Feeds

What's the future of the UK IT industry?

Knowledge economy?

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

3 Big data security analytics techniques

Developing the Future Developing The Future is an annual report from Microsoft and various industry partners, which looks at the UK software development industry in the context of the UK economy as a whole.

The 2007 report is sponsored by City University, London; the British Computer Society, and Intellect (the trade association for the UK hi-tech industry); as well as Microsoft itself.

As well as its reports, it has closed workshop sessions which, purportedly, help give practicing government ministers an insight into what's really going on around IT.

The key findings of its latest report include:

  • The world is changing and the Knowledge Economy [whatever that is; you can guess, it's what knowledge workers and power users do in areas like financial services and IT services] is expected to contribute 50 per cent of the UK GDP by 2010.
  • We're actually rather successful at this, and London is becoming a global entrepreneurial hub, partly on the back of emerging economies such as China and India [For how long, might be the question to ask].
  • Private sector investment in "intangible assets" (such as software, R&D and brands) now equals the investment in tangibles such as manufactured products.
  • There is a serious IT skills shortage, IT degrees are increasingly unpopular - and only some 20 per cent of the UK IT workforce is female, which means we aren't fully exploiting the resources available to us.
  • There is pressure on the UK government to encourage school students to take up IT earlier – by reforming the National Curriculum, of course.
  • And, apparently, there is a "clear loud call for the UK government to develop appropriate IP rights for the Digital Age to support innovation". [Well, there probably is, but be careful of what you ask for, you might get it; and this sounds a bit like special pleading by Microsoft to me. Although IP does have a value and its ownership should be protected, I'm just a little worried that this will mean, in practice, bloating my software applications with unreliable DRM code.]

Nothing very surprising in those conclusions then, but the devil is, of course, in the detail and in the debate generated. There was in fact a reasonably healthy debate with the speakers at the launch

Julie Meyer (CEO of Ariadne Capital and founder of First Tuesday) for example, said the time was over for European "feudalism" and the way it limits entrepreneurial freedom (although she has plenty of European credibility, she rather likes the way the US does things and wasn't keen on EU regulation).

"Live free or die", is her cry, which is fine as long as you're given the choice (some of us would take our chance with tyranny if the alternative were a cruise missile through the front door). However, if this means that no future UK prime minister will ride into unwinnable battles at the heels of his feudal liege-lord in the US, then I'm all in favour. Whether you see her low tax, small government, entrepreneurial paradise as utopia or dystopia probably depends on how much money you have access to and whether you have a job and a roof over your head.

Ben Page of Ipsos MORI countered with a realistic view of what the UK is really like. We may have entrepreneurs and service industries, but take up of IT in the general population is levelling out and some people just aren't interested. That's quite a lot of people who aren't going to be members of the globalised entrepreneurial society and just ignoring them may not be a useful approach.

Top three mobile application threats

More from The Register

next story
This time it's 'Personal': new Office 365 sub covers just two devices
Redmond also brings Office into Google's back yard
Inside the Hekaton: SQL Server 2014's database engine deconstructed
Nadella's database sqares the circle of cheap memory vs speed
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
Hang on. Which bit of Developer Preview don't you understand?
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
Batten down the hatches, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS due in TWO DAYS
Admins dab straining server brows in advance of Trusty Tahr's long-term support landing
IRS boss on XP migration: 'Classic fix the airplane while you're flying it attempt'
Plus: Condoleezza Rice at Dropbox 'maybe she can find ... weapons of mass destruction'
Ditch the sync, paddle in the Streem: Upstart offers syncless sharing
Upload, delete and carry on sharing afterwards?
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.