Will You Learn Big Data Skills This Year?

Dear readers,

Welcome to a new year!  During this time, bloggers and journalists from all fields are publishing lists of top items from 2013 as well as their predictions of 2014, including those in the world of Hadoop and Big Data.  I find these lists to be interesting to read, as they remind us how far we have progressed in the last year, particularly around the fast pace of technology.  These lists also provide industry pundits’ opinions of what we can all look forward to in the new year.

Image credit: gerard79 at stock.xchng

Image credit: gerard79 at stock.xchng

But what does it all mean for you personally?  If you’re reading my blog, you’re likely someone who is interested in learning how to use Hadoop for Big Data.  You’ve probably already heard about how many companies are scrambling quickly to deploy Hadoop to manage and organize data to get a business advantage.  You’ve probably also have heard about the growing demand for hiring and training skilled professionals, such as data scientists and data engineers, to help organizations make sense of big data.  What’s your status in this time of big data business transformation?  In my experience, my HadoopWizard readers are very intelligent and curious, but they might not yet have had the opportunities in their organizations to get much hands-on work experience with Hadoop or Big Data yet.  Either their organizations are not ready for handling big data yet, or perhaps they are employed in a different department from the one piloting Hadoop and other solutions for big data.

In either case, if Hadoop is a vital part of your role in the new world of big data, now is the time for personal transformation for you.  If you’re motivated and willing to spend the effort to learn Hadoop, opportunities will surely open up for you.  You might even be able to take a leadership role in driving your business or your clients to start leveraging big data.  Eventually, technologies such as Hadoop will be embedded into mainstream information technology for common use, but for now, early adopters can still gain a competitive advantage if done right.

When I was starting to learn how to use Hadoop at work, what gave me extra motivation was that my manager had said that he would test each of us on Hadoop Pig or Hive, since those were essential skills for our analytics team.  Although he never got around to testing us, it did motivate me to force myself to accelerate my mastery of Hadoop because of the additional accountability.  For learning and for any personal transformation, it’s very important to have accountability to someone, whether it’s for a personal goal like eating healthier and exercising more, or for other personal development like mastering Hadoop.

Although I don’t always have much time to provide one-on-one help or to write blog articles for tutorials, there is something I will commit to do this year to help you learn and get experience with big data.  If you write to me either in the public comments below this article, or via the private Contact Us form, and say that you have a goal of learning either Hadoop, Pig, Hive, SQL, R, Java, Python, Tableau, D3.js, or some other skills related to working with big data, then I will commit to checking in with you via email every 3 months this year to check on your progress.  You can use me as your accountability partner for learning big data skills.  Together let’s celebrate our advancements!


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    • Anthony (Tony) Taylor on January 14, 2014 at 12:14 pm

    Highly interested in Java on Hadoop and the ‘Why’ it’s so sought after. Also great; What I should learn (specifically) about Java skills needed/relevant working with Haddop and, other combo skills ‘in-demand/rare’ worth pursuing (ie highest paying, etc.).

      • Jimmy Wong on February 14, 2014 at 11:42 pm

      Hi Tony, great question!

      I decided to expand on the response into a full blog post, which you can read here:

      Let me know if you have any other questions.


    • Salam on March 10, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    Hi Jimmy,

    Thanks for the articles, I am a Msc Student and I want to work on big data analytics ,
    the question is what steps I need to do the big data analytics , can you give me the steps to do a simple and easy big data analytics.

    • sahana on March 18, 2014 at 12:09 am

    Hi Sir,

    I am an IT Consultant with total 7 years of experience in Mainframe development (cobol) and testing. I am now planning to switch to BigData as it seems really interesting and extremely interested in acquiring BigData skills. Can you please let me know how should I start off with it,how should I plan it as all my life I have been coding in cobol. What are the skills that I should be well versed in to get a challenging BigData job. I am as well a little skeptical if the industry will accept me with no prior exp or certification in bigdata (just the self learning ). Also do you feel its a smart move to switch or should I stick onto Mainframes. Eagerly awaiting your response.

    Thanks in advance.

      • shama on May 7, 2014 at 2:53 pm

      Hi Sahana,

      I am also in the same boat as you. Mainframes for 5+years. Wanted to learn big data. Jimmy your articles are inspiring. Please assist us.

    • Gitu on May 12, 2014 at 11:01 am

    Hi Jimmy

    I have taken Hadoop Training where I learnt about Pig, Hive, Sqoop. I really wanna go ahead and learn more about it. Please tell me how can I make my learning more useful. Please tell me some sites where I can learn more.

    • vignesh on July 23, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    Thank you so much.Very nice article.
    Hadoop Training in Chennai

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