Top Software Trends in 2019
By Bennett Garner
Technology and software are constantly changing. As a result, it can be difficult to keep on top of trends. However, staying up to date with new technologies is also critical to business and career success. Companies and professionals who don’t utilize the latest technologies quickly see their products and skills go stale. Still, sorting through emerging technologies to identify which are viable and which are fads is time-consuming and often challenging.
Recently, we published our guide to the top programming languages, frameworks, and libraries that companies will be using in 2019. Generally, however, we wanted to survey major trends that will influence the process of software development. Furthermore, the types of applications that developers are building are changing. Due to AI, VR, and the Internet of Things, the future of software is increasingly complex and cross-platform.
In this article, we’ll cover the high-level trends that are influencing software in 2019 and beyond.
Automated Pipelines to Deployment
Continuous integration and deployment are not new concepts in software development. However, increasingly CI/CD is becoming standard practice. In contrast to just a few years ago, the companies that don’t have some continuous deployment pipeline are becoming the exception, not the rule.
Automated deployment is the pinnacle of CI/CD and a foundational part of DevOps. Accordingly, companies who automate their pipeline to production see gains in developer productivity, quicker releases of new features, and more delighted customers. Although that may be true, implementing an automated pipeline to production is not easy and requires a culture shift toward agile practices inside the company.
Expect these changes to become increasingly important as automated, agile companies out-innovate their slower competition.
As part of the larger DevOps and continuous deployment trend, microservices have become a popular architecture for applications. Specifically, they allow for highly maintainable, loosely coupled services that combine to make up a larger application. Whenever a component needs to be updated, it can be changed and deployed iindependentlyof the rest of the application.
Evidently, microservices offer huge benefits over monolithic applications, when implemented correctly. While they’re not a silver bullet, microservices are seeing a huge growth in popularity that will continue through 2019.
Until now, we’ve commonly thought of software as applications built for two platforms: mobile and desktop. While mobile is consuming more market share every year, new devices are also appearing that complicate platform development. Home speakers, smart thermostats, and wearable devices all need software written for them.
Bain predicts that IoT devices will reach a market of $520 billion by 2021. With all these new devices, developing cross-platform solutions that perform well on small screens, with voice control, or in virtual reality will be a major trend in software.
Deep Learning & Neural Networks
Unsurprisingly, artificial intelligence makes the list of top software trends in 2019. Specifically, though, deep learning and neural networks were the AI methods that developers have found to be the most viable according to HackerRank’s recent survey.
These methods for AI training have shown significant promise in difficult areas like language and image recognition. In addition, many of the most successful algorithms are available open source for developers to use. As integrating AI becomes easier, expect algorithm deployment to become less of a niche skill and more common in a software developer’s toolset.
Governments and consumers alike have become increasingly concerned about the state of privacy, security, and sharing of personal data. For example, the EU’s release of the General Data Protection Regulation has forced many companies to change how they collect and store data.
In light of data leaks like Equifax and Cambridge Analytica, companies recognize that data security is a major public relations challenge, as much as it is an operational one. Knowing how to safely collect and store data and use industry standard data tools will be a key skill for all software developers moving forward.
Trends in Software in 2019
All of these trends have certainly existed before 2019. They’ll also continue to exist well into the future. Nevertheless, 2019 will be an important year for bringing these trends into focus. It will also see growth in libraries, frameworks, and infrastructure for these trends overall.
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Originally published at Intertech Blog.