Why AMS is obsolete?

If you want to know the details, you can go through the code.

AMS

Recently, I got a surprising comment from an AMS (Application Managed Support) vendor above. This really confirm my view that AMS will be obsolete in the emergence of DevOps. Luckily, our team have been less reliance on AMS and transitioning to DevOps model over the past few years. Therefore, there is totally no issue for our team to read the codes. However, such mindset is the reason why AMS will be replaced in the next few years.

Paradigm Shift
  • There is little value add for organisations to support AMS with focus on clearing tickets and reduce SLA.
  • AMS objectives are outdated due to paradigm shift to Cloud and Agile.
  • There is no knowledge increase in AMS resources to achieve better Customer Experience (CX).
  • The values of AMS contradicts that of newer paradigms.
The Replacements
  • AMS is gradually being replaced by either DevOps or Self Service Technologies (SST).
  • New experiential indicators are gaining popularity to measure user satisfaction.
  • It is more cost effective and efficient to replace than to retrain existing AMS.

These reasons serve as constant reminders that new paradigm will always replace in favor of old. It helps to push us to seek long term skillset in preparation of this shift. Thus, we should not be contended in our comfort zone.

Digital Transformation and Migration

I find an interesting item while decluttering. This item reminds me of digital transformation and migration. So what have these two subjects have in common?

Digital Transformation of Legacy System

Digital Transformation comes at a much steeper cost if you have legacy system. The key consideration is what you should and able to transform. Although there are many consultants who can advise on the subject of digital transformation, very few can tell you what you can transform in relative to your existing legacy systems. This creates a dilemma of whether to starting afresh or maintaining your legacy systems. Inevitably, you will need to consider migration approach instead.

Migration of legacy system

The decision on migration of legacy system is typical of big organisations. However, this comes a huge risk which are common to all migration project i.e cost and duration. Do start with a simple checklist before you make this decision. They may increase the success rate and decrease the migration costs.

  • Do you own all the source codes or the capabilities of your legacy system?
  • Can the pilot migration be completed within 3 months?
  • Are you practicing Agile or DevOps approach?

It is a simple checklist but difficult to achieve. Experience shows that duration is proportional to cost and greater success is achieved with quick deployment. In-house SME or Agile DevOps will ensure you can handle any migration constraints between legacy and your transformed system.

Cloud Consideration

The Cloud phenomenon is here to stay. Yet, many organisations remained entrenched in traditional department and structures that split into Infrastructure, Security and Application teams. You can easily spot the great divide from the job title and job description (JD) in the job posting. Here is why more change needs to be effected for Cloud.

Organising for Cloud
  • The split between Infrastructure, Security and Application teams must be eliminated and teams will need to structured for Cloud architecture.
  • Cross functional teams needs to be encouraged because Cloud have automated many of traditional infrastructures and security roles.
  • Teams needs to be focused on metering and cost visibility to leverage monitoring of supply and demand with Cloud.
  • Your team must be designed to maximise Cloud functionality using Templates and Enterprise Architecture approach.

Digitalisation and Digital Transformation with Cloud comes with digital mindset and the spirit to change. However, we will continue to see a steep battle for Cloud resources to entangle with traditional Infrastructure, Security and Application. Find your change agent and effect your organizational change! Cloud is a total change, it is not just hiring Cloud!

Social Considerations in being Tech-enabled

Digitalisation and technology have permeated our lives. COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated this process. The digital divide is growing wider and faster. Although our younger generation grow up in a tech enabled world, it will take decades before the entire world become tech enabled. There must be social considerations in our path to Tech-enabled economy.

Checklist of Social Considerations

  • There must be the capability to share and unshare information by content owner.
  • Organisation do not own the content by content creator.
  • The collection and usage of information must be transparent.
  • Content must only be monetised with consent.
  • Parental controls must be enabled for all content.

In a non-physical world, social considerations are often neglected. The rights and protection of data must be continue to be emphasised for tech-enabled world. We should also protect our young ones who should not be exposed to the information for their age.

Digital Mindset

Digital transformation is not just digital changes. Transform your mindset as well.

Me

Digital Transformation may be the hype now! However, not many have adopted the the right approach. One critical step in digital transformation is the change in mindset.

What is Digital Mindset?

Digital Mindset refers to the realisation that digital transformation will help to automate existing SOP (Standard Operating Procedures) and accelerate innovation. The Digital Mindset can be effected at different level of organisations from top-down to bottom-up. It needs to be permeated to all rank and file to actions and behaviours.

Digital Champions and Influencers

The initial Digital Transformation is mainly driven by market condition. The attitude “Everyone is doing it, so should we!” is often adopted with no clear change to existing mindset. There will always be a large group of resistance rallied against the efforts of Digital Transformation. Organisation Champions and Influencers must be well placed to support the change to Digital Mindset. In a way, the message of change is sent clearly and strongly.

Resistance is futile.

Star Trek: The Next Generation – The Borg
Digital Motivation and Reinforcement

While there is trigger on the change for Digital Mindset, the next important step is to motivate and reinforce the new actions and behaviours. A good communication team, who is well versed in the art of digital transformation, is required to convey motivation messages to encourage the benefits of these changes. Feedback must be taken to reinforce the Digital Mindset and ensure the organisation stay on track.

Clearly, the thing that’s transforming is not the technology — the technology is transforming you.

