Skip to main content

Distributed Battle of the Giants

Google and Yahoo are facing each other on a lot of battle grounds, and some of them are less public than others. Research is key to the long term survival of both companies, and lots of information is the bread and butter of the two. Without effective technology to burrow through unheard of volumes of data in record time, neither will make it. Some of the things coming out of this struggle are interesting.

New languages are under development by the research teams at both Yahoo and Google. Sawzall is a the topic of a research paper from Rob Pike, Sean Dorward, Robert Griesemer, and Sean Quinlan. Pig, with a much less elegant name, is an working language from Yahoo Research. Off the bat, note that Sawzall is a paper, and you can download Pig's source today. If Google has an implementation of Sawzall, they are not making it public at this time.

Both are based around respective implementations of the popular concurrency algorithm, MapReduce, originally a Google creation. Yahoo supports an open source implementation of this algorithm, named Hadoop. Google has yet and likely won't release source code or open up their MapReduce system, although much information is available through their research papers.

I guess I just find it interesting that although Google is considered so often to be the geeks company, and a more open and public loving corporate entity, much of it sometimes seems to just be face without substance. Yahoo is the one supporting the open source project, instead of a closed internal solution, and their concurrency language is available freely with its source code. Sometimes, I wonder if Yahoo is more in line with the communities than Google.

Found from Geeking with Greg.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Respect and Code Reviews

Code Reviews in a development team only function best, or possible at all, when everyone approaches them with respect. That’s something I’ve usually taken for granted because I’ve had the opportunity to work with amazing developers who shine not just in their technical skills but in their interpersonal skills on a team. That isn’t always the case, so I’m going to put into words something that often exists just in assumptions.
You have to respect your code. This is first only because the nature and intent of code reviews are to safeguard the quality of your code, so even having code reviews demonstrates a baseline of respect for that code. But, maybe not everyone on the team has the same level of respect or entered a team with existing review traditions that they aren’t acquainted with.
There can be culture shock when you enter a team that’s really heavy on code reviews, but also if you enter a team or interact with a colleague who doesn’t share that level of respect for the process or…

CARDIAC: The Cardboard Computer

I am just so excited about this.


CARDIAC. The Cardboard Computer. How cool is that? This piece of history is amazing and better than that: it is extremely accessible. This fantastic design was built in 1969 by David Hagelbarger at Bell Labs to explain what computers were to those who would otherwise have no exposure to them. Miraculously, the CARDIAC (CARDboard Interactive Aid to Computation) was able to actually function as a slow and rudimentary computer. 
One of the most fascinating aspects of this gem is that at the time of its publication the scope it was able to demonstrate was actually useful in explaining what a computer was. Could you imagine trying to explain computers today with anything close to the CARDIAC?

It had 100 memory locations and only ten instructions. The memory held signed 3-digit numbers (-999 through 999) and instructions could be encoded such that the first digit was the instruction and the second two digits were the address of memory to operate on. The only re…

How To Care If BSD, MIT, or GPL Licenses Are Used

The two recent posts about some individuals' choice of GPL versus others' preference for BSD and MIT style licensing has caused a lot of debate and response. I've seen everything as an interesting combination of very important topics being taken far too seriously and far too personally. All involved need to take a few steps back.

For the uninitiated and as a clarifier for the initiated, we're dealing with (basically) three categories of licensing when someone releases software (and/or its code):
Closed Source. Easiest to explain, because you just get nothing.GPL. If you get the software, you get the source code, you get to change it, and anything you combine it with must be under the same terms.MIT and BSD. If you get the software, you might get the source code, you get to change it, and you have no obligations about anything else you combine it with.The situation gets stickier when we look at those combinations and the transitions between them.

Use GPL code with Closed S…