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July 24, 2013
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Translating your SQL Skills to Hadoop

Hadoop jobs have grown 200,000%. No, that’s not a typo. According to, Hadoop is one of the top 10 job trends right now.

Hadoop Job Trends graph sql Job Trends graph

When you look at LinkedIn, the growth in profiles that have SQL in them is on the downswing — about -4%, but the growth of profiles that have Hadoop in them is up 37%. Hadoop is becoming a clear resume differentiator. Updating and maintaining technical skills has always been part of the job and is part of ensuring a long and healthy career. But that can be easier said than done.

Translating SQL Skills to Hadoop

The need for RDBMS (and other DB) skills is not going away, and Hadoop isn’t a replacement for those systems. Rather it’s an augmentation of those systems for scenarios involving the volumes of data that they can’t efficiently tackle. There’s still a robust market tons of job listings, but not a lot of growth.

Does learning Hadoop mean you have to start all over again? No, learning Hadoop is an evolution, not a revolution. While Hadoop may be a hot new technology, if you’re already comfortable with SQL, then learning how to use Hive (one of the key projects within the Hadoop ecosystem) will feel very familiar as it’s syntax and commands are very SQL-like – deliberately so.

Hortonworks’ Stinger Initiative has the goals of improving the performance of Hive to familiar ‘interactive time’ querying across large data sets and moving ever closer to full compliancy with SQL-92. If you’re already comfortable with SQL, then this technology shift will feel less like writing with the other hand but more like learning to write with a new pen. It’s not a revolution in your skills, it’s simply an evolution.

Not only is Hive very SQL-like, Hadoop is a “+1” in your environment, a perfect complement to your existing data warehouse, storage and database infrastructures. As part of the modern data architecture, Hadoop enables data refinement and exploration at scale in a cost effective way across commodity hardware and unlocks the value of your big data to enrich your apps and experiences. With Hadoop as an addition to your architecture, you can continue to run the infrastructure you’re comfortable with and yet still gain all of the advantages of Hadoop.

So, what’s the easiest way for you to learn more about Hive?  We have a simple 3 step process for you:

1) Explore

2) Download the Hortonworks Sandbox

It’s a free, single-node, personal Hadoop environment that is a learning platform as well. You can follow along with the tutorials in the Sandbox, and then safely go off-roading to experiment and learn as the Sandbox is a complete Hortonworks Data Platform environment where you can upload your own datasets and connect to your favorite BI tools. No AWS accounts needed, no space in your data center required, allowing you to run a fully functional node of Hadoop on your laptop while you’re in a plane, train or automobile.

3) Attend a Hortonworks University Class

*Note, these statistics are valid as of July 2013.



Prashanth Talla says:
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

I’m a Data Integration architect primarily using Informatica ETL tool to acheive buisness goals. I can clearly see that in the coming years, slowly, ETL may be replaced with Big Data technologies. But being an Informatica ETL guy, I’m confused where to start learning Big Data and what to learn as most of the terms in this technology are new to me.

My core skills are Informatica ETL tool, RDBMS (PL/SQL, T-SQL), SQL, UNIX Shell Scripting, Perfomance Tuning, Capacity Management.

On the website,, it gives a direction for developers, SysAdmin and Data Analyst. Likewise, can you kindly give me a direction to plunge into Big Data technologies that would be useful in my career as a Developer/Architect basing on my skills set?


James says:
Your comment is awaiting moderation.

Really good post. It’s really helpful for me, waiting for more new post. Keep working !

owenmorris says:

Needed to compose you a very little word to thank you yet again regarding the nice suggestions you’ve contributed here.

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