March 21, 2014

Computer History

Considering the history of computing, from the enterprise to the home.

Infographic: Datacenter History In Lego

Infographic: Datacenter History in Lego

You might remember my October post, Datacenter History: Through the Ages in Lego. Now it’s available as a handy infographic, thanks to my friend Aditya Vempaty of Coho Data. It’s pretty cool how this turned out – I think he’s got a real talent for this kind of thing!

Datacenter History: Through the Ages in Lego

A modern datacenter, complete with an EMC VMAX, Juniper router, and rackmount servers

Readers of my blog know that I love computer history. Therefore, I decided to focus my entry in Juniper Networks’ “Build the Best (Lego) Data Center” contest on the history of computing. Specifically, I would re-create key historic machines to contrast them with a modern view.

Microsoft’s Big Chance to Change

Steve Ballmer oversaw a decade of "meh" at Microsoft. It's time for new leadership.

It takes a truly-remarkable leader to be willing to kill his old golden geese to make room for a new one; so far, only Apple and Amazon seem willing to forgo continuity in the name of profitable destruction. But new corporate leadership at Microsoft might un-stick the company and awaken the once-innovative Redmond powerhouse. The retirement of Steve Ballmer is welcome news.

Thinking About Storage In a New Way, From Cloud to Flash, with Dropbox and Fusion-io

We need smarter, more integrated storage.

I’ve been a storage revolutionary for quite a while, looking for new ways of data storage rather than technologies that perpetuate the same old approaches. That’s why I’m excited about the implications of two very different API access methods announced by Dropbox at DBX and by Fusion-io today at OSCON.

Apple Brings PCIe SSD To The Masses In The New MacBook Air

A PCIe SSD cuts out the SATA "middle man", offering 10 Gpbs from a dedicated PCI Express lane!

Apple’s brand-new MacBook Air might not look much from the outside, but a revolution lurks under the hood: This is the first mainstream computer to eschew SATA in favor of PCIe SSD! Long heralded in workstations and servers, PCIe SSD brings massive potential for storage performance.

Scaling Storage Is Hard To Do

This is one scaly anteater! No, really, he's a scaly anteater!

Data storage isn’t as easy as it sounds, especially at enterprise or cloud scale. It’s simple enough to read and write a bit of data, but much harder to build a system that scales to store petabytes. That’s why I’m keenly focused on a new wave of storage systems built from the ground up for scaling!

VMware’s Hardware Partner Strategy: Heads I Win, Tales You Lose

VMware has a two-prong strategy, but are they at a fork in the road? Ok, I'll quit with the puns now...

VMware is in an enviable but tricky situation: The company must work closely with hardware partners, keeping these prime sales and promotional channels happy and supportive. But VMware must also innovate around proprietary OEMs, subverting their products with integrated software before a rival steps up with an integrated alternative.

What’s In A Name? And Which Product Is Better?

SLF C3500xi Turbo

Every day, I’m briefed by another company with a range of products from entry-level to high-end. And every day I try to figure out their naming scheme: It seems most IT vendors follow the naming schemes of car companies, but few use the same naming system!

Can Fusion-io Survive Commoditization?

3.2 TB of flash and a single controller chip. That ioScale is one hot PCIe drive!

No small storage company has had more press coverage and “buzz” than “ioMemory” maker, Fusion-io. I have long marveled at the company’s ability to attract attention, but this has rub some analysts wrong. How, they argue, as component vendors enter their space, can a premium company with proprietary products compete over the long term?

Microsoft: Kill the Craptops Before They Destroy Windows!

This is not the latest technology; it's a junky craptop and will leave the buyer hating Windows

Release after release, Microsoft pushes Windows forward. Yet the operating system is continually undermined by the “value-focused” low-end machines pushed by the majority of OEMs. This race to the bottom has tarnished Windows for a decade and now threatens to derail Windows 8. Microsoft must do something to stop the crap before it’s too late!