without join(s)?
>> Cheers,
>> Daniel
>> [/off but interesting topic]
> That all comes down to the keywords, efficiency, robustness and
> performance and you can only pick one of them. So which two can you
> sacrifice? The good news is that it is only theoretical, if you have
> your requirements (i.e. the query with the right results has to return
> within an acceptable time for the user not to get frustrated) who cares
> if it is not as fast as it theoretically could be? Especially if this
> means you can sacrifice the theoretically performance for easier
> deployment and maintenance.
> To get back to the layout question, if I need to have a count of the
> legs at any given time, I would like to see the business process that
> requires this operation.

Well, I gave the concrete example of zoo/cage/animal/leg because this
*is* the business logic. I need to know for example the total number
of animals, this is pretty understandable if you have a zoo. Or you
mean that I should give another example?

> Using the business process I could probably
> narrow down the scope quite a bit like, it is not necessary to have a
> precise count at time *now* but it is good enough to have an exact count
> which is no more then 4 seconds old but the query does need to return
> within 50 ms.

No, I'd like to have the exact number at any given time.

> One solution could be to build a central data warehouse where all info
> is stored in. Then have satellite db's that does ETL syncing with the
> central one. The layout of the satellites contain an optimised table
> version for the queries you want to throw at it.

Let's say I need to implement this on the google app engine, so I
can't make too many choices on my own. On the GAE, how would I do


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