Leadership

Video: Four trends that will transform IT over the next five years

Gartner has cited its top 10 IT trends to watch over the next three to five years. IT leaders should put these trends on the radar to exploit them for competitive advantage. In this episode of Sanity Savers for IT executives, I share four of these trends and give you my take on each one.

Gartner has cited its top 10 IT trends to watch over the next three to five years. IT leaders should put these trends on the radar to exploit them for competitive advantage. In this episode of Sanity Savers for IT executives, I share four of these trends and give you my take on each one.

Here's the original article that this episode was based on:

Sanity check: 10 trends that will transform IT over the next five years

About

Jason Hiner is the Global Editor in Chief of TechRepublic and Global Long Form Editor of ZDNet. He is an award-winning journalist who writes about the people, products, and ideas that are revolutionizing the ways we live and work in the 21st century.

48 comments
reisen55
reisen55

Send more jobs overseas to Bangalore (by) Firing more American workers (so companies can) Cut costs, salaries and expenses (result) Increase shareholder value These are the four trends that I see. And I disagree with every single one of them. But American management believes in them totally.

ivan.ms
ivan.ms

Not very brilliand. I still remenber Bill Gates saying "640 KB will be enough"...

dbecker
dbecker

One only look at who really pays the bills for the Gartner Group and decide to whom they are pandering. It was 8 years ago now, that I took a Gartner Group representative aside and asked about the future of Sybase. His response was that there was a .60 probability that it would go out of business in a year. Eight years later and counting, the Gartner Group false prophets are far worse than evening TV weather predictions. One only need look at their long list of failures of predictions to evoke wonder at how they stay in business, but here's the deal: They tell the fools what they want to hear, and there's no better business model than pandering to fools with pockets full of money. The Gartner Group does has its place, of course. Sometimes us technologists can use them to convince management to do the right thing and pursue what we have suggested. It's a double edged sword though, since the Gartner Group sells itself out to the highest bidder and is willing to, if not bite the hand that feeds it, ignore a hand that feeds it when it finds a better deal -- not unlike my 19 year old cat. The one true and accurate prediction probably lies in the direction of more open source related materials. Yes, corporations want the cheap, but they also want assurances that support will be there when they need it, and not be held hostage to geeks who know what they are doing technically, but may not have the same greed for profit at heart so ingrained within the corporate model. So, yes, open source will be very important, it's just that the corporations will pay for what is free, but at a reduced price. So all those wonderful people who give their time, effort, energy and wonderful technical expertise without any thought of gain, just for the joy of geeking and helping their fellows, will again be the foundation for corporate profit -- something they never had in mind. Nevertheless, the little guy out there, moving to the LINUX desktop, hoping to keep ahead of the devastation creeping forward into the Windows environment, does benefit in a big way and does get all that free stuff that's more stable and better written than the stuff you pay an arm and a leg for and indenture your future generations to pay for. No, the safest prediction is the open source one, but for none of the reasons given here, or issued from the Ivory Tower Temple of the gods at Gartner Group.

koby@disklace.com
koby@disklace.com

Today it is a neglected corner in IT. The quality of data is one of the most important issues in the IT world, because it is one of the main reasons that cause performance degradation. We know the defragmentation process but we love to ignore it. In the future it will hit all portable storage devices. If your cellular phone will be able to carry 100GB of storage (Music, video, recordings etc) you will have the same problems you have now with your desktop computer. That is the reason why we refer to any USB device (MP3, Disk-On-Key and Cellular phone) as a storage device, and we check its fragmentation level. Our product LaceWatcher is capable of finding the threshold in which fragmentation is required and perform preventive maintenance. We hope we are ready for the future.

