Edge computing has become an increasingly important part of the IT ecosystem, with more demand than ever for computing power to be available, accessible, and instantaneous.
Even when operations as diverse as factories and hospitals are moving at least parts of their daily computing processes from the centralized cloud to various edges, edge computing remains a mysterious concept for many people.
To provide some clarity and insight, TechNewsWorld spoke with several experts to detail what edge computing is, why it is needed, and where it is headed.
New IT footprint
“Edge is a strategy to deliver insights and experiences when they are needed,” Nick Barcet, senior director of technology strategy, Red Hathe told TechNewsWorld.
“It turns the concept of cloud computing upside down,” he continued. “When traditional cloud deployments focus on centralizing a single infrastructure that can scale as business needs dictate, the edge is about scaling geographically.
“Edge computing is essentially the latest IT footprint. It combines pieces of previous footprints to create an infrastructure to address specific customer demands that traditional IT models cannot address. “
Raffi Elliott, Director of Content and Partnerships for Mutable, explained that “Edge computing is a distributed computing architecture that aims to solve some of the inherent shortcomings of today’s cloud computing infrastructure, namely high latency and bandwidth costs, by moving the computing as close to end users as possible at the edge of the network. “
By moving the source of remote computing resources to those who use it, the edge cloud reduces the distance that data must travel between a user’s device and the data center, which is a key requirement for latency-sensitive applications. , at the same time that it reduces the tension of the bandwidth in networks ”, he added.
Find the edges
The edge can exist anywhere computing power is needed immediately and without fail.
“Over the last year or two, we’ve seen the rise of applications that push enterprise IT to its literal limits; from self-guided vehicles to artificial intelligence, to vast sensor networks that rely on 5G for instant connectivity and emergency reaction times, ”said Red Hat’s Barcet. “The intention to bring computing resources closer to the end user has never been more relevant.”
As the pandemic has pushed people to various limits around traditional work and business structures, the need for cutting edge computing has also increased.
“While edge computing has been recognized as the next step in the evolution of cloud computing for some time now, the Covid-19 pandemic has greatly accelerated and demonstrated its need,” observed Elliott.
Instead of shaping the computing landscape of tomorrow, you are already shaping today, he continued.
“The types of Internet applications that we are envisioning in the near future, such as AI-powered manufacturing, telemedicine, autonomous cars, and the Internet of Things, are data-intensive and require enormous amounts of computing power, so much so that they are on offer. limited on most of the devices we have today. “
A big part of what is driving cutting edge computing is the need to save money, particularly in relation to uploading and downloading large amounts of data.
“The factor driving the need for edge computing today appears to be processing data closer to where it is generated simply because there is not enough bandwidth to send it to the cloud,” said Amar Kapadia, co-founder and CEO of Aarna Networks. “Even if there was enough bandwidth, it probably wouldn’t be profitable to send that much data to the cloud. A great example of this would be on-premises video analytics. “
Almost all industries have their own particular advantages. They’re finding where those edges are and creating localized processing power where it’s needed most.
“Edges can come in various forms: data center edge, 5G MEC or telecommunications edge, which are small edge clouds deployed by mobile operators, and IoT edge, which has computing on an IoT device,” Raj Nair, CEO of Birdhe told TechNewsWorld.
“There may be industry-specific benefits, such as retail advantage, medical advantage, manufacturing advantage, or gaming advantage, that meet the specific workload and compute needs of the company for that use case.” He said.
Another factor driving edge computing is the need for consistent processing, even in the event of power, internet, or other outages.
“Edge devices reduce the risk of outages due to outages, inherent security vulnerabilities in the cloud, as well as long response times during high usage peaks,” Doug Slattery, CEO and Founder of SYBorhe told TechNewsWorld.
“A well-designed edge network can also provide redundancy and minimize potential single points of failure if a catastrophic event occurs at one location. Edge computing devices can provide a distributed private network for suitable emerging technologies, like Blockchain, for example, ”he noted.
Moving into the future
The edge is likely to become an increasingly powerful place as it takes advantage of artificial intelligence and machine learning and real-time problem interfaces.
“The need for edge computing will only increase as workloads at the most remote locations on the network become more complex and computationally intensive,” said Barcet. “With connected cars, smart manufacturing plants, drone delivery systems and more, the importance of advantage is almost solidified.
“What follows is that the edge computing ecosystem continues to deliver innovation around accessibility, scalability and security, to lower barriers to entry for organizations looking to build an edge strategy and improve the overall security posture of edge footprints. in the face of evolving threats. It’s not just about delivering software, it’s also about providing the capabilities to manage it at scale. “
Many of the computing functions that drive everyday life will continue to be removed from the cloud as edge computing becomes ubiquitous.
“We believe that the future of cutting edge computing lies in autonomous infrastructure, with computing becoming hyperlocal, distributed and ubiquitous,” explained Nair de Avesha. “Managing, properly sizing and conducting root cause analysis of such distributed infrastructures is a challenge that companies must address.”