A good segue to Fabric-Based Infrastructure is Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Blade Servers (March 2012), by Andrew Butler and George Weiss. To fully understand the tie in with Fabric-Based Infrastructure I suggest reading the section on Cisco UCS. Their observations are important because they tie directly to the subject of this blog. You will also get a better feel for why Cisco UCS is having such rapid customer adoption worldwide.
The emphasis for Fabric-Based Infrastructure is delivering value-add functionality that enables data centers to operate more efficiently and cost effectively. A good place to start is by looking at this Gartner report by George Weiss and Donna Scott -- Fabric-Based Infrastructure Enablers and Inhibitors Through the Lens of User Experiences (April 2012). In this short research note, George and Donna go into the key drivers and reasons for the FBI architecture and the benefits that their clients have seen. My take away for the key benefits of Fabric-Based Infrastructure are:
OpEx and CapEx savings
Increased VM density
Time-To-Deploy reduced from months to hours via automation and standards implementation;
Reduce cost and complexity and improve agility;
Improved resiliency by recreating servers and connectivity in minutes using profiles and templates
While reading about a technology innovation is helpful, actually listening to experts discuss the architecture and give their individual perspectives can be more so.
I suggest that you make time to listen to this 34 minute video with featured guest Donna Scott (a VP and Distinguished Analyst at Gartner) and Paul Perez (VP and CTO for the Data Center Business Group at Cisco Systems) -- Fabric-Based Infrastructure (FBI) in Today’s Data Center. Donna looks at the motivations and impact of customers moving to a Fabric Based Infrastructure with an eye toward what is important to adopters. Then Paul discusses Cisco UCS innovations and how they let FBI adopters achieve their goals. If you would like, you can download a podcast of the video from theCisco Analyst Reports page.
From my perspective the truly compelling part of this story is the extent to which Cisco UCS makes the promise of Fabric-Based Infrastructure a reality, while emphasizing safety, security and the risk reduction. These are critical considerations in today’s IT environment. Cisco continues to be a key innovator in data center technology and is continuing to grow from strength to strength, delivering value and benefit for your long term application solution needs.
Below is how I think a Fabric-Based Infrastructure should look. Of course I am predisposed. Cisco UCS architecture provides the ability to define and manage over 120 different server identity parameters via service profile templates, using a native tool with Roles Based Access Controls and across geographies. UCS enables you to have a distributed environment that is centrally managed. Your admins can also use CLI, custom designed tools / scripts, or third party tools as they choose to meet the needs of their current management structure.
Hills, hills and more hills but the view is amazing and does everyone here have a device tracking them? Stream of consciousness, yes, and my thoughts after participating in last weekend’s Coastal Trail Run along with 599 other runners.
Race bib with chip on the back that tracks runners progress.
Most of whom were connected to some sort of device to help track their progress or just to communicate with family and friends during their race. Whether it was an iPhone app that syncs a playlist and shows your progress, some kind of satellite tracking device like a Garmin watch or just the simple bib with the tracking device right in it – all runners were connected. As soon as I got on the shuttle bus that took us to the start line I saw several people snapping photos because not only are runners more connected now than ever before but they also share their experience on social media sites. You could say it’s a way to keep them honest and seek out encouragement as they continue to train for the next race.
Tracking chip on back of race bib
High Tech Athletic Gear
The gear everyone was wearing was also laced with technology. Compression socks, Kinesio tape, every kind of contraption to hold water you can think of and running tights to stay warm. My Dad used to run and constantly tells me, “We didn’t have all that stuff you have now, I used to cut the feet out of your Mom’s pantyhose to stay warm.” Well Dad – we’ve got all that “stuff” now and so much more. For example, the Connected Athlete, which is a simple shoe insole one can use to track activity all day long. The Connected Athlete leverages the Cisco Intelligent Network and ACM Systems’ smart-insole wireless sensor technology, to help improve an athlete’s performance and reduce the chance of injury. So you don’t need a gadget strapped to you at all times, with this technology you can really get a sense of your activity throughout the day just by putting the insole in your shoe. The gear athletes wear to improve performance is constantly changing and improving. Just this week the Warriors announced the players will be wearing new compression style short-sleeved uniforms that will apparently allow for optimal performance.
View during Coastal Trail Run
Times Have Changed
Yes, times have changed, and the way technology is used to enhance an athlete’s performance will continue to evolve. But the end result stays the same- at least for me. Running helps clear the mind, it’s an excellent cardio workout, it helps lower blood pressure and at the same time I get to experience views like this and then turn around and share it with family and friends through a social networking site.
“Everywhere we go in the world, the things that we come across aren’t intelligent. Like this wall that I’m looking at, it’s just separating the room from the other side. In actuality, that wall should be intelligent.”
He goes on to say, “The next 10 years [will be] nuts.” I couldn’t agree more.
Cisco defines IoE as bringing together people, process, data, and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before—turning information into actions that create new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented economic opportunity for businesses, individuals, and countries.
To help more people “get it,” I thought it would be useful to provide more detail about each of the components—people, process, data, and things—that make up IoE. Read More »
Often we focus on the challenges associated with IT with little consideration of the end user viewpoint. In Cisco’s Work Your Way Global Study, completed in January of 2013, we polled over 1300 IT professionals and business-focused end users around the globe to investigate how BYOD is not only affecting IT, but how the challenges directly impact the end user experience. We were curious to compare and contrast the different viewpoints to understand if the difficulties IT was facing had an impact on how end users get their devices on the network, access business applications and perform day-to-day activities on the move. Check out the Borderless Blog to see our awesome infographic!
We’ve been hearing a lot about the transition to the Internet of Everything, and the billions of new devices that will be coming online in the next few years. But the Internet of Everything is not only about connected things, it’s about the amazing things that will happen when you connect people, process, and data with those things. And in today’s fast-moving world, these new connections must be mobile, adapting to let you work or communicate the way you choose—anywhere, without compromise.
When you support mobility with an intelligent network, the result is much more than the sum of its parts. As people, processes, data and things all join together on the Internet, the intelligent network listens, learns, and can take action to make connections more relevant and valuable.
We’re witnessing an increasingly mobile Internet of Everything taking shape around us today. For example, the Palomar Health Medical Center in San Diego is connecting its healthcare environment over a wireless network to provide a better experience for patients. So doctors can securely pull up a patient’s health record on a smart phone or tablet anywhere at the medical center. Or receive a wireless alert the moment a lab test is ready. Next generation programs include mobile robots that let patients roam around the hospital and videoconference with families and caregivers.
The possibilities are endless. How could infinite connections and an intelligent, mobile network help you save your employees time? Make their jobs easier? Or improve the way your kids learn? Learn more at The Platform blog.