No User
No User

First of all Gartner is full of it's self as always and this is just more vomit being spewed by those morons. Apple's market share is so small that it would not be noteworthy to the market if it doubled so woop-T-do. Apple's biggest obstacle to real market share has always been it's price and proprietary elements. Yes they run windows and have Intel CPUs now and that would be the catalyst for the increase in market share. The price will hold them back. Keep in mind that the long ago days of Apples having superior craftsmanship, graphics and being faster are part of days gone by. The cloud computing and subscription software nonsense I wrote about here. http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-6230-0.html?forumID=102&threadID=270642&messageID=2562674 As for IT folks being inflexible and abusing the poor users as they bring their home "consumer" devices to work well I have certainly written enough on that BS. The only inflexibility that you will encounter with IT is the nit wits who view IT as inflexible. "JC" spread legs and remove head from rectum. IT is in a perpetual state of change. If you need further explanation then get a job that has nothing to do with IT. The biggest problems with the idea of users determining what IT delivers for them is Number one although they have desires they don't want involved they want and expect it to be done for them. They don't want to be part of the process because they will be required to learn about IT and it's use in a business environment and the personal responsibility of users which they are staunchly opposed to doing. ;) Number two is they don't have a clue to base a real decision on when it comes to integrating their gadgets and toys into the corporate network and the totality of the implications that go with it. With that said they want their toys but not the work and responsibility that goes with it. Number three with our jobs being outsourced not only to foreigners but moved out of the company and creating a situation where IT folks are contractors not employees, where IT budget cuts get even sharper as more and more is outsourced and the same mutton heads that dreamed this nonsense up also consider IT as being separate from the business as if IT stands outside the business. All the while IT is being scolded by those same mutton heads who deliberately slammed the door on IT and left us outside the corporate decision making room hanging to dry "as unbelievable as it seems" they are saying to IT that IT must align it's self with the business. Talk about being blind to your own faults. The problem with that is that they must align themselves with IT so that they can align themselves with the entire business and not a case of IT choosing not to align it's self with business. Given the reality of those circumstances exactly how are those mutton heads going to pull that one off? The shrinking presence of IT folks, budget and operational input make quite the challenge to maintain now how are you going to cram consumer gadgets down our throat in addition to that? I'm sure that since this will be viewed as IT getting it's coming up ins that the corporation will shower IT folks with massive budgets for training, personnel and all that is needed to usher in this new age of liberation of users at the work place. :0 Sadly the reality check on that one would simply result in even more IT "FREE" over time hours and our own personal expense to train and greater friction between IT\user\business folks and both security and legal nightmares. :( This is just another slap in IT's face from those who have the manipulate, dominate and control mentality and hose everything up. Just as with money power should only be put in the hands of those who know what to do with it. Which would be close to a complete dipsey doodle.

billfranke
billfranke

I much prefer text to video, so I didn't bother to watch this one, nor will I watch any video that isn't instructional. Is it not possible to provide transcripts for videos so that READERS can determine by scanning the content whether it's going to be worthwhile? I'm just not a member of any of the generations that cannot pay attention to things that do not move and morph before one's eyes, and I have no intention of joining any of them either. I can't imagine a good reason for this topic to be in video format other than to reach out to the terminally bored and illiterate.

qoolskip
qoolskip

Please make text available

No User
No User

Videos certainly have their place but not with the nonsense that they deliver here. I would add the POD casts to that as well.

acarter
acarter

Take note Tech Republic.

zwayne
zwayne

I think techrepublic does it because they can. There is no good reason for videos such as these, nor for many of the slide shows that they love to do which can often be summed up in ten bullets. Big waste of time and as a result I find myself going to less and less of their links.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

I linked to it in the post. :-)

verrice
verrice

You linked the article you based your video on... we're all begging you for a transcript of your video. There -is- a difference.

david.stout
david.stout

I prefer text over video because I am deaf and I can't hear anything you were saying... dang, can you at least include caption feature?! The guy who invented Internet (Vint Cerf - TCP/IP protocol inventor http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vinton_Cerf) is deaf and now people like you unconsciously want to shut deaf professional developers out. We would not have invent the phone if weren?t for Alexander Bell?s deaf wife! It was the deaf web users and developers that revolutionizing video blogging as we had been doing it for several years then lately "hearing" people want to take over and shut us out in the process....thanks a lot. I guess if this continues I might unsubscribe TechRepublic's e-newsletter.

