Hadoop: free scalable data processing

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Posted by Lawrence Sinclair on 10 Jan 2009 at 04:53

Hadoop -- If you're a startup and think you have a lot of data, then the cool solution to your data processing problems is to use this technology. Hadoop is an open source distributed system for reading and transforming ("map") then sorting and summarizing ("reduce") raw text data on an arbitrarily large network of cheap computers.

In some specialized cases, Hadoop is becoming a competitor to commercial tools used for ETL ("Extract-Transform-Load") tools such as Informatic and SAS. Hadoop is free and far more scaleable than commercial alternatives. However, it is less flexible, less user friendly, and has no built in reporting or analytic capabilities, and has no database loading capabilities, leaving data in the same flatfile form from which it must come. In the right applications,...