IBM made its support for Apache Spark clear back in June at Spark Summit, when it announced a $300 million commitment to Spark -- including dedication of 3500 researchers and the establishment of a Spark Technology Center in San Francisco. At its own IBM Insight event in Las Vegas today, the company is announcing availability of IBM Analytics on Apache Spark, a Spark-as-a-service offering as part the IBM Bluemix cloud.
By offering Spark in the Bluemix environment, IBM will integrate it with its other cloud data and analytics services, including the Cloudant NoSQL offering and the dashDB cloud data warehouse service. And because Bluemix is essentially an application development cloud, IBM feels its in a good position to connect the dots from code to database, to Big Data, to analytics. And, in that spirit, IBM Analytics on Apache Spark will support working with Spark using Python-based code notebooks -- a feature also supported on the Databricks Cloud Spark platform.
Along with the Spark offering, IBM is unveiling what it calls its Insight Cloud Services, which features "external data about people, events, geospatial and businesses from sources such as Twitter and The Weather Company," according to IBM's press release. Clearly, IBM is trying to provide a complete analytics workbench, with the ability to enrich a customer's own data with external data feeds, then perform analytics on that enriched data using Spark