Ever since I was a kid, I’ve used memorable movie quotes to help people understand a key point in a way that lightens the mood and generates some laughs. If you’re going to work hard, you gotta have fun, right???
The big data market is rife with aspirational marketing misinformation, which among other things causes customer confusion, slows the path to value, and frankly, makes me a little angry.
At Hortonworks, we are maniacally focused on innovating Enterprise Hadoop in the open and enabling our customers and partners to unlock the broadest opportunities that Hadoop has to offer.
Our approach to partnering reminds me of the Avengers where the Hulk – the character associated with the angry quote above – is just one member of a broader cast of characters.
For those unfamiliar with the movie, the Avengers – an unlikely cast of characters – ultimately gelled as a team focused on doing good for the human race (aka the customers) by combining their unique skills to best effect.
Drawing on that sentiment, our customers want us to work deeply with key players in the datacenter at both an engineering and go-to-market level. Why? Because it’s important to them that Hadoop integrates with existing data center investments in a way that enables them to leverage existing skills for their analysts, developers, data architects, and operators.
This is why our partnerships with megavendors such as Microsoft, SAP, and Teradata are critical to enterprises interested in gleaning the most from their Hadoop investments. And just last week, we extended the team with our announcement of a broad and deep strategic alliance with Red Hat.
Interestingly, there was an article last week that attempted to whitewash our partnership with Red Hat as being shallowly focused on 100% open source. Lifting the thin veil on the article reveals Loki, a character with Impala-like horns, seeking to weave his aspirational marketing tales.
Our approach to partnering is about enabling our customers to embrace Hadoop in a way that makes sense for their business, and it’s about enabling our partners to get value out of an alliance with us while being respectful to them in the process. This is what matters to our customers and partners.
A recent article by Wayne Eckerson on BeyeNetwork does a good job summarizing Hortonworks’ unique approach to the market including:
partnering with leading commercial data management and analytics vendors to create a data environment that blends the best of Hadoop and commercial software
You don’t make a platform like Hadoop easy to use and enterprise-ready by going it alone and tagging key players in the datacenter as competitors. You don’t wade into a massive marketplace by telling everyone that you are burdened with glorious purpose and that you know best.
You do it by enabling .NET and Java developers to use familiar tools such as Visual Studio, JBoss, and Spring; by enabling analysts to use familiar BI tools like Excel, Tableau, Business Objects, or SAS and R; by enabling data systems like Teradata, SAP Hana, Microsoft SQL Server, and Red Hat Storage to integrate deeply; by enabling data workers to use Talend, Informatica, or Pentaho; by enabling operators to use System Center or other familiar management tools; and by enabling choice of deployment options that span Linux, Windows, virtualization, cloud, and appliances.
Bottom-line: At Hortonworks, we prefer to team up with our partners in a mutually respectful way that blends our collective skills and enables our customers to derive value from Hadoop more quickly and easily.
I think the broader Apache Hadoop community makes for a great Captain America since the Apache Software Foundation has stood for open source freedom for so many years. And since our corporate color is green, let’s say Hortonworks is the Hulk. These feel right to me since I spent many childhood Halloweens dressing up as the Hulk, and I’ve also been known to play Captain America from time to time.
As far as who the rest of the characters are, I’ll leave it as a fun exercise to you, the reader, to cast Microsoft, Red Hat, SAP, Teradata as well as any others you think are likely to join the team in 2014.