What to expect during the 'Does Hardware Matter?' pilot episode: Join theCUBE June 30

What to expect during the ‘Does Hardware Matter?’ pilot episode: Join theCUBE June 30

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The short answer to the question of whether hardware matters is “yes.” But the value flow for hardware is changing as tech innovation migrates to alternative chip platforms designed for modern workloads.

Network interface cards, accelerators and storage controllers are becoming more advanced and increasingly important in the enterprise. What does this mean for customers, workloads, original equipment manufacturers, and society at large?

To answer this question and more, theCUBE, SiliconANGLE Media’s livestreaming studio, is presenting “Does Hardware Matter?” a new webcast series pilot that will premiere on June 30. It will feature interviews with industry leaders and experts, including executives from Dell Technologies, Broadcom, Red Hat, Accenture, Principled Technologies and Prowess Labs. (* Disclosure below.)

Chip diversification

Cloud growth and the rise of software as a service have paved the way for significant changes in the hardware industry. A market that was oriented to hardware troubleshooting, port configuration, storage array tuning, and server utilization today revolves around containers, applications, microservices and DevOps. Dell Technologies Inc., one of the largest tech hardware companies in the world, recently disclosed that 85% of its Dell Infrastructure Solutions Group were engineers and a majority of them worked on software.

This new reality has led to a number of changes in the hardware industry, beginning with a diversification in chip architectures. The historical progress from x86-based CPUs to GPUs and DPUs has given way to an era of dedicated accelerators and AI-powered chip technologies.

“We’re seeing these more widely deployed, and it’s being done that way because workloads are evolving,” said Bob O’Donnell, president, founder and chief analyst at Technalysis Research, LLC, in a recent interview with SiliconANGLE. “The kinds of workloads that we’re seeing in some of these software areas require different types of compute engines than we’ve traditionally had.”

Moving data

In addition to a need for different compute engines, the changing hardware world is being driven by a critical need for moving and processing data. Issues such as latency and connectivity have become more important as organizations seek to build compute infrastructure around application environments.

Diversity of solutions in hardware is being fueled by customer desire for shared memory between artificial intelligence workloads and huge datasets. This trend will become even more critical as the focus of compute moves to the edge where large amounts of data will be generated.

“When I’m talking to customers, the biggest issue they have is moving data,” said Marc Staimer, founder and president of Dragon Slayer Consulting, in a discussion with theCUBE. “If you want to move it from, let’s say, your transactional database to your machine learning, it’s the bottleneck, it’s moving the data. The only way to get around these bottlenecks today is to spend less time trying to move the data and more time in taking the compute, the software, running on hardware closer to the data.”

Connectivity centric

The hardware industry’s response to these evolving compute scenarios has been to tailor new solutions for a hyper-distributed cloud run by software. A focus of Broadcom Inc.’s partnership with Dell has been to transform system architecture from CPU-centric to connectivity-centric, rearchitecting the datacenter to be connectivity first.

Broadcom provides network adapters and storage controllers for segments of Dell’s PowerEdge server line. The companies have focused on leveraging PCIe and Redundant Array of Disks, or RAID volumes, to eliminate bottlenecks while fostering speed and scale. In the upcoming pilot series, theCUBE will discuss what these new technologies mean and how changes in hardware design will reshape the modern enterprise.

“Being able to access lots and lots and lots of data locally is going to be a really, really big deal,” said Kimberly Leyenaar, principal performance architect at Broadcom, in a recent interview with SiliconANGLE. “The reality is the growth of real-time applications that require local processing are going to drive this technology forward over the coming years.”

TheCUBE livestream/on-demand access

Don’t miss the “Does Hardware Matter?” Limited Series, presented by theCUBE, airing June 30 at 9 AM PT. Plus, you can watch the series on-demand after the live series episode.

How to watch the pilot episode

We offer you various ways to watch the “Does Hardware Matter?” Limited Series, including theCUBE’s dedicated website and YouTube channel. You can also get all the coverage from this year’s events on SiliconANGLE.

TheCUBE Insights podcast

SiliconANGLE also has podcasts available of archived interview sessions, available on iTunesStitcher and Spotify, which you can enjoy while on the go.

SiliconANGLE also has analyst deep dives in our Breaking Analysis podcast, available on iTunesStitcher and Spotify.


During the “Does Hardware Matter?” Limited Series episode, theCUBE analysts will talk with industry executive and expert guests, including Jas Tremblay, general manager of the Data Center Solution Group at Broadcom; Andy Brown, senior director of performance and software architecture at Broadcom; Mark Van Name, co-founder and president of Principled Technologies; Aaron Suzuki, founder and chief executive officer of Prowess Consulting; and Shannon Champion, vice president of product marketing — primary storage, HCI and CI — at Dell Technologies Inc, as well as other expert industry guests.

(* Disclosure: TheCUBE is a paid media partner for the “Does Hardware Matter?” Limited Series presented by theCUBE. Neither Broadcom Inc., the sponsor of theCUBE’s pilot series, nor other sponsors, do not have editorial control over content on theCUBE or SiliconANGLE.)

Image: SiliconANGLE

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