It infrastructure evolution

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Here we are more than half way through the year 2014. The last few years have seemed very turbulent in the information technology field. The explosion of data analytic’s has fostered in a new era of computing. Traditional data center infrastructures have given way to hybrid cloud arrangements. Businesses now have an unprecedented flexibility in how they work to provide innovation using technologies in a cost effective and highly time consistent manner.
This lowers the barrier to entry considerably for not only established corporations but also go it alone entrepreneurs. Yet the idea of cloud based services such as PAAS, IAAS and SAAS scares IT people and even some well established corporations. Corporation’s reluctance are understandable, there are very important factors to consider when adopting a cloud strategy from security and compliance to letting go control of minute details of the infrastructure.
The reluctance to embrace cloud is understandable. Hell, I was not on board with it until 2012 when I realized that eventually the cloud offerings will be far to compelling for any business to ignore. The cloud evolution started with small business and go it alone entrepreneurs and is going to continue to consume the market upward until it mainly supplants the traditional IT infrastructure. This is what Clayton M. Chrisitensen describes in the innovator’s Dilemma when he talks about hard drive manufacturers of the 1970’s and how with each seemingly small and unprofitable technology put major computer manufactures out of business within a decade of emerging technologies.
This means the traditional IT worker on the ground in the data center must transform or go work for a cloud vendor to stay entirely hands on in the trenches. There will be great opportunity in the IT world in the coming decades but one must adapt to be able to find skills that will be useful to a business beyond just managing IT assets and  upgrades. Sure there will still be the need for those jobs but they will not be abundant as as much of those functions as possible will become automated. How does one find skills to stay competitive in the wake of these changes you might ask?
The main thing IT workers must do beyond obtaining the technical skills to integrate their systems into the cloud either fully or hybrid style is to also learn about business. Learn how business process dictates IT direction and then become innovative in that space. This is where entrepreneurial type training can help. A person who understands technology and business can make suggestions and run projects to help business streamline processes and automate where ever they can. Become an expert at LEAN analytic, start up and business methodologies and help lead the way in helping organizations become faster, leaner and stronger.
Get to know the cloud technology and the major players. Companies like IBM have partnered with Rackspace and also have purchased bare metal PAAS vendor SoftLayer. Red hat, Oracle, Amazon all have cloud offerings. Learn about them and be able to understand what each offers in terms of how it would help a business in particular projects. The cloud evolution is well underway. You can spend the next ten years trying to avoid the wave or grab a surfboard and catch the wave!


Chris McAuliffe

I am technologist with nearly 20 years experience in designing, testing, supporting and building medium to large infrastructures. Over the years I have supported or built local area networks, Windows server, Linux, Solaris, HPUX, AIX and other even older variants of OS. I love technology both hardware and software. I like fixing things and diagnosing performance issues. I also love building technology. I love building new iron as well as configuring virtual machines. I love building webpages and learning scripting and programming languages. I learn new concepts quickly and I am able to relate knowledge of specific subjects to technical problems to come up with solutions that aren't always the norm but can are effective. I do not believe in the status quo and believe there is always a better way to do things. Improving one's work and one's life is a life long quest for me!

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  1. Chris Barnes September 3, 2014 at 8:44 am


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