Why We’re Bringing Netcool Capabilities into Watson AIOps

4 min read

On July 28, 2020, we announced that we will bring the superb event management, topology, and predictive insights capabilities from Omnibus/Netcool into Watson AIOps.

When Stanley Kubrick created 2001: A Space Odyssey—arguably the most visionary science fiction movie of all time—he paid homage to IBM.

As he looked ahead and envisioned a human future in search for its origin, he created HAL. HAL was a true Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and the first-ever AGI that was portrayed in a movie.

HAL was said to be derived from I->H … B->A … M->L. But, more importantly, it was a (slightly malicious) computer the crew could interact with through video, audio, human gestures, and emotional behaviors. HAL was an advisor and a companion, but its primary role was managing the spaceship. It was doing AIOps.

Why AIOps?

Why AIOps? Because it managed all infrastructure resources and the overall health of the ship. It identified or predicted incidents and assessed risks. All these features were only fiction at the time but are now coming back into reach. AI is maturing to help us realize new human experiences by understanding unstructured data, thus creating new ways to interact with users and automate—or simplify—workflows.

Recently, we announced Watson AIOps to bring powerful new AI capability to the CIO and the IT Operations practitioner in order to transform the experience of IT Operations and incident management. We believe this can help reduce the time to diagnose incidents by up to 90% and assist engineers in tackling more complex problems, faster.

Here’s a testimonial from Paul Hudson, SVP of Platform Engineering at Dynata:“…we found that traditional methods like keyword searches could not surface anything meaningful out of our unstructured data, but when using Watson AIOps, we were able to find and localize new anomalies within our data sets, which helped our teams address potential long-standing issues and improve our overall service levels and incident responses.”

With additional insights derived from an understanding of change, data, and people at design, code, build, test, or deploy time, we will be able to further inform the SRE or DevOps engineer (and yes, also management) about the nature and risk of an application deployment or incidents as they may (and they usually do) occur in production.

We use AI to deliver human-consumable, application- and incident-oriented advice to empower users and help transform the DevSecOps operating model. We also use AI to recuperate from new risks that were introduced alongside the benefits of Agile and DevOps.

Watson AIOps doesn’t just stand for novel AI applied to incident management and application lifecycle management—it represents a renewed commitment to investing and bringing innovations to the IT operations and cloud management domain, as previously addressed with our Netcool product line.

Why are we bringing Netcool into Watson AIOps?

On July 28, 2020, we announced that we will bring the superb event management, topology, and predictive insights capabilities from Omnibus/Netcool into Watson AIOps. We have refactored and cloud-nativized these capabilities to offer our clients a comprehensive—yet modular—solution that will propel the transformation to a modern SRE operating model with incident and application centricity and ChatOps support to bring insights where people collaborate.

We have refactored and cloud-nativized these capabilities to offer our clients a comprehensive—yet modular—solution that will propel the transformation to a modern SRE operating model with incident and application centricity and ChatOps support to bring insights where people collaborate.

What does this change mean?

  • As the CIO of your organization, this change will help you accelerate your transformation, save effort and cost, and shift capacity toward new business initiatives.
  • As an engineer, this change will equip you with a powerful AI companion and the ability to proactively discover dark debt (i.e., anomalies), in unstructured data like application logs or tickets to identify causes and resolve issues faster.
  • As a procurement officer or license manager, this new extended Watson AIOps offering becomes the successor of your current Netcool or Omnibus entitlement and will allow you to transition to the new offering and capabilities while leveraging your investments to date.
  • As the IT tools administrator, this transition and upgrade will be seamless as we incorporate current Netcool technology.

At IBM—and specifically in our AIOps team—we are very excited about the innovation we can offer today, but we are just at the beginning and are even more excited about what lies ahead.

If Stanley Kubrick were alive today, he would likely look way beyond what we can do right now, but I bet he would be surprised at how far we have come.

Now open the pod bay doors, HAL!

Learn more about Watson AIOps.

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