Symbolic IO Reengineers Instruction Sets to Advance IT

Mike Vizard
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Digital Integration: Overcoming Enterprise Data Challenges

While interest in all forms of computing that promises to make IT infrastructure faster and more efficient has been running high, very little attention has been paid to the way instruction sets actually lay bits down on top of IT infrastructure. With the launch today of Symbolic IO that may be about to finally change.

Unveiling today what it describes as the first computational-defined storage system, Symbolic IO is making a case for reengineering instruction sets to develop systems that it claims are 10,000 times faster than Flash memory and even 10 times faster than the forthcoming 3D XPoint architecture being developed by Intel and Micron. Symbolic IO CEO Brian Ignomirello, formerly CTO of Hewlett Packard’s Global storage team, says for the past four years the company has been reengineering the way bits are laid down on IT infrastructure.

The fruits of that effort are three offerings based on Intel processors consisting of both a 2U IRIS Compute platform and an IRIS Store offering capable of storing up to two petabytes of data in a 2U rack and IRIS Vault, which makes use of advanced encryption technology to secure data on dedicated systems.

Ignomirello says that because Symbolic IO rewrote the instruction set, Symbolic IO has been able to break traditional I/O boundaries by driving all the latency out of the relationship between compute and storage. The result is storage that doesn’t require a particular type of media to be attached to a server, says Ignomirello.

Rather than focusing on only the high performance computing (HPC) market, Ignomirello says, pricing for the IRIS Compute platform will start at $80,000 as part of an effort to make the platform more broadly accessible from the day of launch.

It remains to be seen if Symbolic IO can transform IT infrastructure as we know it today. But the one thing that is apparent is that when it comes to making IT both faster and more efficient, not enough attention has been paid to the instruction sets on which all IT is fundamentally based.

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