• United States
Contributing Writer

Moving on

Jul 07, 20043 mins
Enterprise ApplicationsIT Skills

* For Sandra, it's time to say goodbye

Well, all, next week will be my last newsletter as Events Editor for Network World. I’ve enjoyed communicating with all of you over the past three years.

There have been lots of changes since I first started writing this column. VoIP has matured to become a productive part of IT networks. Wireless LANs have moved beyond security woes to serious options in the enterprise. Data center consolidation is in full swing; automation is more than a pipe dream; and virtualization is offering real cost savings. These are just a few of the advances that have been made in a short period of time.

And just think what’s ahead for networking. One day, networks will truly be lights-out, but I don’t foresee that putting IT pros out of work as many fear. I see new challenges arising that will make them even more valuable – moving beyond configuring routers to excelling at the intersection between infrastructure and applications.

At some point, it won’t matter what device someone is trying to access the network from – applications won’t have to be Web-ified. They’ll just know automatically how to adjust to numerous media. You won’t have to worry about prioritizing voice, video and data traffic; that will sort itself out. And you certainly won’t have to worry about outages or downtime as networks will be self-healing and be able to create another version of itself without missing a beat.

This is an exciting vision, one that I’ve heard talked about on the myriad Technology Tours, Tech Updates, Town Meetings and custom events that I’ve been on. We’ve seen snapshots at DEMO, DEMOmobile and VORTEX.

When I think of this exciting new realm, I think back to one of my favorite interviews I’ve ever conducted with John Seely Brown when he was head of Xerox’ Palo Alto Research Center. He said, and I’m paraphrasing because it was several years ago, that computers will be something we don’t think about. They’ll just be – in the walls, not on them; in our desks, not on them; in our bodies, not on them. We won’t think of their footprint, they’ll just be.


Upcoming Events

Wireless LANs Technology Tour

July 13 – Atlanta

July 14 – New York

Today there’s just one universal truth about building sophisticated WLANs: The design, management, and buying decisions you make now will determine the effectiveness of your enterprise network for years to come. So attend Wireless LANs: Gaining Strength, Reaching Farther, a new Network World Technology Tour event. It brings together the intelligence, innovations, and solutions you need at an exclusive forum led by industry expert Craig J. Mathias.