LintDB is a multi-vector database meant for Gen AI. LintDB natively supports late interaction like colBERT and PLAID.

Key Features

  • Multi vector support: LintDB stores multiple vectors per document id and calculates the max similarity across vectors to determine relevance.

  • Bit-level Compression: LintDB fully implements PLAID’s bit compression, storing 128 dimension embeddings in as low as 16 bytes.

  • Embedded: LintDB can be embedded directly into your Python application. No need to setup a separate database.

  • Full Support for PLAID and ColBERT: LintDB is built around PLAID and colbert for efficient storage and lookup of token level embeddings.


LintDB relies on OpenBLAS for accerlated matrix multiplication. To smooth the process of installation, we only support conda.

conda install lintdb -c deployql -c conda-forge


LintDB makes it easy to upload data, even if you have multiple tenants.

index = ldb.IndexIVF(index_path)
# we use an IVF index, so we need to train the centroids.
# add documents to the index.
doc = ldb.RawPassage(embeddings, id)
index.add(tenant_id, [doc])

results = index.search(
    32, # number of centroids to search
    100, # k to return


LintDB aims to be a full retrieval platform.

We want to extend LintDB’s features to include:

  • Snippet highlighting and explainability features.

  • Support for more algorithms for retrieval and ranking.

  • Increased support for document filtering.

Comparison with other Vector Databases

LintDB is one of two databases that support token level embeddings. The other being Vespa.

Token Level Embeddings


Vespa is a robust, mature search engine with many features. However, the learning curve to get started and operate Vespa is high. With embedded LintDB, there’s no setup required. conda install lintdb -c deployql and get started.



Chroma is an embedded vector database available in Python and Javascript. LintDB currently only supports Python.

However, unlike Chroma, LintDB offers multi-tenancy support.


For detailed documentation on using LintDB, refer to the official documentation


LintDB is licensed under the Apache 2.0 License. See the LICENSE file for details.

We want to offer a managed service

We need your help! If you’d want a managed LintDB, reach out and let us know.

Book time on the founder’s calendar: https://calendar.app.google/fsymSzTVT8sip9XX6

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