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Analyst roundup: humans, machines, Ethernet and combating hackers

Analyst roundup: humans, machines, Ethernet and combating hackers
September 2, 2013in Business2013-09-022013-09-10businessen
How will machines and humans work together to build the enterprise of the future? Read about this and other new research from analyst houses.

human machine relationships focus of Gartner’s emerging technology hype cycle

Analyst Gartner has made the evolving relationship between human and machine the focus of its latest emerging technologies hype cycle. Jackie Fenn, vice president and Gartner fellow says that there appear to be three main trends to the human-machine relationship: augmentation, replacement and cooperation.

In terms of augmenting humans with technology, this could include equipping an employee with a wearable computing device. Emerging technologies in this field include bio-acoustic sensing, augmented reality and gesture control. Machines can also replace humans, such as “a cognitive virtual assistant acting as an automated customer representative,” explains Fenn. Here technologies include holographic displays, autonomous vehicles and mobile robots. Finally a cooperative relationship could be a mobile robot working with a warehouse employee to move many boxes.

As the relationship between humans and machines evolves, enterprises can use them to improve productivity, transform citizen and customer experience. “Machines are becoming better at understanding humans and the environment, for example, recognizing the emotion in a person's voice, and humans are becoming better at understanding machines, for example, through the Internet of things,” Hung LeHong, research vice president at Gartner. “At the same time, machines and humans are getting smarter by working together.”

Ethernet services market booming says analyst Ovum

According to a new report from analyst Ovum, the global enterprise Ethernet services market will exceed US$62bn by 2018, this represents a strong 13.6% compound growth rate from 2012 onwards. Regionally the fastest growing market is the APAC (ex-Japan), where growth is predicted to reach 23.9% over the timeframe. In Japan, however, Ethernet is a mature technology, with growth estimated at just 5.3%.

“Ethernet and IP VPN are the two essential data-optimized WAN connectivity technologies that are supplanting many legacy data connectivity technologies,” explains Ian Redpath, principal analyst, Network Infrastructure, at Ovum. He says that Ethernet remains an attractive choice for enterprises looking to combine separate voice and data networks into a single converged infrastructure.

new generation of security threats spawning specialised tools to combat them, says IDC

Enterprises are turning to new  tools to protect themselves from increasingly sophisticated attacks from hackers looking to steal financial and intellectual property. Analyst IDC has dubbed this new generation of tools specialized threat analysis and protection (STAP). It predicts that worldwide market for them will reach $1.17 billion in 2017, a compound growth rate of 42.2% from 2012.

“Organizations have quickly begun to realize that they need improved protection against targeted attacks,” said John Grady, Research Manager with IDC's Security Products group. “IDC has seen these solutions become a strategic necessity for many organizations, especially in the financial services and government sectors, with budget being quickly allocated to prioritize deployment.”

The key characteristic of these tools is that the use a predominantly signature-less technology – such as sandboxing, emulation, big data analytics and containerization – to detect malicious activity. STAP tools can be located at the network level, the end-point or both. They essentially scan network traffic for anomalies, such as botnet or command instructions. 

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