Traditionally CMSs use SQL databases that are really fast when you need all the information stored together in a record row, but are a bad fit when you need to search for relationship patterns that are not already stored together in your database. A significant performance penalty is incurred for every additional table that needs to be joined for a query. That is why SQL databases are notoriously bad at deducting relationships from datasets. Graph databases, however, are really good at this task.

In a talk we did at FOSDEM ‘17, Tamás Demeter-Haludka and I discuss potential application areas of graph databases in existing open source CMSs like Drupal.

We believe graph databases could make a big difference when used in key areas where traditionally CMSs would fail:

We've created a basic integration that makes it possible for non-developers to work with Neo4j. Combined with Drupal’s content modelling capabilities we believe it could be a powerful tool for people to explore graph databases using a GUI. There is also a case to be made for the use of graph databases in the Drupal ecosystem: sites that already use Drupal could benefit from its capabilities.

CMS as GUI of graph db

What are the possibilities if you combine graph databases with the tools and functionalities CMSs already provide?

For the video recording, click here.

Table of content:

  • Introduction (0:00)
  • Module demo (5:18)
  • CMSs as a GUI for a graph database (9:40)
  • Q&A (19:40)

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About the author

Kristof van Tomme

CEO, Co-founder

Kristof is a Drupal strategist and architect with a degree in bioengineering. He started his career as a technology manager. At Pronovix, the company he co-founded, he’s been focussing on Drupal since 4.7. Recently his interest in DITA and reusable, single source documentation have culminated in the project, an open source project that aims to become the GitHub of website documentation.

He initiated and later became the co-organizer of an introductory Drupal course at the University of Szeged (Hungary). As a permanent member of the Drupal Association, he was at some point the lead for the selection task force for European Drupalcons and of the inaugural Nomination Committee. Among others, he was the initiator and (co-)lead of Drupalcon Szeged (2008), DrupalCXO Brussels (2010), Drupal Developer Days Brussels (2011) and Drupal Government Days (2011). Currently he is involved in the organization of the Write the docs unconference in Berlin (2014 July).