immudb is the world’s fastest immutable database that’s also open source, tamperproof, cryptographically certified, and can be used as a replacement for any SQL database.
As far as use cases of immuDB are concerned, Jack Aboutboul, Vice President for Product at Codenotary, says their database is an option for “anything where you want to make sure that your data is there, that your data’s cryptographically verified, that you’re going to be able to see a history of your data and that it can’t be tampered with.” Aboutboul adds, “What we’ve seen so far is this works tremendously well for things like CI/CD, where you have things going on and you want to be able to store information about different components within your system or different parts of the build or different artifacts.”
As to specific use cases, Aboutboul mentions the financial sector, DevOps, government institutions, and manufacturing.
The latest release of immuDB includes some exciting new features, such as full asset support, deletion/expiration (which allows immuDB to support GDPRs right to be forgotten), enhanced SQL capability (such as SQL primitives), a cleaner interface, and Golang standard library support.
As to whether or not immuDB should become the defacto open-source database for the future, Aboutboul says, “When you talk about stuff like the metaverse, I think that we are already seeing a lot of activity around blockchains there, and blockchains are not always the most efficient way to execute some of this stuff. Whereas immuDB offers a very similar type of functionality but without a lot of the overhead that blockchains require.” Aboutboul wraps it up with, “Yes, I do think, as we move towards the future where data security, integrity, and verifiability are going to become more important to us in society, absolutely, I see us as becoming the defacto open-source database for the future.”
The summary of the show is written by Jack Wallen
Swapnil Bhartiya: Hi, this is your host Swapnil Bhartiya, and welcome to another episode of Let’s Talk. And today we have with us, once again, Jack Aboutboul, vice President for product at Codenotary. Jack, it’s great to have you on the show.
Jack Aboutboul: Hey, Swapnil. Thanks. Great to be here.
Swapnil Bhartiya: Yeah. Today we are going to talk mostly about immuDB. It’s an open source, of course, tamper proof database, which has cryptographic proof and verification kind of built into it. That’s I think almost all that I know about it, but I want to hear from you. Tell me about it.
Jack Aboutboul: Yeah, so it’s pretty much what you said. We’re actually the world’s fastest immutable database as well. And we just added a bunch of new features, which I think will make people very, very excited. But like you said, essentially, with the world’s fastest immutable database, everything is cryptographically verified as well. So you basically have a history of your data as you, work with it inside the database.
Swapnil Bhartiya: So if I ask, as you explained, this database is if I’m not wrong, meant for some specific use cases where you do not want, any tampering to be done, when we look at the whole blockchain or ledger system, where once you create. So if you can talk about, what are the use cases? Where it’s being used? Or where it can be used? Or where it should be used?
Jack Aboutboul: Yes. So the great thing about this release is that we have full asset support now, so full transactional support. So you can actually use it as a replacement for any SQL database that you would normally have used in the past, which is a great part of this new release.
So the use case is really anything where you want to make sure that your data is there, that your data’s cryptographically verified, that you’re going to be able to see a history of your data and that it can’t be tampered with. And what we’ve seen so far is this works tremendously well for things like CICD, where you have things going on and you want to be able to store information about different components within your system or different parts of the build or different artifacts. And then you want essentially be able to make sure that whatever you think is supposed to happen actually happen. So, that’s been one of the great use cases so far. And of course, really, I mean, there are so many, it’s basically, like I said, anywhere that you want to make sure that your data’s not being tampered with. I think that’s the most important thing.
Swapnil Bhartiya: Excellent. I was going to talk about the latest release later, but since you brought it up, so let’s just talk about that. Tell me what kind of new features functionality. Of course, you mentioned some, I know that there’s also added support for GDPR. So there’s so much to talk about, but let’s hear from you pick, cherry pick some of the features that you like in this latest release.
Jack Aboutboul: Yes. So from the user’s perspective, I would say that right now, really the biggest things are number one is that full asset support. And number two is the features of deletion and expiration. So that actually lets us be, lets us support GDPRs, right to be forgotten basically. So if you think of an immutable database, once the data’s in there, it’s not supposed to leave. And so how do you deal with the situation where you have the right to be forgotten and the data needs to be removed from database? So our expiration features, which basically lets you set timestamps on data, which you want to expire at a certain point, that’s now an option and that lets us support GDPR.