Jeanne W. Ross of MIT Sloan’s Center for Information Systems Research

Oracle ODA Composite Bag

After pulling my hair in Oracle ODA intro, I strive onwards and continue my foray into the deep pit of ODA (Oracle Digital Assistant). Today is my first attempt to try out the ODA entities. There are variables in ODA that are described as Entities like real world data format. In this module, there is a cool feature called Composite Bag.

Source: Oracle

Composite Bag allows you to fill in variables grouped in a “bag”. There is also a neat feature to let you auto resolve entities via the chatbot. It really sounds very cool but getting it to work is harder than I thought.

For example, a composite bag for a pizza might include entities for type, size, crust, and extra toppings. If a user enters “I’d like a large pepperoni pizza with a gluten-free crust”, the skill could extract “large”, “pepperoni”, and “gluten-free” from that input and not need to prompt the user for those values individually.

Oracle

As this is a new concept to me, the sequence, flow and placement of the code is important. It takes me a while to reference the pizza template repeatedly and changing the variable to what you have. In the end, I manage to get the auto prompt working! Code wise, it is much elegant than my individual variables.

However, I hit issue to display the bag details. Grrr. I must retry pizza example to analyse how to display Composite Bag details. Another side note is that I have yet to test composite bag for REST or integration. That will be another battle!

Not sure if Oracle heard me, please include auto complete in the syntax and flag the flow error for YAML!

TMS Challenges Checklist

Transportation Management System (TMS) challenges are constantly hounding traditional organisations. Like Digital Transformation, it faces its fair share of challenges during system implementation. This is a simple checklist to evaluate the challenges you are expected to face in TMS implementation.

  1. Is TMS your main business?
  2. Do you have legacy TMS that are different from global TMS?
  3. Are there more than 3 stakeholders involved beside the TMS operational staffs?
  4. Is there a clear TMS strategy provided by your business team?
  5. Do you have TMS subject matter expert (SME) in your organisation?

Providing the answers to above checklist will give you a clearer picture of where your TMS implementation is heading. By having answers to the checklist, you will be better prepared. You may realise that TMS is also a digital transformation. That is why there are many similarities in the challenges. Do not make the mistake of executing TMS with just IT involvement!

Oracle ODA Chatbot Development Intro

My latest “hobby” is playing with Oracle Digital Assistant (ODA) Chatbot. However, this is taking me longer than usual to get used to it. I will think that ODA is a simple configuration of ask and response. Sadly, it is still very code driven. Today is my nearly 3/4 of immersion day struggling and dedicated to master ODA.

Source: Oracle ODA
More Templates Please

I will love to have more templates to quick start my Chatbot beside ordering PizzaBot. By now, I am getting sick of looking at Pizza. Templates alway speed up development as we just need to change certain variables and tweak the flow. Oracle Help is not really very helpful too.

YAML flow error

Anyone playing with JS, NodeJs or PHP will be always expert in syntax troubleshooting? Seriously, I enjoy this loose coding too. For one moment, I and baffled by YAML flow error. YAML is suppose to be a human readable language. However, the error flagged is magician level. Guess what, the error is due to a missing close quote “. Level up!

Takeaway from Intro

In a way, it is a new paradigm way in trying code for a natural language. Somehow, I feel that the ODA environment is still seated in the old development model. I will prefer more drag and drop instead of mastering the syntax. It is definitely not for business or layman to configure. There is a sense of achievement to create the chat. I will get used with more days of development.

Network Orchestration 101

Have you ever heard of network orchestration? The word is coined to describe network orchestrators who are

… companies [that] create a network of peers in which the participants interact and share in the value creation. They may sell products or services, build relationships, share advice, give reviews, collaborate, co-create and more. Examples include eBay, Red Hat, Visa, Uber, Tripadvisor, and Alibaba.

Harvard Business Review 2014

With eCommerce, network orchestrators are so common that they compromise majority of online portals. Traditionally, logistics companies are also network orchestrators. This is simple 101 view on how network orchestrators worked and what they are.

  1. Organisations have strong networked relationships like consortium or alliances.
  2. Digitalisation is a key feature of network orchestrators.
  3. There is a heavy emphasis of knowledge creation and ownership for network orchestrators.
  4. Intangible assets are evaluated and contains many unquantifiable values like networked effects, trust and perceived value.
  5. Consumers are tightly coupled with interchangeable features and relationships with the network orchestrators.

Are you able to identify network orchestration now?

IoT 101

Internet of Things (IoT) is coming strong to the typical consumers. Those in manufacturing will know that this is not a new technology. The explosion of IoT adoption comes from two key factors, the ease of deployment with Cloud and the falling prices of sensors.

What is IoT?

Historically, manufacturing environment needs to be controlled to ensure the product is consistent e.g. temperature, humidity or lighting lumens. Sensors are placed through the manufacturing plant to know the product production, and size and control with full or semi automated processes. Data are fed to the main control room to track all the things in the production floor. What if this concept can be applied for consumer to keep track of devices, things or even temperature like a home?

IoT is SMART

Learning from manufacturing, data can be obtained from the devices as long the main control or console can interpret the information. For a while, this is achieved in decentralized manner using a variety of existing technology like WiFi or Bluetooth. With Cloud Technologies, providers are able to provide IoT consoles to connect various devices with API connectors. Now, layman can easily setup Smart Home with simple setup. Logistics providers can use GPS to track vehicles with SIM cards.

If you think that the internet has changed your life, think again. The Internet of Things is about to change it all over again!

Brendan O’Brien

For more readings, you can check out these books on IoT.