It is probably an understatement to say that the tech world is obsessed with Big Data—tons of articles are generated each week about automated computational analytics. You certainly can understand the fervor, given the game-changing insights that will impact business, consumers and society that Big Data initiatives will bestow on us.

But as we foam at the mouth over the next great revelation that will emerge from the Hadoop cluster, a new wave of cloud-enabled applications are testing the limits of our traditional relational database systems. SQL-based databases are buckling under a tidal wave of tens of millions of good ole-fashion ACID transactions.

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