The United Nations finding that mobile broadband subscriptions are surging in developing countries, reported by The New York Times on Sept. 26, is no surprise. Equally unsurprising, the growing number of users, density of users and increasing bandwidth needs of applications likely are continuing to strain existing wireless networks and per-user bandwidths not only in developing countries but worldwide.
But rising pressure on bandwidth, coupled with increasingly data-intensive applications, isn’t the whole story. Minimizing end-to-end latency – from user to network base station and back again – is crucial in enabling banking, e-commerce, enterprise and other important business applications.
Optimizing the work per dollar spent is a high priority in datacenters around the world. But there aren’t many ways to accomplish that. I’d argue that integrating flash into the storage system drives the best – sometimes most profound – improvement in the cost of getting work done.
Yea, I know work/$ is a US-centric metric, but replace the $ with your favorite currency. The principle remains the same.
I had the chance to talk with one of the execs who’s responsible for Google’s infrastructure last week.
For the uninitiated, low-density parity-check (LDPC) code is an error correction code (ECC) that is used to both detect and correct errors on data that is transmitted from one point to another. All ECC types include correction data, so when information is transmitted with errors, the receiver has enough information to fix the errors without having to ask the source for the data again.
This enables transmitted data to maintain a constant speed as is required with digital television signals. What you don’t want is for the image to freeze repeatedly while waiting for correction data to be sent multiple times.
Not many decades ago, the concept of wellness in the workplace – that healthy employees make better workers – was considered to be groundbreaking. Times have changed, and it’s encouraging to note that for most companies, wellness is now a “check-off” program.
The results have been considerable, starting with successful smoking-cessation programs in the 1980s to today’s workplace, where many companies offer employees various opportunities to monitor their health and learn about healthy living while at work.
But let’s face it – staying healthy takes work.
I am sitting in the terminal waiting for my flight home from – yes, you guessed it – China. I am definitely racking up frequent flier miles this year.
This trip ended up centering on resource pooling in the datacenter. Sure, you might hear a lot about disaggregation, but the consensus seems to be: that’s the wrong name (unless you happen to make standalone servers). For anyone else, it’s about a much more flexible infrastructure, simplified platforms, better lifecycle management, and higher efficiency.
Part two of this Write Amplification (WA) series covered how WA works in solid-state drives (SSDs) that use data reduction technology. I mentioned that, with one of these SSDs, the WA can be less than one, which can greatly improve flash memory performance and endurance.
Why is it important to know your SSD write amplification?
Well, it’s not really necessary to know the write amplification of your SSD at any particular point in time, but you do want an SSD with the lowest WA available.
No, you are not about to read some Luddite rant about how smart phones are destroying our society. I love smart phones and most of you do too. It’s remarkable how quickly we have gone from arguing over the definition of a smart phone to not being able to live without them. In fact, the rapid adoption of smart phones has led to the problem I am going to talk about: smart phones can overwhelm dumb wireless networks.
Many of the networks that carry the wireless data to and from our smart phones are built with chips that were designed before Apple announced the first iPhone® in June of 2007.
If you’re looking to stir up some lively dinner conversation, bring up the name Edward Snowden. The former intelligence analyst is a lightning rod for hot debates over what constitutes espionage and the rights of people versus the rights of the government.
As I’m sure you know by now, Snowden is accused by the U.S. government of leaking details of several top-secret U.S. and British government mass surveillance programs to the press this past spring. This case got me thinking about security and its importance in the business world.
August was always an exciting time at my childhood home. We were excited that was school was starting in September and mom was relieved that summer was coming to an end. I remember the annual trips to the local department stores to buy school clothes every year. It was always exciting to pick out a new school clothing and a new winter coat. With only a few stores to choose from, many of us wore similar clothes and coats when classes started.
Nelson Mandela once observed that “education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”
It’s true. Well-educated people run our companies, our governments and our schools. They are inventing the technology and programs of tomorrow while solving the problems of today.
A new school year starts soon for many students around the world, and this “new beginning” is important to all of us. Those with children depend on flexible schedules and work-from-home opportunities now offered by employers, and focus on their roles as not just parents but mentors and teachers too.