And we’ve already had a few people reach out and tell us just how interesting that feature is. And now it’s possible for them to come into compliance due to, the feature being available now. So we hope to see a lot of growth in that area and that growth is certainly coming. And so that’s great. One other thing from the usability perspective is that we also enhance compatibility with SQL. So there’s a lot of cleanup was done to make sure that when you’re using SQL, first of all, more SQL primitives are supported. And then it just, the interface is cleaner and it works better. A lot of it is under the hood, but that’s there. And I think, another thing for the hardcore developers is that we have Golang standard library support now. So if anyone is using ImmuDB from Golang, the experience is really, really very, very much simplified from what it used to be. So it’s, this is kind of a release, that’s pulling together a few things from different parts of the user base, but it’s kind of delivering something for everyone, which is something that we always like to see.
Swapnil Bhartiya: While you know, in the beginning you said, it’s one of the fastest out there, but are there other databases they also, deal with, this kind of, tamper proof or cryptographic. If they are, how different is ImmuDB from them, what gives you an advantage or edge over them?
Jack Aboutboul: Yeah. So first of all, our performance is amazing. The numbers are all, if you check out the GitHub page, there’s some numbers there that you could take a look at. I think that beyond that also, we have kind of infinite scalability built into the architecture. So that’s really something that an organization can look forward to leveraging, as they grow as their data sets grow. And other than that, I think we have, it’s really not set enough, but I think we have a great team. We have, a really, really awesome team of developers behind the product that they eat, sleep like a live and breathe this 24 hours a day. So they’re very, very motivated to make sure that ImmuDB really is the best, immutable database that’s out there.
Swapnil Bhartiya: If I just want to be very, very specific and ask, who needs immutable database. Of course as I said, you talked about it earlier, what are the use cases where it makes most sense? And what are use cases people must use it? It should not be an option.
Jack Aboutboul: Yeah. So I think when you, the first kind of thing that comes to mind is the financial sector, right? I think they’re dealing with a lot of data. They also have a lot of compliance requirements and, they’re certainly security focused. So I think that this is like really write up their block. Other than that, for DevOps purposes, like I said software development, that’s a very, very interesting use case. I think there’s lots of, we did, someone did a demo of like immutable elections basically. And I think that this is something that, politically is going to be very important in the future. So being able to work with, not just, election data, but government data in general, for them to be able to have, cryptographically verified immutable storage of the data of let’s say an event or of, some other like government program or whatever it is.
I think that, it’s very interesting there. I mean, it even goes into, as far as stuff like, passing laws where the government could theoretically store the data around like a certain proposal or a certain law or whatever it is in an immutable database. And then they kind of have like an ongoing record of, this is the law, these are the amendments that were made to over time. And then you kind of have like that chain to always look back on to see how like the body of the law evolved over time. So again, there’s lots of different sectors. I can think of manufacturing where you’re tracking our products coming off, like a manufacturing line and you want to be able to uniquely identify each of those products and you want to make sure that you’re saving a history of those. So it’s really, I can think of 101 use cases, really.
Swapnil Bhartiya: I’ll just take it one step further, not just recently, but early, it was more or less like, we used to encrypt and all this sensitive data, but now today, it’s like, all end-to-end traffic should be encrypted. Most our data should be even on our laptops. So do you also see, there will a point come that, just yes, making sure that nobody tampered with the whole chain, even for our emails or whatever transaction we are doing online because. And as we move to the metaverse world, we do need to make sure that whatever we create at that point, there’s a stamp on that and nothing can be tampered. So my question to you is that, do you also see a future where this will become the default? Just the way a lot of other things have, seat belts have become default in cars.
Jack Aboutboul: I think in a sense, yes. Because, especially when you talk about stuff like the metaverse, I think that we are already seeing a lot of activity around blockchains there, and really blockchains are not really always the most efficient way to execute some of this stuff. Whereas ImmuDB offers a very similar type of functionality, but without a lot of the overhead that blockchains require. So yes, I do think, as we move towards the future where, sort of data security and integrity and verifiability are going to become more important to us in society. Yeah, absolutely. I see us as, as becoming, the defacto open source database for the future.
Swapnil Bhartiya: Jack, thank you so much for taking time out today. And actually of course you talked about the latest features, but more importantly, you talked about, the need and importance and significance of ImmuDB, and also share, how it’s kind of an edge over other solution. So thanks for those insights and, yeah. Maybe, soon it’ll become a default, it should become a default. So thank for sharing those insights. And I would love to have you back on the show. Thank you.
Jack Aboutboul: Absolutely, Swap. Thank you so much.