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Databricks Tunes Apache Spark-Based Cloud Platform for Data Engineers

Big Data company Databricks Inc. launched a new edition of its Apache Spark-based platform -- specially tuned for data engineers -- on the Amazon Web Services Inc. (AWS) cloud.

Called Databricks for Data Engineering, the platform is designed to help data and machine learning (ML) engineers create and deploy highly optimized infrastructure for data processing in the cloud, the company said.

Those folks, when tasked with addressing business use cases such as real-time dashboards or fraud detection, undertake mission-critical operations such as cleansing, transforming and manipulating data, said Databricks, which added that data engineering is crucial for processing data in order to make business decisions or automating business processes with intelligent algorithms.

Powering that data processing in the Databricks platform is Apache Spark, an open source data processing engine that exploded in popularity based on capabilities that improved on the MapReduce component introduced with Apache Hadoop.

"The new offering enables more cost-effective data engineering using Spark while empowering data engineers to easily combine SQL, structured streaming, Extract, Transform, Load (ETL), and machine learning workloads running on Spark to rapidly and securely deploy data pipelines into production," the company said in a statement today. "Databricks for Data Engineering will complement the company's existing cloud platform by providing all enterprises with a unified data analytics platform that fosters seamless collaboration to accelerate data-driven decisions across the organization."

Specifically, the company said the optimized platform offers:

  • Performance optimization: Databricks I/O technology (DBIO) improves processing speeds with a tuned and optimized version of Spark for a wide variety of instance types, in addition to an optimized AWS S3 access layer -- accelerating data exploration by up to 10x.
  • Cost management: Cluster management capabilities such as auto-scaling and AWS Spot instances reduces operational costs by avoiding time-consuming tasks to build, configure and maintain complex Spark infrastructure.
  • Optimized integration: Comprehensive REST APIs to programmatically launch clusters and jobs and integrate tools or services -- such as Redshift, Kinesis and ML frameworks such as TensorFlow -- with the Databricks platform. An integrated data sources catalog makes every data source immediately available to all Databricks users without duplicating data ingest work.
  • Enterprise security: Turnkey security standards including SOC 2 Type 1 certification and HIPAA compliance, data encryption, detailed logs easily accessible in AWS S3 for debugging, and IT admin capabilities such as Single Sign-On with SAML 2.0 support and role-based access controls for clusters, jobs, and notebooks.
  • Collaboration with data science: Integration with the data science workspaces in Databricks, enabling a seamless transition between data engineering and interactive data science workloads.

Pricing for the optimized platform is based on data engineering workloads such as ETL and automated jobs ($0.20 per Databricks Unit plus the cost of AWS), the company said.

About the Author

David Ramel is editor in chief of Visual Studio Magazine and Application Development Trends Magazine.

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