Happy New Years. It is now 2013 and time to jettison all of that outdated technology you have been milking for a decade or longer. You know the old, slow, pre-cloud tech that has been hanging around in one form or another since the early 1980s. Oh, you haven’t even been alive since the early 80s? Well, let’s take a look at what you missed!
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Happy 2013, out with the old
As I was trying to come up with a list of 2013 resolutions for the IT Organization, I came across a slideshow by Christopher Null originally posted September 7, 2012. The slideshow lists 10 technologies that have outlived their value and require either a total upgrade or to be replaced. Although the slideshow is probably directed at the SMB market, there are many thought provoking ideas here to drive incremental improvements in the enterprise. I have chunked them together for easier e-waste recycling.
Fax Machine, PBX, Land Lines, Postage Machines
The most obvious outdated technology from before the average IT worker was born – the Fax Machine. So, when I started to write this blog post, I thought oh, the fax machine has been around since, say the 1980s – WRONG. The first fax type device was invented in 1846, yes that is 18 not 19, before the telephone. Of course, the Xerox Corporation created what was considered the first commercialized version in 1964. In 1966, they released the Magnafax Telecopier, weighing in at a mere 46 pounds. Far easier to operate, the machine could be connected to any standard telephone line and was it able to send a single page document in only about 6 minutes. Wow, the speed!
Although it has come a long way, the fax machine is an obsolete piece of junk that requirements an unbelievable amount of tech support. And when you realize that most, if not all of the incoming faxes are trash, you begin to see that making it “virtual” would be an improvement and drive cost savings immediately. Oh, and maybe even save more than a few wasted reams of paper and ink cartridges in 2013.
File Servers, Ultrabooks, On-site Backup Hardware
We all know how “rewarding” doing the nightly back up has always been. The old tape backup was never very efficient, and recovery not really easy. Today, there are many alternatives that will drive ROI and added confidence in the IT Organization when a recovery is needed.
“When I worked in IT, dealing with the nightly backup system was a headache that no one enjoyed. It never seemed to work right, and restoring files (when you had to) was a huge pain. Now you can not only get rid of the tape drive, you can quit doing local backups altogether: Online backup services can keep your business data safe with a much more reasonable investment – and far fewer headaches.”
Windows, Extended Warranties, Credit Card Processing Machines
Although I am a huge fan of the cloud, I am not sure that an enterprise, let alone an SMB, should move from the standard – Windows. I can certainly agree with his basic premise, “virtually every computing task now available via the cloud, the old incompatible software argument against migrating off of Windows no longer holds… for many businesses, switching operating systems is now as simple as installing Firefox or Chrome…” Simple, yes, practical, not so sure.
The bottom line, the New Year is a great time to take a look at some of those legacy systems and business machines. If you are tracking your incident tickets you can easily see the time-suckers and begin to build a plan for the end-of-life for the worst offenders. Happy 2013 and congratulations on making past the end of time as predicted by the Mayan Calendar.