TechinMN
TechinMN

For those few of you complaining about there not being a text option, look below the video window. It clearly says: "Here?s the original article that this episode was based on" and provides a link. Take that extra fraction of second to read the information you are presented, and you won't have to get uptight that a text option is not available, or engage your persecution complex.

billfranke
billfranke

Thank you for the reply. I'm happy to see that there will (likely) be transcripts for all videos by the end of 2008. I suspect that if you'd found the entire Gartner article "more useful", you'd have had no reason to pare it down to four points that were in your opinion, I also suspect, "most useful". Doing that says that the other six points were not significant enough to repeat and is, I think, better reporting and a better basis for commentary and discussion than reading and discussing things that you don't consider important enough to repeat. That is helping people to avoid wasting their time.

verrice
verrice

Now knowing that transcripts may be coming by the end of 2008, I'll get off the soap box, and wait patiently & quietly. Thank you Jason for showing that TR is indeed listening. :-)

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

We will likely be providing transcripts of all videos by the end of 2008. However, if you want the information, the link I provided is even more useful because it provides even more than what is in the video. My hope is that these short videos are enough to get people interested in the topic, and those who are interested will go on to read the full piece that it is based on. We've found that different users prefer different formats and we're simply trying to appeal to the broadest audience possible.

verrice
verrice

This is a looooooong running complaint that TR is ignoring. Every time a video comes up, the complaints come out, and invariably (this time it was you) someone says something akin to "duh, there is text", but the point is it is not the text of the video. The point being... I've never seen anyone complain about a text article not being a video, and every video post is full of complaints. So no, nothing really was you personally; it's kind of like getting a Mac Vs Windows debate going. Either way, until there's a transcript of the actual video, not just a link to a base article, saying there is text will get rebuked. My bunnies are not fuzzy... we shave them prior to the experiments... KIDDING! We don't shave them.

TechinMN
TechinMN

Sorry, couldn't hear your loud buzzer noise. I'm a disabled veteran who, among other disabilities, has hearing loss. Nice attempt at humor, though, verrice. Not sure where your attitude is coming from, since I only stated some facts. One dude's complaining about there needing to be text because he doesn't approve of video--text is available. One dude wants to know if there is something he can browse, so he knows whether he should watch it--text is available. And Dave complains he can't hear it, and goes off that it's a conspiracy against deaf people because there's no captioning--not only is there text, but as a disabled person myself, it's clear to see he does have a persecution complex. Still trying to figure out where I mentioned anything about my likes or dislikes, though. Go play with your fuzzy bunnies now...

verrice
verrice

That is NOT the text of the video, it is some other text that they used to base the video on. However, without a transcript of the ACTUAL video, those who cannot view the video cannot accurately discuss it, even after reading the base article. Take that extra fraction of a second to read the information you are presented by other people, and you won't have to get uptight that people don't like the same things you like, or engage your persecution retaliation.

pgraunke
pgraunke

My time is too precious to waste on a video when I can get the same data dump in less than half the time with the text version.

gstrickland
gstrickland

I totally agree with the comments regarding making the text version available. It is far easier and less time consuming for me to sit and read the text. Please take note TechRepublic!

donnasander
donnasander

I don't care for the video either. And I did't even have an option...it just started running. Let me choose if I want to watch a dumb video. I can read much faster than that guy trying to inject all his drama...

atoms
atoms

I keep finding myself clicking on these in the emails, then feeling like an idiot to be shown a video window. I work for a huge company but we don't have the bandwidth to stream video. If this happens to me again I may just unsubscribe from Techrepublic newsletters.

verrice
verrice

Not just the base article... the text of THE VIDEO! Or... just stop doing videos... that'd be nice. :P

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

I disagree with some aspects of the subscription model. Some software it makes sense to subscribe as you'll be changing it very regularly - such as accounting programs with regular updates for tax changes and personnel software with regular updates for changes in the industrial relations and privacy laws; subscription will see you have the very latest at reasonable prices. For most of the office use software it is much cheaper and more effective to purchase the software license outright as you can then use it for many years without any additional costs except for expansion of licensed users. A classic example of this is the basic office suite of software; the majority of people doing word processing today are still using only the basic features they were using ten to twenty years ago as they have no use for the many new features. the same applies to most of the general office use software. Many small businesses in Australia are still running old computers with Windows 98 and MS Word 6 - this still meets all their current needs, and this is true of most. To make this worth subscribing the annual price would have to be extremely low, so low that many software companies would think it too low. Having said that, I'm aware Microsoft are in the business of forced software upgrading by making their new operating systems with changes to make them NOT fully compatible with their older software application packages. I expect this to become a burden for them as more people switch to packages that will carry forward and no extra cost. One alternative I see here is the ultimate thin client where businesses combine their existing server farm with the Internet cloud technology and buy licenses for server based software to establish and use in house variants of Google Apps and the like. The staff use basic systems with a browser and then use the company in house server based Internet office package. The rest makes sense although I think other technology trends may evolve to overtake some - with the current development levels it's hard to say which way some will go.

