Doug Cutting to Austin JUG

Few in the tech community have contributed more than Doug Cutting. Inventor of Lucene and Hadoop (and Nutch and ...) Doug has almost single handedly changed the face of our industry. No small thing.

The talk was billed The Enterprise Data Hub, but any of the 80 people there would be convinced that it was just about Hadoop. Cloudera's message is that they are one and the same. Hadoop is the new Enterprise Data Hub.

Doug allowed me to video the talk. Here it is on youtube:

Slides to the talk can be found here

Cloudera, Pulling Out All the Stops?

Some of us who work in the big data space were surprised to see Doug Cutting present in the relative backwaters of Austin Texas. Big Data is on fire on both coasts, but the midsection of the country - Texas specifically - is painfully behind in terms of adoption rates. Some of us are guessing that this is why we got lucky. And lucky it was.

It is also easy to see how Cloudera emerged as the big dogs in this market. The whole team showed up for this presentation. These guys are sharp. They are also just good guys, so you can see how their customers would just want them to be on their team. That's just my opinion, but I bet I'm not the only one.

If You Wonder How History is Made

Doug Cutting tells the whole history from the beginning of Hadoop, really from the beginning of Lucene and Nutch. Quite a story. Those of us who wonder about such things will find this one of the most satisfying parts of this talk.

I've worked with Hadoop for over 18 months, as per this presentation, but like many of us, I really didn't know it's history. And according to Doug, there's plenty more history yet to be made as Hadoop becomes the defacto standard replacing many current data engines.

The Q and A May Be the Most Revealing Part

Over beers after the talk, Doug reflected that it is really necessary to gloss over a lot of technical detail in a talk like this. Indeed, there were moments: Oh no, he's not really going to make me listen to the benefits of Open Source?  But our local user group rose to the occassion, and peppered him with lots of detailed questions about the technology immediately after the formal part of the talk.


You may find you learn much more about Hadoop in this part of the youtube.


In a moment of history sometimes charachterized by egomaniacs and blow-hards - from Larry Ellison to worldwide political and religious fanatics, Doug Cutting stands out as a modest and moderate human being who claims to have just been lucky - twice. Check out the video in 59:45 and watch the Q and A. Soft and sweet stuff.

Tell your kids you don't have to be a dick to get something pretty cool done. Doug Cutting can be your existence proof.


If there was a headliner in this talk, it might have been Apache Spark. It got a lot of attention. You might be surprised, if you're not already on the Spark bandwagon.