Of all the potential competitors and partners I enjoy following in the market - VMware is one of my favorites. And there was a flurry of IoT and Edge Computing announcements, tweets and blog posts coming out of VMworld this past week in Las Vegas and from their parent company Dell in parallel. It’s interesting to note that the two were really quite coordinated in terms of content and messaging during VMworld 2018. By the way - nice tattoo Pat. Though I don’t know how they reconcile the significant investment Dell is making in the EdgeX Foundry or the investments Dell makes in software companies that compete with VMware IoT Pulse. I like VMware because, unlike a number of the legacy enterprise software and network providers, they have a real solution, something customers can deploy and use. Like VMware, MachineShop offers a solution, not just a kernel of technology that a team of developers and integrators can turn into a solution 6 months and $1M later. And while the recent announcement of Pulse IoT Center 2.0 includes some new features that MachineShop has offered for quite some time, they are the things customers need to really deploy and manage edge infrastructure and devices.

MachineShop is an edge-first distributed platform that has always designed its platform from an API-centric point of view. Our customers can easily choose to work with our intuitive application interface to configure and manage devices, their data and upstream cloud orchestration. But our customers can simultaneously work with a rich set of well documented RESTful APIs that underlie every element of functionality in our solution’s application layer.

Out of Dell proper, and the Edge and IoT Solutions division in particular, the major announcement was about the bundling and integration of technologies focused on surveillance, computer vision and actionable insights. The pre-integrated bundle is to serve as a reference design, but will also be deployable with promised results on day one. What I like about the offering, and the vision, is the importance that Dell places on a balanced and distributed architecture from the edge to the cloud. It’s a little confusing what Dell means when they say it’s built on the “world’s leading cloud infrastructure”. Is this AWS, Azure, Dell’s own cloud, any cloud, bring your own cloud?

On a positive note again, Dell makes a subtle but important mention that all of this will be “software-defined”. The Software Defined Networking (SDN) market is very big and getting bigger - billions and billions of dollars big. At MachineShop, we see our work as really about the ability to deliver computing solutions for edge devices and their data through brilliantly simple software offerings - ours of course.

But whether competitor or partner, or both, we tip our hat to VMware and Dell for their continued advancement of these key themes. IT and OT professionals must embrace the notion that tomorrow’s computing architectures will be balanced and intelligently distributed between the edges and the clouds.