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From Janne Jalkanen <>
Subject Re: Counters and Top 10
Date Sat, 24 Dec 2011 13:47:30 GMT

In our case we didn't need an exact daily top-10 list of pages, just a good guess of it. 
So the way we did it was to insert a column with a short TTL (e.g. 12 hours) with the page
id as the column name.  Then, when constructing the top-10 list, we'd just slice through the
entire list of unexpired page id's, get the actual activity data for each from another CF
and then sort.  The theory is that if a page is popular, they'd be referenced at least once
in the past 12 hours anyway.  Depending on the size of your hot pages and the frequency at
which you'd need the top-10 list, you can then tune the TTL accordingly.  We started at 24
hrs, then went down to 12 and then gradually downwards.

So while it's not guaranteed to be the precise top-10 list for the day, it is a fairly accurate
sampling of one.


On 23 Dec 2011, at 11:52, aaron morton wrote:

> Counters only update the value of the column, they cannot be used as column names. So
you cannot have a dynamically updating top ten list using counters.
> You have a couple of options. First use something like redis if that fits your use case.
Redis could either be the database of record for the counts. Or just an aggregation layer,
write the data to cassandra and sorted sets in redis then read the top ten from redis and
use cassandra to rebuild redis if needed. 
> The other is to periodically pivot the counts into a top ten row where you use regular
integers for the column name. With only 10K users you could do this with an process that periodically
reads all the users rows or where ever the counters are and updates the aggregate row. Depending
on data size you cold use hive/pig or whatever regular programming language your are happy
> I guess you could also use redis to keep the top ten sorted and then periodically dump
that back to cassandra and serve the read traffic from there.  
> Hope that helps 
> -----------------
> Aaron Morton
> Freelance Developer
> @aaronmorton
> On 23/12/2011, at 3:46 AM, R. Verlangen wrote:
>> I would suggest you to create a CF with a single row (or multiple for historical
data) with a date as key (utf8, e.g. 2011-12-22) and multiple columns for every user's score.
The column (utf8) would then be the score + something unique of the user (e.g. hex representation
of the TimeUUID). The value would be the TimeUUID of the user.
>> By default columns will be sorted and you can perform a slice to get the top 10.
>> 2011/12/14 <>
>> Hi all,
>> I'm using Cassandra in production for a small social network (~10.000 people).
>> Now I have to assign some "credits" to each user operation (login, write post
>> and so on) and then beeing capable of providing in each moment the top 10 of
>> the most active users. I'm on Cassandra 0.7.6 I'd like to migrate to a new
>> version in order to use Counters for the user points but ... what about the top
>> 10?
>> I was thinking about a specific ROW that always keeps the 10 most active users
>> ... but I think it would be heavy (to write and to handle in thread-safe mode)
>> ... can counters provide something like a "value ordered list"?
>> Thanks for any help.
>> Best regards,
>> Carlo

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