About Loring Wirbel

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Loring Wirbel is a communications and applications analyst and writer who has worked with Smartbook Blog, Service Provider IT Report, Innovation Generation, FPGA Gurus among other sites. He is the former manager of market intelligence for EE Times and is the author of two books.

Every time Ethernet increases by a factor of ten, or Fibre Channel accelerates by a factor of four, analysts carefully probe the pricing factors involved in determining the slope of user acceptance. The arrival of 10G Ethernet was slowed significantly by the price of some semiconductor logic components, and by the price of implementation in line cards. At other times, the shifting price differentials in multimode vs. single-mode fiber, or pricing of different laser types (VCSEL, DFB, Fabry-Perot) has been named as a key factor in determining how quickly fiber networks scale to a new speed grade, whether in LAN, SAN, MAN, or WAN.
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This summer seems to have been the era of Software Defined Networks' self-analysis and self-doubt period, where wags insist SDN really stands for "Still Does Nothing," and dozens of blog posts appear that resemble Silver Peak Systems' droll inquiry about what potential users might even mean by SDN.
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For nearly ten years, storage and virtualization analysts who were supposedly in the know, predicted the imminent demise of Fibre Channel, to be displaced by protocols such as iSCSI or FCoE riding atop 10G Ethernet. Given the splash many storage vendors have made over 16G Fibre Channel, the ubiquity of Ethernet is nothing to anticipate in the next few quarters. So what happened?
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