|By Lori MacVittie||
|March 29, 2013 10:00 AM EDT||
One of the primary reasons node.js is currently ascending in the data center is because of its core model: event-driven, non-blocking processing.
Historically, developers write applications based on connections and requests. It's blocking; it's not asynchronous; it's not fire and forget until some other event reminds them that something needs to be done.
If the underlying network fabric worked like applications today work, we'd be in a heap of trouble. A switch would grab an incoming packet and forward it and then... wait for it to return. You can imagine what that would do to traffic flow and just how much bigger and beefier switches would have to be to support the kind of traffic experienced today by enterprises and web monsters alike.
Luckily, the network isn't like that. It doesn't block waiting for a response. It grabs an ingress packet, determines where it should go next, forwards it and then moves on to the next packet in line. It does not hang out, mooning over and writing bad love poetry about the packet it just forwarded, wondering if it will ever come back.
That, in part*, is why networks scale so well, why they are so fast and able to sustain a significant order of magnitude more concurrent connections than a web or application server.
So imagine what happens when a web or application server adopts a more laissez-faire attitude toward processing requests; when it fires-and-forgets until it is reminded by the return of a response?
Exactly. It gains phenomenal network-like speed and much better scalability.
That's what node.js is bringing to the data center table - an event-driven, non-blocking application infrastructure that aligns with the event-driven, non-blocking nature of the network fabric. Louis Simoneau sums it up well:
Here’s where some of that jargon from before comes into play: specifically non-blocking and event-driven. What those terms mean in this context is less complicated than you might fear. Think of a non-blocking server as a loop: it just keeps going round and round. A request comes in, the loop grabs it, passes it along to some other process (like a database query), sets up a callback, and keeps going round, ready for the next request. It doesn’t just sit there, waiting for the database to come back with the requested info.
And it's a quite capable platform based on the numerous benchmarks and tests performed by developers and devops interested in understanding the differences between it and the old guard (Apache, PHP, etc...)
On a purpose-built operating system, node.js has been clocked at over 4 million simultaneous connections. It scales, and it scales well.
Suffice to say that the application and network infrastructure is starting to align in terms of performance capabilities and, interestingly enough, programmability. What the network is taking from development is programmability, and what development is taking from the network is speed and capacity.
They're aligning in so many ways that it's almost mind-boggling to consider the potential.
It's not just like Christmas - it's like Christmas when you're five years old. Yeah, it's that awesomesauce. I haven't been this excited about a technology since application switching broke onto the scene in, well, quite some years ago now.
This is not to say that the entire network fabric is truly event-driven. It's not quite Christmas yet, but it is close enough to taste ...
Network components, individually, are event-driven, but the overall data center network is not yet. But we're getting closer. You may recall that when we first started talking about Infrastructure 2.0, when cloud was in its infancy (almost pre-infancy, actually), we talked about event-driven configuration and policy deployment:
The configuration and policies applied by dynamic infrastructure are not static; they are able to change based on predefined criteria or events that occur in the environment such that the security, scalability, or performance of an application and its environs are preserved.
Some solutions implement this capability through event-driven architectures, such as "IP_ADDRESS_ASSIGNED" or "HTTP_REQUEST_MADE".
Today we'd call that SDN (software-defined networking) or the SDDC (software-defined data center). Regardless of what we call it, the core principle remains: events trigger the configuration, deployment, and enforcement of infrastructure policies across the data center.
Now couple that with an inherently event-driven application infrastructure that complements the event-driven network infrastructure. And consider how one might use a platform that is event-driven and isn't going to bottleneck like more traditional development languages. Exactly. All the capacity and performance concerns we had around trying to architect an event-driven data center with Infrastructure 2.0 just evaporate, for the most part.
The data center planets are aligning and what's yet to come will hopefully be a leap forward towards a dynamic, adaptable data center fabric that's capable of acting and reacting to common events across the entire network and application infrastructure.
* Yes, there's hardware and firmware and operating system design that also contributes to the speed and capacity of the network fabric, but that would be all be undone were the network to sit around like a lovesick Juliet waiting for her Romeo-packet to return.
Fortunately, meaningful and tangible business cases for IoT are plentiful in a broad array of industries and vertical markets. These range from simple warranty cost reduction for capital intensive assets, to minimizing downtime for vital business tools, to creating feedback loops improving product design, to improving and enhancing enterprise customer experiences. All of these business cases, which will be briefly explored in this session, hinge on cost effectively extracting relevant data from ...
Feb. 9, 2016 03:15 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that Men & Mice, the leading global provider of DNS, DHCP and IP address management overlay solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. The Men & Mice Suite overlay solution is already known for its powerful application in heterogeneous operating environments, enabling enterprises to scale without fuss. Building on a solid range of diverse platform support,...
Feb. 9, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 180
As enterprises work to take advantage of Big Data technologies, they frequently become distracted by product-level decisions. In most new Big Data builds this approach is completely counter-productive: it presupposes tools that may not be a fit for development teams, forces IT to take on the burden of evaluating and maintaining unfamiliar technology, and represents a major up-front expense. In his session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Andrew Warfield, CTO and Co-Founder of Coho Data, will dis...
Feb. 9, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 161
SYS-CON Events announced today that iDevices®, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. iDevices, the preeminent brand in the connected home industry, has a growing line of HomeKit-enabled products available at the largest retailers worldwide. Through the “Designed with iDevices” co-development program and its custom-built IoT Cloud Infrastruc...
