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From BrightMinds Dev <>
Subject Recent Content - Lucene vs. DB SELECT / DB Triggers / Memcached
Date Fri, 04 Mar 2011 17:59:40 GMT
We are developing a large 4-tier multi-server app that will accept 
Questions and related Comments supplied by users.  There will be 100K's 
of users that live in Shards.  Also, ideally there would be no delay in 
adding content and seeing it in recent results but to make the system 
performant a delay is acceptable.

On the main page we will have 2 panels with the 5 most recent site-wide 
Questions and 5 most recent site-wide Comments.
On the user's profile page we would display similar panels except they 
would only consist of links that pertain to that user.

There are essentially 4 design choices:

1) Do periodic DB SELECT calls and cache for site-wide content "AND" do 
live DB SELECT calls for user specific content.  Not wonderful but ok.

2) Use DB triggers to manage tables for site-wide content, though as 
content is sharded we would need to aggregate and resort based on 
results obtained from all shards "AND" do live DB SELECT calls for user 
specific content.  Sounds awful... .

3) Use a solution like memcached however having multiple servers add and 
prune site-wide content to cache seems like it would be a synchro 
nightmare "AND" do live DB SELECT calls for user specific content.  Nix 
that... .

4) Use Lucene to obtain most recent site-wide content (and better yet 
push it into memcached) "AND" use Lucene to retrieve live user specific 

Is this a natural fit for Lucene?

I understood Lucene is very performant but is finding the last X 
documents based on a long (timestamp) something that it would do very well?

Or is Lucene not appropriate and should we be considering something else?

Personally, I think Lucene is the best choice... but would like to hear 
the thoughts of others.



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