Last year at TechEd we talked about deploying technologies in a blended way – both on premises and in the cloud.  We also talked about a framework for thinking about which applications might benefit the most from the blended world.  Specifically, applications can be grouped in two buckets – core and commodity.    Core – things that make your business really unique. Commodity – things that are important, but not secret sauce – think Expense Reporting. Those who started the journey a year ago are starting to see real benefits.

 

Here we are at TechEd a year later with some new trends on the horizon – this time, it’s the convergence of technologies that has us really excited. There are four distinct major technology trends which are beginning to converge. Looking into the future, we see a perfect storm of productivity and application richness brewing. Specifically, SOA, SaaS, Application Virtualization and Modeling will collide and spark a wave of application creation that we haven’t seen since Al Gore invented the Internet. Let me paint you a picture - developers will compose business critical applications from services they didn’t author, run them in datacenters they don’t own, manage them at a policy level, and pay for them by the drink.

 

Let’s take a look at these four trends. Today, developers build services and expose them across the firewall, which looks a lot like SaaS. Modeling technologies are being used to aggregate services into composite apps.  Cloud based, Application virtualization will allow developers to think about their infrastructure in logical terms rather than physical – imagine datacenter as you go.  No more worrying about building something and having too much or too little.  You eliminate the Three Bears problem, not too hot, not too cold – but just right.

 

Microsoft architecting for convergence.  When it comes to building apps that will live in the cloud, we know developers will want to harness their existing skills, leverage their existing apps and connect to existing third party apps. Today we have sevarla active incubations running – BizTalk Services, SSDS and Live Mesh to name a few.  We’ll say a lot more about our plans for the cloud at the PDC in October.