Although increasingly invisible to the naked eye, it needs to provide fast, secure, agile and cost-effective access to any data or application service. Like water, it should be fluid and flexible to the demands of the enterprise. It simply needs to be delivered anywhere, whether on or off premise, through the cloud or not. To flow uninterruptedly, it needs to tap in into a highly connected, always expanding network of people, organisations and things – clearly illustrating why “infostructure” is not a spelling mistake.
The future of infrastructure – like so many final innovation destinies – is to become truly invisible. This means that we can consume infrastructure right from the catalog; we can use pre-defined services and workloads that support us like a truly hassle-free and Lego-style utility, satisfying current and future technology business objectives. Combine this with the incredible richness of data – increasingly through sensors, mobile devices and lots of ‘things’ – and you start to get both the ‘invisible’ and ‘infostructure’ parts of the equation.
The key to an invisible infrastructure is keeping to the ‘as a service’ principle, covering both the more traditional, as well as cloud-native deployment scenarios.
In this dynamic and ever-evolving technology business environment, business models are demanding agile and continuous delivery of applications and data to support new and existing services. IT needs are rapidly and ever-changing, across custom developed applications, COTS applications, large-scale ERP solutions and SAP alike, disrupting the infrastructure ‘norms’ as we know them, in design, deployment and operations.
Traditional infrastructure becomes hyper-virtualised and containerised. Disruptive forces, shaping and molding innovation as water in a vase, create ‘invisible infostructure’ platforms that are fully software-driven; fully secure, automated and orchestrated by software code. Any hardware configuration, storage provisioning and network configuration is managed through software. No longer are we exposed to complexity, as abstraction and automation allow for a simpler way of consuming infostructure capabilities, regardless of where it resides.
Observing our Infostructure for a moment longer, we find that design, deployment and automation of platforms are simplified, facilitating a democratisation of infrastructure delivery to consuming development teams. A ‘new norm’ emerges from the waters, featuring jointly orchestrated service components, edge devices, objects and APIs, each with logging and monitoring requirements, all unlocked with innovative AI-driven operations.
Peek inside your new Invisible Infostructure and you’re bound to find a well-tuned world of containers, virtual machines, cybersecurity bots, storage, networks and cloud services being orchestrated and automated along a secure and continuous pipeline of changes. Changes demanded by consumers and platform specialists alike. It delivers the speed, availability and reliability needed by today’s technology businesses in a responsible, secure and environmentally friendly way.
And as we enter the era of ‘serverless’ solutions that do not appear to require any infrastructure at all, the invisibility cloak is complete.