It’s probably fitting to be a little grandiose on this, the first Bob Blog (BLOB) of our revamped website, and paint the world with a large brush. So here goes…

We here at MXN see a huge paradigm shift afoot, comparable with the seismic shift from amber-and-green terminals in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s to PC’s. And that’s a shift from PC’s, with their ever more complex and harder-to-manage mini-environments, to a community of display devices linked by networks to private and public cloud-based resources. But that’s not all! The improvement in the power and cost of devices of all types means that there’s a wide variety of devices that can access these resources. And this also means that people are now able to own these devices in many types. And they’re campaigning to bring their own favorite device to work or to school instead of using an organizational device. A number of companies have committed to supporting user-owned devices in the name of employee satisfaction and productivity. Colleges and universities have done it for years.

So far this is not new information. But here’s a tidbit that may make this particular BLOB worth the time: IT managers who still own and run PC’s probably ought to quit fighting the change, embrace it, and in fact lead the charge. Why? Two reasons.

First, it’s far better to shape the discussion into more relevant directions than not have a voice in the inevitable decision. But another reason to get out in front is that aside from the predicted doom-and-gloom, this change is probably of great benefit to IT. I can see tremendous time-and-cost savings for IT in moving back to the IT model of the 1970’s–that of providing reliable core systems. Back in the 1970’s, and before the 1980’s IT was in its glory–managing predictable, stable systems and regularly seeing their families for dinner. MVS was expensive as all get-out, but it was rock-solid.

I really do think that it’s time to have your cake and eat it. There are tools available that allow IT to let go of the edge and still provide reliable, stable and predictable service, and with all of (or most of) the services that drove end users and then IT to the PC in the first place.

Envision a world without the need to buy/refresh/manage all of that edge equipment. Think of the capital savings! Think of a world where you’re centrally managing a stable and predictable conduit-and-fulfillment system instead of a horde of ill-managed, internally incompatible end stations. Think of hot food on the dinner table every night at a reasonable hour.

Yep, it’s possible again. We’re assembling tools and techniques for our K-12 users to make this happen, and happen easily. (We’re starting with K-12 since their IT fulfillment needs are dire.) But since information is information, networks are networks and security requirements are consistent, this should be generalizable to any organization.

Enough for the first post! BOB