Sunday, January 04, 2009

Market Predictions - CEP

What lies in store?

Complex Event Processing (CEP) guru David Luckham asks What are your predictions for 2009?

What challenges?

Prediction is hard, especially for experts. What is easier is to identify some of the challenges that have to be addressed. For example:

CEP Products or Services?

David's starting point was a Forrester estimate of the market for CEP software and services. But what kind of services are these? Is Forrester just talking about conventional systems integration services - e.g. paying consultants to build and install your CEP systems? Or are we starting to see a genuine service economy based around the trading and collaborative processing of events?

A certain amount of this kind of thing goes on in the security world, with specialist firms performing what is essentially collective event processing for a number of customers (Monitoring-as-a-Service). But apart from that, I haven't seen much evidence of a distributed economy of complex events.

But why might this kind of thing be particularly interesting in 2009? Because the prevailing economic environment may make it harder to justify people going it alone, building large and complex event-processing applications for their own use.

Shortening the lead

Most people are expecting 2009 to be a tough year. In such circumstances, there is a widespread reluctance to invest scarce resources on remote gains; any vendors trying to sell solutions to business will need to find innovative ways of shortening and tightening the lead between investment and return.

For example, instead of vendors offering an elaborate set of CEP products, together with consultants skilled in wiring them together, there may be demand for out-of-the-box hosted solutions.

Shared Event Semantics

But in order to share events and event processing, firms will need to have a common event model. Which brings us back to some of the challenges identified by Opher, Paul and Tim ...

And Not Just Complex Event Processing ...

These arguments don't just apply to complex event processing, but to many areas of new technology. I'll look at some other areas in subsequent posts ...

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