Why Can't The Network Be Smart Too?
from the battle-for-the-smarts dept
For years, David Isenberg has been pushing the idea that the network going to be stupid, with all the smarts at the end. He actually wrote this while working at AT&T, but left soon afterwards. For years, it looked like AT&T and other telcos missed the point, and continued to assume that all the smarts would be at the center of the network, like the old telephone system. However, as AT&T has stepped into the VoIP world it appears they’re at least realizing that distributed smarts is the way the world works. However, they’re not all the way there. Some have been complaining that many of the VoIP providers haven’t been willing to open up and let others develop intelligent devices to make their networks even better, which is just the old centralized telephone network mindset at work. In an interview with Business Week, AT&T’s chief technology officer, chief information officer, and president of its Global Networking Technology Services business, Hossein Eslambolchi, tries to position the AT&T position as being a “middle ground” by allowing some smarts at the end, while keeping more smarts in the middle. This isn’t so much a compromise solution, because the smarts at the end are already there and growing. It’s more like an effort to try to cling to some of the smarts in the middle, because that’s the only place they can charge for things.