Daily Tech Digest - November 10, 2016

AI, Cognitive Computing To Disrupt Enterprises: IDC

"Recent announcements by several large technology vendors and the booming venture capital market for AI startups illustrate the need for organizations to be planning and undertaking strategies that incorporate these wide-ranging technologies," he added. But it's not just about startups. Enterprises will play a big part, too, or risk being subsumed by digital disruptors, according to IDC. "Identifying, understanding, and acting on the use cases, technologies and growth opportunities for cognitive/AI systems will be a differentiating factor for most enterprises and the digital disruption caused by these technologies will be significant." IDC says that enterprises across a broad range of industries will be able to enable cognitive systems and AI by applying algorithms and rules-based logic to data flows.


Pixel XL with Google Daydream provide premium mobile VR

The flexible Daydream View headset simplifies alignment of the phone compared to Google Cardboard and the Gear VR. Just drop the phone into the headset, and the NFC chip inside the headset turns on Daydream VR and the Hall-effect sensor automatically aligns the screen with the lenses. The phone can be inserted quite far out of physical alignment, and the screen aligns perfectly from inside the headset. ... The Daydream controller has a very comfortable and lightweight minimalist design. It has a touchpad-like button, an application button and a home button that returns the user to the top-level menu. The overall performance and three degrees of freedom (3DOF) works well, though there is a bit of drift that can easily be corrected by pressing the home button.


How ‘Security Scorecards’ Advance Security, Reduce Risk

Understanding what makes a system secure is easy because it’s a technical problem. Deciding whether or not that’s worth doing from a business standpoint is more complicated. A lot of security people assume that security initiatives are always worth pursuing. If it takes zero resources – no time, no money, no anything – of course you’d do it. Every security improvement comes with a cost, and those costs are not always apparent or worth bearing. ... Security people would do well to accept risk, have a process for accepting risk, and make their business colleagues comfortable with accepting risk or paying for mitigation. If we have this business that is under-performing, it’s easy to look at the balance sheet of that business and know whether spending $100,000 on a pentest is worth doing.


A personal yet technology-driven approach to getting those 5-star reviews

With information on guests being so key to the success of hoteliers, it’s no surprise that they’ve been investing in innovating loyalty programmes: this has been their primary method of getting information about their guest’s behaviours and preferences and encouraging them to return. But as guest expectations continue to rise, understanding and meeting them is becoming tougher and tougher. It seems that one solution for hoteliers would be to create an app that drives the desired guest experience. This app could smartly and contextually recognise the guest from almost before the moment they log in, prioritises them based on their profile, and maintains the engagement from booking through arrival, during their stay and after check-out.


APIs Blurring Distinction Between Banking and Fintech

APIs have been used at banks and credit unions for decades, allowing internal developers the ability to interact with banking functionality without having to interact directly with the organization’s back-end systems. The beauty of an API is that it can modernize legacy infrastructure. The difference today is that financial institutions are allowing external access, expanding the possible use cases exponentially. Peter Wannemacher, a senior analyst with Forrester Research, said that “APIs will be, in the near future, a necessary and valuable means by which banks will do their jobs.” He added, “There’s a component of inevitability.” Tech writer Brian Koles says, “A company without APIs is like a computer without internet.” APIs are being used primarily to allow for the building of fintech solutions with a reduced time to market.


Oracle Widens Cloud Investments to Battle Bigger Amazon Threat

Oracle is also moving forward with home-grown tools, and in September unveiled a new plan for its own services for infrastructure, the core computing feature that lets developers easily build applications or work with databases. This business has been the laggard at Oracle, at less than a quarter of the size of the other cloud offerings and with slower growth. Hurd said the latest push -- backed by the company’s own big data centers with more efficient servers -- is something new for the business that can help spur the next chapter of growth. He’s betting customers would rather have more products from fewer providers than a patchwork of tools from a smattering of companies.


Peek at the smart tech inside Box's new headquarters

If it sounds similar to the smart campus that VMware recently opened in Palo Alto, Calif., that's because Chapman was on the team that helped design that build, before he joined Box in July 2015. Chapman was previously the CIO of HP Software and prior to HP, he was a vice president at VMware. The way the mobile app at Box works, "if I want to book a conference room, I bring it up on my app, I see the conference rooms that are available, I choose the room I want, I get turn-by-turn directions to that room and as I step into that room it automatically checks me into the room. Within 10 minutes if a room isn't claimed it's freed up. That works from an efficiency standpoint as well. A percentage of our rooms are reclaimed every day as people don't show up," he said.


New Tools Aim to Close the Cybersecurity Skills Gap

CyberSeek gives policymakers, employers, security professionals and others greater visibility into the demand for cybersecurity professionals around the country, allowing them to see the skills and types of workers that employers are seeking, as well as the true supply of professionals to fill those positions. Resembling a weather map, CyberSeek uses varying shades of color to reveal relative concentrations of cybersecurity job postings and worker supply. Users can search by state or more than 300 metropolitan areas, seeing total job openings, worker supply supply/demand ratio, a quotient for geographic concentration of workers and an area's top cybersecurity jobs by title. Here's an example NICE provides for the Kansas City metropolitan area: CyberSeek reveals that in the past year there were 2,134 job openings and 6,829 employed workers,


2017 Will Be A Bad Year For Pessimists

Everyone talks about the skills shortage, but is that really the problem? What if what is seen as a skills shortage is actually a result of employers’ addiction to Industrial Age work credentials such as college degrees and work experience? Autodidacts have discovered the power of “YouTube University,” but employers have been slow to recognize the potential. Workers wanting to learn a new skill or to pivot or accelerate their career can spend hours searching YouTube and engaging in various social media communities to develop competencies. ... Optimism extends beyond the executives I talked to. The Dalai Lama is also upbeat about the future. The Tibetan spiritual leader is heartened by the emergence of global consensus on climate goals enshrined in the Paris accord on climate change, as well as by the emerging ability to measure the willingness of nations and politicians to get along with one another.


How Java developers can use the Wiremock framework to simulate HTTP-based APIs

If you really wanted to, you could easily implement your own simple logging framework in no more than a day or two. But conventional wisdom has conditioned us never to write logging frameworks from scratch. Rather, we use Logback, Slf4J or similar off-the-shelf logging frameworks. And that’s for logging, a relatively simple function; if you ramp up the complexity of the problem, to consider for example data storage, it is almost a given that you will be using one of the ready-made frameworks available on the market, such as Oracle, MongoDB or Neo4J, depending on your requirements. Or take for example testing frameworks. You would not write a testing framework for every project you start; you’d just use JUnit or any of the other ones available, and optionally build on on top of that.



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"We cannot change what we are not aware of, and once we are aware, we cannot help but change" -- Sheryl Sandberg