One of the things that IT organizations do perhaps like best about cloud computing is that it’s much easier now to be part of a larger IT community. In the past, IT folks inside any organization were pretty much on their own. With the rise of IT management applications in the cloud, most IT people now regularly participate in at least one online community.
One of the IT management applications that has gained a lot of traction inside IT organizations in that regard is ServiceNow. At the ServiceNow Knowledge14 Conference today, ServiceNow extended the reach of its online community with the debut of ServiceNow Share, an online exchange through which users of ShareNow applications can share applications and other forms of content running on the ServiceNow Service Automation Platform.
Shane Jackson, vice president of marketing for ServiceNow, says it’s fairly easy to create applications and content on top of the ServiceNow platform using AppCreator, an application development tool based on a declarative language that ServiceNow provides to customers. Those applications can then be exposed to other applications via both Web services and RESTful APIs that ServiceNow supports.
At this point, ServiceNow doesn’t plan to open an online store. ServiceNow Share is simply about making it easier for the community to collaborate, says Jackson.
Not surprisingly, the big question about all this collaboration is how much it is starting to figure into the actual IT purchasing process. All things being relatively equal in terms of product quality, the vitality of the IT community surrounding any product or service is now a significant factor when it comes to ultimately deciding what technology to deploy.
IT people can more readily than ever look out for their mutual self-interest by pooling their collective knowledge online. After all, no matter what your level of social skills, IT is simply just too complex these days to try to go it alone.