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Thinking about the tomorrow of network connections…

Over the horizon is an interesting problem for me. It is a huge part of my job now, but it is also really hard to do. In part because you never really know for sure. In part because where you look (orientation) can impact the observation. John Boyd, a former US Air Force Officer, created a process called OODA loops for building and delivering decisions. OODA loops build both a framework to make decisions but also a structure whereby there is feedback. I use OODA loops as I consider the technology reality of what is next.

One thing that is interesting in consideration of tomorrow is the reality of the home and work network. The what and how of networks become interesting going forward. More and more companies are considering “broadband” as the answer to the high cost of networks. I find that interesting if you look at the large cloud providers (IBM, AWS, Azure, and Google) running around buying as much fiber as they can. If broadband is the future, why are all the big players buying fiber? What I suspect we will start to see over the next few years is a separation. Companies that move to broadband will offload more and more services to Cloud Service Providers. That way their less available broadband solution will impact their employees, not their customers.

The other split will be more and more companies realizing that if AWS, Azure, Google, and IBM are buying fiber, it behooves them to get the more powerful network solution. Broadband is the cheap read ocean answer right now. Using the OODA loop process, I would, before leaping on the broadband bandwagon consider this:

  • What SLA (service level agreement) does the solution provider. 99.5% or better uptime is the minimum for a good network connection!
  • Does the provider of the network service guarantee throughput. Look I complain all the time about the reality of the fastest in-home wifi (which doesn’t matter if you can use it for what you need). The same is true of commercial broadband. Do you guarantee my upload and download capacity? (a second SLA).
  • Finally and potentially the most critical, how is the provider’s network configured. When you talk about cable model systems, they all come back to the same CO. Fiber connections also come back to a CO, but there tends to be more available bandwidth fiber versus other connections. But the Cable modem is also limited by the reality of how many connections there are in the area. You don’t want your company network to be slow because an eight-year-old in the neighborhood behind you is playing Fortnight.

Those three components are the initial considerations (Orientation) that impact your observation (purchase decision) of Broadband versus a traditional network solution.

  • Question of

    Have you ever experienced a really slow network connection?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    Have you noticed your home network is a lot slower on Friday and Saturday night than any otehr time?

    • Yes
    • No
  • Question of

    did it happen at the moment you needed the network the most?

    • Yes
    • No

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What do you think?

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Written by DocAndersen

One fan, One team and a long time dream Go Cubs!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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