Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Websphere Authors: Pat Romanski, Jayaram Krishnaswamy, Liz McMillan, Elizabeth White, Carmen Gonzalez

Related Topics: Web 2.0, Microservices Journal, AJAX & REA

Web 2.0: Article

Web 2.0 Is Fundamentally About Empowering People

Exclusive Q&A with IBM's VP of Emerging Internet Technologies, Rod Smith

"Unlocking content to be remixed into new business value" is the driver of Web 2.0 in the enterprise, says Rod Smith, IBM VP of Emerging Internet Technologies, in this Exclusive Q&A with Web 2.0 Journal's Jeremy Geelan given April 2008 on the occasion of IBM's release last month of a new technology created by IBM researchers, codenamed “SMash” - short for Secure Mashup.

Web 2.0 Journal: The movement to empowering business users via Enterprise Mashups in 2006 and gathered momentum in 2007. Do you think that 2008 will be the year that they go mainstream, or is that point still to be reached?

Rod Smith: We are seeing a number of activities blossom. First, the idea of unlocking content to be remixed into new business value is translating into strong adoption of RSS and ATOM, making enterprise data broadly available - and mashable.  Security is now being addressed with the SMash contribution into the OpenAjax Alliance, and will address the needs CIOs have regarding composing secure, interoperable mash-ups.  And finally, the introduction of products from us and others in the industry does indicate a shift.

Q. So if the enterprise, or a large portion of it, was waiting for the security issue still to be resolved, then it follows that IBM is hoping today's release of SMash will be a major adoption tipping-point?

Rod Smith: That's what we're aiming for.  Almost from day one of our participation in OpenAjax Alliance, security and interoperability were highlighted as the two major challenges that enterprises wanted to see addressed - in an open standard or de facto standard way, of course.  I  don't think enough credit is given to the folks in OpenAjax Alliance for taking on these issues - and we're pleased be a part of helping to achieve their goals.

Q.
Mashup security aside, to what extent do you still have to evangelize around the theme of self-service IT, and make businesses understand that high performance people can be empowered through mashup technology to serve themselves with the information they need and then choose themselves exactly how to exploit applications to solve their business priorities?

Rod Smith: Good question.  We still need to evangelize - but let's call it in a Web 2.0 style.  We're now able to show IT how empowering their high performance counterparts in business roles helps them as well, and seeing is believing. Instantly demonstrating the value has a huge impact.  What's exciting today is listening to a customer describe a dashboard or mashup they've been dying to have - and then let them drive!

Q. How would you unpack "situational applications" so that everyone knows exactly what IBM means by that?

Rod Smith: Wikipedia's excellent definition is it's software created by a small group of users for a specific purpose. I'm sure your readers think of useful applications that have been just out of their reach or skills to assemble - so we've expanded the thought a bit to include the idea of time to market - situational apps should be able to be composed/assembled quickly.

Q. So do Mashups mean the end of IT departments, or just a re-arrangement of priorities?

Rod Smith: There's no riding off into the sunset for IT.  This does offer IT a way to reshape their role with the line of business folks - offering SOA and Informational services to make their jobs easier.  It also means new responsibilities for IT around governance of information as data becomes easily sharable/remixable beyond the intranet, additional quality of service as business ecosystems grow, and of course new ways to approach security.

Q. At AJAXWorld next week in New York we have an entire all-day Bootcamp devoted to AJAX Security issues. Do you see any reason to imagine that such a Bootcamp would ever be less than fully subscribed (which it certainly is)? ;-)  If so, how long before we get to that point?!

Rod Smith: Bottom line, AJAX is going to be a cornerstone for open clients for enterprises.  Rich Internet applications will need to exhibit the necessary security - and I don't think there's a better place to get fully immersed than Bootcamp next week!

Q.
How great a role do standards play in all of this and how does IBM currently channel its activities in that area of things?

