Information technology is the most important component of the process of using society’s information resources. An answer to the question “Why we need IT” is rather simple: because it’s the future. The following characteristic stages in the development and application of IT can be distinguished.
The first stage of IT development
At the first stage, we had a situation in which there were many manufacturers of many technologies. The implementation of the same functional task under these conditions did not ensure the compatibility of technologies both “from the bottom up”, when new versions appeared, and “horizontally”, performed by different manufacturers.
The second stage of IT development
The second logical step was the application of IT standardization. Some general approaches to the implementation of specific IT began to be developed, which made it possible to ensure the compatibility of solutions for the implementation of the same IT by different manufacturers. A situation arose when there were many manufacturers of technologies while ensuring their certain (solving a particular problem of interaction) compatibility.
This had the following consequences:
- compatibility of solutions has expanded the range of manufacturers and reduced the price of products;
- the presence of a standardized solution or several solutions has led to a situation where there are from one to three to five standardized implementations left on the market for each type of IT, while all other implementations have disappeared;
- at the initial stage of development and active application of standardized solutions, the total cost of developing new and modifying existing solutions was reduced.
However, the existence of an existing standardized solution for the implementation of a specific IT did not provide opportunities for their improvement without changing the requirements of the existing standards. Given the length of the procedure for introducing agreed changes to standards, it can be concluded that it is necessary to search for new solutions.
Gradually, the reserves of conventional standardization have exhausted their potential. This was because the complexity of technological solutions in the information-computing-telecommunication environment (ICTS) has sharply increased. There were situations when the implementation of an integrated solution in the IWTS through the use of disparate standardized technologies did not ensure the achievement of the set goal.
The third stage of IT development
Under these conditions, the third stage of IT development began: the application of functional standardization methods, when not individual solutions in a project are standardized, but a set of solutions aimed at achieving a given goal of functioning. With this approach, the solutions offered by many manufacturers could be different in terms of internal organization, but at the interfaces of exchange with other solutions, with the external environment, they must have agreed rules for organizing interaction by formats, protocols, process organization, etc.
At this stage, we got a situation where there are many manufacturers, several solutions for a specific implementation of the IT set, and compatibility of solutions is ensured. This made it possible to ensure the existence of internal (within the framework of a more efficient implementation of the IT set) competition between manufacturers, which has steadily led to the development of the technologies themselves.