Good news! Cloudant has announced the completion of the BigCouch merge. This is a huge step forward for CouchDB. So thank you to Cloudant, and thank you to the committers (particularly Robert Newson and Paul Davis) who slogged (and travelled the world to pair with each other) to make this happen.

What does this mean? Well, right now, the code is merged, but not released. So hold your clicks just a moment! Once the code has been tested, we will include it in one of our regular releases. (If you want to help us test, hop on to the dev@ mailing list!)

What’s new? The key accomplishment of the merged code is that BigCouch’s clustering capability, along with the rest of Cloudant’s other enhancements to CouchDB’s code base, will now be available in Apache CouchDB. This also includes improvements in compaction and replication speed, as well as boosts for high-concurrency access performance.

Painless replication has always been CouchDB's biggest feature. Now we get to take advantage of Cloudant’s experience running large distributed clusters in production for four years. With BigCouch merged in, CouchDB will be able to replicate data at a much larger scale.

But wait! That’s not all! Cloudant has decided to terminate their BigCouch fork of CouchDB, and instead focus future development on Apache CouchDB. This is excellent news for CouchDB, even more excellent news for the CouchDB community.

Here’s the original press release:

Cloudant Contributes Database Scalability and Fault-Tolerance Framework to Apache CouchDB™

And here are some highlights from the press:

Sofa, so good ... BigCouch relaxes into comfy Apache CouchDB (The Register)

Cloudant pitches one CouchDB for all (GigaOM)

Cloudant Merges BigCouch Into Apache CouchDB (eWeek)

Cloudant Breathes Life Into CouchDB - Merges BigCouch into Apache Project (CMSwire)

CouchDB Gets Cloudant's 'Super-Size Me' Scaling (InformationWeek)

Cloudant Merges BigCouch Code into Apache Open Source Database (The WHIR)

Cloudant Merges BigCouch Database into Open Source Apache CouchDB (The VAR Guy)

Cloudant merges distributed BigCouch code with Apache CouchDB (JAXenter)

Cloudant contributes database scalability and fault-tolerance framework to Apache CouchDB (SD Times)

P.S. Cloudant is also hosting a party at OSCON on July 25 to celebrate the news. (They’re booth #305 if you’re at the show.) And if all that wasn’t enough, stay tuned for news about a CouchDB conference that we should be announcing shortly…