Gartner lists Top 10 Strategic Technologies for 2010

We take a look at them and add our two cents.

Published Oct 20, 2009 1:37 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 12:36 PM CST
4 minute read time
There is a new list of the top 10 technologies that will be strategic for companies in 2010.

The list was compiled by the Gartner who defines a strategic technology as one that can have a significant impact on the enterprise within two years.

So what is on the list? What new technologies should you be concerned with for 2010? After each we will give you a little of our take.

Gartner lists the following:

Cloud Computing
This is being shoveled to the IT world in great and greater volumes. The thing is for anyone that is in IT and understands security this is not a solution. It is a method for service providers (including software service providers) to save money at the expense of the customer. We know that security for these types of services are nowhere near what they need to be yet we now hear it is a leading strategic technology for 2010.

Advanced Analytics
This is actually an old one that is just getting more prominence because it is now economically viable to run much of this from a computer. In the past it was decision flow charts and long documents covering "what if"

Client Computing
Again a regression back in time. Many Many years ago the concept of the client/server was nothing more than a server (mainframe) and a dumb terminal (client) all of the processing was done on the server and the client was used to display the results only. Yet here we are 20 years down the road and seeing a return to this model. I guess the more things change... It is also a way to push cloud computing on the market as the "client OS" can be pushed from a cloud based service.

IT for Green
This one is actually one that we agree with completely. IT and its services have to become more ecologically conscious. However, we must proceed with caution as the "green" initiative has been used as an excuse to push cloud computing

Reshaping the Data Center
This is another move that we can support. The shift from the traditional floor space eating Data Centers to a more modular "Pod" based setup. Take a look at the trailer based setup that Google and Microsoft have to get an idea.

Social Computing
This is the security experts nightmare, Social Computing. You see everyone wants to be connected to their personal lives even when at work. But should a company support that? Should a company really engage in using a Facebook, Twitter, or other social computing products? Personally I say no. It is enabling a decay in the way information is presented and consumed. The short attention span posts found on Twitter and places like Facebook should not be the way companies talk to the world.

Security - Advanced Monitoring
Ah, another move towards the cloud. This one is interesting in that it does provide a needed service but, can take the control away from many companies. The problem is not that many companies do not know how to deal with threats. It is in fact that too many companies do not even know there are threats. Since upper management lacks this knowledge they often will not spend the money on hiring the right people to perform this service in house. If someone offers them this for a reasonable cost they will jump at it.
It is sadly not the right way to go, but one that is inevitable.

Flash Memory
We have been in contact with Seagate an others about this move and it seems that too many enterprise class companies are not going to consider this as viable until they see a clear standard. Right now everyone has their own way of making SSDs, USB keys, pretty much any type of Flash memory. There are also long term usage issues that must be resolved before considering this in a mission critical space.

Virtualization for Availability
Another one that has been long in coming. In fact many companies use this already. with Products like VMWare's ESX and VSphere using V-Motion it is easy to setup. With V-Motion live migration you store the VM (Virtual Machine) images on a central SAN (Storage Area Network) this is then connected to a bank of identical servers (at least two). If one server goes down or is overloaded V-Motion can automatically shift those VMs to another server to keep you up and running. The down side is that the initial cost is pretty hefty for the equipment you must have to use this. Because of this Virtualization for Availability will remain out of the reach for many companies.

Mobile Applications
Depending on how you read this it can mean applications for mobile devices like smart phones and smart books or it can again be a push towards cloud services. Either way you are looking at increased security risks. The loss of a corporate device is not something to be taken lightly, while storing all of your applications and data on a remote server leaves you open to a larger base of attack (the bigger the target the more attacks per minute).

It is an interesting list. Gartner does know what they are doing here. Indeed all of these should be carefully watched. Especially as they are not all they seem on the surface. Many of these are technologies that have been out for years, but now are being pushed as a method to reduce costs. The rub is that most of these will take a lot of money to get in place and working, this leave the small, medium and many larger businesses out as they just do not have the funds to invest in this type of project.

So, while it is nice to cover these and talk about them as strategic technologies that companies should plan for, it is not really going to make that large of an impact and certainly not in the 2-3 year time frame. Adoption of any high capital outlay technology is significantly slower than that especially in a slow economy.
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