Are the days of the showpiece NOC office display gone forever?

Michael Perkins michael.j.perkins at
Wed Dec 16 21:33:53 UTC 2020

 I remember working in the showpiece "Uncle Bernie" Ebbers had built in Ashburn, VA, for UUNET. You can even catch a glimpse of me in the American Greed episode dedicated to WorldCom's downfall. I wonder just what that place looks like now. Since then, I have seen NOCs with multiple displays for multiple customers, but only designed to be useful to NOC staff, not prospective customers or executives looking for something pretty to watch. 
-----Original Message-----
From: Eric Kuhnke <eric.kuhnke at>
To: nanog at list <nanog at>
Sent: Wed, Dec 16, 2020 3:49 pm
Subject: Are the days of the showpiece NOC office display gone forever?

With the covid19 situation, obviously lots of ISPs have their NOC personnel working from home, with VPN (or remote desktop) access to all the internal tools, VoIP at home, etc.
In the traditional sense, by "showpiece NOC" I mean a room designed for the purpose of having large situational awareness displays on a wall, network weathermaps and charts, alerting systems, composed of four or more big flat panel displays. Ideally configured to be actually useful for NOC purposes and also something impressive looking for customer tours.
To what extent potential customers find that sort of thing to be a signifier of seriousness on the part of an ISP, I suppose depends on what sort of customers they are, and their relative degree of technical sophistication.

Are the days of such an environment gone forever? 

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