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Time to update Wikipedia!

June 9, 2014

New IBM Technology Preview is changing the game for SQL-on-Hadoop

SQL (Structured Query Language; /ˈɛs kjuː ˈɛl/, or /ˈsiːkwəl/) is a special-purpose programming language designed for managing data held in a relational database management system (RDBMS).

As data changes, and becomes bigger and more varied, organizations are recognizing that traditional data warehouses are not sufficient and need to be modernized with additional solutions, such as Apache Hadoop, to manage vast amounts of varying data types. Wouldn’t it be the best of both worlds if the same experts that worked with RDBMS could leverage their SQL skills with these new Hadoop systems? By using existing SQL knowledge, organizations could take advantage of big data without having to learn other specialized “big data technologies.” 

Although the Wikipedia explanation of SQL is accurate, SQL is no longer limited to relational database systems. SQL-on-Hadoop solutions, such as IBM InfoSphere BigInsights with Big SQL, are available that leverage existing skills to retrieve and query data in Hadoop. InfoSphere BigInsights offers greater speed, broader SQL and federation.

Using this technology, Hadoop users can now join and query multiple data sources within a single SQL statement, providing richer results and allowing users to ask more specific questions. The overall benefit is reduced costs because data can stay where it is. Big SQL means new applications and services can leverage data in Hadoop alongside transactional data in relational databases.

Want to try it out now? A Big SQL technology preview is now available and you can learn more by listening to this podcast, “Managing big data with SQL-on-Hadoop,”or by visiting IBM developerWorks.