I was so happy to track down Luis Weir, Chief Architect, Capgemini at OpenWorld. He is very passionate about innnovation and technology enablers and he didn't hesitate when I asked him to spend five minutes with me, to share his insights! You can listen to the podcast on YouTube here.
1. What is top of mind for you in terms of innovation and business transformation for your customers?
Many of my customers still have several legacy systems and many of them want to modernize and consolidate them, for example, to single instances of E-Business Suite or SAP. However, they cannot wait until this happens, in order to create digital experiences, so they are looking for ways to innovate/create systems of innovation and engagement quickly, without having to wait for these big modernizations. So, we are creating legacy modernization strategies to leverage modern technologies like microservices and APIs, whilst eating the elephant one piece at a time. So you don’t have to get indigestion trying to modernize a big thing that will take years.
2. What do you see as the key technology enablers to achieve ongoing innovation/transformation over the next 12-24 months?
In my view, there are three sets of technologies that will enable this. APIs are the door to information and functionality, so you need an API Gateway and API Platform that allows you to create APIs on cloud, on-prem, in any cloud vendor and manage those endpoints with proper security and policies. That’s number one. But then, you need some sort of development platform that lets you very quickly spin up microservices. I think containers and technologies around containers, like Wercker for example (recent acquisition by Oracle to do container pipelines), Docker Swarm, Kubernetes – there will be a big push, also including from Oracle. And I agree, Kubernetes is becoming the defacto container orchestration technology. Third, for events and event collaboration, which is important in these types of technologies, Kafka is definitely on the radar for me next year. And then, of course, if you put those three things together, you can create a lot of things to enable customers.
3. Can you share your current favorite transformation or innovation example?
For one of our customers in Sweden, we are currently creating a mobile app that will be rolled out into multiple countries. Their requirement was for a platform that can quickly be deployed to any location/data center (cloud or on-premise), but we don’t know where yet - it might go live in the US, Singapore, China or maybe Australia. We don’t know where it will be deployed yet, but the solution is built – so all we are waiting for is the geography, and then we will be able to deploy the solution to whichever data center makes sense. So we had to build a portable, end-to-end solution to be able to accomplish this. We used standard technologies like Oracle API Gateway because it is portable, standard containers - OpenShift in on-prem but we can deploy these containers in any environment and a standard relational database, the solution is portable and that’s the beauty of it, it gives you so much flexibility.
4. What guidance would you give to customers as they navigate or start this transformation journey?
One step at a time, do some research, all the information is out there. If you are at OpenWorld or if you had the opportunity to come here, I hope you would have gotten a lot of information on this space. Starting to read about trends like cloud native development, containers, Kafka, API Management, I think these topics are going to be prevalent for the next 2-3 years, and if you are not on the band-wagon yet, you should get into it, because it is enabling businesses.
5. What is your favorite place to eat in San Francisco at the moment?
La Tacqueria in Mission Street – lovely stuff, go there!
You can see the rest of the blog series here.
Jules @ Rubicon Red
Manager, Marketing and Events