pickleman
pickleman

> Having said that, I'm aware Microsoft are in > the business of forced software upgrading by > making their new operating systems with > changes to make them NOT fully compatible > with their older software application packages. I'm not exactly sure what "changes" Microsoft makes to their new operating systems that make them incompatible with older software. On Vista, you can still run your Office 95 suite if you so choose to. I personally wouldn't run Vista if you paid me, but that's just because of the incredible amount of bloat. If they streamline their next o/s that will be the successor to Vista, I'll be happy to run it. If it's no different from Vista, I'll happily stick with XP.

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

The reason you need different device drivers between Win 9x, Win NT, Win2K/XP, Win Vista is because they change the command set instructions between the OSs. These are not the exact codes they use but examples of type. In Win NT the command to halt = signal 1, while in WinXP halt = signal A7, and in Vista halt = signal 8F. This is why you need new software with each new OS - except for the few cases where the company codes in multiple command sets and includes an OS detection routine to start with. A few years ago I found I couldn't open MS Word 2a or Word 6 files in Office XP without them becoming corrupted. People have found you can't run Office 2007 on Win XP and have full functionality, also many basic functions don't work. Run Office 2003 on Vista and you have many functions not working either. Ideally if Windows was even half as well written as the MS media people claim any Windows application written for a 16 bit, 32 bit, or 64 bit Windows system should run on all later versions - but they don't.

markm
markm

"To make this worth subscribing the annual price would have to be extremely low, so low that many software companies would think it too low." Gmail, Gdocs, Zoho Suite may well not remain free forever. And as we all know, the availability of the cloud is far from guaranteed. BUT, about 2 months ago those products finally got good enough so that I've not launched an MS app since. 'Cept I still run that dang' OS, but I'll get around to axing that in the next 6 months...

The 'G-Man.'
The 'G-Man.'

considering the may not remain free forever! I also do not consider them viable for company sensative data. Who on earch would trust a web cloud with that kind of data. Not me.

jasonhiner
jasonhiner

Original post: http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/hiner/?p=824 Server virtualization? The revenge of the thin clients? Web-based apps?

NotSoChiGuy
NotSoChiGuy

Disclaimer: I'm not posting to advocate for the use of SaaS. More so, I'm posting this to mention that software costs alone aren't the only driving factor for firms going to SaaS models. I recently was part of a project at a previous employer that was reviewing SaaS vs. in-house solutions for case and knowledge management. Some of the factors under consideration were: 1). Cost of redundancy (what would a hot site cost) 2). Cost of data protection (meaning, what it would cost to adequately backup apps if they were in-house) 3). Cost of support (meaning, it would take 1/4 FT IT person to support the apps, which equates to $XYZ yearly) 4). Mobility of app (meaning, costs pertaining to the ability to enable a remote workforce to use app) 5). Projected Upgrade costs (this is where the RFPs really come in handy; querying the history of updates gives an insight as to how often you may need to change...well, unless there is deception, as I will elaborate on in a moment) 6). Infrastructure costs (servers, O/S licenses, networking, cabling, rack, peripherals, etc.) 7). Power costs (as on off-shoot of #6...there was a 'Go Green' initiative at former employer) Granted, there are other factors that must be considered when determining whether or not SaaS is a model that fits in with a particular organization (security being #1, data ownership being another, compliance, etc). That being said, from a pure economics standpoint, I don't doubt that SaaS will become a much more prevalent business model going forward. NOTE: For the record, we ended up going with the in-house solution. However, the costs were tilted towards the SaaS model (over 7 year period; at 3 and 5 year marks, in-house was ahead a little); but the lead consultant (he is a big reason why I left) pushed for one solution in particular. That vendor subsequently announced a massive revamp of the product that would require 1 additional and at least 2 virtual servers (not disclosed on RFP...announced less then 3 weeks after ink was dry) 2 months after go-live; and then was promptly bought out by another firm (one of my reservations about the firm...asides the ardent support of the consultant...was that they had very questionable liquidity).

