I'm not sure how this happened but I appear to have missed my 2nd anniversary of being a storage-blogger; I guess I'm certainly no longer the new boy and I'm not the only end-user storage-blogger these days, although we could do with more.
I started blogging really as a reaction to all of the vendor blogs which were often full of FUD and marketing BS; I also felt it was about time that some-one started putting the user's case across; those poor misbegotten fools who have to get the latest product from HopkinVale to work. Personally, I think that the vendor blogs have got better but that might be because some of the vitriol has made it's way onto Twitter where it can be dispensed in near real-time.
So what have I learnt over the past couple of years, pretty much all of it in one of deepest and longest lasting recessions that we have experienced?
If we take away certain technological differences; most storage vendors are pretty much in the same chapter, if not on the same page. There is a herd mentality which is pushing the whole IT infrastructure industry to trying to build stacks. These stacks may be as the result of partnerships but there are also companies who intend to build the whole stack themselves. Independent storage vendors may well struggle in such a tightly integrated market place; 3Par are no longer independent, who could fall next? Compellent? Isilon? NetApp or even the mighty EMC themselves?
All we can say for sure is that with the crazy price that HP paid for 3Par is that no storage acquisition is going to be cheap now.
Certainly it seems that most vendors want to do a good job for the customers even if they are completely clueless as to what the customer wants. But that's generally okay as often the customer really has no idea what they want. Strategic thinking currently in many places is still taking the form of 'how do I make it most awkward for my employer to make me redundant'.
I've found myself hooked into the back-channel between vendors and become more aware of some of the friendships and quiet private respect that some of the vendors have for each other's employees. The public face often is not the private reality but I am also aware of some of the viscerality which transcends logic and is really quite silly.
I find myself thinking more deeply about the industry and where it is going; it may lead me to changing things in my own career as I look to align with some of the more interesting trends. I find myself even more determined though to tread the sometimes hard path of the honest man and continue to question what I know is wrong or at least appears to me to be wrong. My integrity appears to have become even more important to me now that I appear to have an audience, fools that you are!
But most of all, I've found that I really enjoy this writing stuff! And I especially enjoy throwing the odd English phrase and word in just to educate our colonial brethren!
Thanks for reading.....