Paul Fremantle, CTO and Co-Founder of WSO2, gave a conference during the last edition of WSO2Con Europe about the importance of companies adapting to their landscape.
If you did not know Paul Fremantle, you should know that in addition to being co-founder of WSO2, he is known as the father of Cloud Native Computing. He has worked at IBM as a STSM and has a long track record on Open Source and Middleware.
In WSO2Con Europe 2017, Paul started his talk with a reference to Marc Andreeseen’s quote “Software is eating the world”, adding that, in addition, it is changing the way companies work and act.
It is important to mention that companies do not just need to embrace digital transformation; they need to go beyond that, adapting to their environment. This is a key fact, since only those companies that are capable of building adapted digital experiences will be competitive in the future.
“Only those companies that are capable of building adapted digital experiences will be competitive in the future.”
But what does it mean for a company to be adapted? In short, it means:
- Detecting market trends faster.
- Reacting faster to consumer demands.
- Being more flexible to meet market demands.
- Create new digital products faster.
- Balanced costs between workloads and turnovers.
“A company being more or less adapted to the consumer is highly related to its fixed expenses structure”
A company being more or less adapted to the consumer is highly related to its fixed expenses structure. If the company is small, it will have more margin to adapt. Conversely, if its fixed expenses are very high, the company will be limited to making the most profits from them, putting adaptation to the consumer aside.
In order to explain this adaptation, Paul draws a parallel with the concept of biological adaptation: “which takes place in every system where interaction and generation exist.” Therefore, he concludes that company adaptation is a continuous process.
On the subject of biology, Fremantle explains that there are two kinds of adaptations: vertical gene transfer and horizontal gene transfer. To better understand it in terms related to our sector, the former would be jumping from one code to another, while horizontal transfer would be what we know as open source.
WSO2 follows a horizontal transfer, since based on its code, its clients may include it in their platforms and create IT solutions, new products… and this, according to Paul, is tremendously powerful.
The growth of integration in companies is constantly on the rise – WSO2 included. This fact causes cycles to be faster. A simple example to demonstrate this are weekly cloud updates. In this simple mechanism we are obtaining immediate client feedback, getting information about what works and what doesn’t in the business. It therefore enables the company to adapt and make decisions in a faster and safer manner.
In addition to this, Paul goes one step further and establishes three dimensions of company adaptation:
- Real-time adaptation to consumers: fraud detection, dynamic marketing…
- Adaptation to workload challenges: scale business areas that need it, consumption-based cost models.
- Adaptation to ever-changing company needs.
We should not forget that when we talk about adapted companies, we also talk about adapted technology. Thanks to it we can analyze events, streaming, data and behavior patterns in real-time. Additionally, it allows us to react directly to demand and the changes it experiences.
It is here where WSO2 is essential. This platform can do a lot for your company’s architecture, allowing you to scale any area that needs scaling, and adapting it to the environment and clients – but it goes even further. Paul claims that a recursive architecture is being built with WSO2, since when this service is used by another company, it becomes a new service. The same happens when an API is consumed.
Furthermore, he explains that one of the main advantages of his open source platform is that it allows company digitalization to be accelerated.
“WSO2 takes existing systems in the business, it integrates them, exposes their data, takes identities and IT systems, with the purpose of creating APIs, events and streams, which monitor, guide and analyze.”
In addition to digitalizing companies, WSO2 is of great help when connecting to different users, works, partners, developers, operators… At the same time, it implies leaving an open door for the next generation of adapted applications which are currently on the way.
With all of this, Paul brings up the following question: Adapt or die?. The answer is quite obvious. If you have any doubt, remember that:
“Creating (and adapting) the digital experience is the key to becoming an adapted company.”
You may now be able to make more sense out of the title of Paul’s talk, “Darwin Ate My App.” It is an adaptation of the quote by Marc Andreeseen “Software is eating the world,” with a small twist of what people used to say about Darwin, “every species he saw, he ate.”
This is precisely what is happening nowadays. Software is necessary for the transformation of companies, guaranteeing their continuous integrations and driving obsoleteness away.
If you missed this enlightening talk given by Paul at WSO2Con, we invite you to see the full video of his keynote speech.