May 25, 2015

Startup Beams the Web’s Most Important Content from Space, Free
Outernet is putting together the first 100 prototypes of those devices, code-named “Pillars,” and starting to test them in the field. One is up and running in a village in western Kenya. Another is in the Dominican Republic, and a third will soon be installed at a Detroit anarchist community attempting to live off the grid. Outernet’s current signal broadcasts about 200 megabytes of data over the course of a day, making it possible to update content such as daily news and weather forecasts periodically. It covers North and Central America, all of sub-Saharan Africa, Europe, and parts of Asia and the Middle East.

Software Defined Reality – NFD9 Redux
The idea that SDN means networking engineers have to be Python programmers persists in the minds of many and, sadly, the products of many as well. Even just a year ago, the first thing we were being told about any SDN-compliant product was what APIs it supported. Is it RESTful? XML RPC? Does it support OpenFlow fully? Bottom line: we (the sane) are not going to be writing code to program every single flow on a switch using OpenFlow. I believe what we really want is products that support standardized interfaces, yes, but only because we like the idea that somebody other than the product vendor might be able to do a better job of controlling that device.

Your SaaS Metrics Are Wrong if You Include These Customers
Ultimately, when it comes to defining “users” you probably want to start only with those that are actually “engaged” with your product or service (whatever “engaged” means… hopefully it’s well-defined in your world). This means getting away from low-value metrics like “signups” or “installs” or “logins” or even general “activity” and into specific metrics like “contextual activity” or activity that indicates whether the user is doing something from which they will derive value. I’ll be honest… this will likely reduce the number of “users” you have – which will cause a hit to the ego – but it will give you a better, more realistic view of what’s really going on in your business.

How to Make the First Minutes of a Major IT Incident Count
How an IT or DevOps organization communicates during the first few minutes of a service outage is crucial – businesses are negatively impacted by even a IT outage lasting only a few minutes.A recent survey of more than 300 IT professionals by Dimensional Research reveals that finding the right person to restore service takes at least 15 minutes. While IT searches for the right individual, the business is often suffering. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some ways reduce business downtime and improve the customer interaction significantly: .. If everyone is transparent with communications, the major incident manager can designate someone other than resolvers to proactively communicate what happened and next steps to customers, partners, marketing and public relations teams and executives.

8 Reasons IT Pros Hate The Cloud
Some find it hard to believe that cloud computing is only continuing to gain popularity. Some object to the purely technical issues that pose problems for IT pros who are used to maintaining data and applications in-house. They feel the cloud creates more work for them. Oftentimes, the issue is rooted in the difficulty that IT admins are having transitioning to new roles. With cloud-based infrastructure, platforms, or software, hands-on technical skills aren't needed as much as they once were in IT. Instead, many enterprises seek professionals who can act as systems architects, bringing a high-level vision of end-to-end infrastructure. With time, these and other pet peeves will be resolved. For now, though, cloud hatred is a serious problem.

Big Data: Uncovering The Secrets of Our Universe At CERN
Crunching all of the data collected from monitoring 600 million particle collisions per second would require more processing power than any one organization has at its disposal. To get around this problem, CERN initiated the construction of the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid, utilising computer facilities available to the universities and research groups collaborating on the project, as well as private data and computing centers. This “distributed computing” gives the experiment access to processing power and storage capacity which would be far too costly to build into one data center. It has other advantages over a centralized system – the data can be accessed at greater speed by researchers wherever they are in the world, and if disaster strikes at one location, multiple mirrors of the project exist elsewhere.

The best of jobs, the worst of jobs
All CIOs need the gravitas to be perceived as a peer of the other executives. Without it, they will not garner the respect necessary to manage the corporate project prioritization process. But with many fewer staff than their Fortune 500 counterparts, mid-tier CIOs also need enough technology expertise to be respected by their IT staff and to avoid being viewed simply as a “suit.” The best mid-tier CIOs have a broad set of skills. They are equally comfortable discussing detailed technology options, project management methodologies and shareholder value.

Connecting Big Data, Cloud and Watson to the Car for a Safer Ride Home
Many high-end cars already have electronic stability control plus adaptive cruise control and lane departure warnings. If you merge these technologies together, you get the first step in automated driving. When we make that leap, the car will be able to obtain and process even more information to keep the driver informed. The car will know the street ahead and make the necessary adjustments. In 2016, we will start seeing mass production for semi-automated driving solutions. By 2020, we will be ready for highly automated driving scenarios and fully automated by 2025. One of the main tasks will lie in using the cloud as an information carrier for the vehicle. Automated vehicles will need to know what lies around the next corner – is the road free, or is there a construction site?

Practitioner's Guide to Establishing a SOC
Establishing a Security Operation Center is a necessary step for an organization to be able to detect and efficiently contain a breach. Once you’ve determined to establish a SOC, the next important question to ask is, “how can my organization most efficiently achieve this goal?”  ... When establishing the Security Operation Center it is important that realistic understandings of these constraints are considered in order to ensure that an effective solution is created. If technology already exists, but access to the data cannot be guaranteed due to political reasons, it is of little use. Similarly, if technology is acquired but the overhead required for deployment, integration and management is beyond the capabilities of the current employees then it will be of little help.

The science behind virtual routers and their emerging roles
To understand a virtual router, it's important to understand the elements of a physical router. In its simplest form, a router links two LANs together via a protocol that implements and understands sub-networks and the routes between those subnets. That is, a routable protocol. Moving up a step, routers also link subnets -- via a wide area network (WAN) -- to subnets that are based in different geographic locations. Thus, three components are needed: a LAN interface, a WAN interface and the routing code that can decide which traffic needs to traverse the WAN and how to package it accordingly. When WAN routing first became a viable way to connect geographically dispersed corporate LANs in the 1990s, the routing world was in its "Wild West" phase.

Quote for the day:

"Feedback is the breakfast of champions." -- Ken Blanchard

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