Red Queen

If Content Is King, The Network Is The Queen

Red QueenThe game of chess requires a keen awareness of the positions for all the pieces, both yours and your opponent’s.

Chess requires patient planning and vision; each piece has a different value, and some are more strategic than others. Of most importance is maintaining the safety of the king, by controlling squares on the board. The king is not typically considered a threat during most of the game. It’s actually the ultimate goal for the opposing queen, rook, bishop, knight, and pawn.

Just as each piece on the chessboard has different levels of importance and strategic value, network infrastructure, too, has many pieces, each one having their own value.

In the ‘chessboard strategy’ of business, content is king. Content is vital for virtually all organizations. It is created for many different purposes, and by many different producers. Certainly, marketers are huge content producers, and according to eMarketer, video and social media content alone will be a $118 billion market in 2013.

Another area where content is king is the entertainment industry. Companies like Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon are delivering on-demand streaming services to subscribers who consume their content from anywhere: at work, at home, or on vacation. Location is no longer a factor or limitation.  Almost all forms of content are now being delivered over networks to remote users. Even the movies we watch at the theater are digitized and distributed over networks. Remember the ‘old days’ when we used to rent movies on DVD from the store and take them home?  We now get movies over the Internet on our smartphones, tablets, laptops, TVs, and video game consoles. When I listen to music at home or away, I get streaming music from Pandora, or iHeart Radio. If I listen to music I own, it’s mostly songs I downloaded from iTunes, or some other music site. Yes, content is king, but the delivery of content is all-important.

The queen is the most strategic piece on the chessboard. It is used to both defend its own king, and to pursue the opponent’s. The network is the most strategic element in delivering content for both producers and consumers. In today’s Internet-driven world, without the network, we simply can’t get to the content. Routers, switches, firewalls, and WAN accelerators are the pieces in this game of delivery. In recent years, WAN accelerators have become top-of-the-list when it comes to importance and strategic value for network reliability, scalability and performance.

The network has become intricately intertwined with virtually every type of content. Every organization and every industry — from entertainment to ecommerce, from government agencies to enterprises — want more customers and subscribers. The best way for them to expand and succeed is to have great content, and a great network delivery infrastructure.