Retailing Brand Target joins the Open Compute Project intending to contribute to edge computing designs. The Open Compute Project (OCP) is well known for its hardware designs for hyperscale data centers; however, edge computing can represent some open fields for the project.

In the ICONN infra cloud conference, Target CIO Mike McNamara said that Target is the foremost retailer company to move to OCP. It has also adopted the OCP standards to take up hardware architecture and deployed OCP-certified hardware in all the data centers, distribution centers, and stores.

He also believes Target has a distributed footprint; it can influence new OCP use cases to optimize networking and edge computing. “What we can uniquely contribute to OCP is running edge compute,” said McNamara. “We’ve got 2,000 stores and each is a mini data center. That’s a different environment than a data center. What we can contribute is how you can develop compute that’s for the edge instead of the data center.”

McNamara said that the edge hardware designs need to be reliant and resilient. He added, “In store if you lose a blade, it’s a third of the capacity. The needs and requirements are different. We hope to benefit from all the work and contribute to the edge in the future.”

Target has attained growth during the pandemic and quickly pivoted to digital commerce due to savvy acquisitions in 2017. The credit directly moves in the hands of multi-cloud architecture and agile development model as they allowed it to scale.