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IT managers consumed by complicated systems: CTO

IT managers consumed by complicated systems: CTO

Open source key to IT innovation

Striking a balance between the needs of IT managers and software developers will lead to greater innovation in the IT space, a CTO has claimed.

In Australia for this week’s VMware VForum, SpringSource’s chief technology officer for management products, Javier Soltero, spoke to CIO Australia about the conflict that exists in IT departments.

“You create a fundamental war between the developers who are the creative people who want to bring applications to life and fulfil the needs of the business, and the IT people that are trying to keep come sense of continuity and normalcy in the enterprise because they are the ones being woken up in the middle of the night trying to support it,” Soltero claimed.

Soltero said the war between IT managers and developers has arisen amid industry pressure to ‘rip and replace’ legacy systems with a fully virtualised environment.

“There’s always organisations that opt to rip and replace,” he said. “The rip part does a disservice to all of the IT professionals who planted the seeds to begin with…[and] it makes it much more difficult to comply with when to rip things out.”

Soltero also claimed that IT managers spend only a small portion of their time looking at the future of IT and are instead consumed by the complicated nature of IT systems.

“IT spends roughly 70 per cent of their time just dealing with the existing state of affairs and trying to maintain things and keep them running and 30 per cent of the time doing forward looking work,” he said. “This is all because IT has become so complicated.”

Adopting open source software was one way for IT managers to simplify the IT environment, according to Soltero.

“The most fundamental role for open source in the enterprise is to enable the adoption of technologies without vendor intervention,” he said. “One of the greatest things about open source is that it wins on its own merits. It doesn’t win because it has the best marketing campaign.”

Soltero said that having a flexible licence agreement was important for open source adoption to be popular.

“It’s technology that’s presented to the end user as available and under a licence that enables them to use it successfully.”

Soltero’s insights come as NASA last week announced plans to adopt an open source cloud computing solution after its CTO said he couldn’t see why the organisation needed to utilise data centre infrastructure.

Read about more IT managers in CIO Australia's Management section.

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