July 08, 2016

Can the evolving CIO role break a glass ceiling for women?

Clearly the numbers are not about ability. They are more likely a reflection of bias, both in advertising and recruiting for senior roles. That’s a tough one to crack but conditions are changing. So what can be done? Inspiring the young is one step. Heneghan believes more needs to be done to promote technology career paths to school pupils and much of this is down to destroying stereotypes by using those female role models as inspiration. Meeting the demands of the evolving CIO role is another step. Businesses can cultivate female talent based on key strengths, promoting a diverse culture and a strategy built on technology business cases rather than nuts and bolts IT management.

Home Computers Connected to the Internet Aren't Private, Court Rules

The judge argued that the FBI did not even need the original warrant to use the NIT against visitors to PlayPen. The Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group, warned that the ruling is far outside any current legal notion of privacy. The group expects, however, that law enforcement will begin to use the ruling unless it is overturned. "The Justice Department has a practice of carving out novel legal interpretations and then advancing them in court," Andrew Crocker, a staff attorney for EFF told eWEEK. "I would not be surprised if they did try to rely on the idea that they don't need a warrant for this type of hacking." Few people will have sympathy for the defendant, a man who allegedly visited PlayPen and downloaded images from the site, but the precedents in the case could affect everyone, the EFF stated.

Enterprise Business Intelligence vs. Self-Service: It’s Not a Fight

This is the holy-grail question of BI. Enterprise BI tools have historically delivered on the governance front; however, had limited self-service capabilities. On the other hand, data discovery tools have launched a liberalizing platform for users to connect, prepare, and analyze data all on their own but with little governance capabilities. Instead, they rely on storytelling, social media features, and annotations for report creators to share their analyses with background knowledge on how they arrived to their interpretations of the data. While both tools differ in terms of level of governance, it is important to consider their core purpose. Discovery tools are meant for users to conduct data mashups and independently find or create insights while enterprise BI is used for information delivery and monitoring.

12 Ways To Cultivate A Data-Savvy Workforce

"Every employee needs [to understand] what it means to be part of a digital, datacentric organization," said Susan Peters, senior vice president of Human Resources at GE, in an interview. "Whether you're on the shop floor of a manufacturing plant, in a research lab, or at the corporate headquarters, everyone is responsible for a company's shift to becoming data-savvy." Of course, not all companies have GE's vast resources. The company spends $1 billion a year worldwide on employee learning and development alone. Even without such resources, here are 12 things your company can do to effectively attract, build, and retain a data-savvy workforce. Once you've reviewed our tips, tell us what you think in the comments section below. Is your corporate culture ready for a data-driven workforce?

4 ways to make agile and waterfall work together

Whether it’s a consulting engagement or an internal software project, IT departments like the flexibility and productivity of an agile project. But in selling the project to upper management and the finance organization, waterfall concepts will nearly always be introduced as requirements. If you think hard about it, agile and waterfall are nearly contradictory philosophies. So how do you get them to work together? In too many software projects, particularly those involving consultants, it’s a pretty uncomfortable marriage. Unlike the song, opposites do not attract. ... Even though it is common to discover many details after that first phase, these new items are not the project implementer’s problem: they are the consuming or client organization’s problem. They should not be accepted as binding requirements without a change order. Unfortunately, I’ve seen projects that were still in discovery after deployment.

Writing Maintainable Configuration Code

A lot of work has been done to write maintainable code and achieve high design quality in traditional software engineering. Similar to production code, configuration code may also become unmaintainable if the changes to configuration code are made without diligence and care. ... Configuration smells are the characteristics of a configuration program or script that violate the recommended best practices and potentially affect the program's quality in a negative way. In traditional software engineering practices, bad smells are classified as implementation (or code) smells and design smells based on the granularity of the abstraction where the smell arises and affects. Similarly, configuration smells can also be classified as implementation configuration smells, design configuration smells, documentation configuration smells, and so on.

Database architects help scientists deal with data floods

The North American Space Agency (NASA) built a SciDB database that helped it manage and process a mass influx of Doppler radar as part of its study on the intensity and frequency of storms in the US. Since the technology for gathering this data is constantly evolving, the data feeds come in a variety of file formats and levels of detail. Some of the information is measured by the degree, while other sources compare changes in tenths of a degree. Meanwhile, the representation of the data is equally diverse, with grey scale and raw signal data jostling alongside derived data values like precipitation rates and wind speed. Without SciDB, NASA’s scientists would miss the bigger pictures evolving as they’d be too busy writing code that could map the various representations together, says Brown.

The Enterprise Is In An Arm's Race With Cybercriminals

“Attackers use the deep web for anonymized communications that they encrypt over web protocols and for trade in rootkits that they use for nuisance attacks to serve as smoke screens that cover real attacks,” says Professor James Hendler, Director of the Institute for Data Exploration and Applications, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). Cyber hoodlums orchestrate the real attacks using threats such as the latest exploits, APT approaches, and zero-days, which they keep close to their chest while enterprises still have no defense against them. “The current state-of-the-art happens off the deep web because attackers are not willing to share that information. Ransomware for example is extremely sophisticated and these criminals go to great lengths to obscure its source,” says Hendler.

More People Work From Home Now Than Ever Before

The number of people working from home increased from 19% in 2003 (the first year the ATUS was conducted) to 24% in 2015. Concurrent with the findings of the previous surveys on longer hours, the ATUS reveals that the average time employed persons spent working at home on days they worked increased by 40 minutes from 2.6 hours to 3.2 hours. Breaking this down by gender, men who were employed full time reported working from home 3.24 hours on an average day while women working full time said they clocked in 3.44 hours on the average day. Those who earned a bachelor’s degree are more likely to work from home. The ATUS found that compared to less educated workers, full time workers who are college graduates were the least likely to work at their workplace on days they worked (74%), and they were the most likely to do some or all of their work from home (39%).

What EA learned about building successful mobile app infrastructure

Some of the best practices include learning from failure, focusing on user experience, creating a plan and leveraging a platform. This allowed the company to go from a few unused applications to a mobile application factory that made it easy to update apps and deploy new ones. Bendrot said it is surprising how often planning the infrastructure does not get considered in implementing a mobile strategy. EA realized it would be much better to leverage a mobile backend as a service (MBaaS) to allow developers to focus on writing new features. It ultimately adopted the FeedHenry MBaaS platform that was recently acquired by Red Hat. In addition, EA needed a strategy for provisioning new apps. They settled on a mobile application management (MAM) platform from Apperian for managing an enterprise store.

Quote for the day:

"High expectations are the key to everything." -- Sam Walton