Autonomic Computing and the Internet
15 Minutes with IBM's Irving Wladawsky-Berger
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At Kennedy Information's Consulting Summit 3.0, Irving Wladawsky-Berger, vice president of technology and strategy for IBM's server group, gave a presentation to nearly 200 industry executives, including consultants, vendors, and developers, regarding his view on autonomic computing and the Internet as the future computing platform. Through the use of the Internet, autonomic computing can enable computers to check for and resolve any problems without human aid. If a system is low on memory, it surfs the Internet for more memory. If a system detects a hacker, it can put up firewalls or retrieve security software over the Internet. After his presentation Wladawsky-Berger sat down with CRM magazine Editor-in-Chief Elliot Markowitz to discuss how grid and autonomic computing are critical to the CRM marketplace. CRM: How has the evolution of the Internet as a platform affected the CRM market? Wladawsky-Berger: The number one value of the Internet is customer service. The Internet has opened up the ability for companies to do a better job in providing customer service seven days a week, 24 hours a day. CRM is it, when it comes to e-business. CRM: What are some of the challenges standing in the way of true distributed and collaborative computing through the Internet? WB: The biggest challenge is to integrate the different communications channels, whether it be e-mail, Web-based, or telephone-based, to improve customer service. More customers want to deal with the brand, regardless of the communication channel. But integrating those channels is much easier said than done. CRM: How does autonomic computing relate to CRM? WB: Hopefully, what autonomic computing can do is have a big value of capabilities when dealing with customer service. When dealing with the Web, the systems should not go down. When dealing with customer data and security, don't get hacked. To customer interfacing applications such as CRM, autonomic capabilities will bring great benefits. CRM: What is IBM's role in shaping the CRM landscape? WB: We recognize the importance of CRM. We work with many CRM application vendors to make sure we have the hardware and middleware, and can provide the services through IBM Global Services to help our customers integrate their ERP solution with a CRM solution. We look across the entire collaborative enterprise. We are not a CRM application developer. We have the ability to do a better job in integrating and supporting CRM solutions than build a specific CRM application.
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