The last 15 years have seen several successive waves of big data platforms and companies offering
new database and analytics capabilities. Leveraging the public cloud, these large-scale distributed
data systems work well in centralized, single region, or single data center topologies and are geared
for “Read intensive” data problems.
As a young kid in Science class I remember learning about simple machines – levers, ramps, etc. The one thing I had trouble understanding was how increasing distance decreased work. It seemed counter-intuitive to me, since the shortest distance between two points was a straight line. One of my teachers pointed something out to me that made the light bulb in my head turn on: “Have you ever noticed how it is easier to walk up a ramp in a zig-zag path rather than a straight line?” I was in 3rd grade so of course every ramp I came across was an opportunity for me to run zig-zag up or down. The point was clear - if a straight line is too much work, take some extra steps if you must.
In the past, I've viewed edge computing as a new kind of tier to cloud computing and one that potentially eclipses the centralized clouds - because it's a natural place to run anything that is interactive, needs to analyze large volumes of shared state data and quickly compute against short time value data. Seen from Josh's perspective it almost seems inevitable to me that edge computing will eclipse cloud computing and that new companies will not just challenge but dethrone the big cloud incumbents.
Ages ago I had the privilege of building out the first field engineering team for VMware’s Cloud Service Providers. Back then it was an easy message for users to understand – we could take your existing workloads and give you improved resilience and operational costs, while providing the flexibility to deliver enterprise applications in a familiar way.
Content Delivery Networks or CDNs have received a lot of attention in the last few years, with the emergence of newer and richer feature capabilities and features. Companies like Fastly and CloudFlare have entered the market with a focus on helping developers leverage the power of edge computing and hyper-locality to users by caching static content close to where it is being used.