Pythonic in-memory MapReduce.

experimental, map, reduce, mapreduce
pip install tinymr==0.1



Experimental Pythonic MapReduce / an exploration in parallelism.

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Inspired by Spotify's luigi framework, specifically its interface for Hadoop's streaming jar.

The Word Count Example

This is pretty naive, only performs some really basic word normalization, and does not handle punctuation. The input is a stream of text read line by line, and the output is a dictionary where keys are words and values are the number of times each word appeared in the text stream.

Here's a very fast and efficient word count example using Python's builtins:

from collections import Counter
import itertools as it
import operator as op

def builtin_mr(lines):
    words = map(op.methodcaller('lower'), lines)
    words = map(op.methodcaller('split'), words)
    concatenated = it.chain.from_iterable(words)
    return Counter(concatenated)

with open('LICENSE.txt') as f:

Currently the only MapReduce implementation is in-memory:

from tinymr.memory import MemMapReduce
from tinymr.tools import single_key_output

class WordCount(MemMapReduce):

    def mapper(self, item):
        return zip(item.lower().split(), it.repeat(1))

    def reducer(self, key, values):
        yield key, sum(values)

    def output(self, items):
        """See ``single_key_output()``'s docstring for more info."""
        return single_key_output(items)

with open('LICENSE.txt') as f:
    wc = WC()
    results = wc(f)

Truncated output:

    "a": 1,
    "above": 2,
    "advised": 1,
    "all": 1,
    "and": 8,
    "andor": 1

Composite Keys

tinymr transacts in tuples for several reasons: they're cheap to create, easy to read, and provide a uniform API for a (hopefully eventual) MapReduce implementation processing data that doesn't fit into memory.

The trade off is that the key layout must be known before data is processed in order to partition and sort data properly and probably a bit of a performance hit when they keys are transformed internally.

from tinymr.memory import MemMapReduce

class CompositeKey(MemMapReduce):

    n_partition_keys = 2
    n_sort_keys = 2

    def mapper(self, item):
        yield partition1, partition2, sort1, sort2, data

Combine Phase

Some MapReduce implementations use a combiner to reduce the amount of data coming out of each mapper. Parallel and threaded in-memory tasks would benefit from a combine phase to reduce the amount of data passing through pickle, which is expensive. The cost is an extra partition + sort phase that I have tried implementing many times, the first of which probably made it into the commit history, and the rest weren't good enough. This is probably more useful for MapReduce implementations that include intermediary disk I/O so I'll try tackling it again if tinymr makes it that far. My gut instinct is that its just not worth it for in-memory tasks, and the code required to do it at a reasonable speed is difficult to read and un-Pythonic. See the Roadmap for more info.


Ideally tinymr will:

  1. Have MapReduce implementations that run in-memory and with intermediary disk I/O.
  2. Let the user decide if the map and/or reduce happens in-memory or on disk. Key handling is such that the API is the same and a flags should suffice.
  3. Support a combine phase, likely entirely in-memory.
  4. Provide the tools necessary for optimizing tasks.


$ git clone https://github.com/geowurster/tinymr.git
$ cd tinymr
$ pip install -e .\[dev\]
$ py.test --cov tinymr --cov-report term-missing