September 25, 2013

IT Chiefs Prognosticate Future at OpenWorld

Isaac Lopez

With Oracle’s OpenWorld going on this week, there is a lot of talk about what the future holds for IT. Two of the most powerful CEO’s in IT took the stage this week to discuss the trends that are shaping the future.

The IT industry is being driven by four key macro trends, said CEO of EMC, Joe Tucci, during his keynote address. The four trends, which include mobile, cloud, big data, and social media, share a common thread in that they are all tremendously disruptive, as well as tremendously opportunistic, said Tucci. Taken together, these trends comprise what Tucci (and IDC before him) refers to as “the third platform.”

“The promise of the third platform of IT is phenomenal,” prophesied the storage chief. “Much better efficiency, much lower costs, much better control through automation, choice – no lock in – which is what customers are demanding in this third platform. [It will also offer] an unmatched agility to meet the business ends of any department in your company or any department in your enterprise or government.”

Tucci also pointed to the rising trend of the software defined datacenter as something that is poised to change the way computing is done in the datacenter. “If you think of what virtualization did for compute, for server – that same type of technology is now being deployed for storage, for networking, and for all alliances in the L3 through L7 stack.

Larry Ellison also got into datacenter prognostication – something he’s had relatively good success with in the past – pitching specialized appliances as the way of the future. Describing the dynamics of the market today, Ellison noted that people typically buy standard Intel commodity servers with the conventional wisdom being that these boxes are cheap and “good for everything.”

“The stuff is cheap,” he commented, but “it’s not necessarily good for everything.”

Ellison believes in a future where appliances and specialized machines play a bigger role in the datacenter. “We think what the datacenter of the future looks like is really a core of these commodity machines, and a collection of these purpose built machines that give you better database performance, lower database costs, more reliable backups and faster analytics.”

In the midst of a flurry of news around the event, Oracle this week announced new software for is X64-based Big Data Appliance providing new security features for Hadoop environments. They also announced their answer to SAP’s HANA, giving their 12c Database a column-oriented makeover. Most notable, however, was the revelation of their newest “Big Memory Machine,” the Sparc M6-32, capable of 32 TB of dynamic RAM.

While the future remains to be seen, at present Oracle is showing that while the IT industry moves to reinvent itself, they intend to reinvent themselves with it.

Related items:

Oracle Gives 12c Database a Column-Oriented Makeover 

Oracle Addresses Hadoop Security with Big Data Appliance 

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