Database Research Group

WSI – Database Systems Research Group


Ferry — Database-Supported Program Execution

With project Ferry we try to establish a connection between two somewhat distant shores: programming languages and database technology. Ferry explores how far we can push the idea of relational database engines that directly and seamlessly participate in program evaluation to support the super-fast execution of data-intensive programs written in a variety of (general purpose) programming languages. Ferry builds on technology developed in the context of our project Pathfinder.

Database systems as programming language co-processors

Relational database systems provide the best understood and most carefully engineered query processing infrastructure available today. Notwithstanding these data processing capabilities, RDBMSs are often operated as plain stores that do little more than reproduce stored data items for further processing outside the database host. With Ferry, instead, we aim to turn the database system into an efficient, capable, and highly scalable co-processor for your programming language’s runtime:

  • Haskell Boards the Ferry. A Database Coprocessor for Haskell. (IFL 2010, Utrecht University, Sept. 3, 2010). [Slides].