Experts reveal infrastructure trends to watch

A new report examines the state of infrastructure and anticipated near-term developments through the eyes of infrastructure experts.

By Jenn Webb
October 4, 2018
Messeplatz Messeplatz (source: Ricardo Gomez Angel on Unsplash)

Trends like server virtualization, containers, serverless, and hardware abstraction are shifting the infrastructure landscape. Functions as a service (FaaS) and infrastructure as a utility are also gaining traction. These changes mean infrastructure experts and the organizations that employ them must evolve as the industry evolves.

With that in mind, O’Reilly recently examined the state of infrastructure and anticipated near-term developments through the eyes of infrastructure experts. In the resulting free report, “Infrastructure Now 2018,” the collected insights from these experts highlight what matters now and what’s around the corner.

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Takeaways from the report include:

  • Democratization and standardization—while ensuring security—are key to successfully keeping pace with evolving infrastructure. Whether you’re building tools or choosing new technology to work into your platform, the tools must be accessible to a wide range of skill sets, compatible with (or easily ingested into) existing systems, and cost effective.
  • Reducing complexity is the overwhelming trend expected in the next 10 years: from containers and serverless, to cloud services, to “easily composable business applications,” the infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) movement is expected to continue and expand.
  • Evolving infrastructure and the trend toward abstraction is going to require changes in roles for people in DevOps, Site Reliability Engineering (SRE), and operations positions. This shift is largely looked upon with optimism, but the experts anticipate a move away from specialized positions toward a need for generalists and full-stack engineers.
  • Not everyone interviewed for the report agreed, but it appears legacy infrastructure is here to stay, and new legacy infrastructure woes are anticipated. One expert predicts “a spaghetti ball of interconnected microservices,” and another pointed out that “everything becomes legacy as soon as it hits production.”
  • Improvements in containers and serverless technology top the list of expectations for the next 12 months. Some experts are already seeing signs that infrastructure as a utility is imminent.

For more on these topics and other key infrastructure issues, download the full report.

Post topics: Operations