Friday Fun Blog: Yule Tide Log EditionDecember 19, 2014
UPDATE: Gmail Encrypts All Emails, Sticks It to The ManDecember 24, 2014
2015 might be the year that changes the way you look at data forever. Everyone is constantly looking for more efficient (but cheaper) ways to store their data or bring their data to their customers as quickly as possible. And to make sure this efficiency is achieved, all eyes will be on the data center.
While data centers have changed drastically in these terms over the past decade, it’s always exciting to look towards the future. In this instance, the not-so-distant future of the data center may make larger strides towards innovation than in years past—and that’s exciting. Take a look at this video put together by HP which pairs exciting music with the future of the data center:
With 2015 about ready to smack us in the face, let’s take a look at the 5 most promising data center trends in 2015.
How Data Centers Will Become More Agile
When one speaks of agility in a data center they’re not only talking about the speed in which data will transfer from host to user, but rather how quickly the data center operates as a whole.
In fact, in my research of the subject, I came across a great line by an answerer of the question “how does one create agility in data center design and usage?” on the tech question & answer site quora.com:
And that really is the main purpose of a data center after all, right? Data is changing constantly—think about it. Think about what was actually stored in a data center ten years ago as compared to now. Would you want your data center to use decade-old technologies to store data (and types of data) that are far more recent?
Moreover, a more agile data center paves a path for a much more efficient and collaborative workforce. And that can only lead to one thing: cheaper, more efficient data centers and an endless amount of innovation. Look for data centers to be much more agile by this time next year.
Data Centers Will Shrink While Expanding: A Paradox
It’s the day before the day of a major holiday, so I’m not trying to twist your mind around a Gollum-like riddle in the dark. No, I’m simply talking about how data centers will shrink and expand simultaneously. Oh, maybe that is a little confusing. But not to worry! It’ll all become clear soon.
In fact, Hitachi’s white paper “Create the Data Center of the Future” explains that the first problem facing today’s data center is data volume. They explained that, “while terabytes of information were the scare words for the past decade, petabytes of data are becoming the new normal.” Ah, then data centers need to expand to accommodate for the amount of data, right? Well, yes and no. They can also expand by shrinking (I promise this will all make sense).
While terabytes of information were the scare words for the past decade, petabytes of data are becoming the new normal
Now, one can look at this in one of two ways: physically, or from a business standpoint. Many major colocation companies see this wealth of data as a means to grow as a business, but the kind souls who actually operate the data center see the need for expansion of hardware. And that’s where the cloud comes in.
Now, we’ve spent some time explaining to our readers the dangers of cloud hosting. In fact, the majority of all those security hacks all over the news revolve around cloud-based systems.
While the cloud reduces the amount of servers required, there are some pitfalls—but the cost (or lack thereof) keeps attracting more and more businesses.
Some companies, according to datacenterknowledge.com are re-evaluating the amount of physical space they’ll need to fully operate under the cloud and many are seeing footprint-reductions of nearly 50 percent.
Data Centers using the cloud will then see the normal data increase but reduced floor-space needed. And that’s how some data centers will shrink while expanding.
Adopting Flash Storage In Data Centers Will Be a Necessity
If you’ve gotten this far in the article, then I’m sure you’ve heard of flash storage or have at least encountered one of those ultra-fast SSD hard drives before. I’m sure it really stood out because, well, it’s ultra-fast. And fast equals money in the data center industry. Instantaneous might just be the word of 2015.
As heath providers, retailers, etc. wanting to retrieve their data faster than ever, data centers will have to full-scale adopt the technology sooner or later. Take a look at this blast-from-the-past video filled with British witticism by Mark Twomey of Data Center Insiders who was talking about flash storage in data centers all the way back in 2012:
Three years later is a human-lifetime from a software/hardware standpoint. So all those predictions Twomey mentioned are coming to a bountiful head.
Look for flash storage to make its mark in 2015.
Data Centers Will Require Less Humans, Become Automatic
We’ve touched on this subject not only a little bit in regards to data center agility above, but also in a previous blog. It’s fascinating, horrifying, and might just be the way of the future.
With business being business and all, many companies have already discovered that the less staff you have around, the less you have to budget for in labor. Wouldn’t it be awesome, then, if data centers could operate and function fully by themselves. With no need for that pesky human error?
Sure thoughts of Hal from Stanley Kubrik’s 2001: A Space Odyssey may come to mind (with a little of the Terminator mixed in, I’m sure). But if you think about what’s heavily weighted as the most crucial aspect of a data center—uptime reigns as king.
So if data centers were smart enough to repair themselves, or at least diagnose their problems so that a monkey could fix it but unplugging this or pushing this button, then wouldn’t everyone jump on that data center’s ship? Little downtime, zero risk of human error? Sounds great to me. And in 2015, some of these data centers could emerge.
With The Internet of Things on the horizon, and more and more focus being on technology, big data, and instantaneous (there’s that word again) information, 2015 looks like the year of the data center. Those who can adapt to the changes, and more importantly—those who prepare for those changes, will have a leg up.
One thing is for certain: by this time next year there will be billions and billions more data than there was this year. And the data center trends of 2015 will have to adapt.