Five stories from the first year of Runtime

In no particular order, here's a look back at the stories that resonated with Runtime's readers over the past year.

Five stories from the first year of Runtime
Photo by Taylor Vick / Unsplash

This week marked Runtime's first anniversary covering enterprise tech, and it's hard to believe how quickly it all went by. It was a consequential 12-month period for enterprise tech: thousands of people lost their jobs, enterprise tech spending slowed to a crawl, and generative AI promised (or threatened, depending on where you sit) to overturn the old order.

In no particular order, here's a look back at the stories that resonated with Runtime's readers over the past year. They all tell the tale of an industry in the midst of profound change — grappling with the impact of new technologies and the end of easy money — and they provide a good baseline for the year to come.

Platforms at your service: How a new group of startups hopes to make it easier to ship software

What happened: The first story Runtime ever published was a look at the evolution of the PaaS market, the neglected middle child of the cloud software revolution. Today's software factories are trying to move faster than ever across incredibly complicated infrastructure with flat budgets, and if you build a better development platform, they'll beat a path to your door.

What's next: AI-powered coding assistants are here to stay, and platform companies that figure out how to integrate them into developer workflows could have an advantage. The idea of the platform engineering team also appears to be the next evolution of DevOps, which presents a huge opportunity as that concept moves from early adopters to mainstream enterprises.

How AI is changing the modern data center

What happened: It would have been hard to miss the impact of AI on enterprise tech last year. The computing resources required to deliver generative AI are changing the way both cloud and on-premises infrastructure is being designed, built, and maintained.

What's next: Alternative power sources will be needed if half the data centers companies are scrambling to build in anticipation of AI demand actually get built. And the exorbitant costs of running an AI data center will need to come down to justify these investments.

As HashiCorp adopts the BSL, an era of open-source software might be ending

What happened: It was a pivotal year for HashiCorp, a company that was an enthusiastic participant in the open-source community right up until the point it became clear that strategy was hurting its business prospects. Seven months after it decided to restrict the use of its popular infrastructure projects, IBM acquired it for a fraction of its 2021 IPO value.

What's next: It seems likely that a generation of venture-capital startups built around open-source projects will follow HashiCorp's lead, and the power of organizations like the Linux Foundation will grow. Nothing will change until the deal closes, but IBM has a long history of supporting permissively licensed open-source projects, and could blunt the progress of the OpenTofu fork should it reverse last year's decision.

Redis CEO Rowan Trollope: Our IPO is still coming

What happened: Well, nothing, as was the case with several other enterprise tech companies still waiting for the right moment to go public. Trollope spoke to Runtime a week before HashiCorp's decision to adopt the BSL, and in March he would make a similar decision to restrict the use of the core Redis project.

What's next: Big names lined up to support a Redis fork, which could pose a big problem for the company's business prospects this year. After HashiCorp changed its licensing strategy and a credible fork emerged, new customer growth fell off a cliff, according to former Gartner analyst Fintan Ryan.

The U.S. government is losing trust in Microsoft

What happened: Microsoft was the biggest winner of the generative AI hype cycle last year thanks to its decision to lock up OpenAI's technology in exchange for cloud credits. However, after years of warnings that it was neglecting security, a devastating attack by Chinese hackers led to a scathing government report that concluded not only that Microsoft had lost its way, but that it was not being transparent with its customers.

What's next: Last week CEO Satya Nadella vowed to refocus Microsoft on security with executive pay incentives and the freedom to choose security over growth, but that was the second time in six months Microsoft had promised to get its act together. Another major incident could finally prompt big customers like the U.S. government to explore their alternatives to Microsoft's cloud.

We'd like to thank all of our readers, sources, and sponsors for their support over the past year, and we're just getting started. Please tell a friend who needs to follow enterprise tech to sign up for the newsletter, and if you're interested in getting your message in front of the more than 20,000 enterprise tech industry leaders and decision makers that receive this newsletter each week, please let us know. Following the launch of sponsored content and the Runtime Roundtable, we also plan to roll out several new products this year, including special reports and events, both virtual and live.

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