Just in case anybody's interested, Coursera is offering a free online course
Introduction to Data Science from the University of Washington, starting next week (1st May). The course aims to cover a range of topics relating to data science, including fashionable themes such as map-reduce and NoSQL, so it should offer a good overview of how/why to pick particular approaches to "Big Data" problems.
Coursera wrote:Commerce and research is being transformed by data-driven discovery and prediction. Skills required for data analytics at massive levels – scalable data management on and off the cloud, parallel algorithms, statistical modeling, and proficiency with a complex ecosystem of tools and platforms – span a variety of disciplines and are not easy to obtain through conventional curricula. Tour the basic techniques of data science, including both SQL and NoSQL solutions for massive data management (e.g., MapReduce and contemporaries), algorithms for data mining (e.g., clustering and association rule mining), and basic statistical modeling (e.g., logistic and non-linear regression).
I recently completed another Coursera course from the University of Washington, which was excellent, so I have high hopes for this course too.