Amazon Web Services has launched “Amazon Elastic MapReduce” beta a web service that enables businesses, researchers, data analysts, and developers to easily and cost-effectively process vast amounts of data. It utilizes a hosted Hadoop framework running on the web-scale infrastructure of Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) and Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3). It is, in other words, the numbers-crunching capability without the cluster setup and management. Prices are lower, too, starting out at $.015/hour. For now, the service is available in the US only.
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