I come to you heavily laden with programmatic gifts, software defined goodies and web based subsidies. I know, that last one is weird, right? Subsidies on the web? Oh yes, it’s a thing, trust me. This week the Top5 is packed with tasty goodness that will get you thinking about the many ways that apps and application development are, or are about to be, driving not only your users’ experience, but your network as well. For those of you that are already in that head space and comfortable with such thought, enjoy the ride. For those that aren’t quite as eager to accept such tomfoolery? Buckle up and dig in, I’ll do my best to not lead you astray. I give to you, this week’s Top5:

 

iControl REST 101: What is iControl REST?

http://bit.ly/1n7g9fD

iControl REST you say? Awesome and new? What is it? What can it do? How is it different? Who should be using it? Why do you care? These questions and more will be revealed to you, dear reader, should you merely choose to peruse this article. There may even be punch and pie. (Note: There will not be punch and pie.) If you’re API inclined then you’ll definitely want to check this out. F5 moving to support a RESTful API for programmatic access to our devices is a big deal. It’s important for several reasons, that all get outlined in this first installment of the iControl REST 101 series. For the next several weeks follow along as more information, examples and goodness are given, and get yourself familiar with iControl REST. If you’re not yet API savvy and have been considering wading in, now is definitely the time. With iControl REST getting things up and running is easier than ever. So take a look, see what you can figure out, and get to coding.

 

iControl REST Home

http://bit.ly/1bn7ofv

Precisely zero people should be shocked that, following the release of the above awesome technology, there is now a new home for it on DevCentral. Just like the iRules, iCall, and iControl SOAP wikis, this is a place where you can come to find out what’s new, what info is out there regarding iControl REST, and what people are doing. Perhaps the most useful piece of the Wiki is, or will be, the CodeShare. Here users will be able to view and share examples of iControl REST doing its thing in a myriad of different languages. I’ve pre-populated the Wiki with some cool examples from a handful of rather awesomely smart people her at F5. There are more examples to come, and much more content in general, as well as a little polishing. It may be a hair rough this close after release but it is still very much growing and evolving, and the info is good. It’s just going to keep getting better, so bookmark this one early and get used to checking it out, you won’t be disappointed. If you’ve got things you’d like to see, suggestions, additions or comments, don’t be shy!

 

The Impact of Micro-Architectures and APIs on Data Center Network Design

http://bit.ly/1aW88dE

Speaking of APIs and just how powerful they are, Lori has an awesome piece portraying the power and importance of APIs, application focused networks and a fancy new term I’d not yet heard, “Micro-Architectures”. Maybe I’ve been living under a rock, but that one’s new to me. Her explanation is, as always, spot on and thought provoking. If you’re paying attention you’ll notice that applications drive the network these days, not the other way around. This means that not only does your network need to be flexible and scalable to suit application needs, but that the very design of your network will likely start to cater to application needs, rather than being the hoop through which applications must jump. Go read more in Lori’s post. It has me thinking which is always a good thing, especially so early in the morning, and these are topics that people are going to face more and more often.

 

The use case of software-defined networking

http://bit.ly/1ekwlLg

Despite spelling data center funny, Nathan’s not a bad guy. He’s also got some pretty cool thoughts on SDN that you just might want to check out. Armed with a bevy of facts and figures, Nathan’s article might just give you some more insight into where this whole SDN business is heading, what you may hope to see as a benefit from it, and not shockingly from a marketing guy, how we can help you get there. We’ll forgive him that, however, because he’s got some really interesting information in there and it’s very much worth the read if you’ve got the time. Software Defined Networking has some pretty powerful potential, and understanding just how to tap into that can be huge. Articles like this one can go a long ways towards helping with that, so do yourself the favor and go take a look for yourself.

 

1-800-HTTP

http://bit.ly/1lwQjq6

Free bandwidth? Unheard of. Subsidized however…now for that there is decided precedent. It is a twist, however, to see the people doing the subsidizing become the application owners themselves. Facebook, Netflix and the like allowing mobile users free access? That’s cool and all, but think for a moment about what has to happen, technologically, for that to be possible. That means the mobile provider must know that you are accessing SiteA, track all usage to SiteA, send the company that owns SiteA an invoice/bill/something, and get those costs recouped so that they can pull the usage for SiteA out of your bill and not tag it onto your total usage for the payment cycle. It’s a rather complex logic bomb just waiting to go off, and it will without question require a heaping helping of application fluency. Lori talks all about it in this awesome post that you should most certainly go check out. This is a very interesting trend that may have legs, depending on how it’s received, and it can’t hurt to get ahead of the curve, can it?

 

That’ll do it for this week’s Top5. Until next time, code hard.