|By Skytap Blog||
|January 30, 2014 09:25 AM EST||
In the movie Groundhog Day, Bill Murray plays the roll of Phil Connors, a regular Joe who wakes up each day to find out that he is reliving February 2nd all over again—and he’s the only one aware of the time loop. To take advantage of this phenomenon, knowing that there will be no long-term consequences to his actions, Connors seduces women, steals money, drives recklessly and even ends up in jail. The next morning, all is back to normal, and he starts his antics again.
Connors also repeatedly attempts, and subsequently fails, to get closer to Rita, a love interest of his. The combination of the same day’s repetition and Connors’ futile attempts set up the classic definition of insanity—doing the exact same things over and over but expecting different outcomes.
In today’s hyper-competitive markets, enterprise software development teams who suffer a lack of innovation find themselves stuck in their own Groundhog Days. In order to stay competitive and relevant, companies need to innovate faster and change to adapt to market demand quicker than ever before. Enterprises today compete on differentiated products and services and do so by adopting more efficient processes. Those that fail to innovate, change, or modernize and optimize existing applications will learn more than an economic lesson—they risk the demise of the entire business.
Rapid innovation is at the underpinning of the enterprise competitive advantage. Whether a change in process to your business applications, developing new products and services or consolidation/modernization of existing systems—the pace of innovation and quality of software released is the differentiating factor to enterprise success.
So, why is innovating so darn difficult? Here’s a hint; it's all about development environments.
Technology is delivered through a software lifecycle that is often measured by cycle time, defined as the amount of time it takes for a feature to move from concept to customer value. In a perfect world, features move smoothly from concept to value. But, the reality is that with accelerated release cycles, quality suffers. An acceptable level of quality is always important prior to releasing an application to production, but low quality is often tolerated in an effort to decrease cycle time in order to get application releases out on time and within budget. Most enterprises that are trying to innovate faster are trying to adopt iterative development, agile, scrum, continuous integration, continuous delivery & devops in an effort to ensure quality while significantly decreasing cycle time.
Here lies the fundamental issue that plagues most organizations.
The anchor drag on cycle time is almost always idle time or any delay in the above mentioned processes. Removing idle time should be the focus of all application development executives, as the reduction of idle time is always within their control and enables them to reduce cycle time and accelerate innovation to drive the competitive advantage to the business. But, like Phil Connors, most enterprises do the same things over again and again, expecting different outcomes. The only change they may make is putting more people on projects, spending more on expensive on-premise infrastructure, and implementing idealistic processes—all in an effort to squeeze a few more days from release cycles.
Many enterprises fail to see that the single largest cause of idle time in software projects is shared environments. Typically on-premise environments for dev/test need to be scheduled, may not be available when needed and provide no value to keep around when not in use. While shared software project resources can include people, in high-priority projects, environments are generally what causes the greatest amount of contention.
All software projects require environments that typically include development environments, test environments, user acceptance environments and production. Each environment consists of four layers:
1. Infrastructure & OS
2. Software libraries to support the application
3. Application binaries
4. Application configuration files
Due to the sensitivity of the application to changes in any of the four tiers, consistency across all environments is critical to identifying defects sooner. When environments are not identical, idle time is introduced and cycle time is increased. Sharing environments for any software project will create idle time and disrupt the SDLC. As a result, innovation, velocity, and quality suffer..
Enterprises that leverage SaaS-based environments not only can eliminate idle time, and the developer time wasted managing and maintaining environments—they dramatically impact the time to delivery, and overall release quality. Enabling development teams the ability to self-provision, replicate, share and collaborate on environments as needed greatly removes the inefficiencies and interdependencies caused by environment contention.
One of Phil Conner’s most memorable lines from Groundhog Day is when he asks his buddies, “What would you do if you were stuck in one place and every day was exactly the same, and nothing you did mattered?” For enterprises that find themselves in a similar predicament, the answer is easy—start using SaaS-based environments for dev/test. Take advantage of the elasticity, scalability and on-demand access of SaaS-based environments. Enterprise grade solutions exist that address security concerns, provide self-service to development teams and complete visibility and control for IT over resource utilization. Believing that on-premise infrastructure is going to help you innovate develop, test, and release quality applications faster is pure insanity.
The pace of innovation, vendor lock-in, production sustainability, cost-effectiveness, and managing risk… In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Dan Choquette, Founder of RackN, discussed how CIOs are challenged finding the balance of finding the right tools, technology and operational model that serves the business the best. He also discussed how clouds, open source software and infrastructure solutions have benefits but also drawbacks and how workload and operational portability between vendors ...
Jun. 26, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 763
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, provided an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life sett...
