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Tech news podcast: 2 AI-powered tools and more layoffs

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Juniper introduces AI-powered networking gear, Salesforce announces ChatGPT integration and more tech layoffs loom.

This week, TechTarget News Director Antone Gonsalves is joined by Bob Laliberte, principal analyst at TechTarget's Enterprise Strategy Group to discuss the latest product news from Juniper Networks, TechTarget's AI reporter Esther Ajao to discuss Salesforce's AI plans and TechTarget's workplace reporter Patrick Thibodeau to discuss continuous layoffs in the tech sector.

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Juniper introduced a new technology this week that it calls the Campus Fabric Workflow, which extends network fabric from the data center out into campus environments, and simplifies deployment.

"They're enabling the campus environment to have that fabric environment in a very easily consumable way," Laliberte said. "Typically, when you're building out fabrics, it would require a lot of process and testing and so forth."

Juniper also introduced what it's calling an AI-driven, cloud-operated switch, the latest hardware in their EX Series portfolio. It reduces deployment times and is capable of accelerated device troubleshooting with proactive anomaly detection, event correlation and microsegmentation.

"Especially for organizations looking at deploying IoT devices in the campus, it's going to enable you to run those group-based policies with microsegmentation, so you can fully isolate your IoT devices as well," Laliberte said.


Salesforce said this week that they would use ChatGPT in a new platform, dubbed Einstein GPT, to help salespeople, customer service agents and marketers do their jobs. Despite the announcement, there is no set release date for the new tool.

"They're partnering with OpenAI, and we know that OpenAI has been successful in the past. Obviously OpenAI has been successful at making things that people really care about, so with this partnership I think [Salesforce] will be successful. I am confident in them. But you know, you never know with vendors," Ajao said.


Since October, the global tech industry has cut 137,000 jobs. Analysts said the tech industry could have more layoffs in the coming weeks. There are many factors at play, including overhiring during the pandemic, fears of a recession and automation. Despite this, the layoffs have been miniscule compared to the growth in the past two years.

"Let's put this in perspective. Tech employment has risen for 24 straight months, until January when it went down 15,000. Now there are about 5.5 million people employed in tech jobs. The amount of shrinkage in the actual tech labor force is a rounding error," Thibodeau said.

There's also a lot of hiring going on outside of the tech industry right now.

"The top employers right now, according to CompTIA's analysis, are finance like Capital One, defense like Lockheed Martin and consulting firms like Deloitte. So, yes, there's a lot of hiring going on, it's just not by the Googles and the Microsofts -- but those companies are going to ramp up again for sure," Thibodeau said.

When the tech industry does start ramping up again, people with IT skills will have nothing to worry about. Even if tech companies are in a lull, they will find work in other industries.

"For too long, the big tech companies were hiring out of MIT, Stanford, Carnegie Mellon. They were chasing degrees," Thibodeau said. "A lot of big companies, including the U.S. government, are dropping their college degree requirements and saying we're going to hire based on skills. This is opening the door to a much wider labor pool than we've had in the past."

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