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CA Leader: Don't Let Legacy Hold You Back

In his Interop ITX keynote, CA Technologies CTO Otto Berkes took a hard look at technology change and how organizations approach it.

James M. Connolly

May 17, 2017

2 Min Read
Otto Berkes

We can't have a tech conversation without talking about change, particularly the pace of change. Today, Otto Berkes put tech change into perspective, saying, "We are lost in a technological maze of our own making."

The chief technology officer for CA Technologies then told the keynote audience at Interop ITX in Las Vegas, "Our architectures are difficult to maintain, let alone evolve," noting that companies are still taking a "linear approach to dealing with exponential change."

Berkes called on the 3,000 Interop attendees and their organizations to find a different way to operate. "It's not sufficient to react to change. We need to reinvent the way we do things," he said.

Otto Berkes Interop ITX keynote

Of course, that calls for new ideas and innovation to enable the ongoing change and improvement that so many companies need to implement through Agile and DevOps. He said that while it is nice to have an idea factory, "Just coming up with ideas doesn't make them real." That calls for a "software factory" that can implement new software through containers and microservices. Those concepts help to bring to life the service-oriented architecture that was just a dream a decade ago.

But new forms of innovation and new architectures alone won't bring IT into a more modern world. Berkes noted that many IT budgets still suffer from the 80/20 rule in which 80% of the money goes to maintenance, leaving 20% or less for innovation.

He urged attendees to not let "legacy" hold them back, to embark on "creative destruction" to reduce their legacy systems where possible, and to "drive new bandwidth" for new applications and approaches.

Finally, he encouraged IT professionals to never lose sight of where the real value is in technology. "It's us, the people," he stressed -- the people whose lives are improved and whose work is enabled by technology.

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About the Author(s)

James M. Connolly

Contributing Editor and Writer

Jim Connolly is a versatile and experienced freelance technology journalist who has reported on IT trends for more than three decades. He was previously editorial director of InformationWeek and Network Computing, where he oversaw the day-to-day planning and editing on the sites. He has written about enterprise computing, data analytics, the PC revolution, the evolution of the Internet, networking, IT management, and the ongoing shift to cloud-based services and mobility. He has covered breaking industry news and has led teams focused on product reviews and technology trends. He has concentrated on serving the information needs of IT decision-makers in large organizations and has worked with those managers to help them learn from their peers and share their experiences in implementing leading-edge technologies through such publications as Computerworld. Jim also has helped to launch a technology-focused startup, as one of the founding editors at TechTarget, and has served as editor of an established news organization focused on technology startups at MassHighTech.

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