Gartner Research offers key technologies organizations should plan to address in 2011, to ensure organizational readiness, competitive health and customer/market relevance.

Gartner has identified what they perceive to be the 10 most strategic technologies that enterprises should track to and plan for leading into 2011. Gartner defines a strategic technology as;

…one with the potential for significant impact on the enterprise in the next three years. Factors that denote significant impact include a high potential for disruption to IT or the business, the need for a major dollar investment, or the risk of being late to adopt.

A strategic technology may be an existing technology that has matured and/or become suitable for a wider range of uses. It may also be an emerging technology that offers an opportunity for strategic business advantage for early adopters or with potential for significant market disruption in the next five years.   As such, these technologies impact the organization’s long-term plans, programs and initiatives.

The technologies include;

  • Cloud computing: The next 3 years will see the delivery of cloud service approaches falling somewhere between the extremes of open/public and closed/private
  • Mobile applications and media tablets: Gartner estimates that by the end of 2010, 1.2 billion people will carry handsets capable of rich, mobile commerce; the quality of the experience of applications on these devices – which include detection of of location, motion and other behavioral context – is leading customers to prefer to interact with companies via mobile devices
  • Social communications & collaboration: While Gartner categories social as follows, the broader point is that social technologies will be integrated into most business applications
  • Social networking — social profile management products (i.e., Facebook, LinkedIn)
  • Social collaboration — technologies, such as wikis, blogs, instant messaging and crowdsourcing
  • Social publishing — technologies that assist communities in pooling individual content into a usable community repository, such as YouTube and flickr
  • Social feedback – gaining community feedback
  • Video: By 2013, more than 25 percent of the content that workers see in a day will be dominated by pictures, video or audio
  • Next Generation Analytics: Predictive methodologies and algorithms will impact and support real-time business actions
  • Social Analytics: Include a number of specialized techniques such as social filtering, social-network analysis, sentiment analysis and social-media analytics; these tools are useful for examining social structure and interdependencies, as well as the work patterns of individuals, groups or organizations. Social network analysis will allow organizations to evaluate the impact, quality or effectiveness of a relationship
  • Context-Aware Computing: A contextually aware system anticipates the user’s needs and proactively serves up the most appropriate and customized content, product or service. By 2016, one-third of worldwide mobile consumer marketing will be context-awareness-based
  • Storage Class Memory: Gartner sees huge use of flash memory in consumer devices, entertainment equipment and other embedded IT systems; key advantages include space, heat, performance and ruggedness
  • Ubiquitous Computing: The third wave of computing involves computers invisibly embedded into the world (e.g., the Internet of Things); as computers proliferate and everyday objects are given the ability to communicate with RFID tags, networks will surpass the scale that can be managed in traditional, centralized ways. Computing systems will be imbued into operational technology.
  • Fabric-Based Infrastructure and Computers: A modular form of computing where a system can be aggregated from separate building-block modules connected over a fabric or switched backplane; (admittedly – we’ll need to dedicate some additional time and resources into fully evaluating – and understanding – this one)

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