wszwarc
wszwarc

Where are the flying cars, the trips to the moon, mining on other planets? These were all trends Popular Science and Mechanix Illustrated were posting 20 years ago. Gartner is in many ways the same. Look at current trends, do some navel gazing, then make a prediction. What they don't say is what will IT look like in the future. We are in an age where we outsource to third parties. Perhaps outsourcing to a third party is not the way to go. Why not outsource to the first party? The idea is to not purchase a server but the use of a server from your server provider, then purchase the use of the software instead of the software itself. You can keep your data internally on a few data centric servers co-located at the provider or on your own premise. What's the benefit? Instead of managing a huge IT budget, which is synonymous to an albatross in the eyes of business people, you manage relationships with vendors. The vendors give you a line item bill broken down by departmental usage. Each department pays for its own usage. In todays world, IT is truly just a service the company requires. Paying for it as a service is the next logical step. Business managers have been clamoring for that for years but IT just doesn't get it. The days of the huge corporate IT department are fading. This is not doom and gloom. The same work effort will be required at the service vendors where solid contracts will provide a more stabile IT environment for its workers. Just my thoughts, but judging about how many empty promises I've heard from Yankee and Garnet, you might just as well believe me. Or, flip a coin.

stevejennings
stevejennings

It's easy to point out the failures to accurately predict trends in IT/Telecom but to suggest that little goes into the prediction other than some navel gazing is misguided at best and naive at worst. As has been alluded to, it's extraordinarily difficult to predict trends in a world where for example IP address space is exhausted; enter NAT, private addressing and IP6. I think it has less to do with poor trending ability, and more to do with ingenuity. I'm not aware of any serious technology trending prediction that wasn't more or less derailed by the introduction of something previously not considered. Regarding outsourcing IT . . .that notion has been around since the late 70s and gained quite a bit of traction in the 80s particularly among large corporations seeking to reduce capital expense and avoid the sudden spikes in expense with massive IT overhauls and forklift upgrades that were common anytime IBM or Amdahl or CA were the chief vendors. And finance and accounting departments globally seized the notion that IT was a commodity and that "developer", "systems analyst", "network engineer" indistinguishable, one from another. And it was a compelling argument because of the predictability of cost associated with renting a developer or leasing CPU cycles. I worked in technical sales support for an outsourcing company for years and the litmus test for whether a deal would be made or not was "are we dealing with the CFO or the CIO?" If it was the CIO, we had little or no chance because he knew that while we could offer reduced costs, there was a price: quality control. And for CIOs who have to deliver a quality product to provide a competitive edge, outsourcing is a death knell. Outsourcing an IT function where it has been traditionally a strategic component of business is crazy.

drl.techrepub
drl.techrepub

Excellent. And my coin agrees too. No matter what happens we'll be surrounded by people who believe we haven't been to the moon, there's a face on Mars and and things that if I said them would put me on the hit list of one crazy religion or another, thus proving the point that I'm making (but at too high a cost). Psychologically, the human race hasn't left the caves. That's what holds us back.

