January 27, 2014

NSA surveillance revelations could lead to data collection policy
What one hopes it won't do is impede innovation. Sure, the data collection we see every day in things like targeted coupons and targeted advertisements can have a rather high creepiness quotient. But there's much good that big data collection can do. Examples abound -- from analyzing Tweets to understand smoking habits to collecting meter data to optimize the grid to improving automation. That's as long as the analytics end of the equations are sound.

The ROI of Data Governance
Many organizations have found success by “thinking globally and acting locally.” Sometimes referred to as guerilla governance, this may not be the fast path, but is likely the pragmatic path to enterprise data governance. This is not a shortcut – there’s no substitute for the broad-based communication, collaboration, coordination, executive sponsorship and investment required to obtain sustainable governance. It’s merely a way to align with the principles and practices of data governance and obtain some small, quick wins cheaply to build the evidence and confidence required to support greater investment.

Would NFC smartphones have helped at Target?
The answer is complicated and political, primarily because there are questions over who is liable for a data breach -- the retailers or the financial institutions and their associated card processing companies such as Visa and MasterCard. It is also expensive to install point-of-sale (POS) terminals in millions of retail locations and at ATMs that can read chips on the newer contactless cards, as well an NFC signal from a smartphone. It also doesn't help that Apple hasn't included NFC chips in its popular iPhones. "Apple's refusal to integrate NFC functionality is a blatant roadblock, there's no other way to put it,"

Hands-on with Knoppix Linux 7.2.0: A well-established and very stable Linux distribution
Over the years, Knoppix has evolved and expanded. In about 2005 a Live DVD version was added, with loads of additional applications, utilities and packages included. Rather than drop the Live CD version, however, both formats have been maintained since then, with the CD version as a "small/fast/easy" alternative, and the DVD version as an "everything including the kitchen sink" alternative. My first use of Knoppix came at SANS training classes, where they were using the Live CD version as a convenient way for course participants to gain access to Linux tools.

Wipro's CEO maps out a future for IT Services firms
The world continues to change rapidly for Indian IT Services firms. Here’s a recent interview with Wipro CEO T.K. Kurien with all the usual stuff about firms in transition, the trauma of effecting change and other such things. However, embedded in there are three observations that give us a glimpse into a brave new world for software services firms.

How Xerox Evolved From Copier Company To Creative Powerhouse
There’s one other thing that’s crucial to getting the best, most innovative work out of Xerox employees. “Having fun is one of the principles I always talk with new hires about,” says Vandebroek. “Unless you have fun, you can’t truly bring your intellect, your skills, and your deep knowledge to push the boundaries of the unknown, to invent and create.” She goes on: “Being innovative to me is being both creative and entrepreneurial. And you can’t be creative and entrepreneurial unless you truly bring your heart to work, and have fun at work. Having fun is really essential. You need to have fun every day.”

As security woes bedevil IT, guess who’ll shoulder more of the load?
So what’s the solution? One increasingly prevalent view is that end-users be enlisted to the cause, first by educating them about safe practices, about corporate security policies and regulations (and the penalties for breaking them) and finally by enforcing those policies. Let’s face it, if you are a knowledge worker, you need to collaborate with others, sometimes contractors, partners outside the firewall — and should have a good idea of who is to be trusted with documents and work product.

Myths and Misconceptions about Transaction Isolation Levels
In every discussed Isolation Level so far, you are also always able to get so-called Phantom Records – records that can appear and disappear in your result set. If you want to get rid of these phantom records, you have to use the Isolation Level Serializable, which is the most restrictive one. In Serializable SQL Server uses a so-called Key Range Locking to eliminate phantom records: you are locking complete ranges of data, so that no other concurrent transactions can insert other records to prevent phantom records.

Fiberlink president talks IBM MobileFirst plans, EMM consolidation
Candidly, what we were not good at was global marketing and global sales. We did not have the scale and we did not spend the money. We could, but we chose not to go that route to just try to buy market share. Over the course of the last couple of years, we continued to get close to IBM in terms of packaging some of their stuff for the laptop side, but also uniquely developing the whole mobile side of the house. It was becoming more and more obvious to us that the market in mobile management still has not found vendor loyalty…

Interview with Ole Jepsen on Leadership in Agile
Good leaders create an environment where self-organizing teams can thrive and create great products and services to delight their customers: that is what Ole Jepsen explained in this interview. At the XP Days Benelux conference he talked about truly leading people and the subtle but important differences between taking and giving control. InfoQ interviewed Ole on leadership in agile, self organizing teams and focusing on people

Quote for the day:

"You can't improve and still be the same" -- John C. Maxwell