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InfoQ Homepage News Neo4j Launches Open Source Graph Query Language openCypher

Neo4j Launches Open Source Graph Query Language openCypher

Neo4j graph NoSQL database team launches open source graph query language called openCypher. Neo Technology, the company behind the graph database, announced last week at GraphConnect Conference, the launch of the open source project that will be available to technology providers as a common language for querying graph data.

openCypher is based on Cypher, Neo4j’s query language used to store and retrieve data in the graph database. There is currently no common query language standard for working with Graph databases like we have SQL for accessing data in Relational databases.

The goal of openCypher is to accelerate the usage of graph processing and analysis by making it easier for storage, analytics or tooling platform for data access to graph data models. Technology providers can implement Cypher inside of their tools and platforms.

openCypher delivers four key artifacts:

  • Language specification: Licensed under a Creative Commons license, the Cypher language specification is a technical expression of the language syntax to enable parsers to auto-generate the query syntax. A full semantic specification is also planned as a part of the openCypher project.
  • Reference implementation: A reference implementation, distributed under Apache 2.0 license, is a fully functional implementation of key parts of the stack needed to support Cypher inside a data platform or tool. The first planned deliverable is a parser that will take a Cypher statement and parse it into an AST (abstract syntax tree) representation. 
  • Technology compatibility kit: The Technology Compatibility Kit (TCK) consists of tests that software vendors can run on their products, to self-certify support for a given version of Cypher.
  • Cypher reference documentation: Reference documentation for versioned releases of Cypher, includes the user documentation describing use of the Cypher query language with examples and tutorials.

There are several companies supporting the openCypher initiative. Some of these companies include Oracle, Databricks (the company behind Apache Spark), Tableau, and Linkurious.

If you would like to learn more about the openCypher initiative and how it benefits developers, checkout the FAQ page on their website.


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