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September 27, 2019

Rockset Connects Kafka with SQL

Rockset, the serverless search and analytics startup, is extending the ability to run SQL on NoSQL data with real-time event analysis on Apache Kafka.

The company, based in San Mateo, Calif., said it is coming at the ingestion, analysis and serving of data from a different angle to allow users of the Kafka to run SQL analytics on raw data from the distributed streaming platform. Rockset also this week announced a partnership Kafka distributor Confluent that verifies its Kafka Connect plugin on Confluent’s API hub.

The real-time SQL analytics tool in the form of APIs for developers as well as various dashboards targets the inability of traditional databases to handle semi-structured data. That, the startup notes, complicates the use of event data in real time. In addition, complex data pipelines are needed to load NoSQL data from Kafka event streams into SQL databases.

Those hurdles make simultaneous operational analytics on event data “next to impossible,” Rockset noted.

Rockset’s “sink” approach complements Kafka’s KSQL stream processing feature for ingesting a processed event stream. Event data from Kafka is automatically represented as an SQL table that is available for querying “in seconds,” the startup claimed

Further, a “distributed SQL processing engine” allows users to filter and combine different data sets from different sources. “Our goal is to give Kafka users the speed and simplicity they need for deriving maximum value from their event streams in seconds,” said Venkat Venkataramani, co-founder and CEO of Rockset.

The SQL on Kafka release also includes the ability to visualize event data on real-time SQL dashboards such as Tableau and Grafana.

Other features include the ability to create developer APIs for building micro-services and applications for the Internet of Things, electronic commerce and operational monitoring.

Rockset also said its SQL tool joins Kafka event streams with data stored in Amazon Web Services’ DynamoDB, Kinesis and S3 platforms along with Google Cloud Storage and other data analytics, storage and database platforms.

Rockset’s SQL-for-Kafka  announcement comes in advance of a Kafka community summit in San Francisco the week of Sept. 20.

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