Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Grand Theft Auto and Zero Tolerance

The fun and games continue for guest blogger Richard Muirhead of Tideway Systems on day two of the SIFMA Technology Management Conference in New York, where he gets to grips with the latest data centre switching system from Cisco, which is finding use not only in banks.

SIFMA, day two. What have I learned? The Grand Theft Auto network incorporates the Cisco Nexus 7000. Operational features for preventing human error, including blinking port lights to guide cable swaps, are key.

What does this have to do with SIFMA? We all know how incredibly intense the world of banking has become. Partly due to mounting competition, partly due to existing or planned regulatory compliance as well as cost constraints, a big spadeful to do with mounting product complexity and market diversity and some (I hope at least a little) due to a contrite sense of obligation to the rest of the world to do a “better job” in the wake of the credit crisis. I hope.

So this bit of the Cisco briefing this morning was not news. Neither is the blissful state that application development and operations teams in financial services have been operating within. What do I mean by that? The business wants to deploy an app - well that will be 90 days for an existing app or five or six months for a new one.

And as Doug Gourlay, who runs marketing for Cisco’s Data Center Solutions practice noted, the 'killer' issue is how do you orchestrate multi-admin collaboration across server deployment, app server configuration, database tuning, storage provisioning, security auditing, HVAC installation, cabling and the rest of the gubbins that goes into making an application happen?

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