The Top 5 2016 Trends That Are Changing Software Development By Omed Habib
Software development is a moving target. You have to keep your eye on trends in the tech space that haven’t even happened yet just to stay current. Consider what’s happened with augmented reality (AR) in this year alone. If you said you were working on an AR app in 2015, you might have gotten a lot of blank stares or jokes about Google Glass. Then Pokémon GO happened. Like AR, the trends listed below have been building steam for some time, but they’ll be taking off in surprising new directions before the end of 2016. Here’s an overview of what’s coming next and what software developers can do to prepare for it.
1. Linking Application Performance and Business Performance Application performance management (APM) has grown incredibly sophisticated over the past decade. By 2010, Gartner had defined five dimensions of end-to-end performance for best-in-class software:
Monitoring how the end user experiences the application and surfacing discontents
Defining the scope of problems in execution, runtime architecture, and communications
Mapping out user-defined transactions across components (a.k.a. business transaction management)
Tools for going deeper into the components identified as sources of the problems
Behavioral learning analytics for patterns of breakdowns and issue forecasting
Management has been so impressed with the results of reducing Mean Time to Resolution (MTTR), they want to apply these lessons to reduce the overall Mean Time to Business Awareness (MTBA). Today, highly advanced tools like AppDynamics are doing more than organizing the priorities of development teams. Real-time insights into the customer experience can auto-correlate the relationship between specific performance data and business goals.
At AppSphere 2016, David Wadhwani, President and CEO at AppDynamics, explained it best:
“I can’t say this enough: there are very few times in a person’s career where you’re sitting on a precipice of a change like this. Take advantage of it. Accelerate your careers, redefine your goals. Don’t think of yourselves as IT professionals, think of yourselves as business owners who happen to run the technology as well.”
Ultimately, the application of APM expectations into MTBA measurements is aiding CIOs in understanding how technical choices and priorities impact a business. More than ever, that’s what the CIO is expected to explain to senior managers. At the intersection of technology and finance, the role of the CIO has become the locus for all the most critical data analytics.
2. Application Teams as Human Microservices The microservices model applies to more than just software. Software tends to match the organizational structure of the design team, just as the switch from waterfall to agile required a restructuring of development teams.
Teams of application developers have always shared out projects like sub-routines or specific software integrations. What’s different in 2016 is that software engineering teams are acting more like independent business units. The microservices model has happened in companies like Google and Amazon, where individual and autonomous “application teams” are organized around specific business objectives. At Google, these application teams include a crucial new role: Site Reliability Engineers (SRE) who combine development and operations skills. As Google’s Ben Treynor defined it, “The SRE is fundamentally doing work that has historically been done by an operations team, but using engineers with software expertise, and banking on the fact that these engineers are inherently both predisposed to, and have the ability to, substitute automation for human labor.”
Figure 1: Decoupled applications with autonomous application teams centered around individual business capabilities
In the year ahead, expect this to spread to more organizations inside and outside of the software industry. You will see more work teams that include their own developers, deployment models, performance engineers, business analysts and product management teams. Like miniature companies within a company, they will operate as autonomous groups responsible for innovation, execution, deployment, application performance monitoring, and business performance monitoring.
In early experiments with this sort of microservices team structure, here are some of the challenges that commonly arise:
Displaced business priorities: When the microservice goal becomes the team’s primary responsibility, they may pull off course from the overall company strategy, strengthening the argument that more insight into business performance is necessary.
Microservices that don’t communicate: APIs connecting the functions of microservices can fall between the cracks as teams argue over who is responsible for making sure that they work together. Attaching and detaching microservices from the main functionality of the application is never as easy in practice as it is in theory.
Struggles with team cohesion: Many developers have developed their skills in isolation and may have difficulty aligning their work habits with a tighter team structure.
In the end, it can only work in the presence of leaders who reinforce communication, collaboration, and success measurements among application teams.
3. Microservices, Containers, and DevOps One of the most massive shifts in the world of software development hit at the same time as the dot-com bubble. It was the shift from monolithic apps residing on bare metal to distributed applications populating virtual machines. This was partially due to the improved reliability of networked infrastructures. However, it was also a reaction to waterfall development methodologies built on the aging manufacturing model of ideation to coding to testing to production, and then shifting into maintenance mode. This was the period that introduced agile methodologies that made much more sense in the bootstrapping world of software startups.
The point is that we are now headed into another shift that will be at least that pervasive. It has grown out of agile concepts like interactions over processes, minimal viable products and responses over planning. The emerging app-driven world will be defined by the rules of DevOps, where feature development and application performance monitoring have to happen simultaneously. Enterprise software is now a whirling mass of microservices, APIs, and containers in constant communication with each other through the hybrid cloud.
