Turbotodd

Ruminations on IT, the digital media, and some golf thrown in for good measure.

Live @ IBM Pulse 2010: Integrated Service Management

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Before we heard earlier today from Al Gore, we heard from that other Al, Tivoli’s own Al Zollar, the general manager of Tivoli software for IBM, on the subject of integrated service management.

Al Zollar took the stage bright and early to explain what’s going on in the external environment, that signs of the smarter planet are all around us, and that they have the potential to change the way people, business, and processes operate, and how Tivoli is working to optimize the world’s infrastructure — physical and digital — so we can all live and work smarter, not harder.

Al talked about the proliferation we’re seeing, of instrumented, interconnected, and intelligent devices, and how we’re helping deliver innovative services we couldn’t have dreamt of ten short years ago.

Here’s what we’ve learned thus far, according to Al: That you all (our customers) are dealing with amazing levels of complexity growing due to the new devices and services being added each day.

Of the skyrocketing number of security threats that you all deal with every single day.

And that yet, with the lack of integration of yesterday’s tools and processes, many organizations are not able to “see” and manage it all effectively.

As Al observed, “You can’t effectively manage with an Excel spreadsheet.”

The sheer volume of dependencies is absurd, and a single transaction can yet now cross multiple application domains.  Any change in one of these in such an environment can wreak havoc.

Just a single change can have up to 1 billion permutations.  Now THAT is complexity.

Al then launched into a number of Tivoli case studies.  The Capitol Region of Denmark, for example, whose countless backup requirements for each hospital it supports can range to massive amounts of data duplication distributed across three different storage sites and over 1.5 petabytes of information.

They were able to overcome their storage management challenges with only 4 people and an integrated service management portfolio from IBM Software.

Or the U.S. Air Force, which has 100 bases and 700,000 military personnel around the world, and where “mission critical” takes on a whole new meaning.

The Air Force is leveraging ISM in a cloud environment from IBM to help overcome its challenges.

Service lifecycle management and dashboards; unified management of service requests and incidents; asset management; and automated management, all are what’s needed to reduce complexity in today’s smarter planet, all through three single core concepts: Visibility, control, and automation.

To help matters, IBM today announced that its Energy and Utilities Centers in LaGaude, France, and Austin, Texas, were now open for business — if you can lock down the grid, you can lock down just about any connected infrastructure.

Zollar then introduced new releases of several key products, including Tivoli Provisioning Manager for Images; IBM Information Archive; Tivoli Security Information and Event Manager; Tivoli Storage Manager; and Fastback Solutions.

He also announced new partnerships with Ricoh, Johnson Controls, and Juniper Networks.

Rational Software GM Danny Sabbah then took the stage to observe the role design and delivery has played in the ongoing evolution of the American automobile.

In 1977, Sabbah observed, the Oldsmobile Toronado had a single computer unit for spark plug timing.

Today, a car is more like 30 computer on wheels, with 100 million lines of code and with more software than the complex controls used on the retiring U.S. Space Shuttle!

The car as data center on wheels.

Sabbah suggested we must stop this madness that development, deployment and operations are separate and distinct processes.

He also said that the Looming Business Crisis demands linkage, that we need to drive fundamental change in design and delivery in order to be able to achieve the goal of ISM.  Because when critical services and applications “go down or slow down,” they cost time, money, and, ultimately, customer loyalty.

Finally, Laura Sanders and Mike Rhodin brought things to a close with a compelling case study featuring The Venetian hotel’s “smarter city within a city” demonstration, and a look at the industry frameworks IBM Software is putting in place to put ISM in the context that matters most, the business of your business.

Ultimately, businesses and organizations can’t just be content with optimization: They must innovate.

We’ll be sure to hear more about this innovation over the next couple of days.

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