This week my exceptional guest is Tom Lyon, serial entrepreneur and Internet legend, who takes us on a journey to the leading edge of distributed computing. This is a very special interview for Product Storyteller, as it explores the origins of our current IT economy from an engineer’s point of view.
For software to take over the world, Tom and his cohort had to lay the foundation of Unix and TCP/IP. And his cohort is impressive, including Ken Thompson, Eric Schmidt and Bill Joy. These brilliant technologists wrote reliable and efficient software for their own use, enabling the many products we use today.
Perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise then that the entrepreneurs who disrupted networking 40 years ago, would be the same ones to commoditize it today. Tom now builds the kind of next generation products that the Cisco’s of the world can monetize, which gives his companies excellent acquisition exits.
His current focus is DriveScale, a company he founded with Satya Nishtala in 2013 to commoditize the endless server SKUs from Dell, HP and others. With DriveScale, one can create, deploy and adapt servers on the fly to meet the demands and distributed nature of containerized applications. It’s a perfect match for Kubernetes.
This interview puts you in the mind of an engineer who has repeatedly broken down the walls between networks and systems. From the origins of Unix and the Internet to the virtual machines that run all of IT today, we cover it all. I hope you enjoy the trip.