Xplain.io is now part of Cloudera.
Fifteen months ago, Rituparna Agrawal and I incorporated Xplain.io in a small shed in my backyard. With intense focus on solving real customer problems, we built an eclectic and diverse team with skills across database internals, distributed systems, and customer-centric design.
Throughout Q4 2013, we interviewed more than 60 enterprise data architects and found that they were all overwhelmed with the choices available in modern data management. Today’s data architect is expected to design, deploy, and maintain data stores across newSQL, key-value, document-oriented, in-memory, and many other data models. The problem is incredibly widespread, yet no tools were available to choose the most efficient data store for existing workloads.
Our first “Aha!” moment was the realization that customers already had a great starting point to build their modern data stores. For multiple decades, enterprises have crafted SQL queries to build reporting, analytics, ETL, and other applications. What if we could analyze these queries to choose a modern data store best-suited to specific workloads?
Working on that question quickly revealed the second Aha!: enterprises have very little visibility into their existing queries’ behavior. Xplain.io’s first customer executes nearly 8.4 million (yes, million!) SQL queries annually against various data stores. This begs the question: How many of these queries have access patterns that could benefit from a new data model? The customer did not have a clear answer, and we saw an opportunity. Today, Xplain.io’s profiler is used to identify the most common data access patterns and Xplain.io’s transformation engine is used to generate the schema design for modern data stores such as Impala.
Then another interesting pattern began to emerge in our customer base: almost all of them wanted us to generate code for CDH. In the summer of 2014, we started mapping out an integrated product offering with Mike Olson and Charles Zedlewski at Cloudera. Once we started delving into the strategy of integrating Xplain.io into CDH, it dawned on us that building product together would make for a much more powerful and useful tool for our customers.
On behalf of the team at Xplain, we would like to thank our Series A investor at Mayfield, partners, and customers for helping us come this far. We are incredibly excited to join forces with the whole Cloudera team to build best-in-class data management tools for enterprise data architects. Stay tuned to see what the future of this collaboration will bring.
Anupam Singh is the CEO and co-founder of Xplain.io.