In April of 2009, IBM made available a revolutionary product named IBM InfoSphere Streams (Streams). Streams is a product architected specifically to help clients continuously analyze massive volumes of streaming data at extreme speeds to improve business insight and decision making. Based on ground-breaking work from an IBM Research team working with the U.S. Government, Streams is one of the first products designed specifically for the new business, informational, and analytical needs of the Smarter Planet Era.
Overview of Streams
As the amount of data available to enterprises and other organizations dramatically increases, more and more companies are looking to turn this data into actionable information and intelligence in real time. Addressing these requirements requires applications that are able to analyze potentially enormous volumes and varieties of continuous data streams to provide decision makers with critical information almost instantaneously. Streams provides a development platform and runtime environment where you can develop applications that ingest, filter, analyze, and correlate potentially massive volumes of continuous data streams based on defined, proven, and analytical rules that alert you to take appropriate action, all within an appropriate time frame for your organization. The Streams product goes further by allowing the applications to be modified dynamically. Although there are other systems that embrace the stream computing paradigm, Streams takes a fundamentally different approach to how it performs continuous processing and therefore differentiates itself from the rest with its distributed runtime platform, programming model, and tools for developing continuously processing applications. The data streams that are consumable by Streams can originate from sensors, cameras, news feeds, stock tickers, or a variety of other sources, including traditional databases. The streams of input sources are defined and can be numeric, text, or non-relational types of information, such as video, audio, sonar, or radar inputs. Analytic operators are specified to perform their actions on the streams. The applications, once created, are deployed to the Streams Runtime.