The Standards Framework for Information Technology, Data Centers, Cloud, Big Data, IoT, Facilities, and Infrastructure
Business owners and Technology stakeholders have never had a systematic and dynamic mechanism that provided a holistic end-result driven evaluation of the effectiveness of the vast and disparate array of information, applications, resources, technologies, processes, personnel, infrastructure, documentation, standards and governance that together, despite their inherit complexity, form the ecosystem that powers their business. Nor have they had a common language that allowed them to effectively interact with their executive leadership and peers as well as industry stakeholders, vendors, and service providers in a way that universally assures projected business results, until now. The Infinity Paradigm® empowers organizations to truly synchronize technology strategies, designs, plans, implementations and operations with business strategy; and to optimize business strategy with accurate data indicating true capabilities, vulnerabilities, and competencies obtained from every layer of the Application Ecosystem™.
Until recently, a data center was most commonly understood to be a single facility located at a specific site. IDCA’s Infinity Paradigm® considers this definition to be completely inadequate, and thus has redefined it to measure up to its modern task. The function of the data center is to serve the application, and today’s business application requirements usually demand that it be delivered across multiple sites and facilities. Whereas predecessors tend to focus on a narrow or micro view of a single element, the Infinity Paradigm® provides stakeholders with big picture (macro) as well as detailed (micro) views of their entire Application Ecosystem™ stack.
The Application Ecosystem™
The rapid evolution in the areas of information technology, cloud, data center facilities, IoT, big data, cyber security, business sustainability and national security has revealed and highlighted unresolved infrastructure issues, and shortcomings in the practices and the ideological principles of the past.
To this end, key questions have remained unanswered: How do we address the ever-growing challenges with data center cooling, ensure power efficacy, and be redundant in components and paths while eliminating redundant costs? How can we obtain the necessary resilience, remain efficient, and achieve security and safety at the same time? How do we align a staff of platform, network, storage, security, electrical and mechanical engineering professionals to serve a single common goal? How do we deploy application delivery models that actually meet our unique business and application needs, as opposed to dealing with “one size fits all” solutions?
The Problem: Legacy Principles, Modern Requirements
How do we address the dichotomies we are all faced with – operations vs. infrastructure, distribution vs. consolidation, CapEx vs. OpEx, energy efficient vs. resilience, security vs. complexity, and more – all while staying in budget? How do we address the non-technical trends that may impact our organization, such as legislation and governance, geopolitics, climate or sustainability trends, and other diverse and conflicting priorities?
There is a vivid need for a universal language and understanding amongst all stakeholders in the data center industry. This need can present itself in the fine details, such as a lack of an industry wide color coding scheme for cabling and piping, resulting in the increased probability of human error related outages as workers go from one company to another. It can also present itself on the broader strategic level, where service providers and their customers have no common basis for quantifying and qualifying performance requirements and capabilities.
The Solution: The Infinity Paradigm®
Established by the International Data Center Authority, Infinity Paradigm® is the fundamental framework for organizations to reduce business risk, and optimize & align performance with defined business requirements. It is the framework for visualizing and analyzing an entire information technology system as a holistic and dynamic model, in a manner that qualitatively and quantitatively illustrates the myriad of interdependencies of its various supporting components. This model is called the Application Ecosystem™, and it is comprised of various physical layers of technical infrastructure as well as some conceptual or logical layers that are derived from those physical layers.
These layers are commonly depicted in a pyramid fashion to illustrate the concept of the interdependent infrastructure stack. The layers include the Topology (T) Layer at the foundation of the pyramid, followed by the Site layer, the Site Facilities Infrastructure (SFI) layer, the Information Technology Infrastructure (ITI) layer, the Compute (C) layer, the Platform (P) layer, and finally the Application (A) layer.
Application Ecosystem (AE) 7-Layer Stack
Each layer, except for the Topology layer, can be comprised of multiple discreet instances of infrastructure working in concert to support the layers above them. These instances may have a one-to-one, one-to-many, or many-to-many relationship with the instances of infrastructure in the layers below it.
