By Doug Henschen, InformationWeek, October 25, 2011
IBM announced Monday that its Hadoop-based InfoSphere BigInsights distributed data-processing and analysis platform is available immediately as a service on the vendor's SmartCloud Enterprise infrastructure.
The big data news kicked off of this week's IBM Information OnDemand (IOD) conference in Las Vegas, where the company also announced a new iPad app for IBM Cognos, geospatial analysis capabilities added to SPSS Statistics software, and new information integration and master data management (MDM) capabilities supported by two InfoSphere server software upgrades.
IBM introduced its InfoSphere BigInsights software in May. The software package includes a distribution of Apache Hadoop, the Pig programming language for MapReduce programming, connectors to IBM's DB2 database, and IBM BigSheets, a browser-based, spreadsheet-metaphor interface for exploring data within Hadoop. Hadoop's key appeals are scalability and flexibility to handle fast-growing and non-relational data such as social network comments, weather data, log files, genomic data, and even video.
IBM's move to support big data processing in the cloud comes just weeks after rivals Oracle and Microsoft took their first steps toward embracing Hadoop. Oracle announced in early October that it will introduce its own distribution of Apache Hadoop software, and on Monday it confirmed that an Oracle Big Data Appliance that will run the software will be available in the first quarter of 2012.