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GridIron Systems: Mining Big Data 'Gold' in a Flash

Trends in the IT industry sometimes resemble gold rushes as vendors pan for revenue "nuggets." The use of solid state devices (SSDs)--most notably, flash memory--is the central point of one of these, but just as with the real 19th century gold rushes in California and Alaska, not all prospectors (that is, vendors) will be successful. Where the claims are staked can make all the difference in the world, and GridIron Systems is staking one with a focus on accelerating big data analyses.

GridIron cites a number of client examples. In one, an Oracle data warehouse for an online comparison shopping site was able to reduce the production of critical reports from six hours to about 30 minutes. In the process, GridIron says, about $2 million was also saved from storage and server consolidation. In another case, a financial services hosting provider was able to triple improvement in response time as well as double its overall hosting capacity, leading to savings of more than $1 million.

I/O bottlenecks are a very real problem that does not allow servers to exploit all of their capabilities while trying to process information from storage. That is why so many vendors are rushing in with SSD-based solutions to try and solve this problem. GridIron Systems does not try to solve every I/O bottleneck problem, but instead focuses on simply addressing the problem as it relates to the analysis of big data.

GridIron seeks to accomplish this through its TurboCharger line of appliances. On the business side, the advantage of faster analyses is the ability to take advantage of the results of the analysis faster (and, in some cases, that may be the difference between the data being of material value since late-arriving data may be worthless). On the IT side, better CPU and storage utilization leads to better IT investments. That can include savings, which makes GridIron's approach to enhancing big data acceleration and analysis worthwhile.

At the time of this publication, GridIron is not a client of David Hill and the Mesabi Group.

David Hill is principal of Mesabi Group LLC, which focuses on helping organizations make complex IT infrastructure decisions simpler and easier to understand. He is the author of the book "Data Protection: Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance." View Full Bio

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