riak-js pre-release announcement/warning

Mathias Meyer meyer at paperplanes.de
Mon Oct 22 10:43:18 EDT 2012

Hey folks, 

I've been putting some work in the riak-js client for Node.js recently, and as we're getting pretty close to doing a release, I wanted to keep you posted on changes and especially breaking changes. 

About a year ago, Francisco Treacy started rewriting the code (originally written in CoffeeScript) in pure JavaScript. First up, thanks for all the great work, Frank!

After he sought a new maintainer for the library earlier this year, the fine folks of mostlyserious.io took over maintainership [1], and I eventually hopped on board and started hacking on the new JavaScript implementation too, to finish off missing bits [2].

Along the way, the domain riakjs.org unfortunately expired, but the website found a new home at http://riakjs.com, thanks to Vincent Mac [3].

The good news is that things are looking pretty good, and pretty much ready to be shipped, pending some updates on documentation, which I'll get to this week. The slightly bad news (only slightly, really) is that there are breaking changes.

As the client hasn't officially reached v1.0 yet, I figured it's still a good opportunity to move things around, make things more explicit and cleaner.

The basic APIs, though, are still the same or at least very similar. The most important changes affect Riak Search and MapReduce.

Riak Search is now fully supported, which means documents (i.e. JavaScript objects) can be added and removed directly without the need to store them in Riak. The functionality is namespace in the client, e.g. to find documents, you can use the following snippet:

db.search.find("users", "email:meyer at paperplanes.de")

Same for adding and removing documents:

db.search.add("users", {id: "mathias", email: "meyer at paperplanes.de"}) or
db.search.add("users", [{id: "roidrage", email: "meyer at paperplanes.de"}, {id: "mathias", email: "mathias at travis-ci.org"}])

db.search.remove("users", [{id: "mathias"}, {query: 'email:"meyer at paperplanes.de"'}])

MapReduce was also moved to its own namespace, with the API being pretty much the same as in the CoffeeScript client:


Moving these out into separate namespaces is mostly a matter of clarity and separating concerns, drawing some inspiration from other Riak clients.

There are other changes, e.g. regarding bucket properties (now db.getBucket() and db.saveBucket()), Luwak (getFile(), removeFile(), saveFile()), though Luwak would also be a candidate to be moved into a different namespace and having to be explicitly enabled because it's been deprecated and is not included in the standard distribution anymore.

So we're close to doing a release, but I just wanted to make sure information on what things might break is out before we do. If you rely strongly on existing APIs, make sure to pin your package.json to 0.4.1.

The next release might still be a bit rough around the edge, and it'll be missing support for Protocol Buffers, but one step at a time :)

Let me know if you have any suggestions or feedback!

Cheers, Mathias

[1] https://github.com/mostlyserious/riak-js
[2] https://github.com/basho-labs/riak-js
[3] https://github.com/vincentmac/riakjs.com

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