Postgres has the unique ability to act as a powerful data aggregator in many data centers. Bruce Momjian, EnterpriseDB senior database architect and co-founder of the PostgreSQL Global Development Group, explored this unique and powerful capacity during the recent PG Conf NYC conference. His talk shows how Postgres's extensibility, access to foreign data sources, and ability handle NoSQL-like and data warehousing workloads gives it unmatched capabilities to function in this role.
The keys to Postgres’ database federation are foreign data wrappers. The strength of the Postgres community contributed significantly to the development of these extensions. As new data sources emerged, developers in the community built capabilities for using Postgres to work with data from outside sources. Foreign data wrappers enable users to integrate structured and unstructured data within Postgres and enable Postgres to read and write queries to foreign data sources.
These mechanisms give Postgres the ability to federate data, acting as the hub within the data infrastructure. Enterprises commonly run databases from a mix of vendors in their data centers. Postgres can absorb data from multiple sources and reproduce it in tables for simplified queries. The ability to combine structured and unstructured data—from sales orders and invoices to web activity, product management reports, and supply chain information—without sacrificing ACID compliance is a value proposition unique to Postgres.
Postgres has foreign data wrappers for CouchDB, Informix, MongoDB, MySQL, Neo4j, Oracle, Redis and others. They can map to the JDBC, LDAP and ODBC interfaces and work with such non-traditional data sources as files, HTTP, Amazon’s S3 and Twitter.
Keith Alsheimer is Chief Marketing Officer of EnterpriseDB.