Strata Hadoop World 2013: New Tools For Big Data On The Hybrid Cloud

As we close out another big year for data driven application adopters, the emphasis on delivering right business insights has never been greater. The companies that have embraced data analytics have quickly tapped into new revenue streams and innovated faster than their competitors. The conversation is no longer about when and why an organization should implement a robust data strategy, but which one they should focus on and how they will get valuable insights quicker. This may be best represented by the overwhelming attendance at this year’s fall Strata Conference focusing on the world of Apache HadoopTM, October 28 through October 30 in New York.

O’Reilly Strata and Hadoop World is the marquee event for Big Data vendors, business intelligence (BI) applications and visualization vendors to showcase their newest technology to an audience of developers, data scientists and industry professionals. In addition to engaging directly with an entire ecosystem of vendors, visitors can attend a variety of talks featuring topics like data philanthropy, ethics in data collecting and drought prediction. While some of the topics may even seem a bit humorous, it is clear that the world of Big Data is no joke. While some would have dismissed it as a passing fad in years past, it is clear that Big Data has captured the attention of the international stage and has quickly become a topic of rigorous debate among some of the brightest minds in IT.

This year’s Strata Conference focuses on the world of Apache Hadoop; a technology born in a Google think-tank and adopted initially by some of the industry’s most demanding Internet giants. Now more than ever enterprises and start-ups want to leverage the same data platforms in hope of discovering new ways to connect with customers, optimize processes and uncover important patterns in the data they collect. Since technologies like the cloud have accelerated the generation of data to enormous scale, new strategies leveraging multiple technology platforms have become a necessity.

As you may have read in a recent announcement, Rackspace unveiled two offerings at Hadoop World aimed at bringing a common Apache Hadoop distribution to the public cloud and managed dedicated servers. Back in 2012, Rackspace partnered with industry leading Hadoop distribution vendor Hortonworks to build an on-demand service allowing flexible deployment and instant access to a fully featured and optimized Hadoop environment. Currently in early access, the Rackspace Cloud Big Data Platform allows users to deploy, test and query Hadoop without procuring any infrastructure or signing any contract. This offering is aimed at accelerating the adoption and exploration of new technologies like Apache Hadoop.

Just as important as the engines that provide the data processing are the ecosystem of tool vendors that elevate simple processing tasks into valuable tools that can be leveraged by the business. This is why we are excited to welcome two new additions to our Cloud Tools Marketplace, our ecosystem of technology partners that help Rackspace extend the functionality of our public, private and dedicated offerings. Learn more about the Cloud Tools Marketplace here.

Continuuity is the creator of industry’s first scale-out application server for Hadoop – Continuuity Reactor 2.0. Continuuity Reactor makes it easy for any Java developer to build, deploy, scale and manage Apache Hadoop and HBase applications in the cloud or on-premise. Continuuity puts the power of Apache Hadoop in the hand of the enterprise, increasing productivity, providing a standard development framework and removing the additional costs associated with hiring hard to find, specialized Big Data engineers. Continuuity and Rackspace will now align efforts to deliver the best possible experience for enterprise and developers. Continuuity Reactor will add support for Rackspace Private Cloud powered by OpenStack and Big Data developers building on the Continuuity platform can deploy their applications to Rackspace Cloud.

Gazzang is a data encryption, key management and access control vendor that is the first to fully integrate with both the Rackspace Cloud Big Data Platform and the Rackspace Managed Big Data Platform. Gazzang empowers users to gain analytics on personal and sensitive data. Organizations are increasingly turning to the Rackspace public cloud and private cloud infrastructures to reduce infrastructure investment costs and simplify installation, configuration and management. Many of these companies are storing and running large-scale analytics jobs against sensitive, regulated customer data in the cloud. Rackspace Big Data customers can now use Gazzang to secure the data at rest in Hadoop and meet strict compliance regulations including HIPAA, FERPA, PCI-DSS and more. Gazzang provides high-performance transparent data encryption and key management for Rackspace Big Data customers through its zNcrypt and zTrustee solutions, which are purpose-built to protect sensitive files, directories and images in Big Data and cloud environments.

These two additions to the marketplace represent an advanced toolset that empowers Hadoop users to do new and compelling things with the technology; things that may have never been in the original scope of its founders. By allowing users to simplify the deployment and data discovery experience and start to understand relationships across highly sensitive data they encapsulate the notion that if you can dream it, you can build it.

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  1. I wonder, some 18 months later, how does the author feel about the current state-of-the-art with regards to DA/DMaaS (Data Analytics/Data Mining as a service) and SECaaS (security as a service), which is essentially what those two RackSpace offerings from 2013 attempt to address. Where does RackSpace stand today w.r.t. DMaaS and SECaaS, and what is your vision of the directions in which the entire ***aaS/cloud ecosystem (esp. with regards to ‘big data’ and security in the cloud) be moving forward?


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