Jun. 26, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 999
Your business relies on your applications and your employees to stay in business. Whether you develop apps or manage business critical apps that help fuel your business, what happens when users experience sluggish performance? You and all technical teams across the organization – application, network, operations, among others, as well as, those outside the organization, like ISPs and third-party providers – are called in to solve the problem.
Jun. 26, 2016 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 599
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
Jun. 26, 2016 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 532
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, a Developer Advocate with IBM Cloud Data Services, discussed...
Jun. 26, 2016 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 751
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
Jun. 26, 2016 08:45 AM EDT Reads: 689
Digital Initiatives create new ways of conducting business, which drive the need for increasingly advanced security and regulatory compliance challenges with exponentially more damaging consequences. In the BMC and Forbes Insights Survey in 2016, 97% of executives said they expect a rise in data breach attempts in the next 12 months. Sixty percent said operations and security teams have only a general understanding of each other’s requirements, resulting in a “SecOps gap” leaving organizations u...
Jun. 26, 2016 08:15 AM EDT Reads: 982
SaaS companies can greatly expand revenue potential by pushing beyond their own borders. The challenge is how to do this without degrading service quality. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Adam Rogers, Managing Director at Anexia, discussed how IaaS providers with a global presence and both virtual and dedicated infrastructure can help companies expand their service footprint with low “go-to-market” costs.
Jun. 26, 2016 01:00 AM EDT Reads: 785
Cognitive Computing is becoming the foundation for a new generation of solutions that have the potential to transform business. Unlike traditional approaches to building solutions, a cognitive computing approach allows the data to help determine the way applications are designed. This contrasts with conventional software development that begins with defining logic based on the current way a business operates. In her session at 18th Cloud Expo, Judith S. Hurwitz, President and CEO of Hurwitz & ...
Jun. 25, 2016 03:00 PM EDT Reads: 1,552
In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Lee Atchison, Principal Cloud Architect and Advocate at New Relic, discussed cloud as a ‘better data center’ and how it adds new capacity (faster) and improves application availability (redundancy). The cloud is a ‘Dynamic Tool for Dynamic Apps’ and resource allocation is an integral part of your application architecture, so use only the resources you need and allocate /de-allocate resources on the fly.
Jun. 25, 2016 02:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,027
"A lot of times people will come to us and have a very diverse set of requirements or very customized need and we'll help them to implement it in a fashion that you can't just buy off of the shelf," explained Nick Rose, CTO of Enzu, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Jun. 25, 2016 02:00 PM EDT Reads: 990
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
Jun. 25, 2016 01:45 PM EDT Reads: 889
19th Cloud Expo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterpri...
Jun. 25, 2016 01:15 PM EDT Reads: 1,233
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
Jun. 25, 2016 12:00 PM EDT Reads: 582
SYS-CON Events announced today that Bsquare has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's @ThingsExpo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For more than two decades, Bsquare has helped its customers extract business value from a broad array of physical assets by making them intelligent, connecting them, and using the data they generate to optimize business processes.
Jun. 25, 2016 11:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,179
Internet of @ThingsExpo, taking place November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, is co-located with 19th Cloud Expo and will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the most profound change in personal and enterprise IT since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago. All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - comp...
Jun. 25, 2016 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 1,197
"SpeedyCloud's specialty lies in providing cloud services - we provide IaaS for Internet and enterprises companies," explained Hao Yu, CEO and co-founder of SpeedyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Jun. 25, 2016 11:15 AM EDT Reads: 734
There is little doubt that Big Data solutions will have an increasing role in the Enterprise IT mainstream over time. Big Data at Cloud Expo - to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA - has announced its Call for Papers is open. Cloud computing is being adopted in one form or another by 94% of enterprises today. Tens of billions of new devices are being connected to The Internet of Things. And Big Data is driving this bus. An exponential increase is...
Jun. 25, 2016 11:00 AM EDT Reads: 1,296
The 19th International Cloud Expo has announced that its Call for Papers is open. Cloud Expo, to be held November 1-3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, brings together Cloud Computing, Big Data, Internet of Things, DevOps, Digital Transformation, Microservices and WebRTC to one location. With cloud computing driving a higher percentage of enterprise IT budgets every year, it becomes increasingly important to plant your flag in this fast-expanding business opportuni...
Jun. 25, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 1,248
Creating replica copies to tolerate a certain number of failures is easy, but very expensive at cloud-scale. Conventional RAID has lower overhead, but it is limited in the number of failures it can tolerate. And the management is like herding cats (overseeing capacity, rebuilds, migrations, and degraded performance). Download Slide Deck: ▸ Here In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing for the HGST Cloud Infrastructure Business Unit, discusse...
Jun. 25, 2016 10:30 AM EDT Reads: 836