Flink’s State Processor API

Seth Wiesman and Fabian Hueske show off Apache Flink’s State Processor API:

The State Processor API that comes with Flink 1.9 is a true game-changer in how you can work with application state! In a nutshell, it extends the DataSet API with Input and OutputFormats to read and write savepoint or checkpoint data. Due to the interoperability of DataSet and Table API, you can even use relational Table API or SQL queries to analyze and process state data.

For example, you can take a savepoint of a running stream processing application and analyze it with a DataSet batch program to verify that the application behaves correctly. Or you can read a batch of data from any store, preprocess it, and write the result to a savepoint that you use to bootstrap the state of a streaming application. It’s also possible to fix inconsistent state entries now. Finally, the State Processor API opens up many ways to evolve a stateful application that were previously blocked by parameter and design choices that could not be changed without losing all the state of the application after it was started. For example, you can now arbitrarily modify the data types of states, adjust the maximum parallelism of operators, split or merge operator state, re-assign operator UIDs, and so on

Read on to learn more about how this works.

Derivative Event Sourcing

Anna McDonald explains the concept of derivative event sourcing:

If you happen to be the proud owner of a single order service, then you are all set to begin.

But what if you have more than one order service?

Something that tends to happen at companies that have been around for more than a sprint is the accumulation of technical debt. Sometimes that debt takes the form of duplicate applications. Mergers happen and you adopt other applications that, for reasons beyond your control, cannot be retired or rewritten right away. In other words, sometimes you end up with more than one order service—enter derivative event sourcing!

This is a nice article for real-life scenarios where you don’t get to build nice, well-designed services from scratch.

Real-Time Analytics with Divolte, Kafka, Druid, and Superset

Fokko Driesprong gives us a proof of concept architecture for real-time analytics in the Hadoop ecosystem:

Divolte Collector is a scalable and performant application for collecting clickstream data and publishing it to a sink, such as Kafka, HDFS or S3. Divolte has been developed by GoDataDriven and made available to the public under the Apache 2.0 open source license.

Divolte can be used as the foundation to build anything from basic web analytics dashboarding to real-time recommender engines or banner optimization systems. By using a JavaScript tag in the browser of the customers, it gathers data about their behaviour on the website or application. You’re in full control what you do, and don’t want to capture.

Click through for the example.

Apache Flink 1.9 Released

The Apache Flink crew announces version 1.9.0:

The Apache Flink project’s goal is to develop a stream processing system to unify and power many forms of real-time and offline data processing applications as well as event-driven applications. In this release, we have made a huge step forward in that effort, by integrating Flink’s stream and batch processing capabilities under a single, unified runtime.

Significant features on this path are batch-style recovery for batch jobs and a preview of the new Blink-based query engine for Table API and SQL queries. We are also excited to announce the availability of the State Processor API, which is one of the most frequently requested features and enables users to read and write savepoints with Flink DataSet jobs. Finally, Flink 1.9 includes a reworked WebUI and previews of Flink’s new Python Table API and its integration with the Apache Hive ecosystem.

Click through for the major changes.

The Basics of Apache Airflow

Divyansh Jain explains what Apache Airflow is and takes us through a sample solution:

Airflow is a platform to programmatically author, schedule & monitor workflows or data pipelines. These functions achieved with Directed Acyclic Graphs (DAG) of the tasks. It is an open-source and still in the incubator stage. It was initialized in 2014 under the umbrella of Airbnb since then it got an excellent reputation with approximately 800 contributors on GitHub and 13000 stars. The main functions of Apache Airflow is to schedule workflow, monitor and author.

It’s another interesting product in the Hadoop ecosystem and has additional appeal outside of that space.

Cloudera Stream Processing

Dinesh Chandrasekhar announces the new iteration of Cloudera’s streaming data processor:

Cloudera Stream Processing (CSP) is a product within the Cloudera DataFlow platform that packs Kafka along with some key streaming components that empower enterprises to handle some of the most complex and sophisticated streaming use cases. CSP provides advanced messaging, real-time processing and analytics on real-time streaming data using Apache Kafka. CSP also supports key management and monitoring capabilities powered by Cloudera Streams Management (CSM).

