A few people were down on Cisco for promising the “Next Generation” of the internet and then just releasing a new router a few days ago.
I’ll skip over the fact that EVERY manufacturer claims their gear is Revolutionary, Game Changing, or the Next Generation; I mean the iPad is just a big iPhone but apparently it’s “Magic”. For me magic is then a beautiful girl comes out of a genie bottle, calls me “Master”, crosses her arms and bobs her head, and creates a huge feast out of thin air.
So Cisco didn’t just create the next generation of the internet. But they built the device that can handle the throughput for the next generation of the internet and that’s just as important. Bullet trains may be the “next generation” of rail travel but without rails it’s just an expensive, immobile, hunk of metal. Cisco makes up about 86% of the internet routing devices, so when they see big bumps that means all of the web benefits.
It’s easy for casual home internet users not to realize how important the backend of the internet is but that’s only because the internet has never run out of bandwidth. Can you imagine what it would be like if your home DSL connection only ran at dial up speeds from 2pm-8pm because the net was overloaded with Hulu streams?
Luckily backend technologies are keeping well ahead of current demand and this is the moment when potential expanded to three times its size. Next Generation it may not be but this is still quite and accomplishment.
The CRS system devices are powerful on their own but their big claim to fame when originally developed was the ability to cluster the devices to create one super router. Through this clustering a single location can have the theoretical routing throughput of 322 Terabits of information. To put that in perspective as Cisco states, 322 Tbps is equivalent to transfer the entire printed collection of the Library of Congress in just over one second; every man, woman and child in China to make a video call, simultaneously; and every motion picture ever created to be streamed in less than four minutes.
Already Cisco and AT&T (ironically both my last 2 employers) are researching to put the new tech to use to create “thicker” backbones. AT&T owns most of the backbone connections that link regional carriers and even most of the undersea links coming into and out of the US. Unlike the latest smartphone, tablet, or laptop release event, or any of the new up and coming websites at SXSWi this development by Cisco will directly impact you and you life.