Tonight my friend Zac Kleinpeter gave a great presentation CouchDB, a schema-less document-oriented database from the Apache Software Foundation. I have to admit that I don’t completely grok it yet, but the schema-less model does seem to be catching on in platforms designed for high scalability, such as Google’s BigTable, Amazon’s SimpleDB, and Microsoft’s SQL Data Services (at least the first available incarnation of it).
Since it’s mostly popular with the Ruby and Python crowds, there isn’t a whole lot of effort being put into .NET libraries, but they do exist. The SharpCouch library, part of the couchbrowse project on Google Code, is the main one that I’m aware of, but I believe there are others.
Definitely something that merits more investigation. I’ll just squeeze it in alongside my experimentation with Mono, NHibernate, Rails, and the myriad of other goofy things that I continue to fill my free time with. 😛