|By Michael Bushong||
|February 28, 2014 01:49 PM EST||
The OpenStack Summit session voting is officially open, and Plexxi has two sessions in the running. Check out sessions from Nils Swart, The Future of OpenStack Networking, and Derick Winkworth, Group Policies for Neutron and evolving the abstraction model to merge with OpenDaylight, and get your votes in. In our video of the week, Dan Backman explains how the Plexxi Pod Switch Interconnect has increased the size of our product portfolio and looks at the differences between the switching platforms. Check out our video of the week and a few of my reads in the Plexxi Pulse – enjoy!
Eric Krapf, contributor to No Jitter, discusses how the communications industry is embracing SDN more and more as evident by Microsoft and HP’s use of a Lync API that can connect the communications servers with the controllers in an SDN architecture. This article has a great discussion, even though it’s not surprising that SDN is relevant in communications. If you think of communications as just another application of the network, then the idea that SDN will enable app-network exchanges is a natural extension of the technology. The issue is that people don’t frequently think of SDN as enabling app-network collaboration. It has gotten a fairly narrow definition around controllers and OpenFlow, which misses the point of abstractions and workload delegation. This article provides a very practical example of what can be done and highlights how SDN doesn’t need another 3 years to make an impact.
Jude Chao, editor at Enterprise Networking Planet, says more mergers and acquisitions will occur in the networking industry in 2014 according to a report released by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) this week. Jude says SDN is a major factor driving this industry shift. I agree with the underlying premise – that there will be consolidation. A small number of networking hardware and software players will get acquired and several startups will fail to pick up traction and lose out on subsequent rounds of funding. I also believe a few smaller vendors will break out as independent players. Interestingly, the action will be in the periphery as well. Analytics, monitoring tools, data collection, DevOps, and even point solutions for niche applications will do well, and a round of change for the VARs will occur. Deploying SDN will mean a shift in business models, and not all VARs will make the leap. Much of this industry shift is not necessarily tied to commodity hardware, because the underlying being hardware cheap is not that big of a driver for industry consolidation. Differentiation already exists in the software today, even if pricing favors hardware.
The Register’s Jack Clark discusses the “seismic shifts” in networking and focuses on a quote from AT&T’s head of technology and network operations, John Donovan, in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, saying that the telco’s Supplier Domain Program 2.0 saves money. The networking industry has had good margins for a long time. This isn’t because of the hardware being intelligent or not. It’s because there hasn’t been much competition. The thousands of features that get deployed mean that the number of functionally equivalent devices for a particular spot in the network is small. With little competition, pricing stays high. Things like SDN are important for two reasons: first, they reset the architecture to some extent, which reduces the power of all those legacy features, and second, it helps automate workflow. The first point increases competition and drives prices down. The second addresses the bigger cost issue: managing all the devices. Ultimately, Cisco will drop their prices as competition heats up. They will be a player in the future of AT&T, just maybe not to the same extent they are today. But the real battle is going to be over long-term OpEx reduction. Merely making a cheaper switch doesn’t address that. If AT&T just wanted the same network they have today at lower prices, they would put pricing pressure on Cisco. This is about something much larger.
Blogger Ethan Banks contributed an article in Network Computing about how Ethernet switches and the purchasing process have changed in the last few years. He says buyers today “must learn a variety of technical nuances that set switches apart from one another, match those capabilities to their organization’s needs, and then move ahead to a purchase.” After reading this post, I wonder what the role of off-box capabilities will be in Ethernet switch selection in the future. SDN is about workflow automation. People interested in that will also key in on things like orchestration and DevOps. It could be that on-box support for what ultimately ends up being off-box functionality will matter more. I only mention this because I suspect that people will need to broaden their selection criteria beyond the box to include things like Puppet or Chef integration or even OpenDaylight support. It will take a confusing process and make it potentially even tougher in the short term. Those customers with a more solid grasp of current and future strategy will be in a better position to make these types of decisions.
ReadWrite contributor Jonathan Crane explains how the IT department will make important strides toward driving innovation and growth in 2014. Jonathan analyzes a recent Gartner that predicted numerous developments that will greatly impact the IT function across mobile device management, hybrid cloud integration and SDN. One of the things that becomes necessary in an infrastructure environment that is orchestrate as a whole and in support of the applications is the expression of application requirements in application terms. Basically, to operationalize things, someone has to be able to capture what is important across the infrastructure. This cannot be specified in networking language or compute language. It has to be expressed relative to the application. The various infrastructure systems then need to translate the requirements into underlying behavior. I mention this because someone has to own the application abstraction. That would seem to fit with your definition of the OM. And then the OM would translate (or facilitate the translation of) the application requirements into underlying configuration primitives. This obviously has to be done through data models and APIs; a manual translation would leave us where we are today. The question people need to be asking then is: who is defining the abstractions? And what tools do I need to use them? This is where open source projects like OpenStack and OpenDaylight come into play. Anyone who is in an OM role (or wants to be) needs to be looking at these projects very closely to understand how to intersect their IT operations with the availability of management frameworks and controller architectures.
