Welcome!

Open Source Cloud Authors: Elizabeth White, Liz McMillan, Yeshim Deniz, Zakia Bouachraoui, Pat Romanski

Related Topics: @DXWorldExpo, Open Source Cloud, Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo, Apache, SDN Journal

@DXWorldExpo: Article

Hadoop and Big Data Easily Understood - How to Conduct a Census of a City

What is Hadoop, what is Map Reduce and what is Big Data - how to count the residents of San Francisco, Los Angeles or a village.

BigData (and Hadoop) are buzzword and growth areas of computing; this article will distill the concepts into easy-to-understand terms.

As the name implies, BigData is literally "big data" or "lots of data" that needs to be processed. Lets take a simple example: the city council of San Francisco is required to take a census of its population - literally how many people live at each address. There are city employees who are employed to count the residents. The city of Los Angeles has a similar requirement.

Consider are two methods to accomplish this task:

1. Request all the San Francisco residents to line up at City Hall and be prcessed by the city employees. Of course, this is very cumbersome and time consuming because the people are brought to the city hall and processed one by one - in scientific terms the data are transfered to the processing node. The people have to wait in line for a long time, the processing time is lengthy as the employees do down the line counting and processing the residents: "How many people live at your address?" In scientific terms, the data is processed serially, one after the next; then the data is aggregated at the end of the processing phase.

2. Send census forms to each address and request the residents to complete the form on a specific date and return to city hall for aggregation. In scientific terms the data is processed at the data node (resident's address) in parallel (all forms completed simultaneously by residents on a target date) and then aggregated at the processing node (city hall).

These two phases: process and aggregate are known in the Big Data community as "Map Reduce" - phase one map the data; phase two reduce the data to aggregate totals.

So far so good.

How do we process large amounts of data, in parallel, very quickly using computers?

An open source project, licensed under Apache, known as Hadoop, grew out of research from Yahoo and Google. Hadoop performs the MapReduce function on a distributed file system known as HDFS (Hadoop Distributed File System). Why is the file system distributed ? Remember, the Map Reduce function performs the phase one processing of data at the data node (the census form is completed at the resident's address). It is too time consuming to copy the data to a central processing node (request all the residents to line up at city hall). Thus Hadoop uses a distributed file system, so that the processing takes place on many distributed servers at once (in parallel). Because Hadoop is distributing the processing task, it can take advantage of cheap commodity hardware - compare this to processing all the data centrally on big expensive hardware.

The advantage of cheap commodity hardware is you only need to use as many servers as needed. To use the census analogy - how many computers would Hadoop require to process the census forms of San Francisco (four square miles) compared to Los Angeles (400+ square miles) ? If the census bureau buys one very large computer, the computer would be able to process the data for Los Angeles, but most of the compute power (and electricity) used by the computer would be wasted when the computer processed the census data for San Francisco. So the census bureau can rent say four computers to process the San Francisco data, and then rent perhaps another 90 to process the census data for Los Angeles. It is cheaper to rent commodity physical hardware and the Hadoop task is also an opportunity to use an elastic cloud computing environment where compute power is used on demand.

More Stories By Jonathan Gershater

Jonathan Gershater has lived and worked in Silicon Valley since 1996, primarily doing system and sales engineering specializing in: Web Applications, Identity and Security. At Red Hat, he provides Technical Marketing for Virtualization and Cloud. Prior to joining Red Hat, Jonathan worked at 3Com, Entrust (by acquisition) two startups, Sun Microsystems and Trend Micro.

(The views expressed in this blog are entirely mine and do not represent my employer - Jonathan).

IoT & Smart Cities Stories
The challenges of aggregating data from consumer-oriented devices, such as wearable technologies and smart thermostats, are fairly well-understood. However, there are a new set of challenges for IoT devices that generate megabytes or gigabytes of data per second. Certainly, the infrastructure will have to change, as those volumes of data will likely overwhelm the available bandwidth for aggregating the data into a central repository. Ochandarena discusses a whole new way to think about your next...
CloudEXPO | DevOpsSUMMIT | DXWorldEXPO are the world's most influential, independent events where Cloud Computing was coined and where technology buyers and vendors meet to experience and discuss the big picture of Digital Transformation and all of the strategies, tactics, and tools they need to realize their goals. Sponsors of DXWorldEXPO | CloudEXPO benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities.
DXWorldEXPO LLC announced today that Big Data Federation to Exhibit at the 22nd International CloudEXPO, colocated with DevOpsSUMMIT and DXWorldEXPO, November 12-13, 2018 in New York City. Big Data Federation, Inc. develops and applies artificial intelligence to predict financial and economic events that matter. The company uncovers patterns and precise drivers of performance and outcomes with the aid of machine-learning algorithms, big data, and fundamental analysis. Their products are deployed...
All in Mobile is a place where we continually maximize their impact by fostering understanding, empathy, insights, creativity and joy. They believe that a truly useful and desirable mobile app doesn't need the brightest idea or the most advanced technology. A great product begins with understanding people. It's easy to think that customers will love your app, but can you justify it? They make sure your final app is something that users truly want and need. The only way to do this is by ...
Digital Transformation and Disruption, Amazon Style - What You Can Learn. Chris Kocher is a co-founder of Grey Heron, a management and strategic marketing consulting firm. He has 25+ years in both strategic and hands-on operating experience helping executives and investors build revenues and shareholder value. He has consulted with over 130 companies on innovating with new business models, product strategies and monetization. Chris has held management positions at HP and Symantec in addition to ...
Dynatrace is an application performance management software company with products for the information technology departments and digital business owners of medium and large businesses. Building the Future of Monitoring with Artificial Intelligence. Today we can collect lots and lots of performance data. We build beautiful dashboards and even have fancy query languages to access and transform the data. Still performance data is a secret language only a couple of people understand. The more busine...
Cell networks have the advantage of long-range communications, reaching an estimated 90% of the world. But cell networks such as 2G, 3G and LTE consume lots of power and were designed for connecting people. They are not optimized for low- or battery-powered devices or for IoT applications with infrequently transmitted data. Cell IoT modules that support narrow-band IoT and 4G cell networks will enable cell connectivity, device management, and app enablement for low-power wide-area network IoT. B...
The hierarchical architecture that distributes "compute" within the network specially at the edge can enable new services by harnessing emerging technologies. But Edge-Compute comes at increased cost that needs to be managed and potentially augmented by creative architecture solutions as there will always a catching-up with the capacity demands. Processing power in smartphones has enhanced YoY and there is increasingly spare compute capacity that can be potentially pooled. Uber has successfully ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CrowdReviews.com has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 22nd International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 5–7, 2018, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. CrowdReviews.com is a transparent online platform for determining which products and services are the best based on the opinion of the crowd. The crowd consists of Internet users that have experienced products and services first-hand and have an interest in letting other potential buye...
When talking IoT we often focus on the devices, the sensors, the hardware itself. The new smart appliances, the new smart or self-driving cars (which are amalgamations of many ‘things'). When we are looking at the world of IoT, we should take a step back, look at the big picture. What value are these devices providing. IoT is not about the devices, its about the data consumed and generated. The devices are tools, mechanisms, conduits. This paper discusses the considerations when dealing with the...