Infinity Paradigm® Benefits
As we have seen in the preceding scenarios, the Infinity Paradigm® can present a wide variety of benefits, based on the challenges each end user is attempting to discover or solve. From a C level executive down to an entry-level staff engineer, from a public sector organization to a global corporation to a local small business, every adopter and constituent is empowered by its comprehensive capabilities and relentlessly thorough approach. Among the many benefits presented by the Infinity Paradigm®, certain key features stand out:
Comprehensive & Cloud-inclusive
The Infinity Paradigm® was founded on the basis of bridging existing industry gaps. It enforces a comprehensive view of the logical and physical aspects of information technology, data centers, and Cloud, as well as their investments, designs, infrastructure, personnel, performance metrics, overall operations, and management. Virtualization is essential to the modern era computing environments. The Infinity Paradigm® is the pioneer of introducing cloud and virtualized services as a key factor of the next-generation standards framework.
Operational conduciveness is a foundational element of the Infinity Paradigm®. The industry has favored availability and resilience over operational effectiveness for far too long. IDCA’s philosophy dictates that an infrastructure’s availability, capacity, security, safety, compliance, etc. cannot be measured unless its operational requirements are fully evaluated and met. Only a demonstrable operational competency with each component’s individual function and the interdependencies between components will fulfill Infinity Paradigm’s requirements of compliance.
Efficiency and Innovation Driven
IDCA’s standards framework promotes efficiency and innovation as vital efficacies. Their continuous involvement and active roles within the organization are the driving force that constantly evolves an organization’s Application Ecosystem™ through phases of development, implementation, and operation; bringing cost-efficiency, viability, feasibility, enhanced productivity, competitive-edge and enriched efficacies. The notion of “Infinity” is meant to symbolize the infinite possibilities that result from the continuous pursuit of perfection.
International, Yet Localized
The Infinity Paradigm® was designed to bring the world’s best and brightest together, allowing all cloud, application, information technology, facility and data center stakeholders to enjoy the synergy that globalized collaboration can provide. It is extensible and adaptable to localized technical, language, environmental, regulatory, political, and industrial requirements and capabilities. This unprecedented level of “reality-centric” customization, allows for ease of access, enhanced efficiency, safety, compliance and effectiveness.
Effective & Application-Centric
One of the Infinity Paradigm’s core missions is ensuring effectiveness via the notion of practicality. Its framework matrix enables a practical, intuitive, detailed and holistic understanding of the entire ecosystem. As the first organization to acknowledge and promote the purpose of data centers to be application delivery, IDCA has effectively redefined the data center as ”the infrastructure supporting the Application Ecosystem™”. This new, application-centric approach eliminates redundant and goalless efforts, honing in on a data center’s true purpose, enabling stakeholders to set accurate expectations and properly strategize towards satisfying their application needs.
IDCA does not solicit or accept input from technology manufacturers, and therefore the standards framework is not biased toward or against any particular manufacturers, technologies, or technical solutions.
Enabling Service Provider Integration Strategies
The Infinity Paradigm® enables and empowers the integration of cloud and infrastructure service providers into the end user’s Application Ecosystem by providing a common grading model for service providers to validate performance capabilities far beyond basic service levels agreements. Service provider’s Efficacy Ratings and G Scores can be integrated into the end user’s ESR score directly, providing management with the most powerful tool yet to understand the impact that partner integration has on their overall operations.
Open Community Effort
The Infinity Paradigm® is a free, open data center framework available worldwide. It empowers functional performance on a global scale, while adapting to local requirements. It provides the stakeholder with an all-inclusive standards framework granting total control over Availability, Efficiency, Security, Capacity, Operation, Innovation and Resilience based on the specific needs of the business.
The Infinity Paradigm® bridges existing industry gaps by providing a comprehensive open standards framework capable of handling the complexity of the post-legacy information technology and data center age. It maintains a focus on certain unique core values: comprehensiveness, effectiveness, practicality, and adaptability. This framework, and the standards, controls, and guidance that support it, will grow and evolve over time through the input and collaboration of its users around the world, continuously redefining the very essence of what information technology, cloud, and the data center is and does. It integrates legacy standards and guidelines, remaining fully aware of their strengths and limitations, in a forward looking and practical way. As a result, the Infinity Paradigm® provides information technology, cloud, and data center designers, planners, builders, operators and end-users with a holistic and constructive approach, addressing the problems of today and challenges of tomorrow.
Download Infinity Paradigm® AE360
Standards Framework: https://www.idc-a.org/ae360