Comparison of JSON with Relational Databases
Although even JSON hosts or represents data, it differs significantly from the conventional relational database model implemented in RDBMS applications such as SQL Server and MySQL. Knowing these differences can help you to prefer JSON over RDBMS or vice-versa, as per the data structure and type.
Following are the basic differences:.
- Structure: A table stores data in a relational database, while JSON uses arrays and objects from the same, which can be recursively nested.
- Metadata: A schema stores data about the type as well as structure of the stored data in a relational database. Further, schemas are created while creating a database and tables, not at the time of storing data. Even JSON can use a schema but it is not pre-created like in a relational database. Usually, a JSON structure is self-describing but if it uses a schema, it ensures more flexibility than a schema in a relational in a relational atabase.
- Data Retrieval: A relational database utilizes SQL, which is a robust and expressive language based on relational algebra, for obtaining data from tables . On the other hand, JSON does not use any popular language. In fact, it uses JSON Query Language (JAQL) and JSONiq, which are still evolving query languages.
- Sorting: In a relational database, SQL easily helps in retrieving data and displaying it in ascending or descending order. In JSON, a developer can sort arrays.
- Learning Curve: JSON has a much smooth learning curve. This is because the data types and structure supported here are used in several programming languages. Therefore, a developer with basic programming background grasps JSON concepts and coding quite fast. On the other hand, RDBMS is a distinct field to learn and explore, which takes time to master. However, once mastered, it has its own opportunities and benefits to offer.
- Application: The market has several commercial as well as open source relational databases to offer. There are also NoSQL databases but they use JSON to store data. JSON is usually implemented in several programming languages.