Feb. 9, 2016 02:45 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that Pythian, a global IT services company specializing in helping companies adopt disruptive technologies to optimize revenue-generating systems, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Founded in 1997, Pythian is a global IT services company that helps companies compete by adopting disruptive technologies such as cloud, Big Data, advanced analytics, and DevO...
Feb. 9, 2016 02:45 PM EST Reads: 187
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, Inc., the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Alert Logic, Inc., provides Security-as-a-Service for on-premises, cloud, and hybrid infrastructures, delivering deep security insight and continuous protection for customers at a lower cost than traditional security solutions. Ful...
Feb. 9, 2016 02:15 PM EST Reads: 388
SYS-CON Events announced today that Interoute, owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. Interoute is the owner-operator of one of Europe's largest networks and a global cloud services platform which encompasses 12 data centers, 14 virtual data centers and 31 colocation centers, with connections to 195 ad...
Feb. 9, 2016 01:15 PM EST Reads: 368
With an estimated 50 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, several industries will begin to expand their capabilities for retaining end point data at the edge to better utilize the range of data types and sheer volume of M2M data generated by the Internet of Things. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and President of Infobright, will discuss the infrastructures businesses will need to implement to handle this explosion of data by providing specific use cases for filte...
Feb. 9, 2016 12:00 PM EST Reads: 144
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
Feb. 9, 2016 11:30 AM EST Reads: 399
Eighty percent of a data scientist’s time is spent gathering and cleaning up data, and 80% of all data is unstructured and almost never analyzed. Cognitive computing, in combination with Big Data, is changing the equation by creating data reservoirs and using natural language processing to enable analysis of unstructured data sources. This is impacting every aspect of the analytics profession from how data is mined (and by whom) to how it is delivered. This is not some futuristic vision: it's ha...
Feb. 9, 2016 08:45 AM EST Reads: 427
With the Apple Watch making its way onto wrists all over the world, it’s only a matter of time before it becomes a staple in the workplace. In fact, Forrester reported that 68 percent of technology and business decision-makers characterize wearables as a top priority for 2015. Recognizing their business value early on, FinancialForce.com was the first to bring ERP to wearables, helping streamline communication across front and back office functions. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Kevin Roberts...
Feb. 9, 2016 08:00 AM EST Reads: 363
One of the bewildering things about DevOps is integrating the massive toolchain including the dozens of new tools that seem to crop up every year. Part of DevOps is Continuous Delivery and having a complex toolchain can add additional integration and setup to your developer environment. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 18th Cloud Expo, Miko Matsumura, Chief Marketing Officer of Gradle Inc., will discuss which tools to use in a developer stack, how to provision the toolchain to minimize onboa...
Feb. 9, 2016 07:45 AM EST
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Feb. 9, 2016 07:15 AM EST Reads: 218
The cloud promises new levels of agility and cost-savings for Big Data, data warehousing and analytics. But it’s challenging to understand all the options – from IaaS and PaaS to newer services like HaaS (Hadoop as a Service) and BDaaS (Big Data as a Service). In her session at @BigDataExpo at @ThingsExpo, Hannah Smalltree, a director at Cazena, will provide an educational overview of emerging “as-a-service” options for Big Data in the cloud. This is critical background for IT and data profes...
Feb. 9, 2016 06:45 AM EST Reads: 171
Silver Spring Networks, Inc. (NYSE: SSNI) extended its Internet of Things technology platform with performance enhancements to Gen5 – its fifth generation critical infrastructure networking platform. Already delivering nearly 23 million devices on five continents as one of the leading networking providers in the market, Silver Spring announced it is doubling the maximum speed of its Gen5 network to up to 2.4 Mbps, increasing computational performance by 10x, supporting simultaneous mesh communic...
Feb. 8, 2016 05:00 PM EST
SYS-CON Events announced today that VAI, a leading ERP software provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. VAI (Vormittag Associates, Inc.) is a leading independent mid-market ERP software developer renowned for its flexible solutions and ability to automate critical business functions for the distribution, manufacturing, specialty retail and service sectors. An IBM Premier Business Part...
Feb. 8, 2016 03:00 PM EST Reads: 584
SYS-CON Events announced today that Fusion, a leading provider of cloud services, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Fusion, a leading provider of integrated cloud solutions to small, medium and large businesses, is the industry's single source for the cloud. Fusion's advanced, proprietary cloud service platform enables the integration of leading edge solutions in the cloud, including clou...
Feb. 6, 2016 03:30 PM EST Reads: 745
Most people haven’t heard the word, “gamification,” even though they probably, and perhaps unwittingly, participate in it every day. Gamification is “the process of adding games or game-like elements to something (as a task) so as to encourage participation.” Further, gamification is about bringing game mechanics – rules, constructs, processes, and methods – into the real world in an effort to engage people. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robert Endo, owner and engagement manager of Intrepid D...
Feb. 5, 2016 09:00 PM EST Reads: 804
WebRTC has had a real tough three or four years, and so have those working with it. Only a few short years ago, the development world were excited about WebRTC and proclaiming how awesome it was. You might have played with the technology a couple of years ago, only to find the extra infrastructure requirements were painful to implement and poorly documented. This probably left a bitter taste in your mouth, especially when things went wrong.
Feb. 2, 2016 04:30 AM EST Reads: 871
Learn how IoT, cloud, social networks and last but not least, humans, can be integrated into a seamless integration of cooperative organisms both cybernetic and biological. This has been enabled by recent advances in IoT device capabilities, messaging frameworks, presence and collaboration services, where devices can share information and make independent and human assisted decisions based upon social status from other entities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Heydt, founder of Seamless...
Feb. 1, 2016 05:00 AM EST Reads: 958