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Seismic Shifts in Software Development Still Need Hardware

Breakthroughs in innovation are accelerating the digitization of industry and the economy with the potential for software to see exponential growth.

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth

December 22, 2021

3 Min Read
tippapatt via Adobe Stock

The software world once again stands on the precipice of change with promises to accelerate the development of applications and the use of data exponentially as new resources loom on the horizon.

In early December, Rod Cope, CTO of Perforce, gave a keynote at the DeveloperWeek Global: Enterprise conference on “The Future of Software Development.” He touched on the famous quote from Marc Andreesen about software “eating the world” and noted how things have changed since it was first uttered. “That’s a 10-year-old quote at this point,” Cope said. “What’s that mean? Software companies turning the physical world into data in bits and apps and software.”

For example, Amazon’s rise to prominence in ecommerce and ebooks, Netflix streaming service upending Blockbuster, and Apple changing the game with digital music over physical media. “You don’t go to the music store in the mall to get a CD,” he said. “It’s bits; it’s data.”

Such change is not just among tech giant FAANG companies, Cope said. Over-the-air software updates to add features are commonplace these days. “Every enterprise is a software company now; you hear it all the time,” he said, noting that development teams are growing rapidly to pursue digital transformation. “Recruiting development talent and maintaining it hits the top five list for strategic success for global CEOs,” Cope said.

He framed the changes seen with the advent of the iPhone to where the market stands now as a nascent stage that sets up what will come next. “We’re going to see 10 times that much change in this period we’re right in the middle of now,” Cope said.

Factors that drive change in the space include the technology response to the COVID pandemic and the ramp-up of users on the internet who want to explore new ideas. Citing market intelligence firm IDC, Cope said this momentum will drive a tenfold increase in apps and services that lead to half the global economy being digitized, which by 2022 may be closer to two-thirds.

Hardware remains connected to the development of software, but he said hardware may start to disappear in some cases while compute power is on track to escalate fast, including the development of quantum computers. “Volkswagen is talking about doing full city traffic management with quantum computers,” Cope said. This may also lead to quantum AI and the development of DNA specific drugs and medicine. Referring to a Gartner projection that quantum computing will be a revolutionary technology in about 10 years, he said, seismic shifts may be underway. “We’re talking about global, life-changing stuff coming,” Cope said.

The stories below represent a taste of InformationWeek’s coverage of software development and DevOps in 2021 that might aid IT leaders forming strategies for 2022:

Modern App Dev: An Enterprise Guide

Developers don’t sit behind glass walls anymore. And citizen developers are jumping into the low end of the app pool. Just what’s going on in the insanely busy world of software application development?

Cloud Native Driving Change in Enterprise and Analytics

Software development via cloud-native resources continues to gain traction among enterprises looking for scale, security, and accessibility of business intelligence.

Is Automation an Existential Threat to Developers?

Automation is alive and well across the enterprise, including in DevOps. But if AI can write code, then developer roles will evolve.

Ancestry’s DevOps Strategy to Control Its CI/CD Pipeline

Genealogy company sought a different approach to corral its software development and deployment.

IT Skills: Top 10 Programming Languages for 2021

These are the languages most likely to be useful for getting a job as a developer or other IT professional.

Why DevOps is Critical to Digital Transformation

Organizations should focus on automation and efficiency to keep pace with pandemic-driven technology transformation.

Why ING Entrusted Core Dev Needs to Low Code / No Code  

Banking and financial services giant turned to Genesis’s platform to tackle certain app development.

About the Author(s)

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth

Senior Editor

Joao-Pierre S. Ruth covers tech policy, including ethics, privacy, legislation, and risk; fintech; code strategy; and cloud & edge computing for InformationWeek. He has been a journalist for more than 25 years, reporting on business and technology first in New Jersey, then covering the New York tech startup community, and later as a freelancer for such outlets as TheStreet, Investopedia, and Street Fight. Follow him on Twitter: @jpruth.

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