As a process engineer I would like to be able to integrate complex specific calculations, such as from a 3rd party analytics engine, so that I can use the Asset Analytics and its context with all the available data and scheduling to run those without needing to do custom heavy development.
PI Server 2018 has been released, including native integration with MATLAB Production Server.
I'm a bug fan of AF, yet every decent project i needed to create my own external calculation engines for more complex business logic. I've used SQLserver, OLEBDEnt and linked AF tables, or custom C# engines.
In all cases i would at least get rid of all the technical plumbing of management, scheduling, security, etc., just like the ACE scheduler was.
So mechanisms to trigger custom logic, supply the data and provide access, and send back the data to AF.
If needed, i can supply specific examples i've built for customers.