Are you interested in how enterprises and service providers are making and saving money via cloud? Last week, Cisco hosted a live webcast featuring IT executives from CSC, Sprint, and Educational Testing Service (ETS) who discussed the economic benefits of cloud computing for their businesses and their customers.
This session provided real-world perspectives into the cloud adoption of major enterprises and service providers, as cloud computing continues to transform businesses through improved agility, better economics, enhanced security and a dynamic, assured experience. The executives discussed the economic benefits derived from cloud business models and shared examples of how cloud computing is changing their industries.
Recently I blogged on the rise of UCS and my own perspectives joining Cisco Data Center Services around the launch of Cisco UCS back in March 2009. I then posed a quick poll on the Cisco Data Center Facebook page, with a number of options, asking which of these options did we in Cisco Data Center Services *not* offer to our customers today. Thanks to all who took the time to answer the poll. So let’s look at the summary of our services I presented in my previous blog (diagram below), and let’s discuss what you said via the poll.
Cisco Data Center Services Portfolio Evolution 2008-2012
This is the question I continue to ask myself as I look back at my career at various companies in multiple industries. As I look back, I remind myself of the industry changing trends that we’ve gone through in past few decades: the rise (and fall) of the mainframe, the PC, numerous different networking protocols and technologies, and various standards that come and go. On top of all this I recall, dozens of system architectures and hundreds of programming languages. And these days … Open Source Software, Si-photonics, mega/giga/tera-bit interfaces, smart phones and tablets, big data and real time analytics, cloud computing, everything fully virtualized.
Let’s pause here to think about the game changers. The architectures, processes and ideas that once pushed industries forward seemed to eventually disappear into the next big thing. Distributed Object Technology (RFC), Loosely Coupled Technology and Architectures (SOA). Agile, or is it Dev/Ops? As you can see, there are major differences here. Each technology trend brings tremendous value and is of critical importance but, like so many of these examples there is that fundamental difference, that many of these trends evolve and merge into much bigger vision. It’s also present in how we view SDN and how we are including it in what we’re building at Cisco.
March 2009 was an exciting time for both for Cisco and for me personally. Cisco launched the revolutionary Unified Computing System, with many observers across the industry doubting if we’d stay the course (and if we’re honest, some truly misplaced derision -- I wonder who is on Planet Zircon now!). And I joined the Cisco Data Center Services team from the Cisco R&D organization! So with the recent third generation launch of Cisco UCS, described very well by my colleague Todd Brannon, I thought it would be a good time to reflect on our data center services portfolio around that time, and where we are now. My previous blogs chronicle part of this journey, however I have to say, the direct comparison I draw here I personally think shows that we have indeed brought a new transformational experience to the data center for our customers. And I’d like to give you my personal recollections on how and what I found out about Cisco’s approach to shaking the incumbents’ lack of innovation in the blade server market.
For at least the past two decades, knowledge workers have been firmly rooted in the PC era. Within enterprises of all sizes, that meant that the predominant operating system on the desktop – and often in the data center — was Windows.
We had unprecedented productivity gains during this time, no doubt, but I would now firmly assert that as Ray Ozzie suggested — and Steve Jobs was more than happy to reinforce — that we are transitioning to an era where PCs play a secondary role, if at all – this is the Post PC era.
I believe we will now have more access to more information on more devices from more applications than ever before.
It’s not as if PCs are going away, so what do we mean by the “Post-PC Era”? PCs have their place. They’re still useful business tools. But it’s clear: We are rapidly evolving from a predominantly client-server world to one in which the Windows PC is just another device in a broad list of options.
We now have many choices in devices – even the option to perform the same tasks on different devices depending on our preferences at different times. Everything is anchored by persistent services that enable device portability and mobility.
Once upon a time, I dreaded having to replace my mobile phone or PC. The transition invariably brought with it lost data, lost time, lost sanity… But I can now upgrade from one device to another fairly quickly without breaking much of a sweat. And I really need that ability if I want to keep up with the latest advances in technology.
Although they’ve performed well for over two decades, traditional business tools and infrastructure based around the desktop PC and office-productivity software no longer exclusively fit the modern knowledge worker nor the global distributed form of 21st century work.