Former national ICT agency MDEC (Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation) officer and industry veteran Michael Warren (pic above), now Emerio Malaysia MD, offered a wish list for Malaysia's drive to a digital economy. (For more details, see the full piece My Wish List for Digital Malaysia)
He said: Several things I would like to see in 2017, incluses a move to introduce a national digital currency around blockchain: At a time when Malaysia is struggling with our lowest currency exchange against the US$ since 1998, we see digital currencies growing at an all-time high. Major powers like China, whom Malaysia has an excellent relationship with are already rolling out national plans around this area. We should set this in motion immediately for Malaysia and work out how to get China invested in our digital currency to protect our long term currency exposures."
In addition, he suggests Bank Negara needed to offer clearer outsourcing guidlines for banking operations in Malaysia as the last published guidelines are now more than 10 years old. "([Also] there needs to be a reduction in domestic power and international bandwidth rates for data centres in Malaysia as the future of digital is in the cloud."
Among other suggestions, Michael believes that there should be more mergers and acquisitions between local and global companies. "The world is Malaysia's oyster. We need to go out but we cannot do it alone/
Abdul Aziz Ali (pic above), Country Manager, Brocade Malaysia, admitted that is "it is difficult to make predictions, especially about the future. However, in 2017 we can expect to see continued disaggregation of hardware and software leading to more cost-effective networks, at increased capacity, offering more flexible service models across an expanding footprint. We will see advances in wireless network technology, as well as a subtle shift in security postures of enterprise endpoints. Users will be more connected, more often, to the networked resources they need to be most effective."
Machine learning, IOT, smart cars
"In recent years, we've seen excitement and rising expectations for Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualisation (NFV)," he said. "Then in 2016, we watched as the industry came to materially understand the significant challenges of on boarding, orchestrating, and controlling a software-defined infrastructure of network connectivity and services. Now, as we approach 2017, we can begin to see balanced scepticism and optimism that indicates we are nearing the level of maturity needed to find real solutions."
"In 2017, we can expect to see complete software-defined network infrastructure solutions that are commercially available, multi-vendor, based on a viable ecosystem of SDN and NFV components. Proprietary platforms will begin to feel uncomfortably closed as users realize the extent of their lock-in. And adoption will rise, beyond the early adopter service providers, as enterprises and private datacentres begin to see a manageable path to achieve the value of a flexible infrastructure."
"In addition, with the rapid adoption of smartphones in recent years, and a consolidation of mobile OS platforms, wireless user behaviours have become better understood," he said. "At the same time, users are becoming more advanced and their expectations of the network are rising accordingly. In 2017 we will begin to see the fruits of various efforts that unify local Wi-Fi and cellular mobile data networks."
"As more and more things are connected to the network, in 2017 a new normal will begin to emerge for networked cars," he said. "Opportunities to improve vehicle maintenance and driver convenience are already being explored by carmakers, but the real opportunities are only just beginning to become apparent. In the coming year, users will begin to realise the promise of being able to connect their cars and homes, to share telemetry and driving conditions with nearby vehicles, and integrate more fully with the driver's IT experience - safely integrating personal calendars, messaging apps, etc., into the driving experience."
"In 2016 the "Internet of Things" (IoT) achieved significant mindshare, with many people now aware of the promise of a connected home. Thanks to a productive blend of start-ups and well established vendors, our homes can be monitored, climate controlled, and secured with network-connected things. Our smart TVs can now collaborate with our lighting," he added. "But "unfortunately, some of the early adopters in 2016 also learned a painful lesson about the need for standardisation and open platforms. As some vendors with proprietary cloud-based platforms went out of business or changed business models, users were left stranded. In 2017 we should expect the IoT market to begin to develop standards that make their platforms more secure, as well as more open and sustainable. In addition to easing consumers' minds, these standards will enable an IoT ecosystem that increasingly appeals to enterprises, allows service providers to create innovative services, and enables advanced use cases that we can only imagine today."
"Research into machine learning (ML) algorithms has been advancing for many years, but in 2016 we saw it storm onto the mainstream stage," he said. "ML algorithms can now be trained on all sorts of data, thanks to the availability of high-powered processors, 'big data' collection architectures, and open source software implementations. And in 2017 we will continue to see ML expand in importance as a fundamental technology driving innovation in every industry. In the context of network technology, ML techniques will be applied to problems that were previously thought to be impractical to solve. The tech talent crunch that we saw in 2016 will get even worse in 2017 as demand rises for the most talented ML scientists and engineers. Combined with SDN and NFV, ML will be a core competency for any vendor trying to build next-generation platforms for vehicular networking, IoT, MEC, cloud, and security."
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