A: Linked Data
The following article was written by Cameron Allen, Pierre Coyne and Beth Sarnie and is the second in our OSLC series.
For those of you, like myself, that don’t have a Watson-like recollection, here’s a quick flashback detailing a millisecond in Watson's brain on a sample patient:
- Watson is given specific information on a patient’s symptoms, and makes a preliminary diagnosis of the flu as the most likely illness.
- Based on the unique patient's name, Watson looks up records of the patient's history for the past few years, providing new insights that point to the better possible cause of, for example, a Urinary Tract Infection.
- Based on the patient's family connections, Watson is able to use the family history to derive that the mostly likely cause is now diabetes.
- And finally, Watson is able to access a patient’s latest tests to derive a final diagnosis.
If you're in the business of IT, this may sound a lot like incident management. And as any level 1 support person can attest, diagnosing the root cause of an incident is much like diagnosing a patient's condition. You need information from multiple sources (e.g. service desk, license, CMDB, monitoring, and asset management systems), but more importantly, it has to be in context, up to date, and delivered in a timely basis to make an accurate diagnosis of the root cause.
The problem has always been that an incident manager, like a doctor, has to jump between tools, entering requests in each system for the right information...and that is time consuming. In some cases, information isn't readily available and must be requested from other sources, not under their direct control.
One of the ways Watson is able to be such a great diagnostician (and incident manager) is through "linked data," which allows it to seek out and find related information on the patient from multiple sources in a fraction of a second to facilitate faster, more accurate patient diagnosis.
Until now, an incident manager did not have this same luxury.
That's where Jazz for Service Management comes in. Jazz is IBM's realtime platform for integrating management across multivendor tools, and across service lifecycle processes and functions. Like Watson, Jazz for service management uses principles of linked data, along with community standards (including OSLC) to support Watson-like service management decisions, regardless of what vendor tools you have in place.
If you want to learn more about OSLC and linked data in the context of service management, join the IBM developerWorks Jazz for Service Management community for demonstrations, and to gain early access to beta software.