On the ‘net: The Foggy Future of Network Engineering

The world of networking tends to be bistable: we either centralize everything, or we decentralize everything. We started with mainframes, passed through Lotus 123 hidden in corners, then to mini’s and middleware, then to laptops, and now to the cloud, to be followed by fog. This particular cycle of centralization/decentralization, however, has produced a series of overlapping changes that are difficult to decipher. You can somehow hear someone arguing about disaggregation and hyperconvergence through the fog — but just barely. —CircleID


  1. alan.wijntje on 26 July 2016 at 4:13 am

    Very interesting blog post and something to really think about..

    I did notice a lack of “Software Defined X”, was this intentional (still have to watch your roundtable on SDN)?



  2. Russ on 26 July 2016 at 8:04 am

    I don’t tend to separate out “software defined x” as a “thing,” any more, but rather as one of a range of options in the design space… It’s become more of a marketing term, or perhaps a general idea, than an actual “product,” as so many products have been labeled “software defined…” For instance, I would expect hyperconverged solutions to use a lot of internal SD stuff to glue things together, while disaggregated solutions are bound to use SD stuff more for programmability and disaggregation (OpenFlow as a standard interface into all chipsets, for instance).

    Thanks for stopping by — and, as always, an insightful comment!