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Network Architecture

The internet is a medium and technology being used and built - and rebuilt - simultaneously, a Tower of Babel of sorts, whose original architects speak in a language - and emerged from a culture - very different from those who are working at the outer limits of the network today.

The internet network engineers of 1979 and of 1989 occupied a very rarified environment, working mostly with peers with whom they shared a good deal of training, career experiences and technical knowledge. They only had to design a network capable of surviving a nuclear war - not the popular onslaught of grasping, slack-jawed bargain-hunting hoards during the annual Christmastime consumption convulsions.

Today, the internet is a popular medium, one that has to support grandmothers e-mailing cookie recipes, Web-casted database applications and multi-point video conferencing - often deployed by companies with otherwise little technical affinity. Yet, every Web application makes its particular, and often peculiar, demands upon the network. In its current incarnation, then, there is no company which places data or applications on the Web that is not drawn into technical questions that speak to the network itself.

There are, however, few who can make informed judgements on how applications will perform within a given network deployment scenario and forecast the cost and maintenance burdens attendant their initial roll-out and their continued maintenance. Here at TRG we have brought together some of those network infrastructure sorcerers to address those questions that online companies invariably have to confront when building out their internet enterprises.

Our approach is one of a dialogue focusing on bottom-line realities. We ask our clients to dream about the applications or data resources they want to mount on the internet. Then we awaken to that facts about what all their wild musings will require in technical and financial terms. We work with our clients to build a networking infrastructure tailored to their needs, schedule its development and cost out all of its technical components and staffing requirements.

Planning is the the essential first step in any electronic commerce engagement. At TRG's network practice we like to say that any dream without a detailed plan to implement it is a hallucination. Toward the practice's imperatives, we have organized our network infrastructure practice around three essential phases. It ain't rocket science, but it is a repeatable discipline whose benefits have been realized by scores of our clients. Those are:

Strategy, design and implementation

Working with the customer to refine their enterprise goals and specify those services and technologies that will have to be animated to meet those goals. Our consultants can help gauge the impact changes in the networking infrastructure will have on your IT organization and determine the hardware, software and people hours required to meet your business goals. Example: If your company wants to vend retail data products on the Web, the task would involve determining the appropriate expansion of your IT infrastructure (i.e. Web, database and credit card clearinghouse server), recommendations for changes to business processes and security models and disaster and expansion planning. This process would draw a map of the entire project.

Designing networks and servers to meet the service and capability requirements of a customer. The secret of success in infrastructure development is building only what your company needs to service the work loads that the technology will be required to support. The focus is on developing a system that can support the demands of all the transactions that may be demanded by a given business model. The black arts of design, however, is not paying for any more technology that you really need.

Implementing networks, servers, and server based applications. Once the strategy and design are nailed down, we can work with an existing implementation team - or build one - to roll out and maintain the new or augmented technologies. When working with internal teams, we transfer all product knowledge inward to your staff so they will have the knowledge necessary for maintaining or expanding the service.

Contact the Director of the Network Infrastructure Development practice, Eric Johansson

US Offices: 38 Rice Street Suites 2-0/2-2
Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA 02140
VOX: 1-617-491-2952     FAX: 1-815-364-3002

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