Barefoot networks has developed a new chip that sits inside networking switches, the hardware devices that directs traffic and shuttles data across the internet and among thousands of computers at places like Google and Facebook. For a long time these switches were purely physical devices that could transport data between other switches and networks that they were connected to physically, for example by an ethernet cable. What sets Barefoot's chips apart is that they are fully programmable, meaning the owners can write software that tells the switches what to do, similar to how people can write apps and software that tell your phone or computer what to do. Furthermore, Barefoot has developed this technology while keeping speed a priority. Barefoot's chips can process network packets at a rate of 6.5 Tbps, twice as fast as any other on the market. (Source: Wired)
Barefoot Networks goal is to make programming your network as simple as programming your CPU. With their new Programmable Independent Switch Architecture (PISA), they have shown that users can program their networks for themselves without any degradation in performance using an open source programming language, P4, meaning anyone can modify it or use it to build their own chips. Barefoot says it will eventually open source designs for switches that use Tofino. In other words, anyone will be free to build and use hardware equipped with these chips or similar chips including companies like Facebook, Google, and Cisco. (Source: Barefoot)
*Based on Preferred Stock Price, Barefoot Networks does not have a stock symbol since it is currently private and is yet to have an IPO.
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