Scala MaxMind GeoIP library released

16 January 2013  •  Alex Dean

A short blog post this, to announce the release of Scala MaxMind GeoIP, our Scala wrapper for the MaxMind Java Geo-IP library.

We have extracted Scala MaxMind GeoIP from our current (ongoing) work porting our ETL process from Apache Hive to Scalding. We extracted this as a separate library for two main reasons:

  1. Being good open-source citizens - as with our referer-parser library, we believe this library willl be useful to the wider community of software developers, not just Snowplow users
  2. Keeping Snowplow’s footprint small - at Snowplow we believe very strongly in building modular, loosely-coupled software. Massive monolithic systems that ‘do everything’ are a nightmare to test, maintain and extend - so we prefer to build small, standalone components and libraries which we (and the community) can then compose into larger pipelines and processes

On to the library: for Scala developers, the main benefits of using scala-maxmind-geoip over the MaxMind Java library are:

  • Easier to setup/test - the SBT project definition automatically pulls down the latest MaxMind Java code and GeoLiteCity.dat
  • Better type safety - the MaxMind Java library is somewhat null-happy. This library uses Option boxing wherever possible
  • Better performance - as well as or instead of using MaxMind’s own caching (GEOIP_MEMORY_CACHE), you can also configure an LRU (Least Recently Used) cache of variable size

That’s it! And if you have any problems with this Scala library for MaxMind GeoIP lookups, please raise an issue or get in touch with us via the usual channels.