ESG's Mark Bowker and Bob Laliberte discuss upcoming ESG research on Distributed Cloud and Digital Ecosystems.
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Mark: Bob, thanks for joining me on this one. This is a kind of interesting topic around distributed cloud and digital ecosystems. So, I often talk about distributed cloud of being a connection between legacy on-premises IT with hyperscaler, with even specific industry clouds out to the edge, using the telco. And I don't know about you, but all that is part of that architecture, but it doesn't matter unless it can be connected, right?
So, what are some of the things that you're kind of seeing as people are taking those different, I'll say, ingredients and connecting them?
Bob: Yeah, absolutely, Mark. This is certainly, we're seeing this distributed environment really increasing and it's creating a lot of complexity. But like you said, the most important piece and it's really, you know, covering networking like I do, it's really encouraging because now the network is a lot more relevant because all of these places need to be connected, not only from location to location, application to application, but also users to those locations as well, right?
So, it's really driving a lot more emphasis on the network connectivity to ensure they've got low latency and secure connectivity between all of these locations. And I think another big thing that's really interesting when we think about this new ecosystem, for a long time 4G has been used as backup technology for organizations at the edge. Hey, if I don't have a great landline, can I do a backup over wireless?
But I think 5G is really changing the game. And that's really going to open up a lot of opportunities and allow organizations to drive a lot of innovation at the edge. And it's also going to empower a lot of these telcos as well because now they've got some really valuable real estate where compute can be deployed that will take advantage of those low latency, high bandwidth 5G connections from their towers to the enterprise locations.
Mark: And to me, when I think of that, Bob, I think of that as all proximity, right? Ultimately, it's about being able to put proximity of the end-user and then application with what that application is doing. If you can cut down on, I'll say the distance of that and using different networks, like you mentioned, 5G is super important, I definitely see kind of co-location facilities having a role there as well.
I see businesses taking their, I'll say, traditional systems, moving them inside a co-location facility, just to have proximity to that hyperscaler cloud service, for example, as well. So, I think we'll kind of watch those with the research as well.
Bob: Yeah, absolutely. It's a great point. And the interesting part of, you know, with the IT pendulum swinging towards distributed again, right, I think the important consideration we want to look at is that organizations aren't necessarily looking to build out data centers at the edge, but what's the minimal amount of compute and storage that's required at the edge to run those programs, those applications that perform the specific analytic functions they need them to without having to build out all those data centers.
So, it's a really thoughtful approach to the edge and how they're going to leverage that compute and the network connectivity.
Mark: The four walls of the data center have really evaporated, right? Or they're very transparent in many cases. So, stay tuned and look out. We do more research in distributed cloud. Reach out to Bob and I if you're looking to learn more, and we'll talk more about some of the questions that we're looking to answer, some of the challenges we see companies have, and some where their priorities may be as well.
So, thanks for joining. And, Bob, thanks for your time today as well.