Do artificial intelligence and mainframe rehosting really have something in common? The answer to that question is yes. AI and re-platforming mainframe applications on the cloud share common attributes and can enable similar business outcomes. After defining AI properly and looking at what it’s being used for, we’ll show you how AI and rehosting intersect.
When a tech trend or new technology is as popular as AI and machine learning (AI/ML), it can be difficult to find a realistic definition or definitions. Everyone wants to lay claim to it and in the process, the real meaning can get lost. For example, Stanford University and Forbes definitions delve into quantum computing, robotics, and specific branches of AI/ML. In addition, SAS has a great inventory of all the ways AI/ML are being used, but without a clear definition.
After extensive research, we’ve been able to find these three realistic and easy-to-understand descriptions of AI/ML.
Wikipedia offers this definition: “In computer science, artificial intelligence (AI), sometimes called machine intelligence, is intelligence demonstrated by machines, in contrast to the natural intelligence displayed by humans.” AI4ALL, a US-based nonprofit, describes it as “a branch of computer science that allows computers to make predictions and decisions to solve problems. When you hear that AI is being used in a product, that usually refers to an area of AI called machine learning. Machine learning (ML) is an approach to teach computers how to make decisions and predictions, by giving them the ability to learn from data.”
Tech Radar says “AI systems are often hugely complex and powerful, with the ability to process unfathomable depths of information in an extremely quick time in order to come to an effective conclusion.”
How is AI currently being used? Retailers are increasingly adding AI to their mobile and web apps to deliver personalized product recommendations to customers. In healthcare, personalized patient care is the product of embedding AI in software that analyzes sensor data and medical records to predict, diagnose, and suggest treatment for health issues.
Manufacturers are creating digital factories that rely on AI and machine learning software to reduce bottlenecks and unplanned equipment failures and maintenance. Financial services institutions have added AI/ML capabilities to the process of monitoring calls to identify vocal tones and sentiment associated with fraud or improper product recommendations.
In short AI/ML is being used in innovative ways to delight customers, improve health, streamline and accelerate manufacturing, and prevent fraud. But more than that, these innovations deliver business agility, enabling them to adjust quickly to changes in the marketplace or customer and patient preferences.
How AI/ML is being used in the real-world is how it relates to rehosting.
Mainframe rehosting delivers an agile infrastructure that enables innovation, freeing companies from a closed, rigid, slow, and aging mainframe environment. There are three ways we see our customers utilize mainframe rehosting. You can move all your mainframe applications as-is to the cloud or open systems. You can reduce MIPS by identifying high-consumption workloads in your environments and offloading them onto less costly open systems or the cloud. And, you can re-platform aging mainframe applications by moving them to the cloud or open systems.
Of the three, re-platforming delivers the fastest path to innovation. The apps move to a cloud environment, improving mainframe performance. Meanwhile, your developers can use existing skills and apply new ones in a much more productive environment that enables them to fulfill modern business and user requirements that deliver the biggest benefits. In addition, it is easier to deliver new or improved business services by transitioning mainframe transactions into web services that can be reused and turning complex screens into intuitive UIs.
IT leaders who have re-platformed report that it is easy to optimize and re-architect legacy applications once they’re already running in the cloud. The result is a collection of modern apps, many of which can include AI/ML functionality. In short, you are set to deliver applications, software, and systems that use AI/ML to help you meet the demands of today’s business world.
One of the difficulties of using or adding AI/ML in applications lies in having the infrastructure available to handle all the data AI/ML must be fed to deliver on its promise. It is extremely difficult—if not impossible—to add AI/ML to apps, software, and systems that are running on an aging mainframe. A modern environment on the cloud is the way to go.
Just as AI/ML is an innovative solution to business issues like customer experience and fraud, rehosting is the innovative solution to business issues caused by running core business apps on a mainframe. It prevents costly, lengthy projects that bog down IT teams or require new resources. This is ideal for companies who have been around longer disruptive companies like Google and Amazon and have environments that predate the cloud and want to take advantage of AI/ML.
So, there you have it. AI/ML and rehosting are both innovative solutions to past human and computing limitations. In addition, both offer the business agility that enterprises need to address business problems and rapidly changing market conditions so they never lose their competitive edge.
For two decades, TmaxSoft has been helping large companies modernize and increase the agility of their existing core applications so that they are more responsive to modern front ends, including mobile applications, e-commerce, social omnichannels, and AI/ML. Our solutions and services reduce TCO, which in turn funds modernization and continuous innovation. And, our system integrators guide the change management needed for the systems and the people involved. To learn more, visit www.tmaxsoft.com.
Paul Bengtson is the Vice President of Sales for TmaxSoft. He has spent more than 20 years selling technology in segments as diverse as big data, analytics, ERP, cloud and SaaS. Paul joined TmaxSoft in 2016 from EFI where he was Sales Director for its ERP solutions. He also has held senior leadership positions with Radius Solutions, where he was VP of North American Sales, and with Misomex, Artwork Systems (now Esko) and Ace Hardware. Paul has a BS in MIS from the University of Iowa and an MBA in MIS from Benedictine University.