Rod Smith: Huge - both formal standards like W3C but also de facto standards like many of the technologies underlying AJAX.  As I mentioned earlier, standards are necessary for interoperability today - they go hand in hand.  In our area, we have a team dedicated to emerging standards who's full-time mission it is to collaborate broadly with customers and others in our industry. It's really in IBM's DNA to work across the industry to develop standards, and we'll continue to do that so that our customers can have the best functionality in the most secure way. 

Q. Is it your belief that non-technical users within the enterprise really can be persuaded to "get" 2.0 and avail themselves of the new benefits of freeform applications? Isn't there always a risk that even secure mashups will always be deployed only by the early adopters within each company, but not get adopted beyond that?

Rod Smith: Nope. I think there really is this thing called "shadow IT" where non-technical users have always looked for ways to be more productive - to empower themselves.  This is especially true as the younger generation enters the workforce, as they're more technically savvy than any generation before them. Because they grew up on blogs, wikis and other Web 2.0 tools, this generation is largely expected to embrace mashups.

Q.
How will IBM know when the wider world of business has caught up with your team at Emerging Internet Technologies? What kind of metrics do you use to track adoption?

Rod Smith: IBM has had the pleasure of seeing a number of our industry collaborations blossom - Java, XML, web services and now Web 2.0.  We have a methodology on measuring the adoption of new, disruptive technologies - in part to keep from not drinking our own Kool Aid.  Each technology has a different set of metrics;  for mash-ups one measure was the reduction in time to market from months to years - to hours.  We measure every proof-of-concept with customers to validate our approach - which helped refine each iteration of the technology and standards.

