This is part 2 in a 10 part series: 10 reasons for the growth in middleware appliances. The series summarizes what we’ve learned from our clients about what they value in appliances and why they selected Solace.
One of our customers once told us that they judge everything they do against the “Hedgehog Concept”, an insight borrowed from the book Good to Great by Jim Collins. which says that you should focus on the few things you can be the best in the world at and waste as little energy as possible doing anything else. With the exception of companies like the former EDS (now HP), virtually no company’s hedgehog concept is “to be the best in the world at managing enormously complex IT infrastructure”. For most companies, every minute spent configuring and tuning middleware is time not spent improving trading strategies, getting travelers to destinations on time, getting product from factory to distribution, or improving national security.
That idea of keeping your eye on what makes you most competitive is a big part of the rapid acceptance of appliances, as well as cloud-based applications and outsourcing of non-essential business operations. Appliances deliver a turnkey experience at a level of performance and simplicity that software running on general-purpose servers simply can’t match. You can see the pattern over and over again. In the 1980s, Cisco moved UNIX software that handled IP packet routing into routers and switches (turnkey network appliances) enabling the internet revolution. More recently F5 and NetApp simplified application delivery and storage respectively using appliances to make operations faster and easier.
At Solace, we believe that distributed information sharing should be as easy and transparent as IP networking. Most large companies have ten or more different kinds of messaging deployed, each segrated and consuming their own pockets of datacenter resources. It’s really the hedgehog principle again: If you can save money, and get rid of a major time-sucking headache so you can focus on what’s truly important to your business, why wouldn’t you?
To take the conversation from the conceptual to the practical, let’s look at some of the ways Solace makes life simpler when managing distributed information flow:
All of these attributes of Solace appliances are designed to make your life easier, to let you put your attention on something more central to your own mission and trust that our hedgehog concept—being the best in the world at building fast, reliable, easy to use distributed information appliances—lets you focus on your hedgehog concept.
The first two reasons in our list of 10 have focused on big picture issues that virtually every customer values. We have a couple more of those to cover off, then we’ll get into some of the more specific things that get our customer’s eyes to light up. You can keep up with the list by subscribing to this blog, or following us on Twitter.