NonStop at the edge!
The greater HPE strategy evolves around the idea that corporations will use a mix of hybrid architecture and hybrid cloud to achieve optimal results for a reasonable investment. Another tenet to the strategy is that everything will be understood through artificial intelligence and its components of machine and dep learning. Finally that a large portion of computing will be done at the edge. By the edge, HPE means near the creation of an event or transaction. It would be pre-cloud and would, most often, obviate the need to move the data back to the data center since it would have already been processed. Only aggregate data and outliers would make the long and somewhat expensive trip back to the data center. By way of example, I was reading of video ‘smart cities’ surveillance systems that were setup in China a few years ago. The raw video footage was 457PB per day. Imagine moving all that information every day and analyzing it. By the use of edge systems to capture, aggregate and determine requirements for sending information upstream, this was reduced to 76PB per day. That’s still an amazing amount to transfer but dropping from 457PB to 76PB is an impressive saving. This means systems at the edge would need to support transactional input from existing devices along with many new streams coming from IoT devices. Additionally they would need to have an ability for OLAP/analytical processing. Analytic code for such things as fraud, preventive maintenance, security and many other machine learning based algorithms would be dropped onto these edge systems after being developed on high-end machine learning systems at the core, such as the HPE Apollo systems. Ideally the edge system would have a mixed workload capability to balance high-priority streaming traffic from backend analytics. As more and more critical processing is distributed to edge systems, the more failure becomes intolerable, expensive and in many cases dangerous. Will the edge require mission-critical systems? I believe you can predict my answer.
NonStop with its known capability for high transaction analytical processing (HTAP) and its demonstrated mixed workload capability (ZLE) makes it an ideal fit for a mission-critical edge server. HPE has a series of edge systems called Edgeline. Could a virtual NonStop run in an HPE Edgeline system? Could you really get a NonStop in 1U? It is important to remind everyone, I’m not in product management and cannot commit to any NonStop roadmap. All that said, yes it can run. If everything goes well we may have a demo at NonStop TBC 2019 – yet another of the many, many reasons to attend. I believe my email is listed but in case it’s not Justin.firstname.lastname@example.org will reach me. Write me if you have some ideas around NonStop at the edge – at convenience stores for credit authorization, inventory and security control? Nursing stations for hospital supplies and patient care? Oil drilling for preventive maintenance and security? Are there specific applications you believe should be running on NonStop at the edge? Let me know your ideas, perhaps we’ll demonstrate one or more at this coming Bootcamp. These are exciting times.
In terms of wins NonStop has had a very good first half with banks and credit card companies investing heavily in the x86 and vNonStop systems. I have been involved in a vNonStop Proof of Concept involving Cisco servers. There were some issues initially but the systems are now up and being tested. The promise of vNonStop was that it would, to a great extent, be hardware agnostic. So far, so good. We have also enjoyed some success outside our typical verticals and have had wins in transportation, freight, retail and even agriculture. So NonStop continues to enjoy loyalty from our customer base along with some new and interesting first time customers in different verticals.