Tech trends

At the annual Gartner IT symposium held in Orlando, the most important strategic technology trends for 2015 were unveiled. These trends were categorised in three broad categories.

1. Merging reality and the virtual world.

  • 3d printing
  • The internet of things
  • Computing everywhere

2. Intelligence everywhere

  • Smart machines
  • Context rich systems
  • Advanced pervasive and invisible analytics

3. The new IT reality

  • Web-scale IT
  • Cloud computing
  • Software defined applications and infrastructure
  • Risk-based security and self-protection

While it is not necessary to invest in and utilize all these technologies at the same time, companies looking to advance in the next year should make deliberate decisions concerning these trends.

Some of these trends are already pervasive today.

  1. Computing everywhere

As mobile becomes the new standard, there will be a greater emphasis on serving the user in a variety of environments and contexts. Wearable devices are slowly becoming a part of the computing environment, and with longer lasting batteries under development, the pace of uptake will only increase. Due to this proliferation, IT organisations are slowly losing control of their user endpoint devices. On the flip side, designers and innovators are in for a good year as users demand increased attention to detail in design and user experience

  1. 3D printing

It is estimated that the shipment of 3D printers will grow by 98% in 2015. 3D printing is viable and cost effective in industrial, biomedical and consumer applications. The improved designs and streamlined prototyping makes 3D printing cost effective in short run manufacturing.

  1. Smart machines

The world of smart machines is a reality already today. This cyber foundation being built involves deep analytics, and a better understanding of the context, combined with advanced algorithms that allow systems to learn for themselves, understand their environment and act autonomously. Robots, smart vehicles and smart advisors already exist, but the age of machines taking your job is yet to come. This will probably be the most disruptive era in the history of IT. Think Terminator and The Rise of the Machines.

  1. Cloud computing

Centrally coordinated applications delivered to any device in the world, are being driven by the uptake of cloud computing. The focus currently is on synchronising content and applications across multiple users and devices. Even the used computers we find on Gumtree and PCs being refurbished and sold have cloud apps on them these days. It is not a new technology anymore.

In the future, wearable devices, or multiple screens, will be exploited to deliver an enhanced experience.

The discussions about private and public cloud are also going to focus on building solutions that solve specific business needs, with cloud solutions being customised for specific requirements, such as technology compliance and customer interaction.

  1. Risk-based security and self-protection

It is not possible to provide 100% security in the virtual world. This is why dynamic and static application security testing, Security-aware application design, active context-aware and adaptive access controls, are all necessary for today’s world.

New security protocols are necessary, and new models are being built into applications to ensure user safety when using an application. Firewalls are no longer enough.

In the wake of the constant high profile cyber attacks being carried out against businesses worldwide, cyber security is a priority and proactive risk management strategies are vital; strategies that that detect crimes and enable intervention before too much damage is done.