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IBM's "Air Traffic Controllers" Meant To Strengthen Cloud Infrastructure

While cloud computing has already proven its worth, the majority of industry experts agree that there is still a lot of work and refinement to be done - and that's exactly what IBM plans on doing with their newest cloud-based technology. Referred to as air traffic controllers by the developers, the technology is expected to streamline resource management and allocation within interconnected environments. The end-goal is to eliminate, or at least minimize, bottlenecks while bolstering throughput and system efficiency.

In an attempt to help the general public better understand the newly introduced technology, IBM inventor Eric Barsness explained the functionality in his own terms. He was quoted as saying: "Try to imagine the tens of thousands of airplanes that fly across the United States each day being managed by a single air traffic controller, who must keep track of each one and determine what runways, gates, maintenance facilities, etc., are available at every airport across the country. The best way to complete that task efficiently and effectively is to break it up to thousands of air traffic controllers, each of which has a view of all resources available and can prioritize and direct traffic accordingly. That's effectively what this invention can do within a cloud computing environment."

To put that in technical terms, IBM's new air traffic controllers track a number of metrics - such as bandwidth consumption, total processor speed and various input-output protocols - as a means of identifying system bottlenecks and allocating more resources to those identified areas.

Essentially, these new air traffic controllers take the place of the job scheduler used in cloud-based networks to date. Instead of relying on a single point of analysis, as was the case with the job scheduler, IBM's new air traffic controllers exist at multiple locations, or nodes, of a cloud architecture. More importantly, however, air traffic controllers are able to re-allocate and re-position themselves in order to accommodate greater resource needs throughout all the other nodes in the system.

IBM's air traffic controllers have many practical uses in today's IT sector, and future applications are bound to be presented at some point. Currently, however, these air traffic controllers can be used by financial institutions, particularly by those who utilize trading systems on a regular basis, as a means of buying and selling stocks or bonds in a quick, efficient and secure manner.

Retail outlets can use these air traffic controllers as a means of strengthening inventory control functionality or managing shipping and receiving logistics, while the medical sector can use them to collect and collate information from multiple sources. Air traffic controllers also have relevant uses in today's hybrid cloud systems, where they can help bridge the gap between public and private cloud environments.

To find out more information about IBM, including information regarding air traffic controllers or any of their other IT solutions, visit their website at Here you'll find press releases, the latest news and a comprehensive portfolio of services and technologies that are currently backed by the team with IBM.


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