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More IT headaches or opportunities? Gartner 2017 Tech Trends give details of what to expect

What will you be doing in IT next year? What about in five years? Gartner Tech Trends show dramatically increased complexity, virtualization, smart "things" and IT demand by 2017.



At a Gartner Symposium IT Expo session last week, analyst David Cappuccio listed 10 “critical”  trends and technologies impacting IT for the next five years. The convergence of cloud, big data, social and mobile were top of the list.

  • Organizational entrenchment and disruption
  • Software-defined networks
  • Bigger data and storage
  • Hybrid cloud services
  • Client and server architectures
  • Internet of things
  • IT appliance madness
  • Operational complexity
  • Virtual data centers
  • IT Demand: Every year

    • Server workloads growth 10% a year.
    • Network bandwidth demand growing 35%.
    • Storage capacity, 50%.
    • Power costs growth, 20%.

 

Throwing more capacity at demand is not the solution; you need to optimize capacity in new ways: virtualization, data deduplication, etc. Over 1.5 billion Web pages are accessible, 450,000 iPhone apps, over 200,000 Android apps, 10,500 radio stations, 5,500 magazine. All drives demand for IT.

 

 

Article at  Forbes on the Gartner top 10 tech trend gives these details:

  • Organizational entrenchment and disruption: By 2014, 30% of organizations using SasS will revert back to on-premise due to poor service levels. There’s significant growth in IT complexity. Faster change cycles. Shorter development timelines. Reduced budgets. We need 24/7/365 global IT support. End users are driving IT; end users demanded access to iPads. Same with iPhone, and other smart phones. End-users are driving IT to make change. There’s also a “skills shift,” with many people retirees, and new set of skills required of newer employees.
  • Software defined networks:  A new way to operate networks, in which control of the networks moves into an OS. It moves control from individual devices to a central controller. Allows configuration of the network from one place. “Think of it as virtualizing your network,” he says. Location of physical data center no longer is relevant, creating completely virtual environment. It reduces the time require to provision new resources. Work loads are crossing data-center boundaries. There is potential for significant organizational disruption.
  • Bigger data and storage: By 2015, big data demand will generate 1 million jobs in the Global 1000, but only a third will get filled due to shortage of talent. Seeing 30%-60% compounded growth in data depending on the organization. Audit, archive and recovery are increasingly complex. Analytics and pattern recognition are key. Seeing new specialized ARM-based servers to do specialty analytics. Get more performance in smaller footprint, with reduced power requirements. He notes that 15%-20% of current servers are doing nothing at all. He says most of the storage growth has been on premise.
  • Hybrid cloud services: Composed of services from multiple providers. combination of private and public clouds. Use cloud as extension of IT. Gartner thinks private clouds improve agility and will dominate. People are looking at the cloud as a way to accelerate business growth, particularly mobile apps. You could end up with hybrid environment with dozens of specialty providers. It’s about increasing capability and/or capacity. He says that “hybrid data centers will be in your future.” You can move non-critical work to the cloud to free up space. Result can be incremental operating expense growth, but long-term capital spending deferral.
  • Client and server architectures: One size does not fit all. One OS does not fit all. Form factors are not static. You have to let tablets in. Forced end-user standardization does not work; let me people do what they want within reason. Windows 8 will in your organization, but will not be full replacement for Windows 7 or XP or whatever you are using now. Office on tablets makes no sense unless you like typing on glass. There are other apps that make no sense on notebooks. Users force IT to do wireless networks, and instant messaging, and now tablets and smartphones. You need to decide what to do about Office; “The days of the monolithic suite are going away.
  • Internet of things: Cheap, small devices. Everything will have a radio and GPS capability. Self-assembling mesh networks. Location aware. This all creates the always on society. All of these things have an IP address and can be tracked. Most new cars being enabled for social. Street lights are being networked. Devices proliferating everywhere. It’s not a single technology, it’s a concept. Driving the trend are things like embedded sensors, image recognition, augmented reality, near field communication. The result is situational decision support, asset management, more transparency. Many, many business opportunities with the Internet of things. But it all adds to complexity of IT; brings more fo the business into IT.
  • IT appliance madness: Proliferation of point solutions, which are easy to deploy, with embedded OS, and locked down environments. They contribute to the complexity issue. Now seeing more virtualized appliances, which again adds to complexity. Some appliances are for specific workloads. Sometimes with entire embedded software stack. Inventory monitoring. Security monitoring. Easy to deploy, easy to forget about.
  • Operational complexity: By 2014, employee devices will be compromised by malware at 2x the rate of corporate-owned devices.  For every 25% increase in functionality of a system, there is 100% increase in complexity. Cisco 6500 Switch has 2,390 pages of installation and reference information. Oracle 10g database has 1,677 parameters. With Exchange on VMware there are 115 performance/capacity settings.
  • Virtual data centers: Ratio of virtual to physical servers is now about 11-to-1. Virtualization creates inexpensive resources. Can provision sever in minutes. Resources are distributed to workloads. Can be distributed across data centers and geographies. New focus on distributing specific workloads, rather than focus on physical servers. Seeing segmentation of legacy workloads and new applications. Complexity increases resolution times and masks ownership of issues.  Workloads and issues are no longer confined to a known environment. Enable staff innovation, the help drive staff retention – give them more to do. Cloud services and hybrid environments exacerbate the support issue.
  • IT Demand: By 2017, 40% of enterprise contact information will have leaked on to Facebook via employee mobile devices. Server workloads growth 10% a year. Network bandwidth demand growing 35%. Storage capacity, 50%. Power costs growth, 20%. Throwing more capacity at demand is not the solution; you need to optimize capacity in new ways: virtualization, data deduplication, etc. Over 1.5 billion Web pages are accessible, 450,000 iPhone apps, over 200,000 Android apps, 10,500 radio stations, 5,500 magazine. All drives demand for IT.

Chinese Foo Camp, growth and pollution

Tim O'Reilly blog post on Chinese fast growth and pollution in his Chinese Foo Camp review made me think of the book "Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update" which I just got. If you haven't seen it it is an analysis and computer models of where our current world is going with all the growth and pollution and the effectiveness (or not in most cases) of actions we might take to prevent an economic, human and ecological crisis in the next 30 years. It is sobering to play with the variables and assumptions in the models and still end up crashing the planet. For example doubling the amount of oil and other natural resources actually makes things worse in the long term due to even greater pollution. They conclude that we are currently in a global 'overshoot,' or resource use beyond the carrying capacity of the planet and that there will be a corresponding crash within next 50 years.

I remember reading the original book edition in 1972 and there are some stories on what we have done right (eg CFC and ozone layer) and others that are not so good (global warming).

The models are available if you want to play with them at Chelseagreen or from Amazon. The models are written in a programming language called Stella that I hadn't come across before.

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