Pure Storage can never be accused of sitting still. Less than a week after the hugely successful launch of the FlashArray//X, we had another monumental task – somehow bring structure and consistency to a slew of new software products and features that would be announced at Pure//Accelerate 2017.
Starting with the FlashArray//X (and applying it retroactively to the FlashArray//M), we had already set up a pretty flexible branding system for products. However, we needed Software to feel like a different branch from Hardware, while still a part of the same Product Family Tree.
Immediately, we set out trying to bring a structure to the two biggest Software announcements: a 5.0 release of the Purity Operating Environment for the FlashArray family and a 2.0 release of the Purity Operating Environment for FlashBlade. Within that little sentence includes about six different brand initiatives that, up until that moment, had been worked-around, swept under the carpet, or summarily ignored.
The first thing we had to do was establish a visual difference between the FlashArray and FlashBlade families – Software and Hardware. The second task was to develop a distinct look and feel for the Purity Operating Environment. And finally, the last task was determining exactly how to handle versioning.
The versioning problem had already been solved with FlashArray//M and //X. So, we piggy-backed that solution right off the bat. As we developed the look and feel for Purity, we leaned on the art direction we were simultaneously developing for the Pure//Accelerate intro video centered around Big Data. And finally, we incorporated the color scheme we'd established during the FlashArray//X launch – light for FlashBlade, dark for FlashArray, orange for the top brand.
This presented the most difficult challenge because it's really where the rubber meets the road. Can the system you've established hold up under the stress and weight of dozens of names and featuers – some of which are utterly unique, and some of which are crazy hybrids with one foot squarely in both product families.
Designers tend to be pretty level-headed – at least in our experience. So when everything fell into place and came together perfectly, it was kind of a big deal to hear a couple "Awwwwww yeah!"'s around the office. We were beyond stoked to see the flexible system we'd established to expand to include new features and solutions as the Purity family grew even between our final delivery and the full announcement at Pure//Accelerate 2017. Many fistbumps were had at the back of the auditorium during the keynote announcements.