Thursday, December 12, 2013

What is Neo4J?

It is billed as the 'World's Leading Graph Database'.
It is a different kind of database if you are thinking about relational databases like SQL Server, Oracle etc. Graph database is all about nodes(vertex) and relationships(edges)between nodes. Both nodes and relationships have properties. On the surface it does not seem to have the rigidity of relational databases in terms of integrity relationships, but I have only skimmed the surface. If relational databases are synonymous with set theory, the Graph databases seems to lean on graph theory. These considerations apart it appears to be well suited for social networking and non-structured data. Well it may not be a good fit for relational data. Who knows the 'relational people' may add other hooks to do the same.

Get yourself acquainted with this powerful database technology here:

Download and try. The file size is small  (x64 bit version is 65.4 MB) and easy to install. It does not work on IE right now, but only on Mozilla, Chrome and some others. Looks like they are going to include IE as well in the future. The server comes up on my IE 10; can see the documentation but cannot work with objects. 
This one on Mozilla.

The querying the database is called traversing the nodes, consists of hopping as it were from node to node. It has its own query language which is called Cypher which borrows some concepts from SQL and you write commands using a shell.  The web based server has a navigational side to it which can be used to do the coding and viewing responses.

Hey, download and do a test drive



Word of caution

The browser may come up asking to download some JAVA upgrade. Watch out, you may be downloading all sorts of programs you may not need or you will be spending energy to uninstall. Probably the upgrade is not needed, I am not sure. Before the 'Java' was run the Neo4J was working!

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