Mesh4x adds generic database support

posted on: May 7, 2008

First of all – a very heartfelt support to the Myanmar population in this times of crisis. Many friends are either already there or on their way to help as part of UNDAC teams. It’s a tough situation in a tough context, and all my hopes reach out to the communities there so they can recover soon. Unfortunately, it won’t go back to "normal" for a long time, if ever. I was in Peru last week and the August ’07 earthquake still defines how people live in Pisco. The press and much of the aid has left and the town is still…leveled. Throw in a major disaster in a non-resilient environment, with a bunch of foreign aid with varied commitments to the region, and the long term outcomes are very hard to predict.

This week we made significant updates in mesh4x. One of them is a Hibernate adapter, which allows you to plug into the mesh almost any relational database available in the market

Hibernate Adapter

In our first scenario, let’s say you have, or you are quickly hacking together, an application to help enter, analyze and report information. You have a database schema, and you’d like to integrate it with an excel database that field folks are using for data entry. You need to make sure updates and deletes somehow make it out to the spreadsheets, and that folks’ updates make it back in. Furthermore, you’d like folks in the field to synchronize spreadsheets with each other directly – thus making it a classic mesh scenario. With the Hibernate adapter, our goal is to allow you to mesh-enable your database by just mapping your entity fields to your database fields.

Hibernate, as most developers know, is an Object-Relational Mapper library for Java. With this adapter you can now integrate into a data mesh any database engine that Hibernate supports, which is an impressive list. By supporting Hibernate as an adapter we allow every user to customize the mapping of the mesh data to their database schema using familiar tools, and get support for a lot of databases. There is still some work to do – for example, as of today the adapter still requires the database schema to revolve around the fact that the rows are being synchronized in a mesh. We expect in the upcoming weeks to remove this restriction and use two separate ‘repositories’, one for the synchronization information (which you shouldn’t care about) and another one for your data.

This will allow you to point to almost any existing database schema and mesh it up without messing it up. (Apologies, couldn’t resist).

You can always reach the project through http://mesh4x.org.

Here you can see a list of adapters and suggest your own.

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