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NIA Makes It a Working Birthday

Denise Culver
5/2/2017
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Say what you will about December being a month filled with busyness and obligations, but for my money, the busiest month of the year is always May. And this month is shaping up to be a doozy.

As of now, I've got a college graduation, a son getting married, a 27th anniversary to celebrate, the Big Communications Event (BCE) and a couple of birthdays, one of which is for the New IP Agency (NIA), an organization that I enjoy following because it's doing something pretty unique in an industry that sometimes lacks in the originality department.

NIA's mission, in a nutshell, is to serve as the voice of reason in the morass that's resulted from the proliferation of standards bodies that relate to the creation of open, virtualized IP networks.

NIA puts the number of those organizations at more than 35, including official organizations, de facto industry organizations and single-vendor initiatives, all with specialized, often incompatible goals that make it extremely difficult for service providers and others that are migrating to virtualization. For a great look at all of those initiatives in a single place, take a look at the Industry Organizations section of Virtuapedia.

It's obvious that the migration toward virtualization is not an easy path. In mid-April, one Light Reading story stated that no one has implemented a commercial-scale, virtualized network using off-the-shelf, open source code -- or even vendor-supplied software -- and, likely, no one ever will. (See Why Isn't Virtualization Working?) During the Open Networking Summit in early April, almost every speaker talked about the need to harmonize efforts among open source groups to eliminate overlap and duplication. (See 5 More Key Takeaways From ONS.)

When NIA was officially announced at BTE (the precursor to BCE) in 2015, ten companies were recognized as members, along with European Advanced Networking Test Center (EANTC). (See The New IP Agency Is Born at BTE.) Today, NIA boasts more than 35 members, and it will celebrate its special day by testing for interoperability in management and orchestration (MANO) in the NFV space at BCE in Austin later this month. (See New IP Agency Plans Test for NFV Interoperability.)

To be certain, the issue of essentially standardizing the standards bodies is far from a simple task. But it's nice to see that after just two years, NIA's membership has grown to more than three times its original size, and it is testing functionality that's vitally important to virtualization.

More than 1,600 companies and 1,650 products are now listed in Virtuapedia, making it the telecom industry's most comprehensive resource for all things related to virtualization. Some 14,000 network professionals also are now registered with Virtuapedia, giving them access not only to vendor and product information but also to the latest industry news and research from Heavy Reading.

To get your company listed in Virtuapedia, go to the Get Listed tab on the site. To join the growing ranks of the virtualization community and get access to executive summaries of Heavy Reading's research, go to the Register Now tab.

Denise Culver, The Pediatrician

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