Gartner recently held their Symposium/ITxpo, October 17-21, in Orlando. At that conference, Gartner released their annual list of top 10 Strategic Technologies and trends for 2011 in a presentation delivered by Gartner VPs David Cearley and Carl Claunch
Gartner defines a strategic technology as one with the potential for significant impact on the enterprise in the next three years. Factors that denote significant impact include a high potential for disruption to IT or the business, the need for a major dollar investment, or the risk of being late to adopt.
The summary below provides the list of the ten technologies along with my summary observations about Gartner’s take on technology trend. The first five on the 2011 list is familiar from last year's list.
- Cloud Computing. This trend continues to mature along both private and public delivery models. In 2011 expect more vendors to focus on providing private services or technologies to create private implementations to address concerns with security and control.
- Next-Generation Analytics. Gartner says the next focus for analytics is to combine real-time predictive functionality with collaborative applications. Future analytics capabilities will bring business intelligence to a much broader set of users and therefore impact a broader set of business processes.
- Social Communications and Collaboration. An outgrowth of the ‘Web 2.0’ trend, this technology area includes the use of social software for internal communication and collaboration, customer-facing websites, and public social networking.
- Mobile Applications and Media Tablets. This emerging technology will significantly impact both consumer and enterprise computing. Gartner points out that the launch of the Apple iPad will drive IT departments to evaluate when, where and how tablets should be used in a business context.
- Storage class memory. Gartner says that flash memory, becoming popular in consumer devices, will make its way into the enterprise storage hierarchy in servers and client computers. There are key advantages for IT (space, heat, performance and ruggedness). Expect this technology to have a significant impact on many analytical and transactional applications.
New to the Gartner list for 2011 are the following 5 technologies.
- Social Analysis: Gartner says that social analytics, an intersection of “Next Generation Analytics” and “Social Communications and Collaboration”, is an important emerging trend. A key development to watch out for will be the ability to harvest intelligence from mobile applications and context aware computing.
- Context-Aware Computing: Systems will increasingly anticipate the user's needs (based on their things like environment and historical behavior patterns), then proactively provide the most appropriate and customized content, product or service.
- Video: Gartner says it is time for businesses to develop strategies and goals for using video technologies within business processes. Video can add new capabilities to business processes and workflow.
- Fabric-Based Infrastructure and Computing: Gartner says systems will become more flexible and modular as they evolve to support the dynamic needs of public and private cloud computing.
- Ubiquitous Computing: The explosion of sensors, chips, and other low cost computing devices is resulting in smarter objects. Businesses and IT leaders will need to learn how to incorporate these ever increasing large number of computing devices and their data they provide into business processes and decision making systems.
For more on Gartner's list of 10 strategic technologies
- Read the press article here.
- View a 3 minute video of Gartner analyst David Cearley discussing the top ten list on Youtube at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SvpJXAoGeA
- View a 1 hour video of the actual presentation of the ten technologies during the Orlando event (registration required) at http://mediazone.brighttalk.com/event/Gartner/27d8d40b22-4312-intro.