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onePK – Building Applications and Agents on API’s Across Cisco’s Network OS’s

Cisco’s OnePK (one Platform Kit) – APIs and the accompanying SDK is finally launching this week at Cisco Live! For myself and a few friends in Cisco, it has been a long journey to this point! Our passion is opening the network operating systems in such a way that customers can collaborate directly in code with the developers of the OSes and the platforms. The greatest challenge was, and still is, crafting a set of consistent and functional APIs covering the breadth of features in our network OSes.

Anyone who knows Cisco networking knows that feature consistency and breadth are all too often not found together. The unique challenge we have had is to achieve consistency without settling for a lowest common denominator approach. Letting platforms show their strengths while still offering a consistent programming model is a great challenge, and one I hope we will live up to.

Software Defined Networking, public networking APIs and abstractions are still in their infancy. Compare where we are today to the rich history of GUI APIs that we can read about here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_graphical_user_interface

Networking APIs today are at a stage analogous to where applications under MS-DOS with proprietary GUIs were in the late 80s, coming up to the 1990s, when mainstream use of the desktop API’s propelled us into a decade of innovation in GUI elements and abstractions. Are we here with Network OSs?

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