Are Industry Associations Snorage or Hype-Busters?

By Clive Gold, CTO Marketing, EMC Australia and New Zealand.

As soon as I say “Storage Networking”, you will glaze over and think… “storage is snoreage” and if there is no ‘social’ before ‘networking’ who cares!  However consider that in IT, there just might be a small chance, that a few isolated vendors, possibly over-exaggerate or over-hype new technologies. I would argue having an independent voice in this market can provide you with a great deal of value!

Quick background, SNIA is the Storage Networking Industry Association, a body formed by the industry to drive standards and best practices associated with ‘storage’. In the past this body has been responsible for driving standards around storage management, storage protocols such as Object-based and iSCSI, etc.  Last week I was in the USA at SNW, (Storage Networking World) as I chair the International Steering Committee for SNIA, which represents the 7 regional affiliates to the ‘core’ of SNIA. (ANZ, Brazil, China, Europe, India, Japan, and South Asia).

So the question is, with a name like ‘Storage Networking’ which is so 2000’s, why does this association continue to exist? The answer is like EMC, SNIA has expanded its focus but is battling with its brand perception. Have a look at the agenda from last week, (Agenda and Pressos here), and in particular search for the “SNIA Tutorials”.

What you will find are a number of topics that you would expect, core storage related like, “Advanced Deduplication Concepts”, “Benefits of Solid State in Enterprise Storage Systems”. Don’t stop as you will notice a move to the virtual world, e.g. “pNFS & NFSv4.2: A Filesystem for Grid, Virtualization and Database”, “Storage Optimization for Virtual Desktops”, etc.  But it doesn’t stop  there, as the market has done SNIA moves from virtualisation to cloud. Sessions like: “Interoperable Cloud Storage with the CDMI Standard”. (“Cloud Data Management Interface” was the first standard for cloud storage and has begun being built into products on the market.)

Now it starts to get more interesting as a number of topics seem to move from the ‘core’ technology and more about how and why, titles like:

  • “A Hype-free Stroll Through Cloud Storage Security”
  • “Deploying Public, Private and Hybrid Storage Clouds”
  • “The Business Case for the Cloud”
  • “Enterprise Architecture and The Cloud”

How does that relate to ‘Storage Networking’, well it’s definitely about storage, no arguing there, and some would say you don’t have ‘cloud’ without networks.. so it’s perfectly relevant! It’s just about your ‘historic’ perception and the reality today!

To make it worse, your journey doesn’t stop there as you notice subjects that lead further from basic protocol standards, like, “Got Lawyers? They’ve Got Storage and ESI in the Cross-Hairs”, “Bringing Light to the “Digital Dark Age” – Preserving Digital Information for the Long Term”, “Can U B Social? Defining Social Media For Your Organization”.

Have a look at some of the content, and even if you aren’t a “tech nerd”, I think you will see value in a consensus view! If you want to know more sign up at snia.org.au.  See you there!

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3 responses to “Are Industry Associations Snorage or Hype-Busters?

  1. Clive, your premise started with is SNIA relevant? I also believe it to be relevant, especially in the area of delivering unbiased recommendations. At IIIS, recently, I found it refreshing to deliver a backup and restore presentation that was not based around the messages that HP, the company I work for, specifically wants to push. It was delivered to help the people in the audience. Whilst the two are not mutually exclusive, it puts a different focus on the presentation and how it is delivered. It was certainly well received.

    We all work for vendors, and we know our companies all have agendas around their products. SNIA helps to level the playing field in a way that enables it to be understood.

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