IT Application Development Game changers
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I’m an IT guy. I love this stuff. Sometimes drives my wife crazy. Interesting enough she also has a B.S. in Computer Science. Although mine is from Iowa State – nice school middle of a cornfield, hers is from Central Michigan – also nice school in middle of the hand. (Not so inside joke if you’re from Michigan). You know where I work – she has the harder job – taking care of our kids now – and much lower pay.
Anyway, on to the topic.
This is the time of year I love. When we begin to look at next year. I’d like to share some industry trends that I find key to 2009 and beyond:
Web 2.0, RUI and Rich Internet Applications. Enough said on this subject. But WOW - technologies always get my blood pumping. This is it. Everyone in IT should be getting on the train. Providing better access of information and our products - to our internal and external customers and prospects. One word, COOL.
Simplification and Dynamic Languages. Making things easier. Technology drives much of the world – but it just plain needs to be easier to both create and consume. No developer should think that creating web forms, running business logic, and accessing information should be difficult. What is difficult should be the art of creating something that is easy, valuable, and meets the need. Not the underpinnings of the technology. In context of languages, Forrester calls the drive to simplification Dynamic Languages. Languages that are easier that let developers do more.
SOA. It’s mainstream now. And it’s transforming how IT approaches application development and maintenance. And reuse – especially of existing assets is a great thing. Too much money being spent to rewrite, rehost, replatform, or redo with very questionable corporate value or ROI.
Business Rules. Categorizing business processing; identifying processing in code – and delivering processing through rules engines. A repository that codifies the business. This is a no brainer to me. Electronically, I should be pointed to key business processing as I’m working with an application. A key facilitator of SOA. Love the ILOG announcement.
Agile Development. We’re all over that here. And it’s proving to provide better deliveries - through better understanding of working new application components and how they fit with other components – much earlier in the cycle. It’s also improving how teams function and interact. As we’ve all known – team productivity can be a bigger issue than individual productivity. One superstar can’t make much difference without an executing supporting cast.
Model Driven Development. Using pictures to define and understand processing, gain agreement, then generating code - from those pictures - is certainly a good thing. But we need to make even more consumable and useful in the real world. And extend our processes to tie business models to application models to business rules to code (not necessarily only in that order).
Cost Management and the tie to Green initiatives. I know. Cost management sounds boring. And what does IT have to do with Green? Well think about it. If we take up less building space, require less infrastructure, use less power, we save resources – and money. By lowering costs in other areas, IT can be more responsive by reallocating some costs to even more revenue producing initiatives.
More entrepreneurship and growth of IT influence in the business. This is the most important. Profit is king. Try things that generate profit. Fail or succeed. Learn. Try some more. Bring more excitement to and focus on IT.
In closing – my view is that IT will need to focus on these key areas in 2009 to be successful. Some are lower level, some higher – but I think all will need coverage. I’d recommend you assign owners to each – some can be shared. I look forward to delivering technology next year to you that can help in all these areas.