The Optical Networking and Communication
Conference & Exhibition

San Diego Convention Center,
San Diego, California, USA

Talk: A Ubiquitous Cloud Requires a Transparent Network

Urs Holze

Urs Hölzle

Senior Vice President for Technical Infrastructure, Google, Inc., USA

What makes cloud amazing is ubiquity. What makes Cloud ubiquitous is the network. We realized that at Google over a decade back while building the first truly global Cloud infrastructure. Ever since, we have been building a network unparalleled in reach, scale and capability. While we built the network as the backbone of a global super computer, we also turned the network control and management planes into distributed services running on the same Cloud. In the process, we made every network layer, including optical transport, intelligent, fault-tolerant, highly reliable and programmatically manageable to allow for rapid evolution and innovation. We have also applied the lessons of disaggregation, learned from Cloud, widely to our network infrastructure.


Urs Hölzle is Senior Vice President for Technical Infrastructure at Google. In this capacity he oversees the design, installation, and operation of the servers, networks, and datacenters that power Google's services. Through efficiency innovations, Hölzle and his team have reduced the energy used by Google data centers to less than 50% of the industry average. Hölzle grew up in Switzerland and received a master's degree in computer science from ETH Zurich and, as a Fulbright scholar, a Ph.D. from Stanford. While at Stanford (and then a small start-up that was later acquired by Sun Microsystems) he invented fundamental techniques used in most of today's leading Java compilers. Before joining Google he was a professor of computer science at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He is a Fellow of the ACM and a member of the US National Academy of Engineering and the Swiss Academy of Technical Sciences.

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