2020 – The Future


It’s almost the weekend. Almost Christmas. And, almost the year 2020! 2020…doesn’t that sound insane?!


When I was a kid, 2020 always sounded like a distant, unreachable year that would consist of flying cars and the people of earth living on settlements on distant planets.  Yet, here it is just a few days away.


Although we have seen considerable technological developments in the last 30-40 years, it is not quite the sci-fi landscape we thought it might be by now. That being said; there was a special journey, in the world of IT, that has led it to where it is today. Much like the special journey that has brought us to an event even closer than 2020….the premiere of the new Star Wars movie!


A Galaxy Far Far Away


Star Wars HistoryThe 9th Star Wars film (or 11th if you include spinoffs) and final installment in the “Skywalker Saga”, Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premieres tonight!  Given our close-proximity to this cinematic event as well as the year 2020 being just on the horizon, I decided to recap the saga and highlight technological milestones that occurred within each year that a Star Wars film was released. So, let’s take a look at what happened “a long time ago in a galaxy far, far way” as well as not so long ago right here on planet Earth!


Star Wars: Episode IV- A New Hope

Year: 1977

George Lucas creates groundbreaking first Star Wars film that redefined the space-opera as well as the modern blockbuster. It went on to become the highest grossing film of 1977 and ends up spawning a massive franchise (hence how we got here *wink*).

What happened in tech?

The first personal computers are made available to be sold to public consumers. The Apple II, Commodore PET 2001 and the TRS-80 computers are commonly referred to as the “1977 Trinity” of personal computers.


Star Wars: Episode V- The Empire Strikes Back

Year: 1980

The biggest movie at the time (Star Wars still reigning supreme from its release 3 years prior) now had to attempt to outdo itself with the biggest sequel of all time. And boy did it deliver! From the introduction of classic characters like Yoda and Lando Calrissian, lightsaber duels, a cliffhanger ending, and the infamous “No, I am your father” line…the second entry into the Star Wars story was bigger and better in almost every way and is still revered as the best in the series.

What happened in tech?

Digital Equipment Corporation, Intel and Xerox introduce the DIX standard for Ethernet


Star Wars: Episode VI- Return of the Jedi

Year: 1983

The original trilogy comes to a close with a third film that introduces new planets, new villains, character shifts and the revelation that Luke and Leia are actually twin siblings of the Skywalker lineage! Say whaaat?!

What happened in tech?

The migration of ARPANET to TCP/IP was officially completed. The new protocols were permanently activated, essentially “giving birth to the internet”.


Star Wars: Episode I- The Phantom Menace

Year: 1999

George Lucas returned to the director’s chair for the first time since the original Star Wars, 22 years prior. With the rise of CGI, he was able to flesh out some of his ideas that had previously been impossible and helm a new trilogy of prequels delving into the origins of Anakin Skywalker and other major characters. Highly anticipated, The Phantom Menace was the highest grossing film of 1999.

What happened in tech?

A high level of concern arose in 1999 with the fast approach of the year 2000 (or Y2K as we called it back then). The previously unforeseen realization that many systems and programs had been designed around the last two digits of the calendar year, thus making the year 2000 indistinguishable from 1900. Organizations all over the world upgraded their computer systems in anticipation of the problem and very few actual issues occurred. Phew!


Star Wars: Episode II- Attack of the Clones

Year: 2002

The story gets taken a further 10 years down the road from its predecessor, with a new actor portraying Anakin and an even more elaborate look into the backstory of the Star Wars universe.

What happened in tech?

Funny enough, this entry is also notable from a technological standpoint as it was one of the first motion pictures shot completely on a high-definition digital 24-frame system, as well as being the last Star Wars film to be released on VHS in the United States. The end of an era!


Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith

Year: 2005

Speaking of the end of eras, the final entry in the prequel trilogy brought us the fall of Anakin Skywalker to the darkside of The Force. Arguably considered the best of the prequel trilogy. Revenge of the Sith was once again the highest grossing film the year of its release. Quite the track record!

What happened in tech?

Microsoft releases the Xbox 360 gaming console in North America. Storage, memory and computing power that at one time had seemed impossible was now available for home use on a personal gaming system!


Star Wars: Episode VII -The Force Awakens

Year: 2015

The epic saga returns picking up where the original trilogy left off. A new director and cast take the reins, while also bringing back series-staples Harrison Ford (Han Solo), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) and Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker)!

What happened in tech?

The Apple Watch is released. One of the first “smart watches” of its kind. It quickly became the fastest selling wearable device, selling 4.2 million units.


Star Wars: Episode VIII- The Last Jedi

Year: 2017

Mark Hamill reprises his legendary role as Luke Skywalker in a big way. Important story pieces get put into place to set up the final entry into the epic 9-part “Skywalker Saga”!

What happened in tech?

The “WannaCry Ransomware Attack” targets computers around the world.  It infected the Microsoft Windows operating system by encrypting data and demanding ransom payments in the form of Bitcoin cryptocurrency. The attack is stopped within a few days due to emergency patches released by Microsoft. The discovery of a kill switch prevented infected computers from spreading WannaCry any further.


Star Wars: Episode IX- The Rise of Skywalker

Year: 2019

Huge amounts of anticipation abound for the 9th and final chapter. It will wrap up various storylines, resolve cliffhangers, and attempt to satisfy fan expectations! After 42 years, the Star Wars saga finally finishes its sweeping tale, today, December 19th, 2019!

What happened in tech?

