There are a couple of good blog posts worthy of a look over at the Hitachi website this week, good enough for me to post references to them as they aren’t purely about the latest hardware product on offer.
First, Dave Merrill (aka The Storage Economist) talks about storage cost ratios in “Back to 1999 Capex Ratio“. Dave’s content is good, certainly thought provoking but perhaps worthy of a wider discussion on how storage growth has affected costs in absolute terms. We’ve seen massive storage capacity growth since 1999; at the time the largest disk drive was around 20GB and we’ve seen a 200x increase in capacity with drives up to 4TB today (not all of these are enterprise-class of course). So although costs have reduced, our usage has also increased and will continue to do so. At the same time, storage has a much higher profile than ever before and consumes more of the IT budget. Data has been seen to have more value with the rise of “Big Data”, more focus on compliance and the resulting desire to simply keep everything. I think Dave should become the IT Economist and put his great storage work into a wider context.
The second post was from Michael Hay, Vice President of Product Planning and Chief Engineer at the Disk Array Systems Division (nice short job title there). In his post “Big Data – It’s not the size of your source but the size of the insight that really matters” (another short and snappy title), Michael makes the point that Big Data doesn’t necessarily refer to big volumes of data but perhaps to the big value within it. He cites a retail example where simply tracking traffic flow within a retail environment and making some small changes can result in significant benefits (in this example 15% higher sales per customer). The last Hitachi Influencers’ Day in November demonstrated how Hitachi/HDS are moving away from the pure hardware story with a wider focus on content. The content and value contained within data is key, as hardware margins continue to be squeezed. The future of hardware won’t be purely about storing data, it will be about proactively managing the content.
Although the Hitachi folks don’t write that regularly, there is great content worth looking out for. I’ve provided links below to some of the major blogs, although most have now been merged into a single “Data Centre Advisors” stream.
- http://blogs.hds.com/ – Main blogs landing page
- Hu Yoshida’s blog (HDS CTO)
- Dave Merrill’s Blog (HDS Chief Economist)
- http://blogs.hds.com/hdsblog/ – the majority of HDS bloggers now fall under this feed
Disclaimer: I was invited and attended the recent Hitachi Influencers’ Day in San Jose. My flights, accommodation and most meals were paid for. However I was not required to talk about the event and none of my posts are pre-screened or approved by Hitachi/HDS before publication.