We live in a world of high-definition video, 12MP cameras, and storage media that can hold 50GB of data on a disc the size of a CD-ROM. In that context, the 16MB limit for the maximum size of a MongoDB document might seem laughably inadequate. Indeed, you might wonder why MongoDB, which has been designed as a database for today’s high-tech age, has such a seemingly strange limitation. The short answer is performance.

If data were stored in the document itself, it would obviously get very large, which in turn would make the data harder to work with. For example, pulling back the whole document would require loading the files in ...

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