No Lazy Summer for Enterprise Tech

Opinion: Momentum is building for a disruptive year to come.

As I walked into the lobby of the San Francisco Hilton last Wednesday, it certainly didnt feel like the dog days of ITs summer. The hotel was hosting the Shared Insights conference on Customer Self Service technology and practice, where I gave an afternoon session on security issues for customer- and partner-facing sites—which I summarized in my InfraSpectrum podcast later that week.

Among my key points: The growing requirements imposed on those who handle personal data, and the rising expectations of customers and partners for reliable protection, make it ever more attractive for all but the largest sites to purchase security from expert service providers rather than trying to do it themselves.

Also on site at the Hilton were the LinuxWorld throngs, who heard IBM promise that Linux was just the beginning of the open-source transformation of enterprise IT— and who also heard creative-rights legal eagle Lawrence Lessig congratulate them for not needing IBM to legitimize their craziness.

Meanwhile, at the other end of the country in Baltimore, eWEEKs indefatigable Darryl Taft appeared to be mind-melding with our Web site to produce a steady stream of news from the IBM Share enterprise user group event—and somewhere near the great-circle route between us, researchers at Chicago-based Luhrq were busily deconstructing the command-and-control infrastructure of the Mocbot Trojan that triggered this months unusually urgent warning from the Department of Homeland Security.

So much for taking any kind of summer vacation.

Under the circumstances, it would be all too tempting to head for the IT war room and occupy yourself full time with fighting the fires of network threats and staying abreast of technical disruptions. As difficult as it may be, though, I hope that this columns readers will also find time to make themselves an integral part of the enterprise strategy sessions that are ultimately the reason for doing the IT gruntwork—and not fall into the trap of thinking that IT is an end, not a means.

Tell me whats on your war rooms radar at


Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, reviews and analysis in programming environments and developer tools.