Agile was a powerful framework for development teams, but agile couldn’t keep up with the demands of near perfect uptime and spiraling customer experience expectations. At the same time, it’s clear that developers and testers can have critical inputs into solving operational issues. Everyone suffers when there is internal friction between functionality and security.
When you combine this trend with the AP to BP bridge, the image emerges of a new and comprehensive BizDevOps. It will fold business strategy and analysis into the DevOps formula.
4. Scale as a Service Popularity can be a problem, as too many startups have discovered. Brooks’ Law, established four decades ago but still disputed, states unequivocally that, “Adding manpower to a late software project makes it later.” Updating Brooks’ Law for the age of enterprise application development means adding warnings like “Rails doesn’t scale,” and “Green dashboards make users see red.”
Going into 2017, watch the boom in vendors supporting services like Elasticsearch to help applications scale without blowing up. To help them get ready to scale, the majority of companies running software are using a mixture of six clouds, both public and private. Three are used for running their applications and another three are used for innovating their next level of services and features.
There are many sides to scaling issues, like bigger nodes vs. more nodes, so scaling up has to be done as a company-wide collaboration. Channel vendors are better positioned to see the bigger picture of inter-related adjustments to security, stability, performance, and cost.
In a turbulent market, which won’t be calming down in the foreseeable future, the ability to scale rapidly is the most essential survival skill.
5. Remote Work and Crowdsourcing In the past, remote work was merely a geographical extension of work. Managers oversaw projects and directed teams of developers. Instead of the team being in another wing of the building, the team moved to another time zone. The biggest structural change in the relationship was the communication channel from in-person to collaboration tech. In many cases, the application performance monitoring (APM) and Business iQ platform served as the collaboration engine, with voice/video/chat software like Skype or Slack on top.
What’s happening in 2016 is that the concept of crowdsourcing is further abstracting the work from the worker to take advantage of the model’s essential efficiencies. The manager still sets expectations and manages routines, but now the coder’s primary transaction is with automation. They submit code and move on to the next assignment. Managers many not even know the people (or bots) who submitted the code.
A good example is Elastic.co, the 100 percent remote-driven group that created Elasticsearch. The open-source ELK stack (Elasticsearch, Logstash, and Kibana) has built up enough contributors to challenge Splunk for the log analysis market. Flexjobs lists 125 virtual companies running on globally distributed teams so far this year, up from 76 a year ago, and only 26 in 2014.
Moving Ahead of the Trends There are several ways AppDynamics can help businesses take advantage of areas where the latest trends are converging and take on a leadership position. Microservices iQ is good way to efficiently track microservices deployed in elastic infrastructures, such as containers or clouds where nodes scale up and down rapidly. Use Business iQ to transform your application performance monitoring into business results. Advance your digital transformation, discover real-time business awareness, and improve customer experiences with deep application analytics.
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The widespread success of cloud computing is driving the DevOps revolution in enterprise IT. Now as never before, development teams must communicate and collaborate in a dynamic, 24/7/365 environment. There is no time to wait for long development cycles that produce software that is obsolete at launch. DevOps may be disruptive, but it is essential.
@DevOpsSummitwill expand the DevOps community, enable a wide sharing of knowledge, and educate delegates and technology providers alike. Recent research has shown that DevOps dramatically reduces development time, the amount of enterprise IT professionals put out fires, and support time generally. Time spent on infrastructure development is significantly increased, and DevOps practitioners report more software releases and higher quality. Sponsors of @DevOpsSummitwill benefit from unmatched branding, profile building and lead generation opportunities through:
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All major researchers estimate there will be tens of billions devices - computers, smartphones, tablets, and sensors - connected to the Internet by 2020. This number will continue to grow at a rapid pace for the next several decades.
With major technology companies and startups seriously embracing Cloud strategies, now is the perfect time to attend @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA. Learn what is going on, contribute to the discussions, and ensure that your enterprise is on the right path to Digital Transformation.
Track 1. FinTech Track 2. Enterprise Cloud | Digital Transformation Track 3. DevOps, Containers & Microservices Track 4. Big Data | Analytics Track 5. Industrial IoT Track 6. IoT Dev & Deploy | Mobility Track 7. APIs | Cloud Security Track 8. AI | ML | DL | Cognitive Computing
Delegates to Cloud Expo / @ThingsExpo will be able to attend 8 simultaneous, information-packed education tracks.
