Jon Masters

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The importance of standardization to emerging 64-bit ARM servers

At Red Hat, we have been involved in the creation of many of the core industry standards that will be used in building future 64-bit ARM powered servers. Over the past few years, we have assisted in the creation of such standards as the Server Base System Architecture (SBSA), the UEFI 2.4 and ACPI 5.1 bindings for the 64-bit ARM Architecture, and other standards and specifications that have yet to be announced. I believe that each of these standards forms an essential component in the creation of a general purpose computing platform suited to widespread enterprise adoption, as opposed to an embedded or appliance-like device that is tailored to one specific purpose (but for which the Operating System and platform are welded together). Such general purpose platforms are important because customers and end users have many expectations around interoperability and system behavior that they have come to expect from decades of working with highly reliable (and highly standardized) platforms. And while it is important to foster true innovation, gratuitous differentiation only serves to harm everyone involved. It might be fun to build an embedded appliance for a specific application, but using that approach in designing a server is a surefire way to ensure a lack of commercial success.

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