Like a kid waiting to open a birthday present, there’s a special kind of excitement buzzing around the Cumulus Networks office. As March 20th-21st draws closer and closer, you can feel the energy going up. Why is that you ask? It’s because that’s the date of OCP Summit 2018, of course! In just a few weeks, we’ll be on our way to the San Jose Convention Center to join up with the OCP community and discuss all the nerdy goodness we can about open networking. We’re looking forward to meeting as many great minds and innovators as we can (and fortunately, it’s not too late for you to sign up!) As members of the Open Compute Project, we cannot wait for this event.

Hold on, what’s OCP?

For those unfamiliar with this amazing project, Open Compute Project (OCP) was started by Facebook in 2009 with the goal to create the world’s most energy efficient data center — one that could scale at any level at the lowest possible cost. Their four core tenets focus on increasing efficiency, improving scalability, maintaining openness and making an impact. A small team of engineers remained dedicated to these tenets and, 2 years later, they completed a data center built from the ground up in Prineville, Oregon. Everything, including software, servers, racks, power supplies and cooling, was their own design. The result was a facility that was 38% more efficient and 24% less expensive than what they had before.

Turns out they weren’t the only ones who saw openness and collaboration as the new foundation for data center networking. Facebook shared their results with the public and, inspired by their success, Intel and Rackspace, Goldman Sachs and Andy Bechtolsheim offered their support for this mission. These five members collaborated and, in 2011, the Open Compute Project was born.

Since then, OCP has held true to their message of improving networking through openness and their global community only keeps growing. Of course, Cumulus Networks is all about this vision of opening up the network and forming a community. In fact, to contribute to OCP’s mission, we created the Open Network Install Environment (ONIE) project, which OCP has adopted. We’re also sponsors for this year’s OCP Summit, and we can’t wait to see what’s in store for this event!

Sounds great! So, what’s OCP Summit about?

OCP Summit is a gathering of over 3,000 members in the community who are similarly dedicated to OCP’s mission of achieving innovation through open technology, open ideas and open communication. If you’re searching for a time and a place to network with some of the great visionaries, pioneers and leaders of the open networking movement, you definitely want to attend OCP Summit.

There are a lot of great presentations, roundtables and workshops planned for this year’s summit. Check out Mellanox’s expo hall session if you’re interested in edge computing, or attend a networking workshop roundtable featuring the Engineering Director of Facebook — no matter what part of networking interests you most, there’s something for everyone. And of course, OCP Happy Hour is always a great chance to grab some refreshments and chat with your fellow OCP attendees.

Will Cumulus be there?

Absolutely! Many of Cumulus’ esteemed members will be making an appearance at various events. The Networking Project Leads, Cumulus Networks principal engineer Scott Emery and Omar Baldonado of Facebook, will kick off the networking workshop on day two. Cumulus’ very own Curt Brune will lead a session about ONIE and securing the install process, and everyone will be joining in the BoF sessions. If you’d like to hang out with Cumulus at OCP Summit 2018, check out the schedule for more information. You can also come find us on the convention floor at booth C13 — we’d love to chat with you! Plus, if that Cumulus goodness still isn’t enough for you, we’ll also be hosting raffles where you can win awesome prizes! We’ll be raffling off guitars, so the lucky winners can literally make their data centers rock!

So don’t miss your chance to be a part of a fun event and become a contributor to a noble initiative. Register for OCP Summit 2018 today — you don’t want to miss out.

If you’re eager to try out cool Cumulus tech for yourself, you’ve got to check out Cumulus VX. This free virtual appliance gives you a sandbox environment where you can test all kinds of different configurations.