There are over 120 breakout sessions in all, with Keynotes, General Sessions, and Power Panels adding to three days of incredibly rich presentations and content.
Join Cloud Expo / @ThingsExpo conference chair Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040), June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA for three days of intense Enterprise Cloud and 'Digital Transformation' discussion and focus, including Big Data's indispensable role in IoT, Smart Grids and (IIoT) Industrial Internet of Things, Wearables and Consumer IoT, as well as (new) Digital Transformation in Vertical Markets.
Financial Technology - or FinTech - Is Now Part of the @CloudExpo Program!
Accordingly, attendees at the upcoming 20th Cloud Expo / @ThingsExpo June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA will find fresh new content in a new track called FinTech, which will incorporate machine learning, artificial intelligence, deep learning, and blockchain into one track.
Financial enterprises in New York City, London, Singapore, and other world financial capitals are embracing a new generation of smart, automated FinTech that eliminates many cumbersome, slow, and expensive intermediate processes from their businesses.
FinTech brings efficiency as well as the ability to deliver new services and a much improved customer experience throughout the global financial services industry. FinTech is a natural fit with cloud computing, as new services are quickly developed, deployed, and scaled on public, private, and hybrid clouds.
More than US$20 billion in venture capital is being invested in FinTech this year. @CloudExpo is pleased to bring you the latest FinTech developments as an integral part of our program, starting at the 20th International Cloud Expo June 6-8, 2017 in New York City and October 31 - November 2, 2017 in Silicon Valley.
The upcoming 20th International @CloudExpo | @ThingsExpo, June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY and October 31 - November 2, 2017, Santa Clara Convention Center, CA announces that its Call For Papers for speaking opportunities is open.
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About AppDynamics Blog In high-production environments where release cycles are measured in hours or minutes — not days or weeks — there's little room for mistakes and no room for confusion. Everyone has to understand what's happening, in real time, and have the means to do whatever is necessary to keep applications up and running optimally.
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How much does it cost to make an app is almost as popular a question as it is confusing.
No one tries to learn the exact costs of, say, making a movie: people realize that there’s an overwhelming amount of variables involved on which they depend.
But almost every day a new inquiry is posted on a tech forum, Quora, or Reddit as to how much it’d take to build a mobile business app.
The benefits of automation are well documented; it increases productivity, cuts cost and minimizes errors. It eliminates repetitive manual tasks, freeing us up to be more innovative. By that logic, surely, we should automate everything possible, right? So, is attempting to automate everything a sensible - even feasible - goal? In a word: no.
Consider this your short guide as to what to automate and what not to automate.
Cavirin Systems has just announced C2, a SaaS offering designed to bring continuous security assessment and remediation to hybrid environments, containers, and data centers. Cavirin C2 is deployed within Amazon Web Services (AWS) and features a flexible licensing model for easy scalability and clear pay-as-you-go pricing.
Although native to AWS, it also supports assessment and remediation of virtual or container instances within Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud Platform (GCP), or on-premise. By drawing on a comprehensive library of curated industry guidelines, control frameworks, and best practi...
The rule of thumb for network security today is that there is no perimeter anymore. An outsider can easily become an insider once perimeter security is breached. Every day, attackers find new ways to breach enterprise perimeter security through ransomware, malware or phishing through social engineering.
This is not to suggest that all is lost. Rather, organizations can defeat cybercriminals, in part, by better managing what has already been put in place. As an example of what can go wrong if that doesn’t happen, consider the following story.
While having a reliable monitoring solution for your application is important, being able to parametrize and configure thresholds and alerting is even more critical.
No matter what kind of market your business is in, your web applications have seasonal patterns. For example, the load of a conventional airline ticketing system fluctuates heavily over the hours of the day, the day of the week, the month, and eventually a particular day of the year. Think about the travel difference between New Year's Eve and the day before Thanksgiving.
Your application may experience some normal fluctuati...
These days, no matter what task you’re trying to accomplish within your online properties, chances are there’s at least one cloud solution that provides it. However, with so much of our personal and business data living now online, there’s perhaps no functionality more important than cloud security. With cyber attacks more prevalent than ever, it’s imperative that organizations – regardless of their size and scope – protect both themselves and their clients from nefarious individuals who prey on unsecured networks and data.
By Madhavan Krishnan, VP, Cloud Solutions, Virtusa
The cloud revolution in enterprises has very clearly crossed the phase of proof-of-concepts into a truly mainstream adoption. One of most popular enterprise-wide initiatives currently going on are “cloud migration” programs of some kind or another. Finding business value for these programs is not hard to fathom – they include hyperelasticity in infrastructure consumption, subscription based models, and agility derived from rapid speed of deployment of applications. These factors will continue to drive cloud adoption into the foreseeable future.
