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Where's i-Technology Headed in 2008?

Where's i-Technology Headed in 2008?

Enterprise UX • Software Testability • Companion Applications
Brad Abrams
Group Program Manager
Microsoft

Brad Abrams was a founding member of both the Common Language Runtime and .NET Framework teams at Microsoft, where he is currently the Group Program Manager for the UI Framework and Services team, which is responsible for delivering the developer platform that spans both clients and Web-based applications as well as the common services that are available to all applications. Specific technologies owned by this team include ASP.NET and ASP.NET AJAX, parts of Silverlight, and Windows Forms.

1.  User experience reaches the enterprise: In 2008 we will see several major enterprises start efforts to build UX-centric applications that increase worker productivity, reduce transaction costs, and increase pull through as the UX meme of the consumer-facing world leaks into the enterprise. The days of the battleship gray forms of data application as the king of the enterprise are numbered because of an imperative toward richer visualization of complex and interconnected data. While there will always be a need for the traditional sort of application, by the end of 2008, it is no longer the only element of the corporate landscape.

2.  Testability becomes a requirement for software development frameworks: No longer satisfied with simple reductions in costs for initial development, a growing community demands frameworks and tools that facilitate sustainable and agile practices. 2008 is the year that frameworks and tools take notice and start to deliver solutions that are testable out of the box. Technologies such as Test Driven Development, MVC/MVP patterns, and frameworks that support moching become mainstream. After seeing this year's cool demos at software development industry conferences, a common question will be: "...And how do you test that?" Let's hope the presenters have an answer.

3.  The companion applications become practical: While RIA and AJAX application categories continue to grow, many consumer-facing Web application and enterprise application developers realize there is a need for desktop exploitive applications as well as reach Web applications that work everywhere. What meaningful application wouldn't benefit from a pairing like that of Outlook and Outlook Web Access? In the past it has been prohibitively expensive to build these applications, but with the circa 2008 technology such as .NET Framework 3.5 and Silverlight, it is finally becoming practical to have a single codebase that fully exploits the desktop and offers a rich Web experience.

Apple Tablet • G-Phone • Social Networking • MVC
Kevin Hoffman
Editor-in-Chief
iPhone Developer's Journal

Kevin Hoffman, editor-in-chief of SYS-CON's iPhone Developer's Journal, is coauthor of Professional .NET Framework (Wrox Press) and co-author with Robert Foster of Microsoft SharePoint 2007 Development Unleashed.

Here are my predictions, in no particular order:
1.  Apple will release a Tablet that runs a variant of Leopard. When people touch it, they will spontaneously combust with joy.

2.  Google's Halo will burst and finally people will stop worshipping them. That won't decrease their stranglehold on search and online ads, however. Their open phone platform will have only niche-sized popularity.

3.  Visual Studio 2008 / .NET Framework 3.5 will remain highly underrated until late 2008 when people finally figure out that they're sitting on a gold mine of new technology.

4.  The social networking bubble will burst. Hopefully this will thin the herd and get rid of the annoying Web 2.0 detritus clogging the way for the real innovators.

5.  MVC. MVC. MVC. This is where Web development belongs. Ruby/Rails will gain in popularity, as will every other MVC framework for Web development, especially the one being hinted at by Microsoft. The number of available framework choices for developers to build high-end Web applications will be larger than ever before.

6.  Vista's service pack will go over like a lead brick.

Windows Mobile OS • Innovative Handsets • Mobile-Oriented Architecture (MOA) • Mobility Development
Ian Thain Senior Technology Evangelist Sybase

Ian Thain is very involved with the design, production and testing of Enterprise class UnWired Solutions that have been implemented using Sybase's UnWired tools for Sybase customers around the globe. He has experience working with the ITSG engineering teams, in particular on the EAServer, EP, PowerBuilder, PocketBuilder, PowerJ & OEM products.

Here's what I believe will occur over the next year...
1.  I expect to see Microsoft consolidate and strengthen its hold on the Enterprise Mobile space with its Windows Mobile OS. This will be in the areas of OS features and security.

2.  Along with this, I believe that our partner HTC will continue to grow its handset market share, with more new models available. If evolution is constant, I expect to see handsets with more innovative designs and features and HTC devices will gain more memory for storage, especially for the running of the OS and user programs.

3.  Mobility (MOA) will become more important on the fringes of SOA. For Sybase, the UnWired Enterprise company, this is a win-win situation as our wide spectrum of products covers the broad area of mobility development. I expect to see our competitive products grow along with these predictions and in areas ahead of them. In fact I can see mobility development coming into the mainstream development fold, just as Web development started off as a separate group and has now become one, in most companies. Having this strong development offering from a unified company will be seen as such a positive step by most if not all undertaking enterprise mobility development.


More Stories By Jeremy Geelan

Jeremy Geelan is Chairman & CEO of the 21st Century Internet Group, Inc. and an Executive Academy Member of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Formerly he was President & COO at Cloud Expo, Inc. and Conference Chair of the worldwide Cloud Expo series. He appears regularly at conferences and trade shows, speaking to technology audiences across six continents. You can follow him on twitter: @jg21.

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