Monday, December 01, 2008

Data Centers may be ready, what about the web consumers?

I guess, that is what I can see what Jim is getting at. Cloud or On-Premise IT shop. Boring is boring. A lot has to change before we can call Clouds the true platforms of change!

While I agree that the enterprise is about control and the web is about emergence (I've made the same argument here at Radar), I don't think this negative characterization of the enterprise is all that useful. It seems to imply that the enterprise's orientation toward control springs fully formed from the minds of an army of petty controlling middle managers. I don't think that's the case.

I suspect it's more likely the result of large scale system dynamics, where the culture of control follows from other constraints. If multiverse advocates are right and there are infinite parallel universes, I bet most of them have IT enterprises just like ours; at least in those shards that have similar corporate IT boundary conditions. Once you have GAAP, Sarbox, domain-specific regulation like HIPAA, quarterly expectations from "The Street," decades of MIS legacy, and the talent acquisition realities that mature companies in mature industries face, the strange attractors in the system will pull most of those shards to roughly the same place. In other words, the IT enterprise is about control because large businesses in mature industries are about control. On the other hand, the web is about emergence because in this time, place, and with this technology discontinuity, emergence is the low energy state.


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