UPDATED 10:53 EST / MARCH 22 2016


Cloudera certification boosts DataRobot’s machine learning platform

Well-funded data science startup DataRobot Inc. it taking a big step into the enterprise market by achieving the highest level certification on Cloudera Inc.’s Enterprise 5, the most popular commercial Hadoop platform.

Top-level certification means that the DataRobot predictive analytics engine can now be managed from the Cloudera management console and that it complies with Cloudera’s preferred security and resource-management tools. DataRobot said certification status should help accelerate adoption of its machine learning algorithm platform by enterprises, which are typically reluctant to work with tools that haven’t passed muster with key vendors.

DataRobot has created a stir since it came out of stealth in February with a $33 million funding round from investors that included Accomplice LLC (formerly Atlas Ventures), Intel Capital Corp., IA Ventures, Recruit Strategic Partners Inc., and New York Life Insurance Co. The Boston-based company has raised a total of $57 million over the past three years.

Its products and services address the pain being felt by many corporations over the shortage of skilled data scientists needed to drive their big data analytics efforts. DataRobot provides machine learning algorithms, supplemented by training, that it claims can improve data scientist productivity up to five fold. The technology also makes it possible for business users to construct their own predictive analytics routines by running data sets against a library of existing models. Machine learning enables the type and sophistication of predictive models to improve over time.

“It literally simulates how a data scientist would go about thinking through a predictive process,” said Razi Raziuddin, vice president of strategic business development.

Integration with Cloudera Enterprise means new and updated releases can be deployed using Cloudera Manager with no down time. Cloudera Manager can also be used to to monitor DataRobot resources using the big data platform’s Custom Service Descriptors. DataRobot supports Kerberos and Sentry for authentication and access control and it works with Apache Yarn for managing multi-tenant environments.

“If a site has a multi-hundred node cluster they can manage DataRobot across all those hundreds of nodes from a central manager,” said Chris Devaney, vice president of operations. “Otherwise, they’d have to push to each node individually.”

By cooperating with resource managers like Apache Yarn, DataRobot can be tuned to do its work in the background to avoid interfering with cluster performance. It can also be applied to data at rest stored in data lakes to put otherwise unused CPU cycles to work in constructing analytic algorithms.

Certification by Cloudera does not imply a formal business arrangement, although Cloudera co-founder Jeff Hammerbacher is an investor in the company, DataRobot said. The achievement is more a matter of gaining access to Cloudera’s coveted customer base. “It can take years and years to achieve this level of integration,” Devaney said.

CC Image via Pixabay

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