Oh man. Where to begin! As you can see from this timeline, we have come a long way since 1977! From cloud computing, intelligent storage, advancements in Artificial Intelligence, predictive analytics (the list goes on). The techy and fantastical world first laid out in the original Star Wars comes closer to reality every day. Now we can only sit back and see where it takes us from here. The future seems exciting for tech lovers and Star Wars fans both!


May the force be with us all.


Zunesis looks forward to working with you in the next decade and seeing where technology takes us next.

It’s that time of year again where many of you may be involved in putting proposals together for a grant for your organization. Grant writing is a process. Like any other skill, it takes passion, preparation, credibility, and perseverance. If you are writing your first grant proposal, it is extremely important you remember the following key factors.


Key Factors for Grant Writing Success


  1. Read your Grant Guidelines. Make a list of all “fatal flaws” and keep that in mind as you construct your application.
  2. Create an Outline of your project, including all required elements from the Grant Guidelines.
  3. Build your budget. Understand fully budget limitations on indirect costs, equipment, operating costs, etc.
  4. Write Your Organization’s Story: Whether it be a school, hospital or state facility, the story behind your needs is compelling.
  5. Paint a Vivid Picture for the Reviewers. Summarize your project and lay out your needs as well as your intent for the project. Make sure your goals are measurable.
  6. Develop a Graphic Depiction of the relationships between resources, activities, outputs and outcomes of your program.
  7. Incorporate Case Studies when available to demonstrate the work you’ve been doing and its efficacy.
  8. Reference Research on similarly implemented programs to demonstrate.
  9. Complete your Grant application with a Project Summary


Superior grants are well-prepared and demonstrate strong attention to detail.  Grant proposals should be viewed as business plans designed to make the funding partner confident in the success of your project.  Your proposal must convey the overall impact of resolving difficult problems for your organization. It should also relay the importance of the befitting of the student/constituents/member that you serve.


At the same time, your submission must be passionate. You must convince the reviewers that your proposal matters by addressing the impact, the “so what question”, and the paradigm shift you will make in the field.


At the end of the day, superior grants are a product of preparation, preparation, and more preparation. Once you are prepared, credibility, attention to detail, passion, and conviction will enthuse, and ultimately convince your donors.


Checklist for success:


  • Prior to even drafting the proposal, research the grant-making organization’s mission and funding interests thoroughly. Look for key phrases and try to integrate these into the text of your proposal.
  • Check the organization’s website to see if there’s an archive of previous winners. See how well your idea lines up with what’s been funded in the past.
  • Pay very close attention to the guidelines. Make sure to look into any internal requirements or deadlines for the opportunity.
  • Get as much feedback as you possibly can. Give yourself enough time to write multiple drafts of your proposal.

We wish you much success with your grant endeavors. Zunesis hopes to partner with you on any future grant projects.


Additional Resources:

Grant Writing 101
Tips and Resources for Successful Grant Writing
Ten Tips for Getting your School Grant Funded
Grant Eligibility

Reliable Cloud Platforms?


2019 has been filled with extensive outages from prominent cloud platforms including Google and AWS. These outages impacted huge numbers of end users and businesses. This resulted in a myriad of issues including missed opportunities and significant revenue loss.


Cloud outage


With 2020 around the corner, it seems only natural that your company revisit the reliability of the infrastructure you have deployed in the public cloud.


Loss of Visibility and Accountability


It is inevitable that outages will happen. The critical question is how your company responds to an outage.  Because you need to be accountable to your clients and end-users, you must have some level of control over your data.  However, as data migrates into a shared cloud space, you lose visibility into its exact whereabouts, into the actual infrastructure that is supporting it. You are essentially losing control over your infrastructure.


If you are outsourcing your infrastructure, you are also outsourcing accountability. Your mission-critical data no longer lives in the server down the hall or in a nearby colocation facility. It is no longer monitored by people you can call by name, on the phone, or contact in the middle of the night. This loss of visibility and control has serious implications for businesses.


When an outage happens in the cloud, it can be exponentially more difficult to trace the source. Downtime can be much longer and costlier as a result. You may find yourself at the mercy of circumstances you cannot control or mitigate. This threatens your ability to be accountable to your clients and users.


 Hybrid IT Option


Many companies today are born in the cloud but even for these companies there are some options that will maximize control, accountability and the ability to mitigate an inevitable outage. The solution lies in diversification or hybridization of one’s IT infrastructure.  You can achieve this by adopting a hybrid IT or a multi-cloud strategy.  A diversified approach allows you to achieve greater control and greater accountability as your company will no longer be outsourcing all of the accountability for your infrastructure.


When it makes sense to retain a significant amount of on-premises IT infrastructure, you can still improve the quality and efficiency of those operations by operating them as a private cloud.


Consider your options, most notably using Microsoft’s Azure Stack. By bringing consistent services on premises, you can run on your own hardware that meets its requirements. The benefit is that Azure is a proven platform with a vast ecosystem of third-party support and expertise available. If you don’t have the right skillset for Azure cloud, you may need help from outside experts.



The hybrid cloud is best defined as the combination of your public and private cloud assets, both on and off prem.  A hybrid cloud is an effective way of hedging your bets on the big trends in technology. You may think a public cloud can do all you need for your organization. But, it is possible that some of the use cases for on-premises IT will take hold in your organization. A hybrid cloud environment gives you the resources, skillsets, processes, and tools to deploy new systems where they belong.


Contact Zunesis for an assessment on what strategy works best for you infrastructure.


EMAIL: info@zunesis.com




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Broomfield, CO 80021
(720) 221-5200

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