Digital transformation has changed the way users interact with the world, and the traditional healthcare experience no longer meets rising consumer expectations. Enterprise Health Clouds (EHCs) are designed to easily and securely deliver the smart and engaging digital health experience that patients expect today, while ensuring the compliance and data integration that care providers require.
One problem that all developers and companies struggle with is trying to decide if they should "build it" or "buy it". Software developers love to build things. That is what we do! Their natural reaction tends to lean towards building things. We are also always up for a new challenge.
There are very good reasons for building or buying software. There are also good reasons to use open source projects, which is a third option.
identify the sources of event storms and performance anomalies will require automated, real-time root-cause analysis.
I think Enterprise Management Associates said it well:
“The data and metrics collected at instrumentation points across the application ecosystem are essential to performance monitoring and root cause analysis.
However, analytics capable of transforming data and metrics into an application-focused report or dashboards are what separates actual application monitoring from relatively simple silo monitoring.
"This all sounds great. But it's just not realistic."
This is what a group of five senior IT executives told me during a workshop I held not long ago. We were working through an exercise on the organizational characteristics necessary to successfully execute a digital transformation, and the group was doing their ‘readout.'
The executives loved everything we discussed and agreed that if such an environment existed, it would make transformation much easier. They just didn't believe it was realistic.
Java 9 ships with some minor—yet awesome—new language features that make developing easier and cleaner. In this post, we’ll take a look at three of these new features.
You probably remember interface methods, which were introduced in Java 8. These are required so that Java itself, as well as framework vendors, can add new methods to interfaces without breaking pre-existing implementations. As these methods can become rather complex, Java now enables you to declare interface methods as private. This allows for extracting common code from interface methods while hiding the code from external us...
Organizations around the world are struggling to cope with the current data explosion. A vital characteristic of this data is that it is unstructured and represents things like email, images, and videos. Storage of this form of data is typically in an object format which differs significantly from the database norm. Databases housed data grows very slowly because most of it is structured. Object storage formats are now being used to optimize access to large amounts of non-transactional files across a growing number of vertical markets.
The question before companies today is not whether to become intelligent, it’s a question of how and how fast. The key is to adopt and deploy an intelligent application strategy while simultaneously preparing to scale that intelligence. In her session at 21st Cloud Expo, Sangeeta Chakraborty, Chief Customer Officer at Ayasdi, provided a tactical framework to become a truly intelligent enterprise, including how to identify the right applications for AI, how to build a Center of Excellence to operationalize the intelligence and how to implement a strategy to scale efforts. She pulled from her ex...
"IBM is really all in on blockchain. We take a look at sort of the history of blockchain ledger technologies. It started out with bitcoin, Ethereum, and IBM evaluated these particular blockchain technologies and found they were anonymous and permissionless and that many companies were looking for permissioned blockchain," stated René Bostic, Technical VP of the IBM Cloud Unit in North America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 21st Cloud Expo, held Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Many enterprise and government IT organizations are realizing the benefits of cloud computing by extending IT delivery and management processes across private and public cloud services. But they are often challenged with balancing the need for centralized cloud governance without stifling user-driven innovation.
This strategy requires an approach that fundamentally reshapes how IT is delivered today, shifting the focus from infrastructure to services aggregation, and mixing and matching the best services for meeting organizations’ current and future needs.
Digital experience monitoring plays a vital role in the ecommerce economy. The industry is booming with millions of websites selling everything imaginable. Online stores are expected to be super fast and easy to navigate; users are quick to assess website performance and if said perceived performance is below expectations, they will quickly move on to competitor’s website.
So data warehousing may not be cool anymore, you say? It’s yesterday’s technology (or 1990’s technology if you’re as old as me) that served yesterday’s business needs. And while it’s true that recent big data and data science technologies, architectures and methodologies seems to have rendered data warehousing to the back burner, it is entirely false that there is not a critical role for the data warehouse and Business Intelligence in digitally transformed organizations.
The nature of test environments is inherently temporary—you set up an environment, run through an automated test suite, and then tear down the environment. If you can reduce the cycle time for this process down to hours or minutes, then you may be able to cut your test environment budgets considerably.
The impact of cloud adoption on test environments is a valuable advancement in both cost savings and agility. The on-demand model takes advantage of public cloud APIs requiring only payment for the time needed to run automated tests. In this framework, success depends on two things: automated i...