Developing Big Data Application Development Skills in your team

As with any new emerging technology, the success of Big Data isn’t really going to depend a lot on the technology but the people that design and build the IT systems. Nevertheless, if you are an IT guy looking to make the jump into Big Data or a company aiming to cross train your staff then this could possibly be troublesome. Big Data tools like Hadoop or BigQuery, or NoSQL databases like MongoDB or Cassandra are different and work in various methods to older more standard technologies. So how can you train yourself up?

If you are an experienced Java, Ruby or Python developer with a strong background in building big enterprise data driven applications, then your jump into Big Data should be very straight forward. You are made use of to the languages that Big Data uses and you understand the complexities that great deals of data brings. Similarly if you are a company with an actually good base of developers with these abilities and provided you hire a couple of Big Data consultants to supplement your team, your ability to train your group will be quite simple certainly.

Again, if you are a.Net specialist with a background in complex data driven application, then in fact relocating to Big Data through Windows Azure and HDInsight (Microsoft’s and HortonWorks’ version of Hadoop for Windows and C#) will be something that must not discourage you.

Similarly, if you are a knowledgeable BI developer or database developer with good SQL and Java/C #/ Python abilities your capability to build data services with NoSQL Big Data systems like Cassandra, MongoDB or HBase should be very simple. After all Big Data is really everything about data and this is what you people do.

Any excellent Linux admin with experience of large scale web systems in Java or ideally cloud services like AWS will find the jump into Big Data facilities very easy indeed.

If you have not been fortunate enough to deal with data driven applications or Java/ Python enterprise systems then the jump into Big Data might be a bit more tough. Being very website focused as a web dev, Front end/ UI dev or designer might be quite difficult as you are taking a look at data not UIs or sites now. Also individuals from more traditional support design background might find this new world of thousands of VMs and server clusters running MapReduce workloads to be from their comfort zones.

Steps to take

Well the most obvious and simplest way is to begin playing around with this in your home. Many people that I talk to who want to enter Big Data typically don’t see this truly obvious choice as being credible for Big Data companies, but it is.

It is now quite simple and really low cost to open an account with Amazon or Microsoft to then provide yourself a Cloud platform that enables you to start running several servers in the Cloud. To this you can then download complimentary versions of Hadoop or NoSQL databases like MongoDB or Neo4j. In fact most suppliers permit you to download all this software absolutely free as long as it is limited in size and scale. As long as it is small scale and you do not expect to leverage support time from them, suppliers enjoy to let you have this complimentary. This is all you need to build up your experience and knowledge in these tools.

What this indicates is that for very little expense, you might have a restricted size Hadoop cluster with a Cassandra NoSQL database working on the Cloud and use technologies like Java, Pig, Hive or Python to design and build MapReduce and HDFS applications. Not only will the cost for you to do this be really limited, more notably, any prospective new employer will take this experience seriously. After all there aren’t loads of people with Big Data abilities readily offered today.

Basically all the BigData vendors are now offering actually comprehensive online training courses for very competitive prices. These will guarantee you have some really excellent training but also have an identified accreditation. Having a MongoDB, HortonWorks or Cloudera certification for instance, will carry a great deal of weight with any Big Data company or employers in the UK at the moment, for the exact same reasons as above. This will assist you get that preliminary project in Big Data which is what your CV needs to make that successful profession jump onto these technologies.

You might be lucky enough to be a Java developer who works for a company that decides to cross train you onto Big Data technologies, however even if you aren’t, we have actually seen that there a number of low cost and easy steps that the majority of IT people can take to make sure that companies that are wanting to use Big Data will have an interest in hiring you.

The long term profession advantages of moving into Big Data– i.e. much better salaries and contract rates, more need for your abilities, the location of actual IT development at the moment and the focus for the majority of IT companies, implies that the quicker you make the jump into Big Data the more helpful it will be for your future profession.


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