Simon Dredge

From cats to crustaceans: The role of microservices in autotomizing NFV

Simon Dredge | Nov 1, 2017 1:15:13 PM

NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) cloud native microservices

The exact origin of an analogy is often hard to ascertain -- especially when it is one which is born, buried, rediscovered, revived, reimagined and repurposed over time. I’m therefore happy to muddy the waters further by taking the current “cats to cattle” comparison and adding my own ill-conceived spin.

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Extending the Switch Abstraction Interface to the Wide Area Network

Simon Dredge | Jul 10, 2017 7:30:17 AM

MPLS (Multi-Protocol Label Switching) Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) White Box Protocol Stacks

As I am not a real writer, in the sense that my output is generally neither coherent nor legible, I usually avoid offending individuals by reporting on their conference presentations. Following a recent speech by Metaswitch’s very own Alan Elder at the Open Compute Project’s (OCP) annual shindig, however, I am making an exception. That’s not just because it’s fun to imagine his initial feeling of dread, on receiving an email notifying him of this post. Although that sure is a good enough reason in of itself. Primarily, it’s because his pitch on taking the Switch Abstraction Interface (SAI) beyond the data center fabric was one of the very few, these days, that I both enjoyed… and understood. I can pretty much guarantee he won’t make that mistake, again.

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Container Mania Grips the Internet of Talk: Going cloud native for VoLTE with Kubernetes

Simon Dredge | Apr 18, 2017 6:34:00 AM

VoLTE Containers mobile applications Mobile Infrastructure cloud native

I know many of you have been itching to hear more about my adventures with Pokémon Go, following this wildly unsuccessful attempt to garner more page visits by lashing a highly targeted piece (QoS for the Internet of Things) with a universally broad and trending general interest topic. Having made it through the end of the 2016 summer holidays, when most people of sound mind had stopped playing, I hung in there until mid-November, ultimately bidding adieu to Pikachu and hanging up my training pants having reached the moderately respectable level of 23. Knowing that status would forever be immortalized somewhere in the cloud, I somewhat unceremoniously and to the surprise of my kids, who had simultaneously mocked me while fraudulently assuming my persona when it suited them, deleted the app. What life lessons did I learn, in all that time spent catching critters, that I can now impart in a public forum like this? Absolutely nothing. Seriously. I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone. It really was a colossal waste of time.

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Enriching the Internet of Talk - Part I: The RCS Universal Profile

Simon Dredge | Mar 16, 2017 7:53:11 AM

VoLTE RCS (Rich Communications Suite) mobile applications Mobile Infrastructure Voice over Wi-Fi (VoWiFi) IoTalk


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The Enhanced Voice Services Codec - Improving audio for the Internet of Talk

Simon Dredge | Mar 8, 2017 6:46:49 AM

mobile applications Mobile Infrastructure IoTalk

OK, I’ll be the first to admit it -- I have a somewhat unhealthy fascination with codecs. While I’ve always been one for a thrilling tale of analog to digital quantization, my head pretty much exploded when I first read about the mechanics behind G.729, aka CELP: Code-excited linear prediction. I mean, seriously, how cool is that name? Even now, when I read it, my mind is awash with the prospect of enthusiastic bits of data foretelling their future (albeit conservative) path. I was always so happy for them. And, of course, that wasn’t the end of CELPs story. These bits quickly became math whizzes (Algebraic/ACELP), which then became quicker (Low Delay/LD-CELP) but then formed some sort of strange growth (conjugate-structure/CS-ACELP), which I admit was a little sad. What I learned about CELP, circa 1995, was from technical “books” -- typically heavy objects costing in the region of one million dollars, in today’s money.1

