Computer, Heal Thyself

"Too bad computers aren't more like people. When we work harder, our hearts beat faster. When we're hot, we sweat. But in the 54 years since British mathematician Alan Turing introduced the notion of artificial intelligence, computer scientists haven't delivered anything close to a self-aware and self-healing computer. That may change soon enough. Researchers in business and government labs are building systems that will challenge what it means to be an IT worker by automating many of the monitoring and maintenance tasks done today by hand.... The motivating factor behind it all: to wage war on complexity. The interlocking pieces of software that make up business computer networks will soon be beyond the comprehension of most IT workers. Plus, these complex systems tend to be fragile, breaking down when even minor changes are made.... The ultimate goal of adaptive computing isn't just to have smart, self-healing systems, but to have smart business processes. That's the prize researchers at Sun are aiming for with a product-forecasting system that constantly monitors its own performance and tests assumptions about business execution."

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