March 16, 2016

10 Ways Virtual Reality is Disrupting Industries

Today we have different types of equipment or gears which facilitate our experience of this simulated environment. Take, for instance, the Google Cardboard, Oculus Rift, HTC Vive, Sony Morpheus VR headset or Samsung Gear VR. All these head mounted display (HMD) devices have magnified the mass interest and hype around virtual reality, bringing it out of animated series or video games, and into our living rooms. Today, this technology and its applications are proving revolutionary for almost every industry, and the world as a whole! Let’s understand the enormous ways in which VR is transforming the world and disrupting many different industries.

Is this the end of the API economy?

A gateway like this is an important element in API-focused service strategy. You can use it to handle user authentication, and then once user tokens have been exchanged, route calls to an appropriately provisioned endpoint. Is a user a subscriber, and at what level? If they're paying for a service, check how many calls they've made from their allocation, and deliver an appropriate error message if they've used their allocation so they can purchase more or upgrade a subscription to account for changes in user patterns. That doesn't mean returning a 200 OK message, it means delivering an appropriate and documented JSON response to ensure that applications are able to report errors to users.

TechUK to spotlight cyber threat intelligence

“The bottom line is that threat intelligence is only as good as the countermeasures that it informs, and that has got to be our ultimate goal,” Young said, calling on security organisations to join the Cyber Threat Alliance (CTA). A key part of informing countermeasures, said Rajab, is applying human intelligence and experience once the technology has sifted through the data to identify what needs further investigation. Similar to the CTA, TechUk considers it very important that threat intelligence is shared in the information security community for the benefit of all. “We have set up Trusted Agents Forum, which enables TechUk members to share threat intelligence and analysis. It is only through sharing threat intelligence and best practice that companies can better protect themselves,” said Rajab.

Debating Disruptive Innovation

It is critical that boards of directors and senior management understand when following accepted principles of good management (such as paying attention to your best customers and focusing investments where you can increase profit margins) leads to failure. Christensen demonstrated that those accepted management principles are only situationally appropriate. That insight can be used not only to avoid failure but also to go on offense to displace competitors. Identifying and harnessing disruptive innovations to avoid failure and to grow shareholder value became far more attainable once Christensen identified the essential elements of a disruptive innovation — a phenomenon previously unnoticed.

How Businesses and Governments Can Capitalize on Blockchain

While blockchain is the core technology that enables the Bitcoin crypto currency to operate, it can be used for entirely different purposes. It’s a distributed ledger shared via a peer-to-peer network that maintains an ever-expanding list of data records. Each participant has an exact copy of the ledger’s data, and additions to the chain are propagated throughout the network. Therefore, all participants in an interaction have an up-to-date ledger that reflects the most recent transactions or changes. In this way, Blockchain reduces the need for establishing trust using traditional methods. ... For blockchain to fulfill its full potential, it must be based on non-proprietary technology standards to assure the compatibility and interoperability of systems.

The downside of relying on social network providers for authentication

Relying on the social media giants helps both users and application developers. Users don't need to create yet another account and remember yet another set of credentials (my 1Password vault already has 176 entries in it). Application developers can skip implementing authentication, identity and password management. However, relying on a third-party identity service such as Facebook or Twitter also has its downsides. The application developer must make an assumption that the user has an account with those systems. The developer also must take it for granted that the third-party system is stable and reliable.

The Future of Jobs in a Machine World

Unlike the disruptions of yesteryear where technologies replaced simple repetitive Blue Collar job functions near the bottom of the Skills and Complexity Pyramid they’re now starting to replace White Collar knowledge workers near the top. The result is an increasingly nervy global workforce and for the first time ever a squeezed middle who are becoming increasingly worried about their lack of specialisms and skills. The technologies that will have the greatest impact and influence on the job markets can be divided into two groups. “Individual Emerging Technologies” such as Artificial Intelligence, Machine Vision and hardware and software based Robots and “Aggregated Emerging Technologies” that combine different technologies together to create platforms that include Autonomous Vehicles, Avatars, Cloud, Connected Home, the Internet of Everything, Smarter Cities, Wearables and Telehealth.

The 9 Challenges of an Industrial IoT Implementation (Part 1)

While industry reports provide some guidance, there is no straightforward answer as to which of these areas will yield the most short or mid-term benefits and should take priority. To name just a couple, Consultancy McKinsey, in its 2015 Report, Unlocking the potential of the Internet of Things, suggests that manufacturers stand to gain the most in making industrial processes more efficient. On the other hand, research firm Forrester, in its August 2015 paper The Internet of Things Has the Potential to Connect and Transform Businesses, counsels companies not to focus too heavily on potential efficiency gains from IoT, lest they “miss out on the potential of IoT to transform business models”. While there is no one size fits all, the answer to the question of where to start can be found by each company through a diligent and coordinated approach.

Chinese hackers behind U.S. ransomware attacks - security firms

"It is obviously a group of skilled of operators that have some amount of experience conducting intrusions," said Phil Burdette, who heads an incident response team at Dell SecureWorks. Burdette said his team was called in on three cases in as many months where hackers spread ransomware after exploiting known vulnerabilities in application servers. From there, the hackers tricked more than 100 computers in each of the companies into installing the malicious programs. The victims included a transportation company and a technology firm that had 30 percent of its machines captured. Security firms Attack Research, InGuardians and G-C Partners, said they had separately investigated three other similar ransomware attacks since December. Although they cannot be positive, the companies concluded that all were the work of a known advanced threat group from China, Attack Research Chief Executive Val Smith told Reuters.

Security via the cloud can ease digital transformation by reducing IT headaches

The rise of cloud-based services is coming at a time when many firms have been struggling to attract and retain skilled cyber security staff. Mistry from Trend Micro said this is particularly true for smaller firms, where IT staffing budgets can be very limited, thus making the ability to outsource cloud security especially appealing. “For businesses that have a limited headcount, in an environment where IT professionals are required to wear multiple hats, this allows some of the maintenance tasks to be reduced,” he said. “This includes network appliances such as firewalls, and also the full-time employee (FTE) staffing costs for the upkeep of security infrastructure. With security as a service, organisations can now use security software without the headache of maintenance. SMEs also favour security as a service for the reasons outlined."

Quote for the day:

"Great leaders are almost always great simplifiers." -- Colin Powell

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