Mitch Wagner at Light Reading says according to a Forrester analyst, Cisco customers can stop purchasing the company’s switches and Cisco will still prosper. There will always be people who predict the demise of the incumbent. That might be hyperbole, but there will certainly be headwinds. I don’t think Cisco is incapable of executing against an SDN strategy. They have proven they can develop products, and when in doubt, they have mastered the strategic acquisition. SDN, however, is a new architecture. The new architecture reduces the need for the tomes of legacy features that have made it exceedingly difficult to get off the Cisco drug. With a new architecture, you get a more level playing field with lower barriers to entry. It’s the increased competition that will whittle away share. Will it be 20 or 30 points? Probably not, but you could see a significant share movement over the next 3-5 years.
Tom Hollingsworth, the Networking Nerd, says SDN vendors are creating an event horizon, which is a boundary beyond which events no longer affect observers or the point of no return for things falling into a black hole. If SDN enables bidirectional communication between the apps and the network, it stands to reason that you would begin to architect each of them differently. Obviously you must start with making it possible; no one will change anything if there is no support for it, but you create applications that take advantage of network information. Imagine massive data replication jobs. If they are not time critical, you could schedule them and create pipes across the network. You could serve content from caches that were less congested. You could do things like variable bit rate for mobile connections that are shifting from 3G to Edge and back to LTE on a train ride. Ultimately, I agree with the premise of this post. I don’t think the future is overlays that are completely agnostic to the underlying network. I think there will be a desire to pin the overlays to the physical infrastructure and allow for the dynamic optimization of the physical transport to suit whatever is happening on the overlay.
Through WebRTC, audio and video communications are being embedded more easily than ever into applications, helping carriers, enterprises and independent software vendors deliver greater functionality to their end users. With today’s business world increasingly focused on outcomes, users’ growing calls for ease of use, and businesses craving smarter, tighter integration, what’s the next step in delivering a richer, more immersive experience? That richer, more fully integrated experience comes about through a Communications Platform as a Service which allows for messaging, screen sharing, video...
Sep. 4, 2015 06:00 AM EDT Reads: 746
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Sep. 4, 2015 06:00 AM EDT Reads: 500
WebRTC services have already permeated corporate communications in the form of videoconferencing solutions. However, WebRTC has the potential of going beyond and catalyzing a new class of services providing more than calls with capabilities such as mass-scale real-time media broadcasting, enriched and augmented video, person-to-machine and machine-to-machine communications. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Luis Lopez, CEO of Kurento, will introduce the technologies required for implementing these ideas and some early experiments performed in the Kurento open source software community in areas ...
Sep. 4, 2015 05:00 AM EDT Reads: 125
The 17th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. 17th International Cloud Expo, to be held November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, APM, APIs, Microservices, Security, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportunity. Submit your speaking proposal today!
Sep. 4, 2015 04:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,703
In his session at @ThingsExpo, Lee Williams, a producer of the first smartphones and tablets, will talk about how he is now applying his experience in mobile technology to the design and development of the next generation of Environmental and Sustainability Services at ETwater. He will explain how M2M controllers work through wirelessly connected remote controls; and specifically delve into a retrofit option that reverse-engineers control codes of existing conventional controller systems so they don't have to be replaced and are instantly converted to become smart, connected devices.
Sep. 4, 2015 02:00 AM EDT Reads: 269
The 3rd International WebRTC Summit, to be held Nov. 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, announces that its Call for Papers is now open. Topics include all aspects of improving IT delivery by eliminating waste through automated business models leveraging cloud technologies. WebRTC Summit is co-located with 15th International Cloud Expo, 6th International Big Data Expo, 3rd International DevOps Summit and 2nd Internet of @ThingsExpo. WebRTC (Web-based Real-Time Communication) is an open source project supported by Google, Mozilla and Opera that aims to enable bro...
Sep. 4, 2015 01:15 AM EDT Reads: 1,629
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies leverage disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 17th Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevOps to advance innovation and increase agility. Specializing in designing, imple...
