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Top 10 Strategic Technologies

Researchers at Gartner recently posted a list of the top 10 strategic technologies for 2009.  These technologies will most likely have a significant impact on the way busineses  are run and where money is invested, and not adopting these technologies soon could have a negative impact on an enterprise.  Many early adopters of these technologies are gaining strategic advantages in their markets.  David Cearley, an analyst and VP at Gartner says, “Companies should look at these 10 opportunities and evaluate where these technologies can add value to their business services and solutions, as well as develop a process for detecting and evaluating the business value of new technologies as they enter the market.”

Here are the top 10 strategic technologies for 2009:

Cloud Computing
Although Oracle CEO Larry Ellison doesn't buy into the hype, Cloud computing is quickly becoming a hot field of strategic technology, and for good reason.  Cloud computing is a provided service that uses virtualized resources over the internet on a utility basis.  The main benefits of cloud computing are scalability and a variety of security and IT capabilities.  

Server virtualization has gotten a lot of attention as a strategic technology but storage and client device virtualization are also becoming more relevant.  In virtualization, motherboard function is located in the data center as a virtual machine and not as hardware.  Virtualization data deduplication reduces the cost of data storage, so it saves your company money.   

Servers — Beyond Blades  
Newer servers are simplifying their provisioning capacity.  In newer servers, resource types such as memory, are tracked separately and are only replenished when a type is in short supply.  Therefore, businesses don't need to purchase all three resource types in order to upgrade server capacity.  Simplified inventory of systems also eliminates the need to purchase multiple sizes and configurations.   This ultimately allows higher utilization because less resources are wasted on wrong configurations.

Web-Oriented Architectures
The importance of a Web-centric approach to building global-class solutions cannot be overstated.  Even though the Web-centric model won't be able to fulfill every enterprise computing need, the internet is still one of the most agile, scalable, and interoperable service-oriented environments available.

Enterprise Mashups
The mashup product environment is a growing space that has considerable transformative potential for businesses.  No longer just a Web hobby, mashups are being used by enterprise-class systems and changing their models for deploying and managing applications.  The mashup product environment will evolve and consolidate over the next year.

Specialized Systems
Heterogeneous systems are becoming the benchmark in high-performance computing.  They are specialized systems with appliance-like, single-purpose imitations, but unlike appliances, the heterogeneous system is a server system for software installation.  Heterogeneous systems are expected to be used for general computing in the near future.

Social Software and Social Networking
People have embraced Web 2.0 technologies such as social networking, social collaboration, social media, and social validation. Social Software has become one of the greatest tools at an organization's disposal.  The technology has allowed businesses to engage customers and colleagues on a platform where once the dialogue was non-existent.  

Unified Communications
Increasing capability of application servers and the shifting of communications applications to off-the-shelf systems is leading to the consolidation of the communications industry.  In the next five years, it is likely that 50% of communication firms will be absorbed or erased.  To prepare for this, organizations will have to plan for the consolidation of their own communications and administrative teams.

Business Intelligence
Every level of business strategy can benefit from Business Intelligence (BI) because it allows managers and knowledge workers to make better decisions.  BI can also lead to faster decision-making.  In a constantly changing business environment, smart and fast decisions are critical to a company's success.

Green IT

Building green data centers can increase efficiency, lower energy costs, reduce spatial needs, and of course, benefit the environment.  Carbon emissions and other environmental impacts are facing the new regulations. Organizations who don't get on board with green IT may struggle to meet regulations and improve efficiency.

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