According to the Linux Foundation, Presto is a distributed system that can be run on large clusters of machines. What makes it special is that it can query data where it is stored, rather than having to move it to a separate location before running queries on it. The foundation first launched early this year to help advance the query engine.
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“Presto has been designed for high performance exabyte-scale data processing on a large number of machines. Its flexible design allows processing data from a wide variety of data sources. From day one Presto has been designed with efficiency, scalability, and reliability in mind, and it has been improved over the years to take on additional use cases at Facebook, such as batch and other application specific interactive use cases,” said Nezih Yigitbasi, engineering manager of Presto at Facebook.
Founding members of the Presto Foundation include Facebook, Alibaba, Twitter, and Uber. These founding companies plan on using the foundation to allow contributors to drive the future direction of the project. Eventually, they hope that Presto will be the “fastest and most reliable SQL engine for massively distributed data processing.”
Presto was developed in 2012 by Facebook. It was created so that data scientists would no longer have to choose between an expensive commercial solution to get fast analytics, or a slow, but free solution. “At Facebook alone, over a thousand employees use Presto, running several million queries and processing petabytes of data per day. After creating Presto we open sourced it to see if other companies were having the same issues and wanted to collaborate. It turns out many other companies were interested and so under The Linux Foundation, we believe the project can engage others and grow the community for the benefit of all,” said Kathy Kam, head of open source at Facebook.
Under the Linux Foundation, the Presto Foundation will have an open and neutral governance model. This will allow the project to scale and diversify its community.
“The Linux Foundation is excited to work with the Presto community, collaborating to solve the increasing problem of massive distributed data processing at internet scale,” said Michael Dolan, vice president of strategic programs at the Linux Foundation.