· Dec 20, 2021 1m read
Holiday Reading: What Lies Beneath!

For those of you who might be new to IRIS, and even those who have used Cache or IRIS for some time but want to explore beyond its usually-assumed boundaries and practices, you might want to dive into this detailed exploration of the database engine that is at its heart, and discover just what you can really do with it, going way beyond what InterSystems have done with it for you.

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· Aug 2, 2022 8m read
Data models in InterSystems IRIS

Before we start talking about databases and different data models that exist, first we'd better talk about what a database is and how to use it.

A database is an organized collection of data stored and accessed electronically. It is used to store and retrieve structured, semi-structured, or raw data which is often related to a theme or activity.

At the heart of every database lies at least one model used to describe its data. And depending on the model it is based on, a database may have slightly different characteristics and store different types of data.

To write, retrieve, modify, sort, transform or print the information from the database, a software called Database Management System (DBMS) is used.

The size, capacity, and performance of databases and their respective DBMS have increased by several orders of magnitude. It has been made possible by technological advances in various areas, such as processors, computer memory, computer storage, and computer networks. In general, the development of database technology can be divided into four generations based on the data models or structure: navigational, relational, object and post-relational.

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· Feb 15, 2021 17m read
Four Database APIs

A concurrent session in IRIS:
SQL, Objects, REST, and GraphQL

Kazimir Malevich, "Athletes" (1932)

"But of course you don't understand! How can a person who has always traveled in a horse-drawn carriage understand the feelings and impressions of the express traveler or the pilot in the air?"

Kazimir Malevich (1916)


We’ve already addressed the topic of why object/type representation is superior to SQL for implementing subject area models. And those conclusions and facts are as true now as they have ever been. So why should we take a step back and discuss technologies that drag abstractions back to the global level, where they had been in the pre-object and pre-type era? Why should we encourage the use of spaghetti code, which results in bugs that are hard to track down, and which relies only on virtuoso developer skills?

There are several arguments in favor of transmitting data via SQL/REST/GraphQL-based APIs as opposed to representing them as types/objects:

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Process-private Globals can be used as a data global in storage definition. That way, each process can have its own objects for the class with ppg storage. For example lets define a pool, which can:

  • add elements to a pool (ignoring duplicates)
  • check if an element exists in the pool

Here's the class:

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In this article I'd like to share with you a phenomena that is best you avoid - something you should be aware of when designing your data model (or building your Business Processes) in Caché or in Ensemble (or older HealthShare Health Connect Ensemble-based versions).

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· Aug 1, 2019 3m read
Nested set model for ObjectScript

In many projects I was faced with storing hierarchical data (tree) in classes.
By tree, I mean such data, where each node has a parent node — an object of the same class.
Many examples of such data can be given. For example, a catalog in the online store. Suppose that this online store sells books, in this case, the category tree might look like this:

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Hi everyone,

I want to talk about our project and use the dataset theme for this contest.

Our intention never was to be a data curator, especially because sometimes my precious data means a lot for me, but not for the rest of the world.

My Precious

We want to go a step further and empower the user to find the perfect dataset for their needs.

Our project is a bridge between the data science community and the developer's community using InterSystems IRIS to achieve this mission.

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· Feb 27, 2018 2m read
Dataset Lightweight M:N

*** archived ***

This data set demonstrates a basic M:N relationship between 2 tables
The dataset is targeted to show a slim implementation of M:N
It's no question that other implementations exist. But at significantly more storage consumption.

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Headache-free stored objects: a simple example of working with InterSystems Caché objects in ObjectScript and Python

Neuschwanstein Castle

Tabular data storages based on what is formally known as the relational data model will be celebrating their 50th anniversary in June 2020. Here is an official document – that very famous article. Many thanks for it to Doctor Edgar Frank Codd. By the way, the relational data model is on the list of the most important global innovations of the past 100 years published by Forbes.

On the other hand, oddly enough, Codd viewed relational databases and SQL as a distorted implementation of his theory. For general guidance, he created 12 rules that any relational database management system must comply with (there are actually 13 rules). Honestly speaking, there is zero DBMS's on the market that observes at least Rule 0. Therefore, no one can call their DBMS 100% relational :) If you know any exceptions, please let me know.

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· Mar 31, 2019 20m read
How to write the home address right?

How Tax Service, OpenStreetMap, and InterSystems IRIS
could help developers get clean addresses

Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Paying the Tax (The Tax Collector), 1640

In my previous article, we just skimmed the surface of objects. Let's continue our reconnaissance. Today's topic is a tough one. It's not quite BIG DATA, but it's still the data not easy to work with: we're talking about fairly large amounts of data. It won't all fit into RAM at once, and some of it won't even fit on the drive (not due to lack of space, but because there's a lot of junk). The name of our subject is FIAS DB: the Federal Information Address System database - the databases of addresses in Russia. The archive is 5.5 GB. And it's a compressed XML file. After extraction, it will be a full 53 GB (set aside 110 GB for extraction). And when you start to parse and convert it, that 110 GB won't be enough. There won't be enough RAM either.

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For the benefit of those who want to use the Document Database (DocDB) capabilities within InterSystems IRIS, and specifically the REST API it provides, I put together a Postman Collection that provides samples for several basic calls.

For example:

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