Monday, December 19, 2011

Key forces shaping software development and lifecycle management

LONDON, UK: 2012 will see software development and lifecycle management taken to new heights, predicts Ovum.

In a new report, the independent technology analyst firm has identified four key trends in software development and lifecycle management which will shape the prospects for businesses in 2012:

* There will be greater adoption of second-generation Agile and Lean ideas.
* DevOps is changing the roles of developers and operators.
* HTML5 will dominate rich-user interface development.
* Software lifecycle management for embedded software will become instrumental in avoiding future crises in product manufacturing.

Chandranshu Singh, senior analyst, IT Services at Ovum and co-author of the report, said: “The software lifecycle management (SLM) market has continued on its evolutionary trajectory since 2011. Application development cloud services continue to play a role in the market as customers look for cost savings and confidence grows in using off-premises solutions.”

Ovum expects to see more large-scale projects adopting Agile practices in 2012, but with some fine tuning to fit the needs of particular business and engineering domains. Kanban is a practice that is being melded into Agile practices. This second-generation approach has grown from the influence of Lean development on Agile development.

While Agile is using a second-generation approach, the DevOps movement is a grassroots initiative for process reform in IT operations. It takes its cue from the development side, which has adopted newer development methodologies and practices, such as various flavors of Agile.

Singh suggests a shared value system changes the way IT professionals think about how they work, interact and communicate with others, and how they rise to meet challenges. He also says that the operations function is looking to re-engineer its processes for greater capacity and agility, better and reliable releases, and fewer production defects.

Elsewhere, HTML5 has entered the mainstream with support for mobile devices that is now consistent enough to make it a good choice for mobile app development. Ovum predicts that in 2012 that this position will strengthen. The rise in embedded software has brought to the fore the need to integrate the worlds of SLM and PLM.

Michael Azoff, principal analyst and co-author of the report, added: “HTML5 will become an important requirement for application developers who wish to reach as many devices as possible without having to make client-dependent changes. This application is being looked at as a long-term web application platform by key players such as Apple, Facebook, Google, and Microsoft.”

The HTML5 applications will be the cause for the shrinking plug-in market. Ovum believes that in 2012 HTML5 for mobile application development will grow significantly as this standard becomes the neutral ground in a market that some players are attempting to corner with proprietary rules.

Azoff commented: “The amount of embedded software in manufactured products is already high and is expected to double in the next few years. In order to manage embedded software effectively, organizations would need to address performance, quality, and security issues. This is why in 2012 we see manufacturing organizations realizing the need to manage the software lifecycle in an integrated way with the product lifecycle.”

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