Top 10 tech topics IT leaders should stay on top of

At the Interop conference in Las Vegas a few weeks ago, I noticed some strong trends in the topics covered. As a matter of fact, most of the topics fit into a dozen or so categories. Here are 10 hot topics that are clearly on the minds of business and IT leaders.

1: Software-defined networking

Software-defined networking (SDN) was, by far, the biggest topic discussed at Interop this year. It seemed like a full 25% of the sessions were focused around this topic. SDN is a set of management tools that enables you to virtualize your network infrastructure to a point where the individual switches and routers don’t matter. It is, effectively, a layer on top of the existing physical equipment that becomes the physical layer that the servers see.

However, there was some disagreement over exactly how this should and does work. During the SDN Keynote Panel, for instance, the panelists argued over even the definition of software-defined networking: Is it just the virtualization of hardware or is it the next level — the ability to rapidly scale and change the architecture using automated tools? As this is a new topic (VMware coined the term in a whitepaper just last year), I expect that better information and resources will be forthcoming.

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