With the open sourcing of Twitter’s Summingbird library this week, we now have another ingenous option to integrate real-time and batch processing. Summingbird allows building MapReduce pipelines with simple primitives and merging data sets with low latency.
Working as an abstraction layer, it aims to separate the MapReduce computation and workflow from physical system layer. Within Twitter it has been used to deploy MapReduce workflow on Hadoop and Storm clusters. More specifically, the team of Oscar Boykin, Sam Ritchie and Ashutosh Singhal have been using this library to write MapReduce “streaming computation once and execute it in batch-mode on Scalding, in realtime mode on Storm, or on both Scalding and Storm in a hybrid batch/realtime mode.”
Summingbird’s real-time MapReduce DSL takes advantage of 3 computation libraries from Twitter:
• Algebird: Abstract algebra library for Scala targeted at building aggregation systems
• Bijection: An invertible function that converts back and forth between two types, with the contract that a round-trip through the Bijection will bring back the original object.
• Storehaus: A library built on top of Twitter's Future that makes it easy to work with asynchronous key value stores.
The library leverages monoids in particular for advanced statistical analysis. Within Algebird, these find application for Bloom filters, HyperLogLog counters and count-min sketches. A monoid is a set that is closed under an associative binary operation and has an identity element I (element of) S such that for all a (element of) S, I a = a I = a.
Summingbird has been used to power Twitter headlines which shows stories related to tweets. It is also believed to be a key driver behind providing near real time views to advertisers on the Twitter advertisement dashboard. Another key milestone that the project would mark is that it shall be Twitter’s 100th public open source code repository on GitHub.
You may follow @summingbird for more updates. The source code has been released this week on https://github.com/twitter/summingbird.
update: 4 Sep 2013: text updated to reflect authors and link after the project release.
image source: Sam Ritchie/Twitter