Why businesses should be paying attention to NoSQL in 2014

Apart from NoSQL, the cloud is revolutionizing IT as you can see from the emphasis coming out of Google Cloud Platform and Amazon Web Services.

Deploying applications into the cloud and providing a reliable, performant cloud infrastructure will revolutionize how companies do business and which applications they provide their customers. IT will have to figure out how to balance the demand for cloud infrastructures with standardization and governance that they deliver with on-premise solutions.

TRP: Do you think the Internet of Things will take on the mantle of cloud or big data as the biggest hype term? Or will it actually start to prove its worth?

BB: The Internet of Things has received strong interest in Europe for some time, but is now also gaining strong traction in the U.S. The IOT is very real and already proving it's worth. Google recently acquired the smart-thermostat provider, Nest, for $3.2B.

They didn't do that because they want to be in the thermostat business - they did it for the data. Everything is going "live" and it's actually frustrating to the younger generations when things they have are not "connected." IOT is just a nice umbrella term for describing what is already happening.

TRP: Cassandra is based on the support of its community, like most open source products. How do you plan to support this community going forward?

BB: Cassandra forms the core of our business, and the Cassandra community is the lifeblood of this technology. We are 100 percent committed to fostering the community, adding value to all of its members, and providing them with the tools and knowledge they need, even if they aren't DataStax customers.

Any open source company worth its salt knows that they will have far more open source users than paying customers, so you know going in that the real success for your company will be a thriving community.

We offer a website called PlanetCassandra.org that is packed with resources. We also offer free online training for anyone who wants to build their skills with Cassandra, and we recently announced a startup program that allows small companies to deploy DataStax Enterprise for free, thus investing in their growth at an early stage.

Last year, our first European Cassandra summit held in the UK sold out so quickly that we added a whole extra day to meet demand. Our US Cassandra Summit 2013 was the largest gathering of Cassandra community members ever.

We are planning to run the same style events this year and we expect even more success when we hold our U.S. Cassandra Summit in September and our EU Summit in December 2014.

TRP: There are so many NoSQL companies hitting the market now. Do you think the market risks getting confused, and how do you plan to set yourself apart?

BB: Sure the market risks getting confused. The market is confused already. NoSQL databases are revolutionary and the opportunity is as large as they come. Here's the first step to sorting out the real players… look for documented customer information. DataStax for example serves 20+ of the Fortune 100 and more than 400 customers - and more than 1,500 companies form the basis of the open source Cassandra community.

Today you can visit our site and read through 40+ case studies and interviews conducted with our customers, and more than 200 interviews on the open source page, www.planetcassandra.org. Now, many of the largest and most recognizable brands aren't the most forthright about their deployments - but that's generally because they are hesitant to share the "secret sauce" of their success. But if you are evaluating a technology and they can't provide 10 really well documented use cases, don't bother.

I can tell you with absolute confidence, and with no marketing hype, that we offer the very best database for online applications -- period. Cassandra is an always-on, fully distributed database, that is built specifically for the world of online, dynamic applications where data is absolutely king.

At DataStax, we deliver Cassandra to the enterprise, helping our customers overcome serious obstacles to innovation that they need to revolutionize the way they do business, and that they can't get done with old, relational technology.

There is nothing else out there that delivers our performance in the face of ridiculously challenging environments. With Cassandra, you can lose an entire datacenter and never miss an SLA for a transaction. Think about that for a minute… that is a concept so radically different from anything we've ever done with databases that it's easy to pass over. That kind of power is rare, and we deliver it in real life -- not just on whiteboards and in marketing speak.

We need to do a much better job at communicating those benefits to the market. There is a trend in technology to rest simply on the strength of your solution and expect the market to understand it organically. In a sense this is true, given the strength of our community - but you also need to educate people, and that is a huge focus for DataStax in 2014. But we are looking forward to an absolutely phenomenal year and are expecting massive growth in Europe and globally.