e-Book - Redis in Action

This book covers the use of Redis, an in-memory database/data structure server.
  • Foreword
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • About this Book
  • About the Cover Illustration
  • Part 1: Getting Started
  • Part 2: Core concepts
  • Part 3: Next steps
  • Appendix A
  • Appendix B
  • Buy the paperback

    6.1 Autocomplete

    In the web world, autocomplete is a method that allows us to quickly look up things that
    we want to find without searching. Generally, it works by taking the letters that we’re
    typing and finding all words that start with those letters. Some autocomplete tools
    will even let us type the beginning of a phrase and finish the phrase for us. As an
    example, autocomplete in Google’s search shows us that Betty White’s SNL appearance
    is still popular, even years later (which is no surprise—she’s a firecracker). It
    shows us the URLs we’ve recently visited and want to revisit when we type in the
    address bar, and it helps us remember login names. All of these functions and more
    are built to help us access information faster. Some of them, like Google’s search box,
    are backed by many terabytes of remote information. Others, like our browser history
    and login boxes, are backed by much smaller local databases. But they all get us what
    we want with less work.

    We’ll build two different types of autocomplete in this section. The first uses lists to
    remember the most recent 100 contacts that a user has communicated with, trying to
    minimize memory use. Our second autocomplete offers better performance and scalability
    for larger lists, but uses more memory per list. They differ in their structure, the
    methods used, and the time it takes for the operations to complete. Let’s first start
    with an autocomplete for recent contacts.