Data Explosion Requires World Class Data Centres

Kris Kumar, CEO, Bridge Data Centres | Thursday, 31 August 2017, 13:21 IST

Throughout our professional and personal lives, data explosion is at the core of our technology-driven world. Our thoughts, preferences, actions and leisure activities generate vast amounts of disparate data in the form of transactions, corporate data, and a myriad of content including photos and hi-def video. In order to be useful, this data needs to be stored, catalogued and analysed, and this process has begun to generate innovative ways in which to monetise its use, through data analytics, artificial intelligence, machine and deep learning and augmented/virtual reality. Application development has hit an all-time high and has presented us with choices in our everyday lives, such as Uber, AirBnB, Amazon, Facebook, Alibaba and many more.

New Opportunities for Agility and Speed to Market - The democratisation of consumption, and the purchasing-parity through ecommerce and payment gateways, has resulted in rapid market growth for products and services, in an unprecedented manner. The cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) platforms have created an efficient and scalable way for organisations to procure compute and storage capacity, to anchor their revenue models, and achieve speed to market using sophisticated technology solutions available to them. These technologies are being adopted in both public and private / hybrid cloud platforms. Companies do not have to settle for “one size fits all” but can tailor the platforms and applications to suit their particular business and operational requirements and goals. Organizations can focus on their core expertise, and through some soul-searching and innovation, leverage their strengths to expand business models and revenue streams. What an exciting time for organisations to hit the reset button and create new competitive advantages that generate value in the business!

Impact on Operations - At the heart of this revolution is technology, consisting of the three traditional layers of capability, namely hardware, middleware (platforms) and software. These three elements need to seamlessly communicate with each other through various means of access appliances and networks (tablets, smart phones, computers, and mobile/fixed network access) to create efficient and scalable services that generate revenue. Focusing on the hardware layer, consisting of compute/ network/storage, cloud players have optimised scalable solutions providing IaaS offerings in public, private or hybrid environments. Organizations can leverage these offerings for specific applications and retain their own environments for core applications thereby achieving scale instantly or in a programmed fashion, as the demand for their products/services wax and wane or scale within the markets in which they operate.

This infrastructure typically is collocated in-house or increasingly in outsourced third-party data centres, and is optimised for the specific purpose it is meant to serve. The data centre facility must provide the right environmental, power, network, and operational reliability to ensure that the organisations can rely on the IT infrastructure underpinning their business to deliver its output 24X365 in a seamless manner.

World Class Data Centres are Needed - Hardware developments and virtualisation of operating systems, together with a dramatic rise in workloads being generated from data and applications, has resulted in significant changes to the power consumption of servers and storage equipment within data centres. The rate of this change is accelerating and is disrupting colocation business models and stretching them to “hyperscale” capacities. Advances in supporting power and cooling infrastructure have not kept pace with these changes, so smart engineering techniques are necessary to ensure that the data centre facilities are designed and operated to allow for true scalability and reliability for corporates and cloud providers. It is critical for data centre providers to build and operate world class facilities designed for the various customer applications and operating requirements. Attention to detail in the flexible engineering design and construction, the continuous training of staff, and well documented global best practices and procedures for operations and maintenance, all will set agile data centres apart from the pack. This attention to detail and best practices will ensure longevity of the data centre and its ability to support changing needs of the IT workloads.

Data centres are the “beasts of burden” that carry technology shifts and changes and are the important foundation of growth in an economy today. The industry is experiencing a dramatic growth in demand as organisations race to build out their technology architecture to support business growth. The era of true alignment of infrastructure and business has arrived, and data centres are at the nucleus, ensuring that Uber driver arrives at your doorstep in time to whisk you off to that holiday you booked on MakemyTrip using PayTM and staying at an OVO establishment or two!