Couch of Ages: Hysteric Rationalism



To say the Victorians were a stuffy, repressed lot is an understatement.

Everything—and I mean everything—was governed by stiff rules of etiquette and manners. This rigid attitude extended to fashion and furniture through that hallmark of antiquated sexism that is the fainting couch.

These unique pieces owe their existence to the concept of hysteria, a catch-all diagnosis that covered all kinds of wacky “symptoms” endured by the fairer sex. Fainting spells were the trademark calling card of the hysteric, a byproduct of restrictive female fashions of the time. Something was needed to accommodate this unfortunate condition, and thus, the fainting couch was born.

No Victorian drawing room could live without one; some homes dedicated whole rooms for “delicate” women to recline or wait for assistance as needed.

Thankfully, there is a silver lining in all of this.

The couch endured as a mainstay of home décor and a social movement based on women’s fashion and taste, sparked by the fainting couch, carried into the Edwardian era.

This led to new concepts like the smoothly curved Rococo and the rustic minimalism of mission style settees that would herald a sea change in furniture design. Fueled by industry, this new paradigm favored sharp angles and simple beauty, the first hints of what would come to be known as modernism.


Sometimes you’ve just got to relax and have a bit of fun. Stay tuned for more from the Couch of Ages blog series and please, feel free to email us if there’s something you’d like to see covered in this space. Have a great day and try to find a bit of time to relax.  

For more about CouchDB visit or follow us on Twitter at @couchdb

Image credit:

CouchDB as a Database Solution

Over the last several months, we’ve been fortunate to have the opportunity to interview a number of CouchDB Developers. A primary question pertained to the top benefits of using CouchDB as a database solution.

The number one slot for the top benefits to using CouchDB as a database solution went to sync. 

PouchDB developer, Nolan Lawson referred to sync as CouchDB’s superpower, going on to state that, “CouchDB isn’t a database; it’s a sync engine.” Developer Joan Touzet calls sync the “killer feature” of CouchDB, sharing that whether you’re doing offline-first client development, running a clustered database or distributing data between various server installations, CouchDB’s master-master replication is better than anything she’s ever used.

Speaking of replication, it didn’t take long to figure out that replication had secured second place in our top benefits list.

Garren Smith mentioned that CouchDB was not just a database you can trust but that CouchDB’s replication, combined with PouchDB, allows developers to build interesting applications that work even when the user is offline. Nick Vatamaniuc mentioned that few databases support the feature of master-to-master replication. He likes that it allows creating custom clustering topologies with various availability and scalability trade-offs.

As for third place? Well, that’s anyone’s guess.

The versatility of the responses speak loud and clear to the gamut of lovable CouchDB features. These include CouchDB’s built-in web interface, its powerful and versatile secondary indexing capabilities, its application data model consistency, support for clustering, schema flexibility and much, much more. Stay tuned to hear more developer details on the benefits of using CouchDB as a database solution.


We look forward to digging a bit deeper on some of the benefits mentioned here. If you’d like to add a benefit to our list or there’s something particular you’d like to see covered on the CouchDB blog, we would love to accommodate. Email us!

For more about CouchDB visit or follow us on Twitter at @couchdb