Serverless and on the edge: The direction of IT for 2023 is mapped out

Photo by Chris Ried, Unsplash

IT professionals always have an eye on the future and the new year is an opportunity to focus on new developments. What can companies expect from DevOps and developers? How will patterns related to edge computing and serverless options evolve?

To get an in-depth look, Digital Journal caught up with Couchbase CTO Ravi Mayuram. Mayuram’s predictions relate to the future of database, with a focus on the role of DevOps in Web 3.0, the evolving role of the CTO, and the evolution of AI.

DevOps will adopt blockchain and newer programming languages

According to Mayuram: “With the advent of Web 3.0, working with blockchain (especially Ethereum) will be in every DevOps professional’s playbook – reflecting the boom in machine learning adoption. Newer programming languages ​​like Solidity, designed for developing smart contracts, are entering developers’ toolkits.”

2023 will be the year that cost-efficiency will officially be built into the tools of today’s modern tech stack

In terms of cost pressures, Mayuram predicts, “With today’s market volatility and inflation spikes, more and more companies are reassessing their technology stack. Increasingly, we will see more and more vendors incorporating cost efficiencies into their solutions to provide a competitive advantage. This shift will drive more vendors to ensure their offerings optimize costs for customers while enabling greater productivity.”

Referring to one case, Mayuram quotes: “For example, today more and more organizations are moving away from multiple database technologies that provide different functionalities of the enterprise, and instead consider a single database that can be used efficiently, scalably, and across the organization. Database vendors that support a variety of industries and use cases and reduce the cost of doing business will see increased demand.”

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It is important to be open to change, says Mayuram: “Technology has the ability to influence the cost optimization of companies and adaptability is crucial for providers today – especially in this changing business environment. Technology providers that understand sudden market shifts and continue to offer innovative yet cost-effective solutions will come out on top.”

As digital transformation results shrink on the landing pad, CTOs will prioritize architecture technology to serve as better business partners for enterprises

Looking at the role of leadership, Mayuram notes, “Traditionally, CTOs were known as technologists rather than business stakeholders and strategists, but today – the CTO’s role is expanding to include not only technology vision, but business vision, too . Businesses are more focused than ever on their technology investments, and as the runway for digital transformation shrinks, CTOs must look through the lens to deliver smarter solutions in support of overall business strategy. More importantly, CTOs are now thinking about how they can be better business partners for clients by providing solutions that not only benefit a client’s technology stack, but provide a service that brings efficiency and agility to the technology spend under control.”

Cloud databases will reach new levels of sophistication to support modern applications in an era where fast, personalized and immersive experiences are the goal

Looking at broader business developments, Mayuram predicts, “From a digital transformation perspective, it’s about modernizing the tech stack to ensure apps run without lag – which in turn provides users with a premium experience when interacting with an app or platform offers. Deploying a high-performance cloud database is one way to do this. There is a massive trend towards serverless systems and using cloud databases is becoming the de facto way to manage the data layer. Over the next year we will also see the decentralization of data moving closer to the edge to provide faster and more reliable availability. Additionally, we will see the emergence of AI-powered databases that enable teams to do more with less. Data proliferation will continue, making AI-powered databases a crucial strategy to make the data lifecycle more operationally efficient for the enterprise.”

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The role of IT is being redefined to meet the demands of digital transformation

Building on the topic of digital transformation, Mayuram states, “Gone are the days when IT teams were solely focused on deploying and managing IT infrastructure. This reflects the growing importance of IT professionals to businesses as they continue to prioritize digital solutions for business growth, customer experience, and other benefits. To achieve this, technical departments are expected to play a broader, more consultative role in understanding business needs and addressing them with technology solutions.”

This may mean new hiring practices, says Mayuram: “This shift is changing the requirements for essential skills in IT teams, as companies place much greater importance on key IT activities such as digital transformation. With these projects high on companies’ to-do lists and the benefits affecting all areas of a business, it’s clear how useful IT professionals will be in an advisory role to plan, implement and sustain digitization efforts.”

Mayuram adds: “We will see that IT professionals need to train other areas of the company as well. This is being driven by the rise of utility computing and tools like low-code development that are lowering the barrier to entry for successfully building and managing applications. With other employees developing systems and overseeing cloud infrastructure, IT teams must act as gatekeepers to ensure efficient and compliant operations.”

Speaking of other skills, Mayuram notes, “In addition to the skills required to provide effective advice, IT teams must also act on all the data that organizations collect and generate. Team members who demonstrate these skills will quickly become more recession-proof as they help the company move forward and make the most of its resources.”

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In an increasingly data-centric world, edge computing will drive the development of reliable AI

With the application of more advanced technology, Mayuram embraces artificial intelligence as a key innovation: “AI is ubiquitous in our everyday lives. It suggests what we buy and what news we read. It could dictate the emails we receive and expand the cars we drive. In the future, AI will be even more embedded in our world. It will go through a period of maturation that will allow us to rely on it more. The predictability and explainability of AI will improve dramatically as it progresses. In addition, AI will evolve from algorithm-driven to more data-driven development. For this to be effective, more and more calculations are being performed at the edge so that the AI ​​is reliable, responsive, and cost-effective. This trend of more data influencing algorithms will determine how AI will evolve into a tool that can be heavily relied on in this data-centric future.”