Archive for the “Pivotal” Category

The Internet of Things (IOT) is a computing concept that refers to a massively interconnected future state in which everyday objects will be connected to the internet and to each other.  Even with today’s early stage machine-to-machine (M2M) endeavors involving smart electricity meters or vehicle telematics, we are a long way from this future IOT state.  Even in the most modern of homes, today’s refrigerators and dishwashers don’t talk to one another or to their owner’s smart phones to remind them to pick up milk or dishwasher detergent.


However, IOT, got a pretty big boost today with GE’s $105 million investment in Pivotal.  You see, GE makes lots of things that are already instrumented with sensors that collect massive amounts of data as they operate.  A surprising amount of today’s Pivotal launch event was devoted to discussing use cases involving GE-made products such as airplane engines and wind turbines.  The main point seemed to be that doing useful things with the massive amounts of data gathered by these things (or at least the sensors attached to these things) requires a radically different software and application architecture.  Pivotal and its upcoming PivotalOne offering will attempt to provide an application development platform that can not only ingest these massive data quantities (using GemFire) but can also wring meaning and useful business intelligence from them in order to enable realtime responses.

One interesting example cited was that, on average, a single Boeing 777 produces over 30TB of sensor data on a single transatlantic flight!  A large wireless carrier I know of processes over 4 billion billable events per day and those are just summary records of the activity that is really happening in the network when consumers use data, send texts or make calls.

So, 113-year old GE appears to be making a bet on the upstart Pivotal in part to focus on building a series of product offerings to help its customers leverage the massive data quantities that GE’s things generate.  GE not only wants to make money from selling the things and the sensors monitoring the things, but also on the intelligence that can be derived using Pivotal’s software architectures from the data that the things generate.



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Just like Spring here in Colorado this year, it seems like the official public launch of the new Pivotal initiative would never get here!  Now, why, you say, would normal people live in a place where spring-like weather is still nowhere to be found on April 24th?  Or maybe a better question, is why I’m actually tracking the launch of Paul Maritz’s latest endeavor so closely?

As to the first, we love living here in Colorado despite the occasional delayed Spring the 300 days of sunshine and gorgeous surroundings are in addition to the great business climate and fantastic people.

Regarding Pivotal, I suppose its launch has caught my attention because of my current focus on helping companies modernize apps and databases for cloud or burst-to-cloud deployments and because Gemfire happens to be part of the suite of products moving from VMWare / SpringSource into Pivotal.

Paul Maritz at the Pivotal Launch

Paul Maritz at the Pivotal Launch

One new bit of news this morning prior to the launch itself was that GE was going to pour $105 million into the new company, taking a 10% ownership stake.  ”With GE aboard, EMC will own 62 percent; VMware 28 percent and GE 10 percent, according to a Pivotal spokesperson.”   Its not yet clear how the GE investment will play out, but having another big name added to the ownership stake will certainly add to the confidence that Pivotal hopes its new customers will draw from a child of EMC and VMWare.

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