* Posts by Matt Banks

14 publicly visible posts • joined 28 Jan 2010

Siri gets Android rival as Cluzee goes live

Matt Banks

point proven

I thought I'd never use Siri. It just seemed stupid. Much of that opinion is based on the fact that voice recognition just hasn't worked for me in the past.

At all.

However, for the most part, it really works. So, it's nice when you're driving along to just be able to ask your phone to do something. And it does it. Correctly.

With that said, I personally don't use Siri a whole lot. The person that uses it in our household is my wife. I can't really say how many times in the past month that my wife has told me or did something completely out of character for her (for example, I made arrangements to have her car in for service and she changed the appointment time and day) and when I asked how she knew to do it (e.g., how did she even know the phone number) she just replies "I asked my phone."

She's had an HTC TP2 for 2+ years (and a Moto Q prior to that) and she had NOT ONCE used either of them to look up information like that - despite my constant prodding to do so. (I mention the other phones partially to point out that I'm not purely an Apple bigot.) Now she tells me perhaps once every other day how much she loves her iPhone.

This is because "it just works" for her. If she were getting errors all the time or results similar to the SeeMe vs. Siri video that's floating around these days, she'd certainly never use it.

I'm sure Android will have something that's "good enough" one of these days, but from what I've seen, there still isn't anything yet that truly gives Siri a run for its money.

Microsoft, IBM tussle for tech value runner-up

Matt Banks

Yeah, Apple should just liquidate and give all the money back to their shareholders.

Oh how times have changed.

No more tiers for flatter networks

Matt Banks


We went with 10GigE (Cisco Nexus) quite early on in our "cloud" environment.

We'll complete that transition this year when we replace our 4507's with 5596's (with FEX's and two ASR's already in place).

GigE just isn't fast enough for a datacenter any more - especially if you're using NFS like you probably should be...

Microsoft: Our clouds are cheaper than VMware clouds

Matt Banks

Apples to Apples...

The problem with this is that it compares pricing and not performance and/or management abilities.

If I could buy VSphere at Microsoft's prices, well, yeah, sure, we'd be all over that. However, the premium we pay for VSphere is well worth it in what we save in hardware costs. We've found that we can get nearly 2x as many virtual machines using VSphere as we can with Hyper-V. When you have 3000+ VM's, that adds up in hardware, datacenter, and electricity costs. Also, there is no comparison in administrative tools. If we were forced to use Hyper-V, I don't think we'd be virtualizing - or we'd have to have a MUCH larger staff to administer our cloud.

The other problem is not pricing. The problem is that there are suddenly A LOT more eggs in a basket when you virtualize. So, if you get bitten by some sort of software bug in your hypervisor, you're paying a much higher price than you would otherwise be with a single OS going down. I'm sure that there are a lot of brilliant people at MS, but frankly, we don't trust them for anything this mission critical.

Oracle resellers: 'Give us our cash and make it snappy'

Matt Banks


So far, it's worked out pretty well for us that Oracle dumped us as a Sun reseller. I guess they did us a favor.

Ballmer leaves investors speechless in Seattle

Matt Banks

No Worries Stevey

I'm actually OK if he stays on at the helm.

The world will be a better place with a MUCH smaller and less influential Microsoft.

HP exec: WebOS tablet will trounce iPad

Matt Banks


Thank you Reg and Mr. Cador. I needed a good laugh today.

I think we'll all be surprised if they make it to number 2.

Dell, HP badmouth Apple's iPad

Matt Banks


"'Apple is great if you've got a lot of money and live on an island,' Dell global enterprise marketing honcho Andy Lark told CIO Australia."

I thought Australia is an island...

So, basically, Dell is saying definitely get the iPad if you live in the UK, South Pacific, Hawaii, Japan, or the Caribbean (etc). Nice.

It's not like he has to tell any MORE people to get an iPad. LOADS of people are buying them without his help. Even those of us whose "islands" are also referred to as "continents."

Apple's 'App Store trademark': A farce of Jobsian proportions

Matt Banks

Not to mention Amazon

So, it's OK for Apple to have to license Amazon's One-click "invention" but if Apple tries to do the reverse with "App store", it's considered somehow wrong or a farce?

Oracle back in the Unix game with Sparc T3 servers

Matt Banks

Love the description

Fantastic potential names for the company. Spot on.

Oracle array users skid off 7410 road map

Matt Banks

The product has a definite EOL date...

It looks like the j4400 trays have an EOL date of Dec 15, 2010.

I'm starting to think that Oracle will run their shiny new hardware business into the ground. And FAST.

I guess that's what you get for getting a "cheap NetApp." You don't get the option of expanding after your initial purchase. Nice.

Oracle promises fresh approach to storage

Matt Banks

Sun 7210 storage

You guys do remember that there WAS a Sun 7210 - right? It was discontinued in July.

IBM's Power7 pitch deconstructed

Matt Banks

IBM Marketing

I get the impression that IBM is really scared of Intel and the EX/Westmere's that are coming.

I'm not a dyed-in-the-wool or blind x86 religious bigot, but I will point out that those Power7's ain't exactly cheap.

At least from my perspective, it would take a LOT to convert everything (as if that were really possible for us with as many Windows desktops as we have running under VMWare) to AIX or to the Power7 version of Linux. That seems to be something that IBM always brushes over. It certainly would not be a walk in the park to do so.

I find the Power7's interesting, but I think in two weeks to a month and a half, the Power7 will have lost its luster to some extent.

Oracle: Storage trouble in store

Matt Banks

Sun Storage overall...

Well, even though the 25x0 storage seems to be much maligned, we've actually been quite happy with it.

I know they're dropping the j4x00 JBOD's - which we were actually starting to really like - this year (not to be confused with the j4400's they sell for 7000 series integration).

The 7000 series are fantastic boxes for what they are, but if you're wanting to run VDI or OLTP type stuff from them, you're still better off running in RAID 0+1 rather than one of the RAID-Z's. Physics still gets in the way.

We'll probably put in 4 to 6 of the 7410 arrays this year, and maybe a dozen 2540's. The 7310's and 7410's aren't quite as refined as a NetApp (we have a FAS3170, and we'll probably end up with a 2040 or two this year, so it's not like we've entirely drunk the Sun Kool-Aid) but if you need/want all the additional stuff Sun just includes for "free," there is no comparison in price. It's not even close.

I wish they wouldn't drop their low end though. I hate to think we're gonna be stuck using Dell (especially storage - the R610 and R710 aren't THAT bad once you get past iDRAC6 Enterprise's issues.) The AX4-5f is a mess compared to a 2540, and significantly more expensive.