Worldwide revenues for Hadoop-MapReduce ecosystem software will rise to $812.8 million in 2016, predicted research firm IDC. That’s a significant uptick from 2011, when revenues approached $77 million. IDC believes the market for Hadoop-MapReduce software is being driven in large part by a rise in what the firm termed “interactional, attitudinal, and behavioral data” from Web-based applications and social networks. Apache Hadoop is a framework for reliably running applications on large hardware clusters; it is prized for its ability to scale from relatively few servers to thousands. The MapReduce framework processes problems across huge datasets and clusters of machines; its reliability stems from the master node’s ability to distribute parcels of work to nodes within the cluster as appropriate. A number of companies large and small rely on Apache Hadoop for their platforms, including a selection of universities, Facebook, eBay, Hulu, IBM, Microsoft, and Twitter. “Hadoop and MapReduce are taking the software world by storm, inspiring a wide range of products that collect both structured and unstructured data and producing output that may be used to answer a single question,” Carl Olofson, program vice president for IDC’s Information Management software research, wrote in a May 7 statement. The software can also “serve as the foundation for a range of other questions, queries or searches,” he added, “or be loaded into a data warehouse for more systematic and repeatable query.” Despite that impressive growth in revenues over the next four years, IDC believes that competition between open-source and proprietary software vendors will force the latter to lower its product licensing fees, which in turn could depress revenues. A lack of tools and personnel will also suppress growth somewhat. “The Hadoop and MapReduce market will likely develop along the lines established by the development of the Linux ecosystem,” Dan Vesset, vice president of Business Analytics Solutions for IDC, wrote in a May 7 statement accompanying the data. “Over the next decade, much of the revenue will be accrued by hardware, applications, and application development and deployment software vendors” including established firms and startups.