More Stories By Jeremy Geelan

Jeremy Geelan is Chairman & CEO of the 21st Century Internet Group, Inc. and an Executive Academy Member of the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences. Formerly he was President & COO at Cloud Expo, Inc. and Conference Chair of the worldwide Cloud Expo series. He appears regularly at conferences and trade shows, speaking to technology audiences across six continents. You can follow him on twitter: @jg21.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SYS-CON Events announced today that Dyn, the worldwide leader in Internet Performance, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Dyn is a cloud-based Internet Performance company. Dyn helps companies monitor, control, and optimize online infrastructure for an exceptional end-user experience. Through a world-class network and unrivaled, objective intelligence into Internet conditions, Dyn ensures traffic gets delivered faster, safer, and more reliably than ever.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Open Data Centers (ODC), a carrier-neutral colocation provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Open Data Centers is a carrier-neutral data center operator in New Jersey and New York City offering alternative connectivity options for carriers, service providers and enterprise customers.
SYS-CON Events announced today that On the Avenue Marketing Group, a sales and marketing firm that utilizes events to market and sell products to consumers, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. On the Avenue Marketing Group (OTA) is a sales and marketing firm that utilizes events to market and sell products to consumers. On behalf of our clients, we attend thousands of fairs, festivals, expos, concerts, conferences, and sporting events annually, helping them reach millions of individuals ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ActiveState, the leading independent Cloud Foundry and Docker-based PaaS provider, has been named “Silver Sponsor” of SYS-CON's DevOps Summit New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. ActiveState believes that enterprises gain a competitive advantage when they are able to quickly create, deploy and efficiently manage software solutions that immediately create business value, but they face many challenges that prevent them from doing so. The Company is uniquely positioned to help address these challenges thro...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vitria Technology, Inc. will exhibit at SYS-CON’s @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Vitria will showcase the company’s new IoT Analytics Platform through live demonstrations at booth #330. Vitria’s IoT Analytics Platform, fully integrated and powered by an operational intelligence engine, enables customers to rapidly build and operationalize advanced analytics to deliver timely business outcomes for use cases across the industrial, enterprise, and consumer segments.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Alert Logic, the leading provider of Security-as-a-Service solutions for the cloud, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® and DevOps Summit 2015 New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo® and DevOps Summit 2015 Silicon Valley, which will take place November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that kintone has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. kintone promotes cloud-based workgroup productivity, transparency and profitability with a seamless collaboration space, build your own business application (BYOA) platform, and workflow automation system.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Akana, formerly SOA Software, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Akana’s comprehensive suite of API Management, API Security, Integrated SOA Governance, and Cloud Integration solutions helps businesses accelerate digital transformation by securely extending their reach across multiple channels – mobile, cloud and Internet of Things. Akana enables enterprises to share data as APIs, connect and integrate applications, drive part...
SYS-CON Events announced today that CommVault has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. A singular vision – a belief in a better way to address current and future data management needs – guides CommVault in the development of Singular Information Management® solutions for high-performance data protection, universal availability and sim...
SYS-CON Events announced today that SafeLogic has been named “Bag Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo® New York, which will take place June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. SafeLogic provides security products for applications in mobile and server/appliance environments. SafeLogic’s flagship product CryptoComply is a FIPS 140-2 validated cryptographic engine designed to secure data on servers, workstations, appliances, mobile devices, and in the Cloud.
SYS-CON Events announced today that StorPool Storage will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. StorPool is distributed storage software that allows service providers, enterprises and other cloud builders to run data storage on standard x86 servers, instead of using expensive and inefficient storage arrays (SAN).
SYS-CON Events announced today that Site24x7, the cloud infrastructure monitoring service, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Site24x7 is a cloud infrastructure monitoring service that helps monitor the uptime and performance of websites, online applications, servers, mobile websites and custom APIs. The monitoring is done from 50+ locations across the world and from various wireless carriers, thus providing a global perspective of the end-user experience. Site24x7 supports monitoring H...
SYS-CON Events announced today that B2Cloud, a provider of enterprise resource planning software, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. B2cloud develops the software you need. They have the ideal tools to help you work with your clients. B2Cloud’s main solutions include AGIS – ERP, CLOHC, AGIS – Invoice, and IZUM
SYS-CON Events announced today that Intelligent Systems Services will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Established in 1994, Intelligent Systems Services Inc. is located near Washington, DC, with representatives and partners nationwide. ISS’s well-established track record is based on the continuous pursuit of excellence in designing, implementing and supporting nationwide clients’ mission-critical systems. ISS has completed many successful projects in Healthcare, Commercial, Manufacturing, ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Vicom Computer Services, Inc., a provider of technology and service solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. They are located at booth #427. Vicom Computer Services, Inc. is a progressive leader in the technology industry for over 30 years. Headquartered in the NY Metropolitan area. Vicom provides products and services based on today’s requirements around Unified Networks, Cloud Computing strategies, Virtualization around Software defined Data Ce...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tufin, the market-leading provider of Security Policy Orchestration Solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. As the market leader of Security Policy Orchestration, Tufin automates and accelerates network configuration changes while maintaining security and compliance. Tufin's award-winning Orchestration Suite™ gives IT organizations the power and agility to enforce security policy across complex, multi-vendor enterprise networks. With more than 1...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Optimal Design, an Internet of Things solution provider, will exhibit at SYS-CON's Internet of @ThingsExpo, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Optimal Design is an award winning product development firm offering industrial design and engineering services to the consumer, medical, and defense markets.
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY., and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MangoApps provides private all-in-one social intranets allowing workers to securely collaborate from anywhere in the world and from any device. Social, mobile, and easy to use. MangoApps has been named a "Market Leader" by Ovum Research and a "Cool Vendor" by Gartner...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Cloudian, Inc., the leading provider of hybrid cloud storage solutions, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Cloudian, Inc., is a Foster City, California - based software company specializing in cloud storage software. The main product is Cloudian, an Amazon S3-compliant cloud object storage platform, the bedrock of cloud computing systems, that enables cloud service providers and enterprises to build reliable, affordable and scalable cloud storage solu...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Gridstore™, the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built to optimize Microsoft workloads, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Gridstore™ is the leader in hyper-converged infrastructure purpose-built for Microsoft workloads and designed to accelerate applications in virtualized environments. Gridstore’s hyper-converged infrastructure is the industry’s first all flash version of HyperConverged Appliances that include both compute and storag...