Sep. 4, 2015 12:00 AM EDT Reads: 385
Containers are not new, but renewed commitments to performance, flexibility, and agility have propelled them to the top of the agenda today. By working without the need for virtualization and its overhead, containers are seen as the perfect way to deploy apps and services across multiple clouds. Containers can handle anything from file types to operating systems and services, including microservices. What are microservices? Unlike what the name implies, microservices are not necessarily small, but are focused on specific tasks. The ability for developers to deploy multiple containers – thous...
Sep. 3, 2015 10:00 PM EDT Reads: 199
SYS-CON Events announced today that IceWarp will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. IceWarp, the leader of cloud and on-premise messaging, delivers secured email, chat, documents, conferencing and collaboration to today's mobile workforce, all in one unified interface
Sep. 3, 2015 10:00 PM EDT Reads: 492
All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades. With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing IoT strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @ThingsExpo, November 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is as "IoT-Ready" as it can be.
Sep. 3, 2015 08:30 PM EDT Reads: 170
Too often with compelling new technologies market participants become overly enamored with that attractiveness of the technology and neglect underlying business drivers. This tendency, what some call the “newest shiny object syndrome,” is understandable given that virtually all of us are heavily engaged in technology. But it is also mistaken. Without concrete business cases driving its deployment, IoT, like many other technologies before it, will fade into obscurity.
Sep. 3, 2015 04:30 PM EDT Reads: 436
As more and more data is generated from a variety of connected devices, the need to get insights from this data and predict future behavior and trends is increasingly essential for businesses. Real-time stream processing is needed in a variety of different industries such as Manufacturing, Oil and Gas, Automobile, Finance, Online Retail, Smart Grids, and Healthcare. Azure Stream Analytics is a fully managed distributed stream computation service that provides low latency, scalable processing of streaming data in the cloud with an enterprise grade SLA. It features built-in integration with Azur...
Sep. 3, 2015 02:45 PM EDT Reads: 392
With the proliferation of connected devices underpinning new Internet of Things systems, Brandon Schulz, Director of Luxoft IoT – Retail, will be looking at the transformation of the retail customer experience in brick and mortar stores in his session at @ThingsExpo. Questions he will address include: Will beacons drop to the wayside like QR codes, or be a proximity-based profit driver? How will the customer experience change in stores of all types when everything can be instrumented and analyzed? As an area of investment, how might a retail company move towards an innovation methodolo...
Sep. 3, 2015 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 518
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
Sep. 3, 2015 02:30 PM EDT Reads: 966
SYS-CON Events announced today the Containers & Microservices Bootcamp, being held November 3-4, 2015, in conjunction with 17th Cloud Expo, @ThingsExpo, and @DevOpsSummit at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. This is your chance to get started with the latest technology in the industry. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the Containers and Microservices Bootcamp, led by Janakiram MSV, a Microsoft Regional Director, will include presentations as well as hands-on demos and comprehensive walkthroughs.
Sep. 3, 2015 02:15 PM EDT Reads: 416
Contrary to mainstream media attention, the multiple possibilities of how consumer IoT will transform our everyday lives aren’t the only angle of this headline-gaining trend. There’s a huge opportunity for “industrial IoT” and “Smart Cities” to impact the world in the same capacity – especially during critical situations. For example, a community water dam that needs to release water can leverage embedded critical communications logic to alert the appropriate individuals, on the right device, as soon as they are needed to take action.
Sep. 3, 2015 01:30 PM EDT
Consumer IoT applications provide data about the user that just doesn’t exist in traditional PC or mobile web applications. This rich data, or “context,” enables the highly personalized consumer experiences that characterize many consumer IoT apps. This same data is also providing brands with unprecedented insight into how their connected products are being used, while, at the same time, powering highly targeted engagement and marketing opportunities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Nathan Treloar, President and COO of Bebaio, will explore examples of brands transforming their businesses by t...
Sep. 3, 2015 12:30 PM EDT Reads: 292
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts, GM of Platform at FinancialForce.com, will discuss the value of business applications on wearable ...
Sep. 3, 2015 10:45 AM EDT
SYS-CON Events announced today that Micron Technology, Inc., a global leader in advanced semiconductor systems, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Micron’s broad portfolio of high-performance memory technologies – including DRAM, NAND and NOR Flash – is the basis for solid state drives, modules, multichip packages and other system solutions. Backed by more than 35 years of technology leadership, Micron's memory solutions enable the world's most innovative computing, consumer,...
Sep. 3, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 286
17th Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises are using some form of XaaS – software, platform, and infrastructure as a service.
Sep. 3, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,604