March 25, 2014

IT is Growing Up: What the IT organization needs to do to be sustainable and valuable
Inspired by strategically minded CIOs and best practice competition winners, respected industry thought leader Jill Dyché is writing a new book about how IT is changing and, when in synch with organizational culture and strategy, its potential to transform how companies function. Trends like digital, analytics and big data are pushing the envelope for technology expectations within lines of business, and with business users often acting independently the traditional IT group simply can’t stand on its own. “The New IT” is about collaboration, working together to make IT effective and enculturating that to provide lasting business value.

Smartphone innovation is slowing, so what's next?
With smartphone innovation flattening, the next direction seems to be making the smartphone the hub -- connected via Bluetooth, primarily -- to emerging technologies. These systems include smartwatches, other wearable devices and everything in the much larger ecosystem of home appliances, cars and other products that, when connected, would comprise what's being called the Internet of Things. While this slowdown in innovation has been widely recognized, marketers for smartphone vendors still trumpet their devices' new features at large-scale events where the latest products are unveiled amid hype that overstates the new capabilities.

Finally, IPv6’s killer app: The Internet of Things
And the plan was so simple too: ISPs would start migrating to IPv6 well in advance of any address crisis. Everyone would run dual-stack for a few years and then when the IPv4 addresses started to run out, ISPs would turn their IPv4 networks off and we would all be running IPv6. Neat and orderly. Theoretically perfect. Well engineered. But not well financed. While the engineers thought this was a logical and great idea, the finance people, well… not so much. So while slipping down the first and steepest slope of the IPv6 hype cycle, the board decided we needed a plan B.

Microsoft Using Machine Learning, AI Across Product Lines
"Large amounts of that system are all done by machine learning because that's how you can do scale," Platt said. "The only way you can answer the billions of questions Bing answers is to have something that operates autonomously. In Xbox, the Kinect was also trained with machine learning. The fact that it can see you in the room even though it's poor lighting and you can wave your arms and it can track you—that's all done with a piece of software that was trained with machine learning."

How Enterprises Are Capitalizing On The Consumerization Of IT
Enterprises are capitalizing on the consumerization of IT and proliferation of mobile devices by developing applications aimed at improving employee productivity and customer satisfaction. These and many other findings are available in the IDG Enterprise Consumerization of IT in the Enterprise Study 2014 published today. The study shows that 83% of organizations are planning to invest in mobile technology in the next 12 months, with the majority of spending being for tablets and training (49%). A summary of the study and sample slides can be found here.

Obama to Call for End to N.S.A.’s Bulk Data Collection
As part of the proposal, the administration has decided to ask the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court to renew the program as it exists for at least one more 90-day cycle, senior administration officials said. But under the plan the administration has developed and now advocates, the officials said, it would later undergo major changes. The new type of surveillance court orders envisioned by the administration would require phone companies to swiftly provide records in a technologically compatible data format, including making available, on a continuing basis, data about any new calls placed or received after the order is received, the officials said.

Security black market as mature as any other free market: Juniper
"I don't think people expect to see it so mature," Greg Bunt, Juniper director of APAC security sales, told ZDNet. "Rather than it being described as a black market, I think it needs to be described as a pretty fully-featured, and fully-rich economy with payment systems, policing — all the sorts of things that you would see in a traditional economy, we see that permeate through this as well." Mirroring aspects of a traditional economy, the survey found that products sold by exploit vendors, often arrived complete with usage terms, tracking functionality, and enforcement functionality.

Oracle Has Sunny Forecast for Cloud Computing
These three cloud approaches have in common the Oracle database, running as a database as a service. Supporting it is the Oracle Fusion Middleware as a service that operates its business applications and is the basis to build custom applications by providing user, process, documents, information and identity services. Middleware is also where Oracle is advancing its support of mobile computing and big data as well as batch-to-real-time integration to applications and data across the enterprise and cloud along with Web services support through the REST and SOAP interfaces. Our research shows that integrating data from cloud applications is important to 80 percent of organizations.

ATM malware, controlled by a text message, spews cash
The malware is engineered to plunder a certain type of standalone ATM, which Symantec has not identified. The company obtained one of the ATMs to carry out a test of how Ploutus works, but it doesn't show a brand name. Ploutus isn't the easiest piece of malware to install, as cybercriminals need to have access to the machine. That's probably why cybercriminals are targeting standalone ATMs, as it is easy to get access to all parts of the machine. Early versions of Ploutus allowed it to be controlled via the numerical interface on an ATM or by an attached keyboard.

Fourteen Interview Questions to Help You Hire Your Next Innovator
The potential for innovation in your company increases when you have employees who demonstrate unrestrained thinking and the ability to connect seemingly disparate ideas. Is it possible to identify the people with these capabilities during a first interview? Absolutely—if you know what you look for and if you’re armed with the right questions. When searching for the next innovator to add to your team, start by looking for these five critical innovation skills and asking the relevant questions to find candidates who have them.

Quote for the day:

"There is only one thing more painful than learning from experience and that is not learning from experience." -- Archibald McLeish

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