Reporting from the trenches at IP Expo
This article was orginially published at https://skeltonthatcher.com/blog/ip-expo-2015/ and is reproduced here for the record.
I was able to attend the IP Expo 2015 show at ExCel London on October 7th and 8th, there were, as expected a huge number of vendors presenting a broad array of products, from data-centre equipment, through software deployment tools to so-called ‘hyper-converged’ compute and storage hardware.
This years IP Expo continued to provide an interesting experience, albeit with something of a feel of more ‘vendor pitches’ and less ‘thought leadership’ than in previous years.
Monitoring, complexity, cost and value..
Grabbing the opportunity to speak to the dataloop.io guys, I hear they’re finding people running Open Source monitoring stacks are realising it’s not quite a free lunch. A common theme emerging is that there’s a tipping point (related to size of estate) where the cost of operation scales beyond internal capabilities, and this is driving decisions around moving to SaaS based monitoring services.
Is AWS fuelling growth in on-site hyper-converged hardware sales?
I saw a number of hardware vendors with ‘hyper-converged’ equipment on display, the essence of which is to provide very high density compute and storage with high performance networking to hook into your local network, or data-centre network if that is your deployment model.
This in itself is not particularly interesting. What piqued my curiosity was that in talking to a small handful of them they are beginning to see customers with existing cloud deployments build small onsite hyper-converged facilities, and in some customer cases this tactic has been aimed at avoiding overspend in cloud storage.
Episode IV: A New Hope^H^H^H^H Acronym
DRaaS – disaster recovery, this is an interesting one, the model here is something akin to, plug our software into your ‘cloud’ and we will handle shifting your data somewhere else, enabling your DR. Thing is, last time I looked, actually recovering from a disaster required quite a lot more than just the data….
It was fantastic to see The National Museum of Computing with a presence at IP Expo, I think for the first time. They were displaying all manner of historic IT objects, alongside one or two more modern pieces. Seeing a functioning old ZX Spectrum was a rare treat, and having the opportunity to try out an Occulus Rift with Elite Dangerous felt very exciting, a gaming classic re-invented paired with a groundbreaking piece of hardware.
Overheard at Expo
Moving around the show, there were a few interesting and eyebrow-raising comments overheard, or captured from presentations:
‘Infrastructure Team are Data Police’
‘Everybody working on projects at once, in true Continuous Delivery, Continuous Integration style’
‘1100 days saved at one large project, 80% of which was DBA time’
‘Improving process efficiency saves money’
‘docker is still not ready for production, even Google are switching to RKT‘
That about wraps up my small taste of IP Expo 2015, it’s an enormous event, and always interesting, usually entertaining, it was great to see the inclusion of ‘DevOps Europe’ as a section in its own right this year, looking forward to IP Expo 2016 already.