I am deeply involved in technology. I find it fascinating to see how technology rapidly changes our world like some freewheeling bulldozer plowing an uncaring path right through the center of society.
I was sitting in an airport over the Holidays waiting for my plane to arrive and I began thinking about the death of the travel agent.
I will admit that I am old enough to remember when travel involved travel agencies. You could call the airlines for a reservation, but it took forever and the prices you received were usually worse than the prices from a travel agent. Your best bet was to call a travel agent who would coordinate everything for you.
<blockquote>Businesses are beginning to realize that they can save a lot of money, improve flexibility, agility and capability by embracing the cloud.</blockquote>
Ironically when you called a travel agent, the reason they could get you these great deals was because they had a computer with special access to airline reservations. They could see all the flights and available hotel rooms. They had special pricing based on what they could see and how much they sold. The very thing that they were leveraging to make them profitable, in truth to make them exist, would also be the same thing that would show up ten years later and demolish their business. The one doing the bulldozing is the cloud.
While the term cloud is relatively new, the concept isn’t. Companies like Travelocity and Orbitz are just cloud based travel agents. Today, these cloud services are what we use to virtually book travel. We have become our own Travel Agents and the job of the professional Travel Agent has been bulldozed.
That is not to say Travel Agents don’t exist, they do. But now they are boutique shops servicing special needs like exotic foreign travel. There are also travel agents inside companies to control costs and increase convenience. But those agents largely leverage the same tools you and I have access to. They are large scaled cloud users.
So here I am in Austin Airport, surrounded by people whose lives, other than the former Travel Agents, have been made fundamentally better, more flexible, more agile and more cost effective all because of the cloud. This got me thinking about IDS and its cloud offerings. While on the surface they don’t seem related, underneath they are exactly the same. IT is becoming a commodity.
Businesses are beginning to realize that they can save a lot of money, improve flexibility, agility and capability by embracing the cloud. There will always be the special scenarios, yet the majority of IT is not unique. The bulldozer is revving up and it’s coming after traditional IT services.
IDS is already there in the cloud, ready to help companies leverage this new service and move them from becoming victims, in front of the oncoming blade, to being in the driver’s seat, shaping the future.[Additional reading: “My Personal Journey To The Cloud” written by IDS CTO Justin Mescher.]