New Relic Previews Future of Software Analytics

New Relic wants to take the whole idea of application performance management (APM) up a few notches by leveraging an analytics engine that the company intends to expose via an API. At the New Relic FutureStack 2013 conference today New Relic previewed Project Rubicon, which leverages a Big Data analytics engine to give developers greater insight into all the factors that may be adversely affecting application performance.

According to New Relic President and COO Chris Cook, Rubicon will include an inbound API that will allow developers to add additional data types to the software analytics engine, while an outbound API will allow organizations to take the results of any particular analytics and integrate them with, for example, an IT automation engine.

Scheduled to be available in 2014, Cook says the goal is nothing short of transforming the definition of APM in a world where IT environments get more complex to manage with each passing day.

In addition to previewing Rubicon, New Relic today also announced support for the Node.js development Framework, support for monitoring mobile applications and devices, an implementation of New Relic that runs on mobile computing devices such as the Apple iPad, and enhanced statistical tools for visualizing complex interactions within an application.

Between the applications themselves and the machines they run there is a massive amount of data that should be regularly analyzed to optimize application performance. Unfortunately, there’s been no really practical way for developers to get at that information. In an ideal world all that information would be analyzed within a cloud service that didn’t require organizations to contract a data scientist to set up.

Ultimately, the whole notion of APM may become so embedded with every application deployment as to be transparent to the developer; all they will experience are the analytics results that identify issues and then, if they so choose, invoke an IT automation to remediate those issues.

In fact, one day this whole debate over DevOps might simply go away. After all, 90 percent of the battle with any IT operations team is about discovering what the actual problem is. With software analytics instrumented inside every application that entire discussion goes away. It’s even quite possible that IT operations teams will be able fix those issues long before a developer even knows they exist. Naturally, it may take a while longer to reach that level of automation but it’s definitely now within sight.

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