There is a fundamental mismatch between what enterprise IT is good at and what is happening on the Internet. For investment projects, IT organizations typically spend six to eight years from initial conceptualization through selling, planning, testing and implementation of the first release. Project cycles, life spans and frequencies of Internet-related developments (and consumer-related product or service introductions) are radically different.
Gartner is (characteristically) playing up technology discontinuities as if they’re new things; as if they’re supposed to be surprising or demoralizing. Please.
I remember the days when the PC (and Mac) arrived in corporations alongside green screen terminals. I remember when laser printers and inkjets arrived. These were tremendously disruptive to the “Data Processing” departments and leaders. It put power in the hands of the users instead of keeping it under centralized control.
When PDAs were on the rise — with Pocket PC and Palm devices flourishing — it was a huge mess, especially in the medical sector, as security of data became a major issue and the devices were often bought by employees and not companies. Same thing today with iPhones, Gmail, social media, etc.
So yeah, there are changes afoot, many of them huge, but it’s not something new. IT departments are the new DP departments. It’s natural to cycle from disruption to stability to disruption and back again.
And by the way, why the hell is Gartner listing software as a service and cloud computing separately? Yes, there can be differences, but really you’re talking about utility computing. They’re effectively the same for most businesses, especially since most do *not* run “clouds” or SaaS internally.
I don’t know who’s more lame in this situation — Gartner for pointing it out (someone’s apparently new to business technology) or ZDnet (for reporting it so breathlessly).