Big Data: Of the Data Center, By the Data Center and For the Data Center

SimonCowley_thumbnail Simon Cowley April 24, 2013

Big Data“Of the people, by the people, for the people.”
These are words spoken by US President Abraham Lincoln almost 150 years ago at the dedication of the Soldier’s National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pa.
This indelible speech became simply known as the “Gettysburg Address.”

It was a short but powerful speech – only two minutes long – which means it will likely take you longer to read this blog post.

A few months ago (four score and several days ago?), I received an invitation to present at AFCOM’s Data Center World conference April 28 - May 2 at the Mandalay Bay hotel in Las Vegas. Certainly, there are a myriad of topics I could cover that would have an impact on the audience. Ultimately I selected the concept of Big Data, covering the infrastructure choices that best position an organization to prepare for and capitalize on Big Data in their business. Big Data means different things to every organization, but in general, it will put increased demands on network infrastructure and potentially speed up the time scale of migration to higher speed technologies. The ability to migrate has long been central to CommScope’s development philosophy, and has manifested itself into virtually all of our data center solutions. So filling my allotted time was not going to be difficult.

Fast forward to March 19, when CommScope announces the exciting acquisition of iTRACS. As I learned more about iTRACS and its Data Center Infrastructure Management (DCIM) solution, it became clear to me that my presentation at this AFCOM event could take on an entirely new flavor. The term Big Data now applies to the data center itself. A wealth of data is available within the data center environment. From the physical layer up, data can be mined, understood, shared, and leveraged to empower decision makers. In his address, Lincoln spoke of “a new birth of freedom,” and it is with this spirit in mind that we free this data, converting it to actionable information upon which decisions are made.

So now I gladly share the stage with my new compatriot Daniel Fry, vice president of software development for iTRACS, to deliver this powerful message. With inspiration from Lincoln, the title of our joint production is: “Big Data: Of the Data Center, By the Data Center, and For the Data Center.” And yes, sharing the stage means I’ll have less time personally with the audience. But realizing Lincoln could recite his entire “Gettysburg Address” nearly 30 times during our time slot; perhaps I should embrace the opportunity for brevity.

I hope you can attend our presentation May 1 from 8:45 – 9:45 a.m. in the Palm C meeting room. If you are attending the AFCOM show, please stop by the CommScope booth #1337 to see all of our data center solutions. Just don’t expect to see me wearing a stovepipe hat.

About the Author


Simon Cowley

Simon C. Cowley is director of campus fiber market development for CommScope.  In this role, he is responsible for developing unique and comprehensive solutions for the office and campus workplace environment covering copper, fiber, wireless, and power technologies. Simon previously led CommScope’s Enterprise Solutions Global Technical Support team since 2006.  He also served as director of apparatus R&D for copper, fiber, and intelligent systems and fiber optic engineering manager since joining CommScope in 2001. Before joining Commscope, he served in various engineering, business development, and management capacities with Amphenol Fiber Optics, ITT Cannon, and FCI/Berg Electronics. Simon is a graduate of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute with an MBA in Global Management from the University of Phoenix.