Applications in the future will be connected as services

Software-as-a-service has been commodity for a long period. Microsoft among other vendors is now forming relations and strategies on how applications will act and perform in the near future. For a long period Microsoft has been pushing ISV developers to develop and implement their applications as SmartClient applications. SmartClient applications are actually just small content-frame-holder (as known from the web world), with different services connected to it.

The enablement of this “mashup” is a great and very new approach to an application. A big change to the business model of this is the actual change in the price of an application. Many developers and ISVs have been purchasing components and resource libraries to “bundle” and use in their applications. These components are sold though redistribution agreements and customer license for usage – and not the source code.

In the future world, this will exactly be the same model, just with services connected to the application. Billing and support will change rapidly offering per-usage billing, not the complete price. So in the future you can actually earn money – when you don’t format you documents in Word 😉

Another good example is the connected and business benefits of the model. Using Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 within a hosted model, several add-ons exists in the “could”. Among these, that Business Card reader webservice, which converts your image-business cards into readable contact information – directly imported to Microsoft Dynamics CRM 4.0 in the cloud. As you probably only want oné invoice, only need one support line, several considerations form around the model. But the general idea is now a reality.

Microsoft has released the Buffy Finder concept as an example, and launched Microsoft CSF Sandbox – a new version of the UDDI registry.

Update – 24.04.2008!

Microsoft Clearflow is another really good example on joining Microsoft Virtual Earth, Microsofts new traffic service and mobiltiy into one complete solution!

Corporate Performance Management – from top to toe

Questions regarding company performance, where are we at and how do we perform, is common and in general, something every employee seek to measure their work against. In these years, the amount of information and the availability of these was grown rapidly in the SMB and upper-end SMB market shares. And with current software on the market, and with the distribution and online services available, CPM is not always a pain of problem for the management team to implement.Here are a short dos and don’ts

Do

  1. Establish a responsible for implementing CPM – one man army, or a common team
  2. Make a roadmap and a short list of what performance you will start to measure
  3. Only use a few external resource, make the strategy from inside the company. But rely on external resources.

Don’ts

  1. First of all, don’t wait! CPM will actually benefit the organization within a few weeks.
  2. Do not make it complex. Start with a SHORT list, not the WHOLE list
  3. Make the strategy support the technologies in the market space. This will help an easy process.

So… if you are planning ahead, here is a short hint. Microsoft released Windows Sharepoint Services 3.0, Office Sharepoint Server 2007 and Performance Point Server. Microsoft Excel is a great tool for KPI and performance analysis, and feather more – Microsoft CRM actually support the WHOLE organization – regardless of type and size (please take me up on this).

Next Generation Software-As-A-Service

We are on the edge of the next generation of software+services. As Exchange, Sharepoint and CRM monetize and become defacto standard for hosters, we seek the next generation of S+S = ISVs going online.

But as a developer there are several converns to what and how applications can be build. These links til show into this.

http://msdn2.microsoft.com/da-dk/architecture/aa479086(en-us).aspx

http://files.skyscrapr.net/users/msdnss/splusarcperspectives.wmv

http://msdn2.microsoft.com/da-dk/architecture/bb906058.aspx

http://blogs.msdn.com/fred_chong/archive/2008/02/10/an-application-marketplace-architecture-for-commercializing-software-and-services.aspx

http://msdn2.microsoft.com/da-dk/architecture/bb499667(en-us).aspx

http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/architecture/aa905332.aspx