December 22, 2013

Advanced Persistent Threats Now Hitting Mobile Devices
"Just when many IT security practitioners were hoping to get their endpoint security risks under control, the exploding growth of mobility platforms and public cloud resources has turned these dreams into a security nightmare," the survey report asserts. The respondents perceive "mobile devices such as smartphones" to be the greatest potential IT security risk in the IT environment, more than PC desktops and laptops.

When You Criticize Someone, You Make It Harder for that Person to Change
Barbara Frederickson, a psychologist at the University of North Carolina, finds that positive feelings enlarge the aperture of our attention to embrace a wider range of possibility and to motivate us to work toward a better future. She finds that people who do well in their private and work lives alike generally have a higher ratio of positive states to negative ones during their day. Being in the positive mood range activates brain circuits that remind us of how good we will feel when we reach a goal, according to research by Richard Davidson at the University of Wisconsin.

Brave New (Dell) World
Dell has started a $300 million fund to explore new technologies and fund companies doing that work. A more cynical person might think that Michael Dell is using the new-found freedom to offer an incentive to other startups to avoid the same kinds of issues he had – answering to single-minded masters only focused on dividends and stock price. By offering to invest in a hot new startup, Michael Dell will hopefully spur innovation in areas like storage.

Oculus Primed: Meet the Geniuses Who Finally Mastered Virtual Reality
As processor power has progressed, various head-mounted displays and VR sets have claimed to have solved the latency problem at various thresholds: 100 milliseconds! 40 milliseconds! Those thresholds might do away with the most frustrating delays, but they can’t guarantee comfort. “It’s easier to get sick from latency than it is to perceive it,” Luckey says. “People in the VR industry have been disagreeing on what humans can perceive—and that number always seems to match up to what their system is just barely able to do.”

Thinking in Silicon
A new breed of computer chips that operate more like the brain may be about to narrow the gulf between artificial and natural computation—between circuits that crunch through logical operations at blistering speed and a mechanism honed by evolution to process and act on sensory input from the real world. Advances in neuroscience and chip technology have made it practical to build devices that, on a small scale at least, process data the way a mammalian brain does.

Target Sees Massive Customer Data Hack
Barbara Endicott-Popovsky, director of the Center for Information Assurance and Cybersecurity at the University of Washington told TIME Magazine that hacking “is a business. The general public would be shocked and amazed by the size of the problem.” She added, “People who run companies are not aware that they’ve actually become software companies. We’re headed toward the internet of things, where we have embedded software in every product. What we’ve done is open up a whole host of vulnerabilities.”

2013 Top 10 SDN Stories
In 2013, Cisco and VMware launching SDN and networking virtualization strategies stole much of the spotlight, organizations like the Open Networking Foundation and OpenDaylight made real progress on OpenFlow development and a common controller. This year marked real progress for open networking and SDN standards development, here are top 10 SDN stories of 2013.

Expert Describes SQL Server 2012 Licensing Pitfalls and Strategies
DeGroot offered some strategies to reduce SQL Server 2012 licensing costs. One of the strategies relies on using the true-up process with SQL Server 2008 R2 licenses to gain additional core entitlements. A true-up is licensing lingo for contract renewals under Microsoft's Enterprise Agreements. DeGroot noted that true-ups will cost the least during the third year of an agreement. The idea behind a true-up is that organizations can add software during the year and pay for the additional licensing later at the annual true-up assessment time.

5 Tips for Agile Enterprise Architecture Innovation
More and more, IT is focused on reliability while the business side is pushing for tech innovation and new tech adoption. Enterprise architects and tech execs are right to be cautious about latching on to the next-big-thing, but there’s also little good done by ignoring this unprecedented wave of business interest and “shadow” adoption. Forrester Research analyst Brian Hopkins recently highlighted a handful of areas enterprise architects can stay grounded in their needs while reaching for innovation and agility. Here are five tips for fostering innovation and agility in EA development as adopted from Hopkins and Forrester’s “Emerging Technology playbook.”

Architecture and Agility: Married, Divorced, or Just Good Friends?
Does agile development need architecture? Does architecture need agile development? Is it possible to even answer these questions without a polarizing debate typified more by caricature and entrenched cultural views than by clear definitions and open reasoning—a debate more closely resembling two monologues streaming past each other than a dialogue? Perhaps rephrasing the question in more general terms offers a better place to start: instead of focusing specifically on agile approaches, we should consider development processes more broadly.

Quote for the day:

"Thus to be independent of public opinion is the first formal condition of achieving anything great." -- G. W. F. Hegel

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