Intel® Chip Chat is a recurring podcast series of informal, one-on-one interviews with some of the brightest minds in the industry. Allyson Klein, from Intel, has hosted this podcast series since 2007. In the podcast recorded at Intel Developers Forum 2015, Redefining Computers for the Future – Intel® Chip Chat: Network Insights episode 27, Allyson interviewed Geoff Hollingworth, Head of Product Marketing for the Cloud at Ericsson. Geoff is one the most articulate cloud evangelists in Ericsson. The conversation is sparkling, witty. Geoff deconstructs the synergy between Telcos and cloud in very simple images that reach the people outside, in the big wide world where future users live. In response to a question asking what is the strategy of Telco in the Ericsson cloud, Geoff said:
I recently visited Thailand for the first time. You turn your phone and it works… So you have to ask the question “Why is so much innovation outside the Telco industry? Why didn’t Telco industry drive that app revolution in the app economy?” The answer is simple: we created massive infrastructure, [without] a way for other people to have access to this infrastructure and innovate…. Now we are making a change in our paradigm and making sure that our infrastructure is accessible and programmable, for ourselves for anyone else who wants to innovate on it.
Geoff elaborated on his answer:
In Ericsson we take what we do well in network industrialization and we are adding compute and data to it. If you move into connecting devices, the reason we are doing this is because they generate data. It is the data that is really valuable. Now the volume of data is tremendous. You have to have a different approach on how you really process that data. So you need to move the compute and storage from being centralized further out into the edge.
Geoff talked about the change in the concept of a computer as we know it today:
There is a lot of change in the basic idea of what the compute is and basically it in our cooperation with Intel about Rackscale architecture. Since compute has begun, you had a box and you put components inside and you had a computer. What we are working with Intel on Rackscale , you can takes those components, compute, data and networking and you can start to pull them that is very geographic distant. Distance does not matter anymore.
Allyson asked whether the latency would be a problem; Geoff said:
In the past, you first had the components in servers and then you have them in a rack. The big place we are pushing is actually having communications network to be an optical mesh, with photonics on the board, and then you can completely change to the degree that there is no such thing as a computer in the future.
What Ericsson proposes is the end of computers as we know them today. A blogger on LinkedIn Pulse suggested re-naming the Internet of Things (IOT) to the Network of Things (NoT), in the spirit of the old slogan “The Network is the Computer” popularized by Sun Microsystems almost two decades ago.
What Allyson’s podcast with Geoff evokes is not just a vision: the telco cloud is very much alive, with tangible, deliverable, and planned monetization, and it is one of the many contributing elements to the Networked Society.
You can watch the full podcast here.
Get more information about Ericsson HDS 8000 Hyperscale Datacenter System here.