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Rethinking the Network

Michael Bushong

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Top Stories by Michael Bushong

With the launch of Cisco’s software-defined networking startup Insieme expected tomorrow, our industry is about to hear a lot about “application-centric” everything. So what does “application-centric infrastructure” mean? First, some basics: Networking is about connecting computing devices and systems so they can share data. Networking infrastructures are built with a combination of hardware such as gateways, routers, and switches that manage the movement of the data as well as software applications that enable you to do things like access the Internet and send email. As you could probably guess, application-centric infrastructure is a type of networking that is based on the application. In an application-centric network, the network administrator manages a system for a specific application rather than managing individual servers and ro... (more)

Creating High-Performance Teams: Get Rid of Judgment

The biggest difference between high-performance teams and more average teams is that the high-performance group actually acts like a team. That statement is so obvious, I am going to let it stand on its own. If you look at most groups, they tend to act less like teams and more like loose affiliations of individuals that are connected through a common manager. The manager is an orchestrator, maybe even a facilitator at times, but that doesn’t mean the group is really a team. Rather, they are individual contributors that are linked by a common task management protocol. Too many peo... (more)

5 Networking Thank You’s and Turkeys

Everyone and their mother does a light blog before the holidays. US Thanksgiving lends itself well to Thank You's and Turkeys. Here are my top five of each: Cisco – A big thank you goes out to Cisco for changing the industry dialogue to something that puts applications first. You can debate hardware vs. software, deep integration vs. loose federations, and single-vendor vs. multi-vendor. But at the end of the day, their ACI launch was about putting applications first, simplifying edge policy, and orchestrating workload resources across disparate parts of the infrastructure. Forg... (more)

Smartest-Person-in-the-Room Complex

A few weeks ago, I came across one of those LinkedIn stories that pop up in everyone’s feed. Basically, it was an advice column dedicated to answering a question from someone who asked if he should leave a company that made stupid decisions despite him telling everyone what the right answer was. The comments section of the article was particularly one-sided as everyone sided with this individual, suggesting that if the company’s leadership team had such big egos that they never listened, he ought to find somewhere else to work. I find this type of response maddening. There is ... (more)

Plexxi Pulse – Looking Back and Ahead

As we embrace 2014, it’s important to focus on emerging trends to predict any industry changes this year and in the coming years. Mike Bushong reviewed 2013 on the Plexxi blog and noted important events that will likely carry into this year, including how 2013 initiated SDN deployments and marked the year Cisco moved beyond networking. We will see what happens in 2014, but it is crucial to reflect before looking ahead. In our Plexxi video of the week, Dan Backman explains optics integration with electrical mediums like Ethernet, and how this transition from optical to electrical ... (more)