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Mushroom Networks Cloud & Virtualization Predictions for 2014

VMblog 2014 Prediction Series

Virtualization and Cloud executives share their predictions for 2014.  Read them in this series exclusive.

Contributed article by Dr. Cahit Akin, CEO, Mushroom Networks, Inc.

Cloud & Virtualization Predictions 2014

We have lived through multiple cycles of technology moving towards centralized computing and cycles moving technology towards computing at the edge. So far, we have yet to see super computers managing all of our computations and feeding them to dumb terminals in our offices or at home. Similarly, we are not yet in a world where edge devices are self-sufficient in the services they provide.

The question always has been: does it make sense to have a distributed approach or a centralized approach when it comes to computing?  2014 will be the year where finally we will start to see some real progress towards the integration of cloud computing and compute power at the edge working in flawless harmony. This will forever change how we look at networking, information sharing and cloud-based services.

Take the A7 powered iPhone and its localized and cloud powered applications. You can both play high- intensity video games and reach out to the Siri server farm to get your vocal inquires answered. Depending on the service of interest, local implementation or implementation in the cloud will be the choice for application designers. The critical delineation will move from "the processor power" being the sole determining factor to the use of "Big Data" as part of the service. In other words, if you need access to a giant library of music track signatures and rapid matching of audio sampling you have on your phone (i.e. Shazam), you are in need of leveraging Big Data, or if you need very specialized overlay data on your map application, you again need access to large amounts of pre-stored data searched and matched to your location. In essence, with processors becoming powerful enough  at the edge, the decisive advantage of cloud computing is rapidly moving towards having access to Big Data sets that you cannot simply store or update frequently enough on your devices or computers

The reason you are not playing  games on your phone where  rendering is done in the cloud is because of latency issues, i.e. the time it takes the big server in the cloud to send you the information that your phone needs, to display on the screen. The latency of the edge-cloud link is here to stay, however, several technologies, such as WAN Optimization and WAN Virtualization are solving some of the pain points for the enterprise and it's only a matter of time for those technologies to trickle down to the consumer markets.

One company that has a good pulse on all of  this is Amazon with their Amazon Web Services (AWS). Amazon is already planning ahead for the unavoidable merger of cloud and edge computing tightly integrated for application performance. Visionary companies like Amazon will continue accelerate that powerful combination in 2014.

We are already starting to see how transformative Big Data can be and it is not a stretch to see where the combination of enormous amounts of data (personal and behavioral) collected and the innovations in analytics to make sense of that data will drastically change our digital lives. In the not too distant future cloud based Big Data combined with powerful edge computing, will help create scenes right out of Spielberg's classic Minority Report  where electronic advertising  and computer displays will greet you by first name and offer merchandise based on your particular taste and history of purchases.


About the Author

Dr. Cahit Akin, is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Mushroom Networks, a privately held company based in San Diego, CA, providing broadband solutions for a range of Internet applications.    
Published Friday, November 22, 2013 6:48 AM by David Marshall
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