Couchbase Server Unplugged

Why do we need Couchbase Server?

Tape is dead, disk is tape, flash is disk, RAM locality is King.

—Jim Gray (2006)

As memory gets cheaper and cheaper, keeping data in RAM becomes a more attractive and practical proposition.

Increasingly data is represented as JSON at application boundaries.

What is Couchbase Server?

Couchbase Server allows for Layer Consolidation - one layer subsumes another, both layers benefit and share common services (as demonstrated in the keynotes from Viber and Amadeus) having fewer layers reduces the logic needed to keep them in sync.

Couchbase is a distributed, master-less, shared-nothing, memory-first, auto-sharded document databases that is built to perform at web-scale.

Couchbase is a document-database paired with a cache (i.e. we keep stuff in memory).


N1QL (/ˈnɪkəl/) is an expressive, SQL-like query languages. The “N1” comes from non-first normal form, meaning we relax the requirements of first normal form, allowing for duplication of data. See my notes on the N1QL session.

Common use cases

  • Social gaming
  • Ad targeting
  • User profile store
  • Session store
  • Content and metadata store
  • High availability cache