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InfoQ Homepage Presentations Abstractions at Scale–Our Experiences at Twitter

Abstractions at Scale–Our Experiences at Twitter



Marius Eriksen considers that scalability problems appear when leaky abstractions are used, exemplifying with RDBMS, GC, and threads, presenting abstractions that help dealing with scalability issues: map-reduce, shared-nothing web applications, big table, all providing narrow access to explicit resources.


Marius Eriksen works on systems infrastructure at Twitter. Prior to that he architected Mixer Labs' database services, and worked on systems infrastructure at Google.

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Recorded at:

Dec 14, 2010

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Community comments

  • JPA as 'dishonest abstraction'

    by Pinaki Poddar,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    Interesting and insightful viewpoint in this talk. However, characterizing JPA as 'dishonest abstraction' is misguided.
    JPA is *not* an abstraction. It is a View in a classic MVC design pattern. The model being good, old RDBMS. A view is *not* an abstraction of a model. Nor is JPA or ORM is an abstraction of RDBMS.
    Like many other views, JPA presents the user an 'object-oriented' view of a relational database. Like any other views, JPA does not substitute or abstract the underlying model, just provides yet another perspective to a model and one takes (or rejects) a view purely based on their world view.
    For a Java developer dealing with a complex graph like domain model, yes, there is some definite advantage of taking a JPA view of a relational schema.
    For a batch upload of million flat records from a CSV file -- JPA brings nothing to the table.

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