While this year’s Cisco Live US was quieter in terms of new product announcements compared to last year’s extravaganza, Cisco did roll out a few of newsworthy items.
1. Cisco To Engineers: You’re Programmers!
Cisco’s developer network, aka DevNet, announced that it had reached 500,000 members since the program was created in 2014.
“Network engineers—you are now developers!” said Susie Wee, DevNet VP and CTO from the keynote stage on Tuesday.
She clarified this declaration by saying that network engineers aren’t like traditional coders pounding out hundreds of lines of code a day; instead, engineers are power users of the network, which is essentially a software system.
And that system can be acted on by APIs, scripts, and other programmatic interfaces. Wee said that software skills are necessary to make full use of the network and all its capabilities.
2. DNA Center As A Platform
In keeping with notion of the network as a software system, Cisco announced it has released a set of APIs and developer tools for DNA Center, Cisco’s automation and management software for its campus and branch networking products.
By providing APIs for DNA Center, Cisco aims to make it easier for developers and partners to write applications that can hook into the network for automation, analytics, and to integrate with other vendors’ software and hardware.
Cisco also highlighted 15 partners, including Accenture, ServiceNow, and Infoblox, that have built integrations into DNA Center.
3. All-In On Intent
While it isn’t news, Cisco is moving forward with its marketing around Intent Based Networking. From Chuck Robbins’ keynote to on-stage demos to individual briefings with Cisco executives, the company is putting a stake in the ground around intent in the campus, at the branch, and in the data center.
For instance, during Tuesday’s keynote, David Goelecker, EVP and General Manager of Cisco’s Networking and Security Business, brought on Tom Edsall, SVP and CTO of the Data Center unit, to demo Cisco’s Network Assurance Engine (NAE).
NAE, which is one of the components in Cisco’s intent-based portfolio for the data center, creates a logical model of the network based on its actual configuration state and policies. Using this model, NAE can show you how the network actually behaves.
With NAE, customers can test potential changes against the model to see how those changes will impact the network, use the model for troubleshooting, and to verify that automated changes—and the intent of those changes—were actually achieved.
NAE competes against similar products from startups such as Veriflow and Forward Networks.