Wednesday, June 29, 2016

IBM is Building A Smart Digital Business Platform on the Cloud

IBM invited a group of analysts to New York for an update on their cloud strategy and the progress building their Digital Business Platform(DBP). The good news is that the technologies are coming together fast on the cloud. The bad news is that it isn't finished to a level of holistic business support yet, but the progress is showing. Like the digital journey itself, which is evolving as organizations learn, deliver and adjust, IBM is evolving their cloud platform while making portions usable now. IBM is doing the same for the business value built on top of it's cloud platform. While not complete yet, IBM was able to show significant progress and end use in a significant number of areas. IBMs' technical difference is that its platform scales, its global, its hybrid and it supports fast development through composition, hybrid languages and rapid method management.  IBM's business difference is delivering vertical solutions that are cognitively enabled on top of a "world class cloud" either by themselves or through close partners. IBM jammed almost two days worth of content into one day so we all drank from the fire hose. See IBM's general in charge, Robert LeBlanc, below along with IBM's target architecture chart.




There were a number of case studies, some presented by clients, showing the technical and business benefits of a dynamic scaling cloud platform, which is worthy of note in itself. However what differentiates IBM besides the technical platform is the leverage of cognitive components or services, which I like to call "cogs". Partners were able to demonstrate the value of cognitive assists in several business situations that delivered business results. IBM intends to show it's cognitive capabilities as it's advantage through making "cogs" consumable in their Bluemix development environment and by funding partners that can deliver vertical and horizontal cognitive solutions for clients digital journeys.  See a growing inventory of cogs in the image below: 


Noteworthy:

I was delighted with some of the vision on video content, IoT and cloud data management, but I was disappointed about not hearing more on their graph data base and digital transformation assistance. I wasn't clear on IBM's block chain stance, but they had a small "demo like" presentation. I think it's early though. We also had to chose one breakout session from a list of six great sessions. I hope to catch up on some of the sessions I had to miss because time constraints. 

Net; Net:

IBM is flexing it's cloud muscle now while it is growing and adapting. I'm hoping that the new approaches do not leave some of the early adopters behind. IBM is also starting to show it's cognitive prowess and I expect this to accelerate. What seems to be missing is a marketing name that catches fire in the market like IBMs competitors have done. To me it's always better to deliver the running architecture before the marketing, so I'm not as critical here. Make no mistake, IBM is not done delivering, but I like the results so far.
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