Hi and Happy New Year!
As we transition into 2015, it’s a good time to reflect on the genesis of SDNCentral, provide some perspective around emerging topics important to the SDNCentral audience, and introduce our new site name: SDxCentral.
Origins of SDNCentral
A little over three years ago, we started SDNCentral with nothing more than a twitter account and some spare time to retweet a couple of visionaries talking about a significant change to the networking: software-defined networking (SDN). Back then, most of the chatter was about an emerging protocol out of Stanford’s Clean Slate Project (subsequently ONRC Stanford/Berkeley) called OpenFlow, as well as buzz about a couple of startups called Nicira (acquired by VMware), Contrail (acquired by Juniper), and Big Switch. Given both our backgrounds, our intention was that SDNCentral could be both a service to the community and a way to keep a pulse on an emerging market so we could eventually do another networking startup in this space. We soon learned the SDN space was not an easy one to enter without raising lots of money from venture capitalists (something we both had no desire to do again). Fortuitously, with help from many of our friends and a little luck in hooking up with Craig Matsumoto, arguably the best managing editor in networking, SDNCentral started growing beyond our wildest dreams.
With fundamental changes in IT infrastructure, where does SDNCentral go next?
Fundamental shifts in the technology landscape and strong competitive drivers pushed many organizations dependent on networking to innovate. While initial interest by network operators to transform was originally sparked by SDN (and to a lesser degree, OpenFlow), this need for transformation expanded the definition and reach of SDN to include things like network virtualization, network functions virtualization (NFV), white box, open-source networking, programmability and migration by network operators to a DevOps mindset.
By the time 2014 rolled around, the audience drove SDNCentral to go beyond SDN and OpenFlow, and we became the leading, trusted, online destination for network operators to learn about the business and technical changes impacting how they build and operate networks. As we look ahead, we expect initiatives like pervasive virtualization, NFV, programmability, policy, security and app-centricity to take us even further into Cloud Management Platforms (CMPs) like OpenStack and VMWare, High Performance Compute, Storage, Security, and Containers and other application infrastructure platforms, (BTW, check out Craig’s awesome container coverage if you haven’t yet done so).
Through this journey, we learned that the reason SDNCentral has been pulled into adjacent topics is because “software-centricity” (the heart of SDN) is the enabling glue that makes the transformation to software-defined compute, storage, security, etc possible. We also realized that our original name, SDNCentral, no longer represents the broader topics on the site. After much consultation and deliberation, we’ve decided to rename the site SDxCentral.
We’ve been early participants (through our consulting work at Wiretap Ventures) in helping network operators at enterprises and service providers transform traditional networks into virtualized and software-managed systems through SDN and NFV. At the same time, we’ve seen how these changes to networking are just a subset of the overall changes in the IT infrastructure space as part of a move towards software-defined everything. Note: we are not alone — check out Marc Andreesen’s musings on how “software is eating the world” for his perspective.
We heard from the line-of-business executives, cloud and infrastructure architects, software developers, and operations professionals at leading network operators who’ve explained their need for a trusted source of credible, timely, information, like SDNCentral for broader technology and business changes impacting their cloud infrastructure. This starts with SDN but quickly expands into broader datacenter and WAN infrastructure technologies and topics and elevating the discussion from networking to also include storage, compute, security and application infrastructure. We felt SDx (software defined everything) best captured all those elements.
What can you expect from SDxCentral in 2015 and beyond?
Most importantly, what’s not going to change is our timely, reliable and credible coverage of all the infrastructure news related to SDx. Along with that, expanded resources across all the elements relevant to SDx infrastructure such as core content, white papers, videos and other material. What is going to change is further expansion in scope of coverage, improved organization and search capabilities, expanded directory and catalog of SDx companies, SDx products and SDx open-source projects.
Site changes during transition to SDxCentral
We started this migration 6 months ago and regular readers have likely noticed subtle changes to the site including:
- Expanded coverage with additional reporting from Keith Griffith and Erin Moriarty covering cloud, open source, security, and DevOps.
- Broader set of topic pages reflecting our increased coverage in areas such as: DevOps, Open Source, Security, and White box in addition to our stalwarts SDN, NFV and Network Virtualization
- Re-categorization of content to align with these topics (and improve your ability to search and find this content on the site). Check out the Resources and Articles sections of the site to pick up articles and information you may have missed.
For now, the biggest change is the switching of our site to https://www.sdxcentral.com — and some subtle changes to our logo and links across the site.
Additionally, you’ll notice some changes to our social media handles, specifically:
- Twitter: we’re changing the handle name to @sdxcentral (from sdn_news) @sdxtech (from sdn_tech) (if you already follow them, no changes are required, but if you want to reference us in tweets or recommend your friends to them, please use the new handles).
- LinkedIn: you’ll notice the change in the group name but should not need to take any action to continue to get updated news.
For our members on our mailing lists, there should be no changes. Finally, you can still continue to reach us on our emails @sdncentral.com, our company name has not changed.
We thank you for your helping us make SDxCentral the leading trusted source of information about cloud and network infrastructure. Please keep your ideas and suggestions to improve the site for you coming!
–Matt and Roy