April 30, 2015

Hadoop’s Next Big Battle: Apache Versus ODP
Schroeder went on to list several concerns about the ODP. Chief among those are that the ODP “is redundant” with the ASF and that it “solves problems that don’t need solving.” “Companies implementing Hadoop applications do not need to be concerned about vendor lock-in or interoperability issues,” Schroeder says, citing a Gartner survey that found fewer than 1 percent of companies were concerned about lock-in or interoperability. “Project and sub-project interoperability are very good and guaranteed by both free and paid-for distributions,” Schroeder writes. “Applications built on one distribution can be migrated with virtually zero switching costs to the other distributions.” The cost of joining the ODP is a sticking point for Schroeder, who raised the question of whether it’s “pay to play.”

5 Factors to Retrospect after Every Sprint while Developing a Product
The essence of agile is to thrive for continuous improvement through empirical process control. True agile teams find ways to improve through experimentation, finding sustainability, and delivering business value earlier. It is a never-ending journey, and a sprint retrospective emerges as an opportunity to further accelerate this improvement process. It is a great time to allocate and analyse extraneous factors in detail, which otherwise may distract the team’s focus. In this post, we highlight 5 factors which every agile team should retrospect after each sprint. Let’s have a look.

IT execs on Facebook at Work strengths and weaknesses
Yochem also says that every company and organization is on the hunt for tools, ideas and methods to accelerate their business and increase collaboration. "Bringing the Facebook construct to the enterprise would conceivably allow for unprecedented collaborative capability across multiple entity types, allowing business and society to evolve rapidly in response to changing customer expectations and business needs." Facebook is initially focusing on large, multinational businesses in an attempt to build momentum and interest around its enterprise product, but Lindenmuth says it would see more success by targeting small- to medium-size businesses with fewer than 5,000 employees.

Your startup isn't disruptive, and here's why
"If you're really disruptive, you're usually making another company's life more difficult," said Christian Jensen of Accel. Existing companies should see you as a threat. They should view you as an enemy. You are fighting for the same space and, as a disruptor, you're breaking the rules in the process. "Everything that's been truly a disruptive technology -- it kind of irks somebody," Herrod said. If your startup makes perfect sense to everyone in existing roles at first glance, it's probably not disruptive, Herrod added. Being able to do something faster and cheaper mean that you'll be able to scale faster. The lower price contributes to price elasticity, meaning the growth in demand that comes with the lowering of price. Ben Brooks of Southern Capitol said this is especially important in that price elasticity is an indicator of potential scalability.

3 ways to reduce turnover for relocated employees
A corporate relocation is a major life event. Whether the employee is a new hire or a proven team member, a job-based relocation involves a variety of challenges—all of which can impact the employee’s long-term relationship with your company. ... Negative experiences or dissatisfaction in any one of these areas increases your risk of losing a talented employee. As a result, it’s in your company’s best interest to manage the relocation process in a way that helps employees and their families quickly adapt to their new location. ... Many employers are using automated communications to stay in touch with employees during the transition period. The distribution of strategic emails or other forms of communication on a set schedule reduces the burden on HR staff. But more importantly, it reduces turnover by making the move less intimidating to employees.

SaaS Customers Beware: Data Issues are Cloudy
The fact is that choosing a cloud-based option presents a different set of legal issues that purchasers do not face with on-premises software, so it’s important that they consider the terms and conditions of the contract. Some of these issues aren’t completely new – they go back to the days before perpetual contracts and “open systems” were the norm. In that era, a company could find itself hostage to a vendor that shut down the company’s system remotely and prevented it from using the technology to run its business and retrieving its data from the system. Before entering into any SaaS contract or renewal, it’s important to review the details of the contract and its terms and conditions. The company should insist on modifying the wording of the contract if necessary to the satisfaction of both parties.

Hadoop and beyond: A primer on Big Data for the little guy
After a decade of growth, however, the Hadoop market is consolidating around a new “Hadoop kernel,” similar to the Linux kernel, and the industry standard Open Data Platform announced in February is designed to reduce fragmentation and rapidly accelerate Apache Hadoop’s maturation. Similarly, the Algorithms, Machines and People Laboratory (AMPLab) at the University of California, Berkeley is now halfway through its six-year DARPA-funded Big Data research initiative, and it’s beginning to move up the stack and focus on a “unification philosophy” around more sophisticated machine learning, according to Michael Franklin, director of AMPLab and associate chair of computer science at UC Berkeley.

FIXing Post-Trade
“Today we are talking about trading in milliseconds, microseconds, even nanoseconds, but if you look at post-trade, nothing has changed for 20 years,” Ignatius John, president of post-trade technology provider Alpha Omega Financial Systems, told Markets Media. “We are still running the same old, archaic architecture in the systems. That is where I believe the change is going to come next.” ... “For the last two decades much of the industry’s investment has been directed towards front-office solutions,” John said. “We believe that the middle- and back-office are essential functions that can contribute to lowering costs, reducing errors and ultimately improving portfolio performance.” A number of large global asset managers have identified post-trade as an area where they are looking to improve efficiencies, reduce costs and capture more alpha.

RSA president questions government role in cybersecurity
"The government is not the answer here," he said, when asked about White House proposals for sharing of cybersecurity information. Despite the growing severity of attacks and a feeling that the government should "do something," the issue is best left to private companies, because they are the ones developing networks and the technology that defends them, he said. "Nobody is going to say information sharing is bad, but I've yet to see what is being asked to share by whom, for what purpose, to which parties, how will it be protected, how will it be used and then what is the value proposition back for sharing information," Yoran said.

Technology driving pick-and-mix banking
US consumers trust traditional financial services firms more than other organisations to secure their data, but banks are still having their businesses picked away by competitors as customers go elsewhere for many products. This is according to research by Accenture of 4,000 retail bank customers in the US and Canada, and provides a stark warning to UK banks which are facing competition from challenger banks as well as IT companies offering financial services. ... The arrival of new banks, some of which are digital only, looks set to bring real competition to the retail banking sector in the UK.  In 2013 the Payments Council introduced a system that enables consumers to change current account providers in seven days, rather than the 30 it took previously.

Quote for the day:

"A quarrel between friends, when made up, adds a new tie to friendship." -- Francis de Sales

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