Databases are one of the fundamental building blocks for cloud-native apps. And with so many types of databases to choose from, it's important to understand their consistency models so that we can make smart choices.

But with acronyms such as ACID and BASE, making sense of them can feel like swimming in a big bowl of database soup. Spoiler alert, they have nothing to do with high school chemistry class.

In this episode of Mobycast, Jon and Chris kick off a three-part series where we dive deep on this database soup. In part 1, we learn about transaction processing, the ACID acronym and say hello to strong consistency.

Show Notes

In this episode, we cover the following topics:
  • In this new series, we are discussing database consistency models explained in three acts. This episode is "Act I: Transaction processing (circa 1973)".
  • We start with the motivation behind talking about database soup - why are ACID, CAP, and BASE important to understand?
  • We define transaction processing and its origins. What exactly is a "transaction"?
  • Transactions are governed by ACID semantics. We define and explain the four characteristics of the ACID acronym::
  • Atomicity
  • Consistency
  • Isolation
  • Durability
  • The computer scientist, Jim Gray, came up with the idea of ACID semantics in the late 1970's. We discuss some of the history behind this, along with a bizarre and tragic ending to his story.
  • We also share a personal story about another important player in transaction processing, Phil Bernstein.
Detailed Show Notes
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What is Mobycast?

A Podcast About Cloud Native Software Development, AWS, and Distributed Systems