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NuoDB 2020 Predictions: "Digital Transformation" Is Not Hot, But IT Infrastructure Modernization Is Changing Fast

VMblog Predictions 2020 

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2020.  Read them in this 12th annual series exclusive.

By Ariff Kassam, CTO, NuoDB

"Digital Transformation" Is Not Hot, But IT Infrastructure Modernization Is Changing Fast

In 2020 everyone will be tired of the term "digital transformation" (if they aren't already), and yet organizations will still be trying their best to make it a reality. While "digital transformation" heard frequently, it's really just another way of describing how organizations are modernizing IT infrastructure so they can scale their services more rapidly and bring new products and services to market faster. In short, it's all about agility. No matter what you call it, it's more than a passing trend. It's a critical factor for business survival.

As organizations continue to modernize applications and improve business agility, many are reviewing their cloud adoption strategies. Here are my top three predictions for what that will look like in the year ahead:

1. Microservices and containers will dominate new development 

As organizations increasingly face new customer demands and competition from more agile startups, many enterprises will consider re-architecting applications to take advantage of new flexibility and functionality offered by microservices and containers.

Using microservices containers helps development teams to:

  • accelerate deployment speed and frequency,
  • reduce costs with better server compute density utilization,
  • improve application availability and flexibility, and 
  • improve operational efficiency.
I predict that more organizations will adopt microservices and containers to simplify and accelerate their application development and deployment. While many companies have shown interest in containers over the past over the last few years, adoption has lagged due to lack of both staff expertise and knowledge about deployment mechanisms. As Kubernetes matures and simplifies container orchestration, organizations will increasingly make the leap to microservices and containers to ensure that they stay competitive.

2. Kubernetes adoption will rise for stateful applications

As software developers are pushed to accelerate the promotion of applications from development to production, many have found building and deploying stateless applications using Kubernetes for container orchestration relatively easy. Stateless applications quickly scale out with increased user demands and are resilient to failures. For more personalized applications or those that handle business critical data, persistent state is essential. Unfortunately, the vast majority of applications used by enterprises require a persistent state. As it turns out, these stateful applications are harder to fit into the new world of microservices and containers.

Kubernetes automatically distributes running containers across the cluster and automatically re-balances the distribution of containers, essentially controlling the life cycle management of container processes. While that worked well for stateless applications, it hasn't been smooth sailing for applications that require state. Luckily, Kubernetes recently added container-native storage solutions to allow the state to be accessible on any node that the container can be moved to. By employing container-native storage and a database that can handle multiple processes running at the same time (without any data loss or consistency issues), organizations will forge ahead with deploying stateful applications in Kubernetes.  

3. Multi-cloud deployment ramps ups

In an always on world, availability is a key requirement for application success. And yet high-profile outages from major cloud vendors persist. To combat the risk of data loss and reduce potential customer impact during such instances, organizations will accelerate adoption of multi-cloud strategies in 2020.

To meet current requirements for continuous availability, many industries today rely on on-premises databases with backups and disaster recovery in a different region in case of emergency. As organizations increasingly move to cloud deployment, there will be a corresponding rise in regulations, particularly for technology-centric industries such as FinTech. Those new regulations will require multi-cloud deployment models to protect consumers from outages from cloud providers.  


About the Author

Ariff Kassam 

Ariff is responsible for defining and driving NuoDB's product strategy. Kassam brings 20 years of database and infrastructure experience to NuoDB to help the company achieve its vision of a distributed database that can manage an organization's most valuable data while exploiting the emerging benefits of modern infrastructures such as cloud and containers.

Prior to NuoDB, Ariff held senior leadership positions at Teradata, xkoto, and Halcyon Monitoring Solutions. Based in Boston, Ariff holds a B.A. Sc. in Systems Design Engineering from the University of Waterloo and a M. Sc. in Medical Biophysics from the University of Toronto. He is also a technical patent co-holder for distributed database design and a passionate technical executive known for his ability to provide proven strategic direction in the face of rapidly changing business requirements.

Published Thursday, October 24, 2019 7:32 AM by David Marshall
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