It is fascinating the ways in which the world of computing can be made easier, thus creating opportunity for new complexities—usually in the form of new computing technologies. It's happened with programming languages, software architectures, computer networks, data center design, and systems virtualization. However, nothing has raised the bar on that concept like IT automation.
You may have been expecting to hear the term "cloud computing," but cloud is just an outcome of good automation. It's an operations model—a business model to some—that was only made possible by a standardization of the core elements of computing and the automation of their operation. Without automation, the cloud cannot be self-service, and it cannot scale to very large numbers of customers or systems.
The best part is that we are only at an intermediate stage in the evolution of operations automation—the second of several evolutionary stages in the growing capability of systems to fend for themselves in a global computing marketplace.
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