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IoT - The Internet of Talk

Simon Dredge | Mar 3, 2017 12:01:00 AM

mobile applications Mobile Infrastructure IoTalk

Twelve gazillion connected devices. I think that’s the last official count for the number of “Internet of Things” endpoints mobile network operators are expected to handle, in the coming years. While a few of those will include some complex machine-to-person or even person-to-person interaction, the majority will be to and from dumb sensors over low-power wireless with a constrained P2P protocols. Now I might be going out on a limb here, but I think that we are paying far too much attention to these “Things.” OK – together, they might enable clever computing platforms or even AI to reach some smart conclusions or predictions, but, individually, let’s not forget that they are still just small inanimate objects of little intelligence. It’s easy to ignore people in favor of the docile data processing devices that populate our homes, cars and bodies. Indeed, I’d go as far as saying it’s fashionable. Some might say we brought it all on ourselves, with our increasingly prevalent propensity to communicate in perfunctory ways, but there’s a revolution brewing.

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5G Network Slicing - Separating the Internet of Things from the Internet of Talk

Simon Dredge | Mar 1, 2017 6:15:00 AM

mobile applications Mobile Infrastructure IoTalk

You know when you hear something relatively obscure for the first time and then come across it again soon after. And again soon after that. I had one of those moments about a year ago when I was first introduced to the concept of 5G network slicing. Now, I know what you’re thinking: “Come on, Dredgie. It was new and someone was pushing it in the media, which you finally noticed after waking up from one of your numerous, protracted, marketing fogs.” Well, not really -- but I did use that exact excuse for missing my wedding anniversary, so I won’t discount the possibility outright. No. I think it was the Baader-Meinhof1 phenomenon in action.

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Outtakes in NFV - Talking Clearwater Cloud-Native IMS Core

Simon Dredge | Sep 12, 2016 7:43:00 AM

NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) Clearwater Core VoLTE Mobile Infrastructure Industry Trends

Want to know what happens to the video footage left on the cutting room floor, after the professionals have taken all they need... or can handle? Well, we sweep it up and recycle it - naturally! Check out this short outtake reel from a recent Intel interview and learn how Metaswitch is pioneering cloud-native virtualized network functions to deliver on the promise of 5G and IoT. The sentiment is sincere and the proposition genuine but the performance leaves a lot to be desired. Don't say I didn't warn you!

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The IP Multimedia Subsystem Comes of Age

Simon Dredge | Aug 15, 2016 8:00:00 AM

SBC (Session Border Controller) NFV (Network Functions Virtualization) IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) VoLTE Mobile Infrastructure

They grow up so fast, don't they? It seems only yesterday that the 3GPP gave birth to the IP Multimedia Subsystem and now we are getting ready to celebrate its Sweet Sixteen and turn it loose on the world.

Of course, way back in (Release) 2000 we didn’t even have a name for it, so we called it “All IP”. Supporting its newly minted acronym, the first IMS specifications were frozen in March 2002 under TS22.228 and promised a world where decoupled signaling and media services were delivered from highly decomposed network functions with well-defined (predominantly SIP-based) reference interfaces, providing modular scalability while eliminating the classic application stovepipes. Back then, each and every stovepipe was dominated by a large vendor who dictated every component in the service chain, often compelling network operators to employ expensive, sub-par, components while frequently forcing them to deploy more than one variant of the same product. Our newborn was going to change the status quo. Take the telecom world by storm.

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Employing Blockchains in Consumer IoT Infrastructures

Simon Dredge | Aug 1, 2016 12:47:16 PM

Internet of Things (IoT) Industry Trends

Like many of you, I have taken a back seat over the last few years as Bitcoin bedlam has swelled, subsided and swelled once again. Let’s be completely honest -- while a form of currency that can’t be systematically plied from my wallet by my teenager and plunked down on the counter of the Hot Topic at my local mall in exchange for various useless Once Upon A Time-branded items is appealing, I have little use for it in my daily life.  Naturally, I put my indifference on hold for a brief time, along with the rest of our (typically apathetic)1 industry, when Verizon Ventures announced in September 2015 that they see value in the Bitcoin Blockchain.2 I quickly moved on, however, when I remembered how confused I was when I previously had read up on Blockchains and how little I cared about something that had nothing to do with MPLS or a PCE.

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