Many data-intensive applications rely on database systems to provide strong consistency and robust performance. By exploiting hardware features, modern database systems are able to provide unprecedented high performance. Such performance gains, however, are often achieved by trading off consistency or robustness, requiring application developers to deal with robustness and consistency issues, by knowing and reasoning about how the database system works internally. 

In this talk, we explore ways for database systems to balance the three important but conflicting properties (consistency, robustness, and performance) "under the hood," to free application developers from the hairy low-level details. Reaching this goal requires holistically examining the entire database stack, including various database components and other parts of the system that interact with the database. The talk will first introduce the serial safety net, a lightweight concurrency control mechanism that provides robust performance with strong consistency. We then address scalability and performance issues found in core database services to actually enable the database system to run fast, thus achieving high performance without sacrificing consistency or robustness. 

Tianzheng Wang received his Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Toronto in November 2017. He has been a research engineer at Huawei Canada Research Center in Toronto since June 2017. He works on the boundary between software and hardware to build better software systems by fully utilizing the underlying hardware. His current research focuses on database systems and related systems areas that impact the design of database systems, such as operating systems, distributed systems, and synchronization. He is also interested in storage, mobile and embedded systems.