IBM Intros Software-Defined Storage Platform

IBM is using technology leveraged from its Watson cognitive computing initiative and its work in high-performance computing as the foundation for its first significant foray into the software-defined storage arena.

At an event here May 12, IBM executives unveiled “Elastic Storage,” a technology they said will address the needs of businesses and service providers that are being inundated by the skyrocketing growth of data being generated, not only through traditional means, but also newer venues like social media, mobile and video. Elastic Storage is designed to let businesses quickly and efficiently store, access and analyze all the data that is coming in, regardless of the source.

The new software-defined storage (SDS) offering, initially developed for the Watson artificial intelligence project that gained national fame via its victory on the game show “Jeopardy,” offers significant performance and scaling advantages over traditional storage techniques, and automated tiering capabilities—stashing data on the most efficient and economical storage hardware, from tape to solid-state disks (SSDs)—that will help drive down storage costs by as much as 90 percent, according to IBM officials, customers and partners.

“Big data has become bigger data,” Russell Schneider, principal storage consultant at IBM partner Jeskell, said during a panel discussion at the event here.

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