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Wishful Thinking: The Innovation Edition

I am an unabashed fan of social networking.  For the data center team, being able to get direct, unfiltered feedback from the market has been a boon for making sure we are tracking in the right direction.  I also thoroughly enjoy the online conversations on the various blogs and in Twitter.  There are a great number of people out there with a lot of good thinking on the data center and I highly encourage you to do a little googling to get plugged into these conversations.  There are folks out there with views diametrically opposed to mine (you know who you are) but they have well-reasoned, well-spoken opinions and you can’t help but respect them for that–and I honestly enjoy the back-and-forth.


And then I’ll come across something that will leave me scratching my head thinking “Really…that’s the best you could come up with?”  I was reminded about this when I recently ran across a diatribe on our “lack of innovation”.  So, as a company, I will readily admit that there are a number of things we need to work on (and are), but “lack of innovation”? Really?


Let’s deconstruct this a little bit.  Just for the sake of argument, let’s start with a definition.  My trusty Mac dictionary defines “innovate” as “make changes in something established, esp. by introducing new methods, ideas, or products,” so lets run with that.  So, what have we done along these lines in the data center space in the last 20 months or so (not meaning to brag, just trying to make a point): 


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Could the Converged Network Adapter be the most important element in a Unified Fabric?

Many vendors are touting the benefits of IEEE DCB, FCoE, CEE, DCE, Unified Fabrics, and many other marketing monikers for equipment consolidation.  Each component of the technology is interesting, but maybe no more so than the Converged Network Adapter itself.   Why so?  Let’s take a look.

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Cisco Nexus 4001I Switch Module for IBM BladeCenter

On my previous blog post “What exactly is a Nexus 4000?” there were many questions/comments around OEM blade server vendors and details of Nexus 4000 Series Blade Switches . Today, IBM announced the details of the Cisco Nexus 4000 blade switch for their BladeCenter H and HT chassis.

Nexus 4001 Switch Module for IBM BladeCenter will provide the support for Fiber Channel over Ethernet (FCoE) and the emerging IEEE Data Center Bridging (DCB) standards over 10 GbE for IBM Blade servers.

So IBM becomes the first blade server vendor to make Cisco Nexus 4000 available for their blade servers. You can find the Nexus 4000 blade switch IBM description at:

and included in the IBM websites below:

and on the Cisco website:

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Cisco IT Data Center Experience

You know, our customers, even folks that are not our customers, are always interested what Cisco IT is up to.  Our IT strategy is intrinsic to our business strategy and folks are always curious to know what is working and what is not working.  Now, if you have every been lucky enough to hear folks like Rebecca Jacoby or Sidney Morgan talk, you know our IT org is a big believer in transparency and will happily share both our successes and learning experiences.  To that end, we have recently released the Cisco IT Data Center Experience.

The website takes you behind the scenes of Cisco’s global data center environment with a chance to hear from the folks responsible for long-term planning and strategy, architecture and operations and implementation.  There are over 30 videos on a broad range of topics–pretty much something for everyone.

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Government Agency Upgrades Application Infrastructure with a Virtualized App Delivery Solution

Government Agency Upgrades Application Infrastructure…and by doing so provides a great proof point of  why old load balancers should be virtualized  (source: IDC) .

Faced with challenges of an aging application infrastructure and needing to scale application delivery state wide with security and performance, the Delaware Department of Technology and Information (DTI) deployed the industry’s only virtualized application delivery solution.

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