Am looking for a good resource on learning the concepts behind NoSql databases.

Most things I find are related to a specific technology (MongoDb, CouchDB etc) but I'm after all the concepts behind NoSql instead of focusing on a specific area (some are graph DBs, some key-value etc).

Can you share from your experience and point me to a good resource?


3 Answers 3


There's an upcoming (as yet unreleased) book that might cover what you are looking for - http://www.amazon.com/NoSQL-Distilled-Martin-Fowler/dp/0321826620

You might also find Ian Varley's master's thesis useful - http://ianvarley.com/UT/MR/Varley_MastersReport_Full_2009-08-07.pdf

Another overview - http://www.aosabook.org/en/nosql.html

For specific implementations, this site covers a lot of ground - http://nosql-databases.org/


I don't know if that's even possible.

NoSQL is a broad term that covers graph databases, document stores, key-value stores. Their lowest common factor is just that you don't have an SQL interface to access the data.

  • OK, that much I figured, but there must be something that covers them all, or if not, then good ones that cover each one (but agnostic of a specific implementation)
    – JohnDoDo
    Apr 13, 2012 at 7:58
  • +1. Although even this isn't a criterion: "Their lowest common factor is just that you don't have an SQL interface to access the data." IIRC there's an SQL(dialect) adapter for mongodb or couchdb. It's not so much about the query language, but more about not being based on Codds rigid concept of relational databases.
    – back2dos
    Apr 13, 2012 at 8:37
  • 3
    @back2dos That's right. IMHO, the term "NoSQL" itself is misleading because it only speaks about the interface but not about the underlying concepts.
    – Raku
    Apr 13, 2012 at 9:48
  • The master's thesis @talonx refers to is using the term "non-relational databases", which is much better in my eyes.
    – Raku
    Apr 13, 2012 at 9:51

The NoSQL wikipedia article covers everything you need to know about the different types of NoSQL databases available.

If you want to delve into specifics, you can read about each one of them individually on wikipedia, or look for other types of documentation.

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