Brian Lillie of Equinix Delivered a Keynote Speech at DatacenterWorld

Last October, the Data Center World keynote address was delivered by a facilities person. This year, it was delivered by Brian Lillie, CIO of Equinix, who is IT enough for me.


Brian Lillie

The title of his presentation was "Are You Ready to Ride the Four Tsunamis About to Hit Your Data Center?” His four tsunamis happen to be:

  • IP traffic increase
  • Mobile data traffic increase
  • Emergence of cloud computing
  • Data volume increase

He showed us the impressive growth in each area, as illustrated by the following picture.

Four Tsunamis Growing

He reviewed the computing industry, as Jill Eckhaus, CEO of AFCOM, did in her opening remarks prior to his speech. He jumped into the discussion of each area by throwing a lot of statistics from market research companies like Gartner at us.

 There is no question about the growth of the Internet and IP traffic. Without showing actual numbers, I think one of his slides articulates the growth very well. The map on the top shows Internet connections in 1997 and the one at the bottom shows them in 2007.


It is clear that mobile computing is growing more rapidly than wired computing. His next slide shows the rapid growth of mobile computing. With the growth in traffic, the amount of data exchange has also skyrocketed. A new trend like Ethernet WAN will accelerate the increase in traffic and data volume still more.

The advantages of mobile computing are obvious:

  • Always on
  • Ubiquitous access to the Net
  • Easy to carry

In spite of this, the U.S. is behind the curve, compared with Europe and Asia. Japan, which I cover in my research, is a good example. Far more people in Japan are online by cell phone than by desktop or laptop PCs. I know this firsthand. Many people I know there do not own computers or do not know how to use them. Via a cell phone, they can exploit easy access to email and various services through the Web. Recently, I talked with a person from NTT Docomo. He said that in Japan, due to NTT Docomo’s i-mode service, there was a clear distinction between the two worlds of mobile and the Internet. But this is changing rapidly, even in Japan, so that the two worlds are merging.

And cloud. It is becoming a mainstream technology, as Brian’s market trend data showed. Data center operators should get ready for this change in the computing paradigm. New cloud service providers pop up, and I found his slide showing the list of cloud service providers interesting.

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Preventing Data Corruption in the Event of an Extended Power Outage
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With all these things happening, how do you as an IT person survive in this rapidly changing world? Brian concluded his presentation with the following three questions for you.

  1. What domain level IT expertise are you bringing to the table?
  2. What are you doing to better align your IT organization and operations to the needs of the business?
  3. What professional development program have you created for yourself to help you achieve your goals?

 This was a good keynote to set the stage for the 2010 Data Center World conference.

Zen Kishimoto

About Zen Kishimoto

Seasoned research and technology executive with various functional expertise, including roles in analyst, writer, CTO, VP Engineering, general management, sales, and marketing in diverse high-tech and cleantech industry segments, including software, mobile embedded systems, Web technologies, and networking. Current focus and expertise are in the area of the IT application to energy, such as smart grid, green IT, building/data center energy efficiency, and cloud computing.

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