I’m always interested in trends and thoughts about future directions, particularly with regards to technology. This morning I read an article on Network World titled Gartner’s 10 Strategic Technologies for 2008. No real surprises here – but interesting to read the summary and to keep it in mind for planning future strategies and investment etc. Gartner’s 10 strategies are:
- Green IT – the recent computer re-cycling interest in NZ would support the fact that this is now being taken seriously. Not only the environmental concerns here, but power usage as well.
- Unified communications – this is a hot topic where I work at the moment, with discussions on how we can unify the core systems we use such as email, calendaring, IM etc within an IP infrastructure in order to increase our effectiveness as a distributed, collaborative organisation.
- Business Process management – involves planning systems to provide the greatest level of agility (and future proofing?) – key thing here is developing systems based on a Services Oriented Architecture (SOA) which is now the focus of development in the MoE work that I am involved with.
- Metadata management – this has been a biggie in my view for some years now. The challenge in the future is going to be reconciling the traditional uses of metadata schema with the emerging use of social tagging etc.
- Virtualisation2.0 – I agree that 2008 will be a big year for this – particularly as more schools join local urban fibre networks and discover the benefits of virtualising many of their management systems and services.
- Mash-ups and composite applications – ask any teenager and they’ll tell you all about the ‘mash-ups’ they’ve created in environments such as facebook, Beebo, Netvibes, PageFlakes etc. Many schools are beginning to understand the potential of simple standards like RSS for creating mash-ups within their intranet for instance.
- Web platform and WOA (Web Oriented Architecture) – several people I work with have been saying this for years – the move from “desktop to webtop”. Recent developments with apps such as Google Docs have me believing the time is certainly ripe.
- Real World Web – this is the one area that has yet to emerge in what I’m seeing in NZ at the moment – it will be dependent on the emergence of supporting or enabling technologies to allow the sorts of things described in the report. Closest thing I’ve experienced so far would be the use of mobile phones to upload photos to Flickr and then port across to a blog for ‘instant’ publishing.
- Social Software – not much to be said here, use of social software and Web2.0 applications is taking off at a great pace within the education community in NZ if the interest shown at the recent ULearn conference is anything to go by. I’m predicting we’ll see a greater consolidation