Meet the Presenters: Alasdair Anderson of HSBC

Today’s interview features Alasdair Anderson, Global Head of Architecture for HSBC’s HSS IT division within the HSBC Global Banking and Markets. Alasdair will be presenting Enterprise Integration of Disruptive Technologies, an interesting look at how established enterprises can introduce Apache Hadoop into their environments.

Tell us about your presentation.

Alasdair: My talk is as non-technical as I can make it, which I think is the point of the Hadoop Summit Integration track. I will address the challenges people working in mature organisations like HSBC face when looking to adopt Hadoop and similar big data technologies. Everyone knows what Facebook, Twitter and Yahoo! have been able to do but there isn’t a great synergy between these companies and your typical large enterprise IT shop. I will talk specifically about why we like Hadoop at HSBC, the main barriers to adoption and how we’ve looked to tackle some of those challenges.

What do you expect will be the single biggest takeaway of your presentation for attendees?

Alasdair: Hopefully some ideas about how you can answer some of the constant challenges Hadoop adopters face when introducing Hadoop to their environment and actions that can help to address the fear and confusion others spread about Hadoop.

Tell us about your current role and how you interact with Hadoop.

Alasdair: I’m responsible for the front-to-back architecture in my division of HSBC Global Banking and Market. I lead the innovation work that the Investment Bank has been doing on Big Data technologies, specifically on Hadoop.

What are you most looking forward to at Hadoop Summit?

Alasdair: Having attended Strata in NYC, I most enjoy hanging out with fellow Hadoop converts, people who really believe in the technology and the benefits it can bring to an organisation and the industry as a whole. Finding out how other people use the technology and the benefits they are bring to their businesses on a daily basis is some of the most valuable takeaways for me. I’m also always interested to hear about the car crash projects, learning from mistakes is crucial in technology but its nice if they are other people’s mistakes.

What other presentations are you most looking forward to attending?

Alasdair: I’m interested in other fellow adopters who share our future data warehouse vision like Patrick Angeles. Real-time or low latency analytics is another hot topic for me so the Michael Hausenblas talk on Apache Drill is a must see.