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Introducing Amazon Neptune: A graph database service for your applications

Last week was lined up with many exhilarating product releases from Amazon at their AWS re:Invent. Releases pertaining to Machine learning, IoT, Cloud services, databases, and many more were unveiled, which gave an altogether new outlook. Amidst all these, Amazon Web Services announced a fast and a reliable graph database built exclusively for the cloud.

Presenting Amazon Neptune!

Well, Amazon isn’t entering into our solar system. By Amazon Neptune, it means a fully managed graph database for end users, which makes building and deploying applications a cakewalk. It also allows organizations to identify hidden datasets within a highly connected environment.

Let’s explore some of the benefits:

  • It is built exclusively to cater a high-performance service for storing billions of relationships and for running graph queries within a millisecond.
  • Neptune backs the famous graph models such as Property Graph and W3C’s Resource Description Framework (RDF). It also supports their corresponding query languages such as Apache TinkerPop Gremlin and SPARQL. It allows customers to build queries with ease. Also, these queries can be efficiently steered through highly associated datasets.
  • It has availability of more than 99.99%.
  • Neptune continuously monitors data and backs it up to Amazon S3. It enables a point-in-time recovery from physical storage failures.
  • Neptune is fault-tolerant and includes a self-healing storage within the cloud, which means, it can replicate six copies of data across three Availability Zones.
  • It offers scalable database deployment with instance, types ranging from small to large–as per your needs.
  • Neptune is highly secure with different levels of security for each database. It makes use of Amazon VPC for network isolation, AWS Key Management Service (KMS) for encryption at rest, and TLS for encryption in transit.
  • Lastly, known as fully managed, Neptune excellently handles database management tasks, be it software patching, hardware provisioning, configurations, backups, and many more.

One can also monitor the performance of their database using Amazon CloudWatch.

Neptune in action: Possible use cases

In social Networks: With the help of Amazon Neptune, one can easily set up large scale processing of user profiles and interactions in order to build applications for social networks. Neptune offers graph queries that are highly interactive and provides a high throughput for bringing social features within any application. For instance, notifying the user with latest updates from their family or close friends’ zone.

In Recommendation Engines : As Neptune features a highly available graph database, it allows one to store relationships between information such as customer interests, purchase history, and so on. It can also draft a query to fire personalized and relevant recommendations. For instance, add a friend recommendation based on your mutual friends.

In fraud detection: A graph query can be built which allows easy detection of relationship patterns such as multiple people making use of a similar e-mail id, or people using similar IP address. In this way, Neptune consists of a fully managed service, which helps in detecting possible fraud cases by analyzing buyers who make use of fraudulent e-mail and IP addresses.

In knowledge graphs: Neptune allows you to store information within a graph model and makes use of graph queries to let customers easily navigate through information. For instance, a person interested in knowing about The Great Wall of China, can also know the other wonders of the world and where each of them are located. Additionally, it can recommend other places to visit in China, and so on. Thus, with a knowledge graph one can give additional information based on varied topics.

In Network/IT operations: By building a graph pattern, Neptune can track the origin of a malicious file i.e the host that spread the malicious file and the host that downloaded it.

Though in its infancy, Amazon Neptune can shoot up to great heights as and when it is absorbed by many organizations. Although, it has many competitors, but it would be exciting to see how it paves a way amidst all, and shines as the brightest ‘graph database’ planet.  

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Savia Lobo

A Data science fanatic. Loves to be updated with the tech happenings around the globe. Loves singing and composing songs. Believes in putting the art in smart.

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