In the emerging field of “big data", there is an urgent need for tools to store, protect, manage and process digital information. Apache’s Hadoop is open-source software framework that addresses these issues, although its complexity impedes direct adoption by end users. MapR is a company that has targeted this commercial need and developed Hadoop-based software that provides full data protection, improved performance, and dramatic ease of use for end-users. The relationship between the open-source software framework and MapR’s innovative architecture was not clearly understood in the marketplace. As part of a comprehensive re-branding, Craig-Teerlink Design made this relationship explicit by introducing an extension to the new word mark: a bold, energetic and forward-looking elephant.
After brand audit, research and analysis, Craig-Teerlink Design reimagined the Hadoop experience as guided by MapR. The Apache Hadoop project is named for and represented by a cartooned, toy elephant. Using pen, paint, and stylus, we drew enough elephants to fill the studio, searching, not only for the essence of “elephant”, but also for one that reflects MapR’s persona and compliments its word mark.
MapR’s elephant references Hadoop’s drawn toy in its calligraphic characteristics, but projects MapR’s persona in action and attitude, speeding forward with an uplifted trunk. Not coincidentally, in nature, the uplifted elephant trunk collects data, drawing inferences from smells, at times, miles away. The symbol’s stroke, rhythmic movement and red color extend the word mark, further distinguishing MapR from the competition’s predominantly blue identities. MapR’s ‘Max’, aptly named by the winner of a company-wide contest, was unveiled at a hometown meeting. Both CEO and CTO remarked on the universal excitement and delight in the new symbol, hearing not one criticism, public or private. Never before had they encountered such overwhelming approval, from employee to partner, of a new visual identity. Craig-Teerlink Design was privileged to witness ‘Max’s’ release into the wild world of big data.