Knowledge is power and Big Data is the name of the game. Collecting data and transforming it into actionable insights is now a must for any business looking to stay competitive and provide quality digital products and services.
If you’re a freelancer who’d like to pick up a skill that will help you dive into the Big Data industry, Hadoop is a good place to start—it ranked first on the latest Upwork Skills Index. Read on to learn how this data processing tool is used to help businesses better manage their data.
What is Hadoop?
Hadoop is an open-source framework for data processing, streaming, and distributed computing. It solves three key problems businesses encounter when trying to leverage Big Data: storage, scalability, and speed. Let’s take a closer look at the core technologies behind Hadoop:
- Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) gives businesses a cost-effective way to store their data in a fault-tolerant cluster of commodity hardware: a catch-all term for widely available and inexpensive devices of disparate origins that can be repurposed for an IT goal.
- MapReduce, which was pioneered by Google, allows Hadoop to efficiently process and analyze the massive amount of data managed within a HDFS.
- Hadoop YARN (Yet Another Resource Negotiator) gives businesses better control over the management and monitoring of their IT workloads.
Hadoop gives businesses a framework for repurposing commodity hardware into compute resources for their technology stacks, streamlining the process of scaling their products and services to meet the demand for more bandwidth as they grow.
We’ve only scratched the surface of the Hadoop ecosystem and all its components. Hive, Pig, and the Apache suite of data tools are just some of the big names missing from this section. You can learn more about the Hadoop ecosystem here.
Who uses Hadoop?
Hadoop benefits just about any industry that can benefit from better data processing and analytics: it’s used in financial services, government, healthcare, manufacturing, telecom, and beyond.
The ability to tame commodity hardware for data storage, distributed computing, and high-throughput data streaming (e.g. video streaming, online games, and high frequency trading platforms) unlocked the potential for businesses to make use of Big Data.
Learning Hadoop requires a solid foundation in data science to implement. Here’s a quick list of the types of freelancers who might benefit from adding Hadoop to their skills:
- Academic researchers
- Data scientists, analysts, and architects
- System administrators
- Software developers and engineers
How to get started learning Hadoop
If you’re convinced you want to add Hadoop to your growing arsenal of skills, where do you start? Thanks to MOOCs (massive open online courses) there’s no shortage of online resources you can use to get your feet wet.
This list of top 10 websites for online education is a good place to start. For Hadoop, I suggest the following resources:
- The official Hadoop documentation
- This Intro to Hadoop and MapReduce course by Cloudera on Udacity
- IBM’s Cognitive Class lessons for Hadoop and Spark
Additionally, you may want to apply for a Hadoop certification from one of these organizations to give your educational journey an end goal:
When you’ve completed your studies and feel ready to take on a project, put a proposal together for an online Hadoop project to put your skills to work.