December 15, 2015

Still Dreaming of the Paperless Office?

Going paper-free means putting an on-going strategy in place, which also encompasses technology, to ensure the project does not stall. This is where the IT department can step up to the plate as it understands the solutions available and can prioritize departments to move forward first, such as those driven by regulatory change, for example. By moving through departments in a chain reaction, an efficient digital transformation program can be put in place. ... We have to be realistic. Going paper free isn’t going to happen today, or even tomorrow. But there are steps that companies can take now to start the digital transformation process. Believe me your competition will be thinking about it even if they haven’t taken the plunge, so don’t get behind the curve.


6 Game-Changing Social Media Trends for 2016 – The Influencer’s View

Social media will be at our fingertips, and people will be more connected than ever. Gemio, a wearable bracelet being delivered to market in spring, 2016, aims to connect tweens and teens both in person by locating other friends wearing the tech, and on the related social app. ... Consumers are simply drowning in content and it’s being perceived by many as just noise with little attention being paid. In order to overcome the apathy towards content, marketers are going to have to ensure that the content they produce in 2016 is clearly targeted and personalized to address not only the overall customer experience, but each one of the points along the buyer’s journey up to the purchase and beyond to realize life-time customer value.


The Vital Role CIOs Play in Bottom-Line Growth

While the CIO’s role remains tied to technology, that technology is far from fixed. Just in the past few years, we’ve seen the increasing use of such developments as cloud computing, big data analytics, BYOD, and even more. Unlike in past decades, these technologies have the potential to affect every person within the organization, not just in what they do for their jobs but how they perform them. This is by no means a light responsibility for CIOs. To effectively make these types of decisions, CIOs need to be more in tune with the business objectives of their organizations than ever before. That requires CIOs to be a valuable player on the executive board, a credible voice that fellow executives will listen to. CIOs also need to learn the best ways to explain their ideas to those who may not be intimately familiar with new technological concepts.


A requiem for Yahoo

Things only got worse when Yahoo started cycling through CEOs—and CEO scandals—like most people change underwear. I got renewed hope when Google exec Marissa Meyer took over in 2012, but her tone-deaf moves to restrict telecommuting even as she installed a nursery in her own office didn't help. More to the point, she hasn't managed to deliver the turnaround she promised when she took the job.  Still, I'd love to see Yahoo return to its former glory, but it's hard to imagine exactly how that's going to happen. The company still enjoys massive traffic to its sites and services, but they're no longer considered cutting-edge. With big-ticket hirings like David Pogue and Katie Couric, Yahoo is now a media company, and a pretty mainstream one at that.


Advanced Security Service Insertion in OpenStack Cloud

OpenStack security groups offer a first line of defense for securing east-west traffic — that is, traffic between virtual machines. The OpenStack Firewall-as-a-Service (FWaaS) plugin can help you configure firewall rules and policies on firewalls or Intrusion Prevention Systems (IPS). Unfortunately, these simpler solutions come with some limitations: security groups operate at the instance level, and FWaaS works on virtual routers within a project. The way FWaaS is currently implemented in OpenStack, a single set of rules is applied to all virtual routers on all subnets, which limits their flexibility and capabilities, thereby preventing companies from the deployment of enterprise-critical production workloads.


Data Center Trends – Are You A Gate Keeper or the Leader of a Business Critical Function

Owning the entire data center stack means that you can affect change without disruption. It also means that you can establish metrics for efficiency and performance at all levels of the stack, from energy input to work output. You can establish metrics because you now have visibility into all parts of what makes the system that is a data center work. Not only do you have visibility, but you have the ability to more easily cross train, to implement more effective change management, and you can do much better long range maintenance planning. ... With top down ownership for the DC Stack the DCO is able to more effectively work with the entire executive team to define a strategic data center ownership document for the company.


How organizational agility will save and destroy your company

Organizational agility is talked about a lot. Indeed, in recognition that industries are changing fast, many organizations have agility in one form or another as a bullet in their corporate strategy. But if you look at most organizations, it just isn't making the huge difference that the pundits claim it will. Why is that? Business agility is hard to attain. ... These elements are compounding. Meaning, if you have a change in market segmentation or new market creation and your underlying technology changes, your organization has to adapt to both changes simultaneously, compounding the complexity of the change and making it all the more important that your organization is nimble.


Couchbase 4.1 delivers greatly-enhanced SQL capabilities

Beyond SQL support per se, Couchbase now supports the mainstream RDBMS concepts of covering indexes and prepared statements. Covering indexes allow a DBA or dev to create an index on a combination of columns in a database table that match the sort order and/or filtering criteria used in frequently-occurring queries, often underlying reports. Such indexes allow the queries to run much more quickly. ... For queries that are run frequently, this can mean a big performance boost. Combined with support for covering indexes, the prepared statement capability makes Couchbase much faster for frequently-run queries. In fact, Couchbase says customers can expect "2-3x Faster Query Performance."


Nuance tames IoT interface woes with new developer tools

Using an application-specific interaction model will help create better products. IoT devices don't need to recognize the entire range of English speech, just a subset of commands tied into what the device is supposed to do.  Once developers have a model set up, it can then learn from users' speech patterns to improve and morph based on how people actually operate a product. Developers are in complete control over what anonymized speech data is fed back into their models, too.  According to Kenn Harper, the senior director of mobile devices at Nuance, Mix will eventually be available in multiple pricing tiers, including one that allows developers to just pay as they go for what they need with minimal support, and another that includes a higher level of partnership between Nuance and an end customer.


IBM's Watson Taps APIs, Learning Centers For IoT Expansion

"One of Watson's strengths is its scale," Karns said. It can handle multiple streams of data, sorting out the correlations as needed. For instance, when IoT sensors are used with operating machinery or systems they will generate hundreds of megabytes per second of status data that must be monitored and analyzed. IBM's new Watson IoT announcements build on developments earlier this year. In March the company announced a plan to invest more than $3 billionover the next four years to build a dedicated IoT business unit staffed by more than 2,000 consultants, researchers, and developers. In October IBM announced plans to acquire most of the assets of The Weather Company, and said it would use many of those components to create a foundation for its IoT cognitive computing efforts, and as parts of the company's Insight cloud services.



Quote for the day:


"Nothing so conclusively proves a man's ability to lead others as what he does from day to day to lead himself." -- Thomas J. Watson