drl.techrepub
drl.techrepub

The Mac has a traditional following in the newspaper/magazine graphic market and also in sound recording, and latterly has developed an end user following because of superficial albeit pretty packaging, but Macs are not going to get a sustainable foothold in the UK. They are pricey and over-stated (IMO). Subscription software is good and I would welcome it if the price is low enough to justify my use (or general lack thereof). In other words, if I don't use it often I don't want to pay. I'll make a few predictions about IT that I think are likely... The Internet is going to continue to go through growing pains. Attacks that strike at the heart of its world-wide use (DNS vulnerability for instance) will increase and we will see very visible results of those exploits because they will undermine established bank and business confidence. The Internet will radically changed to get over this current hurdle and I have cast the old NE2000 compatible network cards and swished the tea leaves to predict the following: Business use of the internet will adopt an alternative set of protocols that are new and far less vulnerable, but this will lead to a two tier internet structure. A "clean" secure network and a "dirty" public one. Even though the general public have financed Internet growth with their home use and subscriptions, large corporates primarily interested in leeching resources for video/TV on demand will saturate the public network to the point where it is no longer unusable, driving users to pay higher prices to use alternative networks. This will lead to the sudden emergence of entrepreneur owned networks that are quite a bit more expensive to subscribe to but eminently more usable, these being passed down existing cable TV fibres as well as new fibre and down power lines. In the days of decreased return on investment provision of subscribtion based private networks will see far better returns on investment than stock trading, building investment and other forms of rental due to its high popularity and universal adoption. Governments will half heartedly try to be the suppliers of these networks through nationalisation but the privately provided networks will be able to afford the skillset to make them work. Criminals, many of whom would be unable to reap rewards from businesses because of the different protocols being used and having their main source of income cut off suddenly, will start to modify their social engineering techniques to blatantly scam the unwary over the phone, on their own doorsteps, and via snail mail in a ferocious onslaught. This will lead to greater adoption of home security, and a massive rise in the value of stocks of manufacturers who provide security equipment and related services. Microsoft will border on imploding because of a saturated consumer market and because of bad assumptions about direction to take, and for the first time we will see serious negative growth in Microsoft's share of the market. However, Microsoft being such a deeply established entity will branch into providing alternatives such as manufacturing hardware with built-in flash based operating systems that are also flash drive optimised and friendly. They will also release the first publicly adopted virtual book and newspaper platform worldwide and this will shake the book and newspaper worlds to the core, in turn creating a meltdown but ultimately a positive change in both. The present barons of the media being displaced. The quality of digital TV programming will have an unexpected social effect of people interacting more because of lack of worthy content. Public disinterest in TV will lead the advertising industry into their meltdown. TV networks will dimish in numbers until a few alternatively financed networks remain. Live entertainment will begin to thrive as a result. I think I'd better stop there because I may be blamed for things going wrong. I hope you had fun reading them.

Locrian_Lyric
Locrian_Lyric

This industry is so volatile and erratic that it can jerk quickly in any direction. Cobol to be dead by 1990, Java to take over the Web... et cetera. Instead of trying to spot trends, IT leaders need to watch what businesses are doing, and be ready for the next sharp turn. The only thing trending is good for is to know when to get AWAY from something. Whatever the up and comming 'hot' item is will be a dog by the time you can position yourself. Be a late adopter, let the other fools make the mistakes, then poach the best when that particular skill market gets flooded

ascott
ascott

Software suppliers want to move to subscriptions but end users do not. BEWARE - The users are revolting (but they always were)

amin_adatia
amin_adatia

The only trend in IT is the attempt to sell yet another pie in the sky approach to aviod doing the work. Saas and Cloud Computing are just more of the same attempts to have a new moving target so as to focus the minds away from actually accomplishing any of the business transactions.

No User
No User

The folks that buy into this general nonsense are the very folks who outsource IT. They believe that IT functions out side of the business and that IT folks think that IT is out side the business as well. So how can you disregard what you don't have? ;)

henryk.schneider
henryk.schneider

The subscription offering from Microsoft for their Office suite in particular.

chris
chris

Is when you have managers and principals who make the "deals". The slick sales presentation convinces them that it is better and therefore there is no need to ask or believe your own IT staff.

fungusAmongus
fungusAmongus

the problem of remote apps is that your ISPs then have a stranglehold over your data and productivity. since there is very little competition among service providers, once they find out that they hold the keys to your data kingdom, they will squeeze the stuffing out of you.

Deadly Ernest
Deadly Ernest

I can see private individuals using the subscription of Internet Cloud technology to use apps across the net like Google Apps. But I also see the majority of the corporate usage can only be done if they get the full software to run on their own in-house servers as they face major legal issues with putting much of their data outside their immediate control. Privacy laws are a basic starter here.

buddyfarr
buddyfarr

I don't think it is the end users you are thinking of. IT would be the only group I could think of that would not be flexible on this because of security. End users don't care where the app is being stored, as long as it works and works well where they are working. Plus if you are subscribing then you don't have to worry about upgrades or getting the latest app. The subscription should include upgrading to the latest and greatest when it comes out.