Why Should You Give A Toss About IBM’s InterConnect Announcements?

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IBM made plenty of big announcements this week, but why do any of them matter to you?

IBM announced a bunch of stuff at its annual customer conference, IBM InterConnect, in Las Vegas this week.

Who cares? So what? Who gives a toss? These are the kind of questions asked en masse after almost every announcement at any technology conference – albeit rhetorically.

But, at TechWeekEurope, if we’re going to ask a question, let’s at least have a bloody answer. So, why should anyone care about IBM’s Interconnect announcements?

Great question. First off, why any of IBM’s InterConnect reveals may be significant really depends on who you are. So, let’s dig into this a little.

For the developers

Out of all of IBM’s updates, there were three in particular that have the potential to make developers’ lives so much better (from a work point-of-view, at least). These revolve around Swift, Whisk and GitHub.

who gives a toss1. Swift announcement

IBM unveiled a whole bunch of projects that its been working on to advance the Swift language for application developers.

IBM detailed the next step on its journey to bringing Swift to the Cloud. It is now the first cloud provider to enable the development of applications in native Swift, server-side. This is important news for anyone who views software as a strategic asset.

2. Whisk

IBM says it wants to simplify cloud development, smashing through pesky barriers for developers who want to move their applications into the cloud.

This is where IBM Bluemix OpenWhisk comes in to play. This is a new open, event-driven platform that lets developers build more feature-rich apps, quickly and easily, that automatically trigger responses to events.

The IBM Bluemix OpenWhisk platform enables developers to quickly build microservices that execute software code in response to events such as the clicking of a mouse or the receiving of sensor data from any IOT device. When an event occurs, the code is automatically executed. As a result, developers need not worry about things like pre-provisioning infrastructure, such as servers or operations –they can simply focus on code, dramatically speeding up the process.

The new IBM Bluemix OpenWhisk provides developers with a unique set of capabilities to rapidly turn ideas into business value:

·     Chaining. Built-in chaining enables teams to individually develop small pieces of code or microservices and later quickly connect them together in a sequence.

·     Integrated Container Support. Any custom code put in a Docker container can be run, eliminating vendor lock-in and providing more freedom and control for developers who need to exploit legacy code in their event handlers.

·     Language Support, Including Swift. Support for multiple languages including Node.js and Swift gives app developers greater flexibility.

·     Built-in Cognitive Capabilities. Use of Watson enables apps to be written that perform cognitive analysis and provide unique and transformative experiences.

With Bluemix OpenWhisk small teams can break down complex problems and work on smaller pieces of code simultaneously, quickly and simply

3. GitHub for enterprise

IBM and GitHub – a software platform used by more than 12 million developers to collaborate – have joined forces to dramatically advance the development of next generation cloud applications for enterprise customers.

IBM and GitHub want to deliver GitHub Enterprise as a dedicated service on Bluemix, IBM’s Cloud Platform, to customers across private and hybrid cloud environments. By working with IBM Cloud, developers can expect to learn, code and work with GitHub’s collaborative development tools in a private, environment with robust security capabilities.

With GitHub Enterprise, code collaboration, code reuse, and review are built into the development process, offering managed, collaborative coding for large-scale enterprise software development teams. As part of Bluemix, the solution will provide customers with Hybrid DevOps capabilities through the Bluemix Dedicated and Local managed delivery models.

As a result, customers can expect to have a unique opportunity to build software using GitHub Enterprise on Bluemix, allowing their developers to create end-to-end enterprise apps within IBM Cloud without having to worry about the overhead costs of infrastructure.

The folks in the C-Suite

That’s the developers sorted. Now, how about the good people of the boardroom? This is where Bitly gets a shout out.

IBM is collaborating with Bitly, a link management platform geared towards helping companies get the most out of their social and online marketing efforts.

With Bitly, users can shorten and brand the links they share online, and keep track of them as they travel across the Internet. Links can be optimised across every device and marketing channel. And individual link analytics can be tracked, gathering audience intelligence and measuring campaign performance in one location.

IBM and Bitly are working together to support data publishing via Universal Behavior Exchange and incorporate link management into the IBM Marketing Cloud to help marketers better understand and engage customers. Bitly today has 25 billion links to IBM cloud.

The IBM Marketing Cloud powers the delivery of exceptional experiences for customers across the buyer journey by leveraging customer data, providing analytical insights and automating relevant cross-channel interactions – all through the reliable IBM Cloud platform. Customers will be able to access Bitly’s services and insights through the IBM Marketing Cloud.

This is a partnership that will enable CIOs to give their marketing managers more power and valuable insight into the work they’re doing.

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