kamu does not compete with enterprise data processing technologies - it builds on top of them:

  • It specifies how data should be stored (e.g. making sure that data is never modified or deleted)
  • Provides stable references to data for reproducibility
  • Specifies how data & metadata are shared
  • Tracks every processing step executed, so that a person on another side of the world who downloaded your dataset could understand exactly where every single piece of data came from
  • Allows you to evolve your processing steps over time without breaking other people’s pipelines that consume your data
  • And much more…

So Spark and Flink to kamu is just a building block, while kamu is a higher level and opinionated tool.

Can I create derivative datasets with Pandas (or other data procesing library)?

kamu’s goal is to be as inclusive of different ways to process data as possible, but also uphold certain key properties of data pipelines like autonomy, low latency, and reproducibility.

Pandas and most other libraries do batch processing, so they are not suited for processing data that flows continuously. Using them would be inefficient, non-reproducible, and error prone, as batch paradigm does not handle late and out-of-order data, and other types of temporal problems we see in data constantly (see our learning materials on the topic of streaming vs. batch).

Also Pandas and similar libraries are imperative and their code is hard to analyze - this complicates our goal of achieving fine-grain provenance. So we’re currently biased towards processing engines that use Streaming SQL, but will be glad to discuss extending support to other frameworks.