SDN – The Next Revolution

Posted on May 10, 2016

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We are in the midst of a new revolution, a revolution called SDN, or Software Defined Networking.  Revolutions are about delivering impactful change, change that is necessary in order to bring about the substantive attainments that the masses demand.  It seems that a major revolution comes to fruition within the IT and communications industry once a decade.  In the 90s it was the transition from wired to wireless.  This released users from the imprisonment of their office cubicles and allowed them the ability to access their devices regardless of space and time.  The following decade brought the dramatic revolution of transforming private networks into IP enabled networks that could access the Internet.  This conversion immediately brought forth VoIP and the birth of the cloud, allowing users to access their data and services, uninhibited by time and space.  All of this makes the next revolution inevitable – transforming hardware to software.

Thanks to these two prior revolutions, datacenters are exploding, servicing ever expanding enterprises, impelled by masses of users and customers alike that are demanding faster turnarounds and delivery intervals within their respective organizations.    The former wireless and IP network revolutions vastly increased the agility of users to operate their devices, but their true potential continues to be restricted by the remaining bottleneck –  the network itself.   The network is that critical component of every enterprise organization.  It is the life blood of every private and public cloud and for the most part it has been defined by complex and rigid proprietary methodologies that require constant maintenance by diminishing IT staffs.  It is these limitations that make the network a barrier to creating new, innovative services.  It is these traditional networking approaches that prevent organizations from keeping pace with the swift tempo of business today.

And it is this swift tempo that is mandating this new revolution of IT.   Companies live in an environment today in which the “time to value” is diminishing constantly.  In order to attain continuous profitability, IT managers and their staffs must focus on strategic value added projects rather dissipate their time with routine maintenance of the existing infrastructure.  Multiple studies point out that routine maintenance is currently consuming as much as 80% of IT budgets.3  Simply put, IT Managers must find a new paradigm that can deliver their organization to the promised land.

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