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Avi Rosenthal

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STKI Summit 2010: When do we need to find the right balance?

On March 16th I participated in the STKI summit by the local analysts company STKI.
The company headed by Dr. Jimmy Schwarzkopf is focused on the Israeli market. The theme of this year conference was: Finding the Right Balance: Standardize vs. Innovate.
Presentations were based on an Israeli market survey performed by the company.
The company's analysts' presentations topics were Infrastructure Trends, Applications Trends, Office of the CIO trends and Infrastructure Services Trends, followed by wrap-up IT Trends presentation by Jimmy.
Jimmy's Keynote presentation included two parts: The first topic (and the more interesting topic in my opinion) was directions and trends. This part was not Israeli market centric.
The second topic summed up the surrey's results and was limited to the Israeli market. The local companies in each category (e.g. Storage Hardware, Integration Software), were ranked by Revenue and Client's Mind Share.
I was surprised to find myself appearing in 11th place in the Infrastructure related Consulting/Analysts.             

The most important changes according to Jimmy and according to IT leaders (Microsoft's CEO Steve Balmer, SAP's co-founder Hasso Plattner, Steve Jobs) and Academy researchers (Andrew McAfee, Zygmunt Bauman, Rakesh Khurana) quoted by him are:
  •     Mobile world with emphasis on new sophisticated devices (e.g. iPhone, iPad etc.)
  •     Home User Centric IT – The home users are Beta "site" for new software instead of organizations.
  •     Enterprise 3.0 focused on Competitive advantage in addition to Enterprise 2.0 focused on Business Processes transformation.
  •   Event Driven IT systems

The result of the combination of all these changes will be a very dynamic and flexible (Liquid) IT World with almost no boundaries between Private Life and work activities.

The theme of finding the right balance implies loosing the balance found few years ago. The first part of the Keynote presentation describes a fundamental change taking place following last year's recession.
No doubt, that the predicted change is a radical change. A new world will necessarily require a new balance. Finding the new balance is not an easy task. The new balance will not be limited to IT, because the new world implies change in organizational and cultural issues in addition to the IT changes.

My Take

  •     The New IT implies higher degree of Complexity.
The illustration copied from Jimmy's presentation depicts this problem.
Enterprise with large variety of End User Devices, Events handling mechanisms in addition to Processes, Services, Components and programs, and deploying some Core Systems in its Data Center and other Core Systems in the Cloud will be more complex than current enterprises. 
Handling the growing Complexity is a must. Complexity could be handled by hiding it (e.g. by using Abstraction in SOA or Virtualization implementations) or by actually reducing it by less heterogeneous platforms and applications.
  •     Perceptual Adaptation is the key for competitive advantage.
The adaptation required in 2010 is very different from the adaptation which was required when Forrester Research coined the term Adaptive Organization.
  •     Mobility is a significant trend. The effects of lack of time or place separation between Work related activities and other activities are beyond computing or IT.
  •     In my opinion the other significant trend is Event Driven. Reality is Event Driven. Until the last years IT systems modeled Systems and Processes, but did not model systematically events processing.
 Event Driven is closely related to SOA, Mobility and Real Time Enterprise.
The second generation of SOA implementations includes concurrent implementation of Event Driven Architecture (EDA).
Implementing Real Time Enterprise requires Event Processing, because in many cases business events processing take place immediately after an event (or State Transition) occurred.
Mobility, enables alerting a consumer or an employee immediately after an event occurs.

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More Stories By Avi Rosenthal

Ari has over 30 years of experience in IT across a wide variety of technology platforms, including application development, technology selection, application and infrastructure strategies, system design, middleware and transaction management technologies and security.

Positions held include CTO for one of the largest software houses in Israel as well as the CTO position for one of the largest ministries of the Israeli government.