EMC continues to tease the market with its management software ambitions, taking another step this week to build on its portfolio. On May 27, EMC announced its intent to acquire Configuresoft, a vendor of server configuration and change management (CCM) software. Forrester views this as a positive development for both companies but we eagerly await more.
This morning, US President Barack Obama unveiled the outlines of a change in direction for US cyber-security policy. The first announcement relates to the creation of a new military command that will centralize and expand on existing cyber-war-fighting capabilities. This is overdue, and should bring more coherence to efforts that were already spread out between several different military branches, notably the Army, Navy and Air Force), and the intelligence services. The NSA, for example, has long had a “red-team” offensive capability in addition to defensive corps. As I understand it, the new military cyber-command will reside in the Department of Defense. Less clear is whether the new organization will just be a military operation, or whether it will also take over parts of the intelligence services’ capabilities.
The second part of today's announcements, the Cyberspace Policy Review, seeks to reform the way the US Government secures itself, its agencies and critical infrastructure like the stock exchanges. As reported in a story in the New York Times, the reforms will create a new office residing in the White House that will report to both the National Economic Council and the National Security Council. The remainder of this blog post analyzes what the plan, which was unveiled at 11 today, recommends.
In my conversations with organizations implementing server virtualization, I've found that there seems to be a gap opening between the number of virtual machines firms are willing to run on a server, and the maximum number that could still reasonably fit on there. It looks like this will be aggravated by newer servers that can run twice as many virtual machines, along with more mature virtualization platforms like VMware vSphere that will support up to a TB of physical RAM. How long will it be before IT is expected to support 50 or 75 VMs per server?
If you want to learn more about this topic, please join my complimentary Webinar, "Forrester’s Top Three Recommendations For Implementing Server Virtualization" on June 11th at 11AM EST. You can register for the session by visiting:
Google is a remarkable company. Need proof? Just consider how reliant we are on Google Maps to find our way around the world. That didn't happen by accident. It happened because Google empowered a couple of brothers, Lars and Jens Rasmussen, to open up the developer APIs to the mapping engine.
These same two brothers announced yesterday at Google I/O developer conference a new technology for communication and collaboration. This new collaboration engine unites email, instant messaging, blogs, wikis into a single hosted conversation. Check out the demo here and the announcement here.
These conversations or "Waves" take place inside Safari, Firefox, or Chrome and look like email on steroids. (Lars said that they took the 40-year old model of email and redesigned it for today's Web-based world.) But it's way more than that. With Google Wave, Google has:
Opened a new path to reinvent how we collaborate. You have to see it to understand, but why would you need four products when one Wave will do? It's a new conversational metaphor that will also easily support document-based collaboration.
Put the code base into open source to attract investment. Google will attract the best and brightest developers and development with this move.
IT Forum EMEA 2009 is running next week from 3-5 June at the Maritim Hotel in Berlin, and we're looking forward to a strong turnout to learn more about "redefining IT's value to the enterprise".
In addition to our keynotes and role-focused track sessions, we'll be featuring Tech Innovation Demonstrations to specifically address Forrester's offerings in specific coverage areas. The following Tech Innovation Demonstrations will be held in the Forrester Booth in the Tech Showcase:
Enterprise Architecture principles are arguably the most commonly created EA artifacts across EA teams. Unfortunately, principles also seem to be one of the least helpful artifacts EAs produce. What! Principles don't add value? Unfortunately not in most cases.
In the first place most principles are not really "principles" at all. Instead they are mostly good intentions. In the world at large, principles are rules we live by. They are the things we believe strongly in and adhere too unless there are extreme extenuating circumstances. For example, engineering principles are generally based on laws of nature so they are very rarely broken. Personal principles are based in moral beliefs and are broken occasionally but only under duress (or too much alcohol). But EA principles are different. A principle of "buy before build" doesn't really mean we will always choose to buy solutions when they are available. The "buy before build" principle really means that we will consider buying an available solution before we jump to coding. The problem this creates is that our clients see us declare principles that we don't adhere to. They (correctly) come to the conclusion that we don't really mean what we say.
The second issue with principles is that they are passive. A principle sits there until something comes along to test it. Strategies are more active. They drive action all on their own. They tell people what to do. Strategies also provide some wiggle room so veering off the strategic track a little isn't as egregious as breaking a principle. Strategies are also easier to connect to goals and objectives and are much better understood by the business than are principles. And that "buy before build" principle? Isn't it really a strategy? Many EA teams I work with have a hard time defining their strategies because they have couched them as principles so they have a difficult time articulating meaningful strategies.
Virtualization is a venerable old computing concept that has achieved new life in recent years.
Virtualization brings to life a new world of more flexible service provisioning while cleverly emulating the old world that is being replaced. Virtualization refers to any approach that abstracts the external interface from the internal implementation of some service, functionality, or other resource.
In the first IT Infrastructure & Operations video podcast, I discuss trends in branch office consolidation as presented at Forrester's recent IT Forum US event, with a lovely backdrop of the Las Vegas strip. Read the accompanying report here.
What is a Smart Grid? It's an interconnected network of electric stations, substations, and meters that communicate with one another and exchange information. The concept utilizes wireless sensor networks, software, and computing to enable utilities to see how much and where energy is being consumed, and if there are problems or blackouts in the network. More importantly, it lets customers manage their electricity consumption. But what does it mean to security and risk management? President Obama has called for the installation of 40 million smart meters and 3,000 miles of transmission lines. This means that technology vendors like Cisco Systems and IBM will be front line players in implementing networking intelligence for the electric system.
Despite the availability of multiple backup appliances supporting deduplication, Data Domain has continued to win customers at a steady pace. As of March 2009, the company had more than 2,900 customers and recruited hundreds of value added resellers. Its proven deduplication technology, integrated replication, and aggressive campaign to eliminate tape garnered it a tremendous amount of mind share and put it on most customers’ short lists. So it comes as no surprise that they were acquired by a major storage vendor.
That it was acquired by NetApp does come as a bit of surprise. NetApp does have its own successful VTL that supports deduplication. But then again, NetApp didn’t introduced deduplication in its VTL until the Fall of 2008 (the last of the major storage vendors to do so) and it typically sells its VTL into its own customer base. With Data Domain, NetApp now owns one of the toughest competitors in the backup appliance market and it gives the company a system that it (and the hundreds of NetApp channel partners around the globe) can sell into non-NetApp environments.