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The Evolving Data Center : Perspectives from the Gartner DC Conferences

I have just come back from the Gartner Data Center conferences in London and Las Vegas where I got to witness the increasing relevance of Cisco in the data center. The critical role of the network to enable the world of many clouds has becomes evident, and Cisco continues to establish itself as an innovator in the server market.  Our vision and solutions really grabbed the attention of the analysts and customers at a level that I certainly didn’t see last year.
Data center consolidation, server virtualization, and converged infrastructure continue to be chief concerns among decision makers.  Emerging topics such as fabric –based infrastructure, hybrid cloud, and network programmability were definitely the focus of numerous presentations and endless conversations.

Cisco continues to innovate on all these fronts, and we had a lot of progress to present to the audiences in London and Vegas.

Three Insightful Conversations 

I’d like to share with you three conversations I had at the Gartner DC Conference in Las Vegas. Two are with the sales and engineering leaders for Cisco Data Center, Frank Palumbo (@fpalumbo) and David Yen, and the third is with one of our partners, Siki Giunta from CSC, who participated on a panel on Cloud that I moderated.

Frank Palumbo on convergence, virtualization, network programmability, and SDN

In the first conversation, Frank Palumbo, VP Global Sales, reports some of the major concerns of the IT organization.  Our conversation covers:

  • The new role of the “cylinders of excellence” — servers, network, storage and security teams — when the goal is to implement a convergence infrastructure;
  • The benefits of deploying unified computing in environments where virtualization coexists with “bare-metal” workloads; and
  • Network programmability and SDN.

David Yen on the evolving data center

My second conversation was with David Yen, Cisco SVP & GM, Data Center Group, who gave a great presentation to more than 600 attendees called “The Evolving Data Center:  Past, Present, and Future.”

David — who brings in-depth knowledge of IT technologies from his years working with Sun Microsystems, Juniper, and Cisco – provides new perspective on the evolution of the data center.
In his presentation David explains how the convergence infrastructure, on the one hand, and network programmability, on the other hand, reshapes the data center landscape to make the world of many clouds possible.
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Unlock New Opportunities with Cisco Distributors

Today, more than 170 Cisco Authorized Distributors around the world help more than 40,000 of our Cisco Authorized Resellers grow their business.

Distributors all over the world are helping partners increase revenue and accelerate knowledge of Cisco products and services through a wide range of tools, resources, and information. As a result, these partners can execute more efficiently, and extend their service offerings and market coverage.

Each distributor offers an abundance of services and expertise such as technical support, architectural expertise, certification training, marketing guidance, and experience developing a services practice. Many also have solution demonstration centers, financing options, and extensive training on Cisco products and services.

This video shares some of the details on how Cisco Authorized Distributors can help you create more demand, close deals faster and gain a competitive edge.

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Please Welcome Diana Huang to the Manufacturing Industry Blog

Blog Cred Diana HuangIt is with great pleasure that I introduce another key member of IBSG’s Manufacturing Practice, Diana Huang. As a key Industry Thought Leader, Diana has had a distinguished career at Cisco to date and is currently leading the Greater China team in helping Fortune 500 CEOs address their most strategic issues—from growth strategy, global expansion, operational efficiency, and leadership development, to innovation, technology in management, corporate culture, and employee training.

Huang is an active member of the Cisco Greater China leadership team, focusing on go-to-market strategies with transformational efforts, and is also executive sponsor of the Cisco Greater China Smart Grid Virtual Team. In addition, she is a member of the Board of Trustees for the International School of Beijing, where she co-chairs the resources committee.

Huang has 19 years of management consulting and industry experience in the United States and China. Prior to joining Cisco, she was a vice president and partner at A.T. Kearney. As a strategic adviser to senior leadership, Huang led teams that assisted both Chinese and multinational companies with strategic direction, organizational transformation, and operational efficiency improvements.

Prior to consulting, Huang was a research chemist. She has written a number of papers, including “Decoding the Cisco DNA,” “Eco-City: Will China Lead the World?”, and “China’s Response to Global Meltdown.”

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2012 Year In Review

Two things I greatly enjoy about working in and around Data Centers are that so many different technologies converge within them and that those technologies are constantly evolving.  There’s always something new to explore.

It’s no surprise then that Data Center Deconstructed ping-ponged among several topics in 2012, from choosing a site to relocating servers to incorporating alternative energy, and more.  I even tried my hand at blogging in real-time, posting live from the annual Technology Convergence Conference.

Here’s are the Data Center Deconstructed topics that received the most attention this year.  Check out any you’ve missed: Read More »

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Engineers Unplugged (Episode 12): Active-Active Home Lab, What’s on your wish list?

In this episode of Engineers Unplugged, Cisco’s Josh Atwell (@Josh_Atwell) talks to WWT’s Jon Duren (@jduren) about his home lab, including Jon’s plan for expansion and wish list. Let’s watch:

Every home lab needs a spy gnome. With Josh Atwell and Jon Duren.

Every home lab needs a spy gnome. With Josh Atwell and Jon Duren.

Welcome to Engineers Unplugged, where technologists talk to each other the way they know best, with a whiteboard. The rules are simple:

  1. Episodes will publish weekly (or as close to it as we can manage)
  2. Subscribe to the podcast here: engineersunplugged.com
  3. Follow the #engineersunplugged conversation on Twitter
  4. Submit ideas for episodes or volunteer to appear by Tweeting to @CommsNinja
  5. Practice drawing unicorns

What’s on your home lab wish list this season? How does it impact education and training for you and your team? Join the conversation here or by following along on Twitter with @ciscoDC. Thanks to all–next week’s episode is the last of the season!

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