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Cisco’s Application Centric Infrastructure and Promise Theory

by Scott Hogg, on Jul 1, 2014 8:57:46 PM

If you search online for “promises,” you’ll find a bevy of quotes about broken ones. It seems that many of us humans just can’t keep our promises to each other. Fortunately machines have a better track record in this area.

In regard to IT systems, “promise theory” enables administrators to create an obligation-based IT management system that results in policy-based configurations.  In a basic sense, promises are commitments to complete a particular action or behave a certain way that are made between agents. But it actually gets more complicated than that, as a track record of promises kept promotes trust, while broken promises have the opposite effect. This complexity carries over to the data center, where the benefits of kept promises are are numerous, including automation, flexibility and scalability.

In my latest Network World article – “Can you really trust the network to keep promises?” – I talk a little about the history of promise theory in relation to IT systems, including the groundbreaking work done by Mark Burgess, who developed CFEngine. I also explain how Cisco’s relatively new Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) supports the promise theory concept. Check it out – I promise you’ll find it a valuable read.

Topics:Data CenterData CenterIT infrastructure

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