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In one form or another, cloud computing has now been embraced by 100% of Global 2000 enterprises. Companies are creating their own unique hybrid strategies as they combine technologies in areas such as virtualization, platform, infrastructure, orchestration, dynamic monitoring and management, often relying on the vast toolbox of open source technologies available to them. The shift to cloud computing will affect $1 trillion in enterprise IT spending by the year 2020, according to Gartner.
The IoT is enabling new eras of manufacturing, logistics and transportation, and new generations of "smart" devices, networks, cities, and nations. McKinsey has forecast that the IoT will impact 10% of the world's entire GDP by 2021, as enterprises and governments increasingly understand its potential to bring not only new efficiencies but vast new insights to traditional challenges.
The Internet now handles more than 1 million petabytes (1 zettabyte) of data per year. This is growing at 26 to 28% annually, according to Cisco. Organizations of all sizes know this challenge is real, as they see their own Big Data challenges increasing dramatically. A whole new world of data collection and analysis, and the actionable insights this data creates, is transforming organizations and industries.
Major financial centers from London, New York, and Paris to Tokyo, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Sydney are hotbeds of FinTech innovation. Solutions are being developed to disintermediate cumbersome processes and to deliver new services to billions of people in developed and developing nations. FinTech is still in its early days, as people figure out how to build upon cloud computing and related technologies to capitalize on the FinTech revolution.
There is a new, third era of Artificial Intelligence (AI), accompanied by its siblings Machine Learning (ML) and Deep Learning (DL). Add it all up, and the era of Cognitive Computing has arrived. New developments are being brought to bear on big problems found in epidemiology, meteorology, energy research, and global logistics. Cognitive is not so much about playing chess as it is about delivering better services and economic growth to all sectors of the global economy.
Microservices are not necessarily small, but they are powerful. This approach to developing cloud-native apps and services builds upon years of service-oriented architectures (SOAs) and the loose coupling of functionality that take best advantage of modern IT architectures. Microservices and the containers that accompany them are not so much the leading edge but are now a mainstream approach to developing and deploying apps and services.
Modern cloud infrastructures and the software that drives them have sped up development and deployment cycles dramatically. A DevOps approach and culture is increasingly being seen as the way to meet the challenges of modern IT architecture and keep enterprises moving at the speed they need to compete. DevOps is not a single technology or piece of software, but rather an entire discipline that builds upon a history of agile and lean development.
WebRTC is erasing the past history of clunky, difficult web communications. Supported by major technology providers and organizations, WebRTC is now recognized as the most effective way for video conferencing, online file sharing, and collaboration through browsers without plug-ins.
The integration of cloud computing and all that it entails leads enterprises along the path of digital innovation and Digital Transformation. The integrated goals of eliminating cumbersome processes, creating free flows of data and insights, developing new user experiences, and becoming focused on IT as the center of operations and strategic vision are all part of the comprehensive Digital Transformation initiatives now being undertaken by organizations of all sizes.