May 05, 2015

Intel's recipe to make it in mobility
Intel's prospective turnaround in its battle for mobility market share comes about a year after the company announced that it would pump $100 million into its Smart Device Innovation Center in Shenzhen, China. It made the move in part to better compete amid the proliferation of microprocessors made by British rival ARM Holdings that had been flooding into the Chinese market, where ARM chips have become the chips of choice for many smartphone vendors. ARM's ecosystem business model has seen the company grasp the upper hand in the Chinese mobility market, so it is no surprise that for Skaugen, Intel's efforts to ramp up its ecosystem in the country are central to its success.

Cisco CEO Chambers on white boxes, SDN, leadership and the cloud
To me, you don’t have a separate network for a software-defined network and a separate network for your physical network. We learned that with ATM and Ethernet and others. Too expensive, you can’t share the information. We’re going to lead the SDN market but we’re going to brace for what people are after: programmability, lower cost, faster speed. So regarding the announcements about large SDN implementations, what you want to ask about is not how many people did you give it away to for free or off a software license. If you watched when Sony presented last quarter, it already has 300 customers with ACI capability and many of them well into production. Ask VMware how many software-defined NSX implementations they have in volume.

Microsoft Chief Slams Google As Lollipop Hits 10 Percent
"Google ships a big pile of … code, with no commitment to update your device," said Myerson at Microsoft's Ignite conference in Chicago this week. "Google takes no responsibility to update customer devices, leaving end-users and businesses increasingly exposed every day they use an Android device." Myerson might want to look at Microsoft's updating history, however, which is hardly a friendly one. The company debuted Windows Phone 7.0 in late 2010. That was followed by Windows Phone 7.1 and Windows Phone 7.5. Most devices shipped during these early years of the Windows Phone platform were able to update to Win7.5 directly from Microsoft, but some required carrier approval, which was often slow to arrive.

Agile Architecture: Reversibility, Communication and Collaboration
In regards to the agile manifesto’s preference for ‘responding to change over following a plan’ this has also been interpreted as ‘there is no need for a plan’, and accordingly there is no need for architecture within a software system. Fowler cautioned that this is often not true - architectural plans are required, but they must be adaptable and changeable. Within an agile project, the role of architecture can be analogous to city planning. Things are changing all of the time, but plans must be applied to maintain coherence across this process. In this respect, architecture is not necessarily about diagrams, but should be focused on communication of design. Dishman discussed that during project inceptions, the key stakeholders gather, but often there is no architectural representation.

17 JavaScript tools breathing new life into old code
Thanks to the ingenuity of an intrepid few, old code is receiving new life via a variety of JavaScript tools. --- The tools are far from perfect, but they tantalize despite their flaws. Rewriting remains a challenge, as it usually means understanding code that was written when disk space was expensive and comments cost real money. While putting in the effort can yield great benefits and erase some technical debt, we often don't have that luxury. Instead, it might be simpler and faster to fiddle with these cross-compilers, translators, and emulators to modernize old code bases than it would be to collect a big team steeped in dying programming languages to pick through old code and rewrite everything.

Six Tips for Keeping Your Cool in All Seasons
Seasonal changes present opportunities to maximize efficiency or improve control. Depending on the return air temperatures to the computer room air conditioning (CRAC) or air handling (CRAH) units, you could still see significant economization in spring. Reduced compressor loading or run time through economization increases cooling system efficiency from 30-50 percent, depending on application and geographical location. As you likely know, IT systems are critically sensitive to extreme variations in temperature and humidity. Very low humidity can cause static electricity to build up and discharge, which can possibly damage electronic equipment and/or cause data loss. High heat or humidity can cause condensation in the space, leading to failure or shortened equipment life.

EMC open sources ViPR Controller, eyes broader software defined storage footprint
ViPR is the key platform behind EMC's software defined storage strategy. EMC's bet is that Project CoprHD's application programming interfaces will be a vendor-neutral control point for storage automation. The big question is why is EMC taking an open source turn now? Sam Grocott, senior vice president of marketing and product management at EMC's emerging technologies division, said the biggest reason the company is open sourcing its ViPR code is that partners and customers wanted it. ViPR manages both EMC and third party storage arrays and the customer base wanted to accelerate its coverage. EMC has been shipping ViPR for about two years. By the numbers, ViPR manages more third party arrays than EMC's, but the automation and deep integration typically goes to the storage giant's systems.

IoT considerations for CIOs
Ultimately the game is one of competitive advantage, and using IoT to advantage will be a key skill required of CIOs. For CIOs, the biggest challenges will be the quantity, collection, analysis and purposeful utilization of near-real-time or real-time data from numerous heterogeneous sources. Big Data has emerged at just the right time for this. But the harvesting of data from inexpensive sensors -- many of which will fail, be in error, need recalibration in different environments or may not have been activated -- will require intelligent handling of large data volumes. ... Accompanying this are concerns about privacy, security and theft, especially since many of the 'things' entering a business may be from multiple unknown consumer sources.

4 steps to success for a new CIO
The lines of demarcation in companies are blurring. New CIOs must read between the lines – between industries, customers and product developers -- as they move swiftly to learn the business, find their niche and make an impact on the enterprise. Speed – or multiple speeds in the world of IT, given legacy systems and the arrival of digital – is the focus as digital drives the rate of innovation and business leaders’ expectations. But new CIOs are not the sole masters of their enterprise’s technology. As reported in theAccenture 2015 Technology Vision, only 34 percent of executives expect the IT organization to be the main generator of innovation in the next two years, down from 71 percent just two years ago. That compounds the challenges faced by new CIOs who walk into the job fully aware that the average tenure of a CIO tends to be shorter than that of their other C-suite colleagues.

Intelligent People but Bad Choices? Try Using Analytics
System 2 thinking (slow) paints a more pessimistic picture. Consider that of the 30 horses in a position to win the Triple Crown in the last 132 years, only 11 have succeeded. That's about a 40% rate. But it gets worse. Prior to 1950, eight of the nine horses that tried, triumphed. Since 1950, only 3 of 22 have managed the feat, and none have done so since 1978. A success rate of less than 15% is not encouraging. Perhaps I'll Have Another was a really special horse, you may be thinking, a once-in-a-generation speedster. Well, we can quantify that with something call a Beyer Speed Figure, a measure of a horse's performance adjusted for track conditions. All you really need to know for this purpose is that higher speed figures belong to faster horses.

Quote for the day:

"Spectacular achievements are always preceded by unspectacular preparation." -- Roger Staubach