Sounds like they’re taking the Kafka route over Spark Streaming, Flink, Airflow, etc.

Kafka 2.3 and Kafka Connect Improvements

Robin Moffatt goes over improvements in Kafka Connect with the release of Apache Kafka 2.3:

A Kafka Connect cluster is made up of one or more worker processes, and the cluster distributes the work of connectors as tasks. When a connector or worker is added or removed, Kafka Connect will attempt to rebalance these tasks. Before version 2.3 of Kafka, the cluster stopped all tasks, recomputed where to run all tasks, and then started everything again. Each rebalance halted all ingest and egress work for usually short periods of time, but also sometimes for a not insignificant duration of time.

Now with KIP-415, Apache Kafka 2.3 instead uses incremental cooperative rebalancing, which rebalances only those tasks that need to be started, stopped, or moved. For more details, there are available resources that you can readlisten, and watch, or you can hear the lead engineer on the work, Konstantine Karantasis, talk about it in person at the upcoming Kafka Summit.

Looks like some nice improvements here.

An Apache Flume Overview

Daniel Berman takes us through an overview of Apache Flume:

Apache Flume was developed by Cloudera to provide a way to quickly and reliably stream large volumes of log files generated by web servers into Hadoop. There, applications can perform further analysis on data in a distributed environment. Initially, Apache Flume was developed to handle only log data. Later, it was equipped to handle event data as well.

Click through to get a code-free, high-level understanding of Flume and where it can work for you.

KSQL UDFs

Mitch Seymour takes us through user-defined functions in Kafka’s flavor of SQL:

One of KSQL’s most powerful features is allowing users to build their own KSQL functions for processing real-time streams of data. These functions can be invoked on individual messages (user-defined functions or UDFs) or used to perform aggregations on groups of messages (user-defined aggregate functions or UDAFs).

The previous blog post How to Build a UDF and/or UDAF in KSQL 5.0 discussed some key steps for building and deploying a custom KSQL UDF/UDAF. Now with Confluent Platform 5.3.0, creating custom KSQL functions is even easier when you leverage Maven, a tool for building and managing dependencies in Java projects.

Read on to see just how easy it is.

Stream Processing with Kafka

Satish Sharma has a four-part series covering stream processing with Apache Kafka. Part 1 gives us an overview of Kafka:

Apache Kafka is an open-source distributed stream processing platform originally developed by LinkedIn and later donated to Apache in 2011.

We can describe Kafka as a collection of files, filled with messages that are distributed across multiple machines. Most of Kafka analogies revolve around tying these various individual logs together, routing messages from producers to consumers reliably, replicating for fault tolerance, and handling failure gracefully. Its architecture inherits more from storage systems like HDFS, HBase, or Cassandra than it does from traditional messaging systems that implement JMS or AMQP. The underlying abstraction is a partitioned log, essentially a set of append-only files spread over several machines. This encourages sequential access patterns. A Kafka cluster is a distributed system that spreads data over many machines both for fault tolerance and for linear scale-out.

Part 2 covers terminology and concepts:

Kafka Streams API
Kafka Streams API is a Java library that allows you to build real-time applications. These applications can be packaged, deployed, and monitored like any other Java application — there is no need to install separate processing clusters or similar special-purpose and expensive infrastructures!

The Streams API is scalable, lightweight, and fault-tolerant; it is stateless and allows for stateful processing. 

Part 3 has you install and configure Kafka:

For quick testing, let’s start a handy console consumer, which reads messages from a specified topic and displays them back on the console. We will use the same to consumer to read all of our messages from this point forward. Use the following command: 

Linux -> bin/kafka-console-consumer.sh --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic tutorial-topic --from-beginning

Windows -> bin\windows\kafka-console-consumer.bat --bootstrap-server localhost:9092 --topic tutorial-topic --from-beginning

Part 4 is forthcoming.

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