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Dell research goes full throttle for an NFV future

Posted: 06 May 2015 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Dell Labs? NFV? server? Internet of Things? FPGA?

Menon said he expects to see 15-fold increases in memory density on servers, mostly due to a new form of memory that is close to the speed of DRAM but is much cheaper. Dell Research is working with partners to develop this new kind of memory, but didn't provide further details.

Software-enabled smarts

Menon also sees a link between NFV and IoT, which has its own software architecture issues. A NFV system could be combined with a portable software architecture that allows data to be gathered in both the cloud and in end point processing.

"I think there's an intersection of NFV and IoT by doing networking that the Internet of Things demands, the new apps to be created," he said, adding that NFV can enable easier app development "by running lower networks with lower CAPEX and OPEX. This is a key component of the overall IoT story."

Menon demonstrated several machine learning programmes for mobile devices that require no additional hardware. A long-discussed mood sensor uses a laptop camera and facial recognition algorithms to track happiness, sadness, fear, disgust, and neutral moods/facial responses.

The programme tracks both head movement and gaze, then correlates those positions. Menon said the programme was used at a TEDx event in Amsterdam to provide audience interest level to a speaker, a technology that could also be brought into the classroom to gauge student interest. In the later example, Dell would need to develop additional algorithms to account for cultural and language differences among students.

Such a programme has the most promise in gaming, Menon noted, where Dell has a subsidiary in Alienware. If a game could track a user's mood or face, it could increase difficultly or provide suggestions.

Dell Research is also developing a "seamless connectivity" mobile system similar to Google Fi, but for enterprise. The software allows for migration between Wi-Fi and cellular, and sometimes coexistent communications, without latency and with the option to set preferences for different applications.

Menon expects this technology to be online in a year, likely coupled with Dell's enterprise mobility manager. The key to making this software ubiquitous is safety and assurance of safety.

Dell has also developed authentication software that tracks users' swipe and gesture tendencies, then shuts itself off when those tendencies aren't replicated. The result is a step closer to password-free mobile use.

- Jessica Lipsky
??EE Times

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