The Future of Improvement in IT

There are many horror stories about the future of IT. As a published science fiction and horror writer, I’ve even written a few of those stories. But for the real world, where do I see the future of improvement in IT?

* Standardizing the standards
The proliferation of standards will slow, simply because too much complexity becomes impossible to manage. In the longer term, standards will merge or common ones adopted and less flexible standards dropped.

* Managing software management and updating our process of updates
When the first and middle of a month roll around, support call volume spikes. Many updates are pushed simultaneously or around the same period by different software packages. When dependant updates don’t sync, chaos can ensue. When updates all try to run at once, bandwidth and computing resources are used up. One future area for improvement is updating our processes of software updates so that related software groups coordinate updates so that one group’s updates don’t adversely impact one another and occur in the least frustrating sequence to users. Managing software management with greater collaboration among software vendors will help users while decreasing vulnerabilities and software support demands.

* Smart AI testing software that can act dumb
Test software can run through many transactions to test software. Artificial intelligence is approaching higher level functioning and may one day match that of humans. Before it decides to take over the world, it could be put to work imitating human behavior on software, albeit at a much higher speed. AIs can analyze the computing logs placed on many work computers recording human behavior and activity. It can then imitate the common mistakes people make, from leaving critical fields blank to transposed digits to clicking on something that looks interesting but is really malicious. In short, we’ll be using smart AI to act like dumb humans for software testing purposes.

* Deflating bloated IT
There were jokes that Microsoft had a secret vested interest in CPU manufacturers, adding features to its Operating System that sucked up memory and processing to force users to get more powerful computers. The rise of portable devices has moved some computing off the personal device and onto the server. I expect functionality levels to remain the same, since users won’t accept fewer options. But vendors may make functionality customizable, only installing the options and add-ons users request, reducing the size of their OS or software in the process. Simplicity will reduce bandwidth and CPU demands. Those software vendors who move toward “lean” software first will be better able to meet the small device market along with allowing larger systems to run faster and more smoothly.