You read that right. Network Computing, the only IT magazine For IT, By IT is back with the first digital issue (registration required) on WAN optimization and application delivery in a virtualized data center.Sure, IT is changing due to economic pressures forcing IT departments to cut costs and maximize investments, but the interesting changes are occurring due to the technology itself. That's where Network Computing steps in to shed light what's new and shaking, and what it means.
Look around your company. Virtualization is popping up everywhere from virtualized workstations, servers, services, and networks. It possibly, easy even, to carry your desktop image on a USB thumb drive no bigger than a mini Leatherman. New network protocols for lossless Ethernet and FCoE that will converge networks into a readily understood and managed fabric; Unified Communications are changing how we interact; the impending IPv6 migration is heading your way; changes to DNS in the form of DNSSEC and wireless with 802.11n and friends. Storage is getting denser and faster with drives offering hundreds of GB of SSD storage that reads and writes data faster, runs cooler, and consumes less power. These are initiatives large and small that impact not only what runs over the network, but how the network runs. And it is all cool.
All of these technologies enable, in one way or another more cool technologies like cloud computing (not the SaaS model, that ain't cloud), Converged Enhanced Ethernet (CEE), mobility, agile networking, better access controls, green computing, unified communications, and a network that actually configures around a user. I am not going to tell you these technologies are fully baked today. Some, like UC are pretty far along. Others, like CEE and cloud computing, not so much. There's still a lot of work to be done in product development and field testing, but it's there. It's happening. Now.
It's a matter of if, not when; these new technologies and strategies will come to your network. Your organization may be bleeding edge ready to try to newest technology and accept the risks that version 1.0 brings--but also the rewards. We want to be there with you--hear about what you are doing ,in fact--and share what works and what doesn't. Your organization may be conservative, in no particular hurry to get to the next big thing; preferring to let the dust settles and the products have matured. With our For IT, By IT focus we'll have plenty of guidance from your peers to help make the decision on when to jump in.
I was pretty excited to start freelancing with Network Computing testing modems and remote access servers back in the 90's. I am pretty excited today with all the new and interesting technology that can solve both simple and difficult problems. But that excitement is tempered by reality and practicality.
Every year since I have been following IT, has been the year of something. The Year of PKI. The Year of the Network Operating System. The Year of ATM (that would be Asynchronous Transfer Mode, not Automatic Teller Machine, kids). The Year of ASP. The Year of the Cloud. "The Year Of" is important because there is a burst of activity around a technology and bleeding edge trials with spectacular successes and failures, followed by years, small 'y', of implementation and refinement. Through it all, our contributors, current or former IT professionals like yourselves analyze, test, and contextualize claims about technologies and products to help you make decisions.
I hope you find Network Computing valuable. I hope you'll tell us when we get it right or wrong. But mostly, I hope you will learn as much from us as we do from you. Want to contribute? Drop me a email. You don't have to be a writer--you just have to an intense interest in technology and are willing to share your experiences and opinions.