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From <>
Subject Lookup views
Date Fri, 13 Jan 2012 08:57:30 GMT
Dear User Couch,

A project I work on is trying out couch and it's proving super so far so thanks a lot for
that. I wonder whether you could provide some advice on one particular feature that we haven't
figured out yet? It's such a basic requirement that I'm pretty sure there's something that
we're just not getting - I know I'm a lot more used to thinking in SQL than map/reduce.

Suppose we buy an sell an awful lot of fruit, mostly apples and oranges but sometimes bananas,
pears and anything else that shoppers want. We take a feed (from another system) of every
trade and load them all into couch as we go along, then define a view to aggregate them up
by various different aspects of the sale. We can control the grouping level to produce many
different reports out the same view and it works very well for us. Some of the attributes
on the trades documents are not on the original feed so we enrich the data before PUTting
them in couch. This is also fine.

Unfortunately, sometimes the enrichment changes. For example each trade has a fruit field
and we have a mapping from fruit to fruit type. Today apples, oranges and pears are classified
as round fruit whereas bananas are long fruit so we can put a fruit type field on the document
as we load it in but tomorrow that classification might change and pears might become lumpy
fruit instead of round fruit. We could go back and update every pear trade in the database
but we'd rather not have fruit type on the document at all and maintain a separate mapping

We thought that perhaps the map function could reference another database that was keyed on
fruit and had documents containing the fruit type but don't seem to be able to perform this
lookup in the mapping. We could get the document itself on the result but not extract just
one field to augment the original documents. We also considered generating the view's design
dynamically out of a mapping table and replicating the mapping into explicit logic in the
javascript but this seemed like an abuse.

In short, how would you implement a pre-aggregation lookup table?


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