Why Oracle Is Safe From The Coming Hadoop Invasion

Doug Cutting Cloudera YahooDoug Cutting, founder of Hadoop, left Yahoo for startup Cloudera

Photo: Wikipedia

There’s a new database technology called Hadoop that looks like it could topple traditional database players like Oracle, IBM, Microsoft.But one of the smartest guys in the field — the one that invented Hadoop — says Oracle doesn’t need to worry.

Hadoop allows companies to store and analyse mind-boggling amounts of information in all sorts of formats (documents, tweets, photos, etc.). A regular database can’t deal with lots of formats (called “unstructured data”). And it does it with free open source software and super cheap hardware, so can be a lot less expensive than Oracle, too.

Because of that, big data is quickly becoming a new multi-billion market.

As companies adopt Hadoop, what happens to regular databases from companies like Oracle, IBM, Microsoft — known as “relational databases.” Do companies stop using them?

Nope. Hadoop is a whole new thing. It won’t hurt them because it doesn’t do what they do, said Hadoop’s creator Doug Cutting in an interview with Computerworld.

Cutting is a database genius that invented this technology when he was at Yahoo. He’s now working for a startup, Cloudera.

Hadoop is “augmenting and not replacing,” regular databases, Cutting said. “There are a lot of things I don’t think Hadoop is ever going to replace, things like doing payroll, the real nuts-and-bolts things that people have been using relational databases for forever. It’s not really a sweet spot for Hadoop.”

But he still couldn’t resist a small swipe at Microsoft and Oracle who are working on Hadoop offerings of their own. “Right now these things from Oracle and Microsoft are experiments,” he said.

Oracle has partnered with Cutting’s current company, Cloudera, for Hadoop. Microsoft has partnered with Cutting’s competitor, Hortonworks.

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