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Hadoop and IBM

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Hadoop and IBM

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"Build a smarter planet," is the mantra we've all heard from IBM.  With its heavy emphasis on "smart" networks and data analysis, it's no surprise that IBM just launched its own commercial flavor of Apache's MapReduce framework, Hadoop.  Branded as a premier tool for analyzing "Big Data," Hadoop has been gaining steam in the enterprise analytics space, with companies such as Appistry, integrating it into their products (or building a product around it).  IBM's InfoSphere BigInsights, released today, will fill in the gaps for IBM's data analytics suite

Although it's used at Yahoo, Twitter, Facebook, and Bing, Hadoop only beginning to get noticed among the corporations with which IBM does business.  IBM InfoSphere BigInsight is a package of Hadoop software and services.  The package includes a visualization tool (seen below) called BigSheets (currently in beta), which is intended to help enterprises comprehend and analyze their large sets of structured and unstructured data.  BigSheets also has a plugin framework extension for adding analytic engines and visualization tools.

IBM already sells products with functionality that is similar to their new Hadoop distro, but they are seeing a trend now for increased Hadoop interest among their customers.  "We are hearing that customers are looking for guidance on when to choose pure hadoop versus hybrid hadoop-warehouse strategies," it says on the InfoSphere BigInsights page.  IBM has predictive analytics and data warehousing capabilities in InfoSphere Cognos.  Along with SPSS products, IBM also has an InfoSphere Streams system for mashing up streaming text, video, and audio data.  

Hadoop fills a gap for IBM in the area of "big data" for customers that have structured and unstructured data that needs to be MapReduce'd for a wider, deeper, and more long-term analysis than data warehouses or stream systems can provide.  IBM will provide support along with the install package for setting up your own Hadoop grid.  IBM will provide customers with commercial support, advice on how to use Hadoop, and even monitor your system.

Hadoop creator Doug Cutting is excited by IBM's Hadoop adoption and is looking forward to IBM's contributions to the Apache Hadoop project, which should definitely help accelerate the software's advancement. 

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