Supporting humans and networks: AI and machine learning

Jul 28, 2017

In this piece, we speak to ITProPortal about the overarching fear that AI and Machine learning are going to take over people’s jobs and the counter argument.


Humans make mistakes – that’s part of our nature, and by using AI and machine learning the risks associated with human intervention can be removed, which could include unexpected network downtime due to the poor manual configuring of a wide-area network (WAN). Thankfully, the concepts of AI and machine learning in IT networking are not science fiction. Rather than making us weaker, they can make us stronger and enable us to increase our performance. They are no Armageddon; they are an enabler that can permit organisations to do more with fewer resources.

The science fiction of autonomous networking, which is spoken about by David Hughes, Founder and CEO of Silver Peak Systems, in his sponsored article for Network World, is already here today in solutions such as PORTrockIT and WANrockIT. They can correctly mitigate the effects of latency without your organisation having to unnecessarily spend money on ever increasingly large bandwidths, WAN Optimisation, SD-WAN and WAN optimisation solutions. With AI and machine learning much can be achieved with what you’ve already got, and an ever larger pipe won’t defeat the laws of physics no matter how much you spend. The problems created by latency will still remain.


“Organisations should also look beyond SD-WAN to a data acceleration solution as it can do more for less. Many of Baker’s goals would probably have been achieved more quickly and more simply with one of them to address the latency challenge of having a global company “go from Atlanta to L.A. to London and Paris”.

– David Trossell, CEO Bridgeworks, LTD


AI and machine learning techniques permit us to better manage and to cope with the ever-growing data volumes too. Clint Boulton, Senior Writer at CIO magazine, talks about freight forwarding company JAS Global in his 12th May 2017 article, ‘How logistics firm leverages SD-WAN for competitive advantage’, and refers to it taking a gamble on an unknown technology.

The firm is using an SD-WAN to run cloud applications, but hopes to use it as the backbone of a predictive analytics strategy to grow its business. The claim is that JAS Global managed to cut millions of dollars from its bandwidth costs. That’s good.

Boulton also explains: “SD-WANs allow companies to set up and manage networking functionality, including VPNs, WAN optimisation, VoIP and firewalls, using software to program traffic routing typically conducted by routers and switches. Just as virtualisation software disrupted the server market, SD-WANs are shaking up the networking equipment market.”


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