Wednesday, July 14, 2010
First of all, the Nook is a decent PDF reader if you are reading a lot of narrative. But, you can't use the device to "zoom" into a page that has a lot of code because the only "zoom" functionality the device has is a selector to change the font which causes code to re-flow and become unreadable. I solved this little problem by cropping the PDF on my computer before loading it onto the Nook.
Now, the review: This book was great. The narrative was descriptive and not overly-complex. Having read the book cover-to-cover (as it where given it was a PDF on a Nook) without walking through any of the examples left me feeling like I could take on a small Hadoop project and know where to go to do it right the first time. Additionally, I gained a much richer understanding of distributed programming using MapReducers as well as some of the tools build on Hadoop. There was a chapter for each of the following tools: Pig, HBase, Zookeeper, plus a chapter on use cases that introduced Hive, Nutch, and Cascading using real-world examples from developers at well known companies actually using Hadoop such as Yahoo, Facebook, and Last.fm (CBS).
I recommend this book to anybody who needs an introduction into MapReduce to anybody who wants to actually build a Hadoop cluster. Some of the information required my pre-requisite Computer Science background in distributed systems, networking, etc (specifically the Algebra of network typologies) and a good understanding of Java (to read MapReduce job illustrations) to comprehend.