Daily Tech Digest - July 22, 2019

Will complexity kill Kubernetes?

Will complexity kill Kubernetes?
Kubernetes, unlike Hadoop, is an easier system with which to become familiar, in part because of where it can run. As Gareth Rushgrove writes, “You can run Kubernetes locally much, much easier (Docker Desktop, Kind, MicroK8s) than the other similar examples. Lowering the barrier to entry makes it easier to become familiar, which combats perceived complexity.” It also helps, as Cloud Native Computing Foundation executive Chris Aniszczyk stressed, that while “distributed systems are inherently complex, the upside with Kubernetes is that every major worldwide cloud provider and multiple vendors offer a managed conformant/certified version of it (no forks) which helps most users with complexity of managing at scale.” Even so, perhaps the right question, Tamal Saha indicates, is whether “Kubernetes [is] complex given the problem it tries to solve.” For him, the answer is no. That is the same answer to the question, “Will Kubernetes get Hadooped?” Kubernetes is already well past that stage.

Microsoft's Chromium Edge browser
In a special enterprise-focused section of the Edge Insider site, Microsoft has posted a .zip-format file that contains all the files - including ADMX and ADML files, and an HTML document - for using group policies on Windows and macOS machines to configure Edge in a managed environment. Last month, Microsoft had previewed those same files and most of the group policies. It wasn't easy to find the files, though, since Microsoft had hidden them in a post on the Insider forum. The current collection of group policy objects (GPOs) also includes those for managing Edge updates, something missing from the bunch previewed in June. One update-related policy, UpdateDefault, for example, lets administrators specify whether and how workers' copies of Edge use the Microsoft Edge Update service, a spin-off of the updater that handles Office. Policy configurations include disabling updates entirely, allowing manual updates and offering only periodic background updates. Other policies can be set so that some or all users are allowed to, for instance, update the beta and stable channel builds of the browser, but not the rougher dev and canary versions.

HMRC makes cloud and data progress 

According to the department, achievements of the new Data Governance Board so far include the introduction of “foundational” elements, such as a data audit on its high-risk systems and services to identify risks of non-compliance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), whereby asset owners are informed about the risks around non-compliance and take responsibility for managing them. HMRC’s Voice ID service is an example where a specific risk of non-compliance has been identified as the department collected data with consent from five million UK taxpayers. An enforcement notice to delete the unlawfully collected data was then issued in May 2019 by Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). The ICO’s instruction was to delete the data within 28 days. According to HMRC, the process was about 40% of the way through when the enforcement notice was issued and the deletion was completed one week before the deadline of 6 June 2019.

Private channels slated to launch in Microsoft Teams this fall

Private channels would help businesses streamline how users are organized within Teams. For example, instead of having an "IT Department" team and an "IT Director" team, Chapman University could have one team for the entire department with a private channel for its managers. Microsoft reaffirmed its commitment to private channels in a keynote address at the Enterprise Connect conference in March, saying the feature would launch sometime in 2019. The company is currently testing private channels with a limited group of beta customers. Microsoft has blamed the delay on the technical difficulty of engineering private teams. The company needs to make private not only the chats but also the files, which requires tinkering with the integration between Teams and Office 365 apps such as the file storage service SharePoint. "We can only speculate as to why it's taking so long," said Raúl Castañón-Martinez, analyst at 451 Research. "Regardless, Microsoft needs to make this issue a priority."

AI Ethics Come Into Focus as the Workplace Evolves

Prominent risks can emerge associated with ethical AI design, development, and deployment. For example, companies are already using AI to automate tasks, with some aiming to reduce their workforces in the process. The survey also noted that 36% of respondents saw job cuts from AI-driven automation rising to the level of an ethical risk. Even jobs that are not eliminated may be affected in some way by AI, prompting some organizations to find ways to use the technology to increase opportunities for employees while mitigating negative effects. Bias is another area of risk. AI systems learn from the datasets with which they are trained. Depending on how a dataset is compiled or constructed, the potential exists that the data could reflect assumptions or biases—such as gender, race, or income—that could influence the behavior of a system based on that data. Generally, these systems’ developers intend no bias, but many have reported AI-driven instances of bias or discrimination in application areas such as recruiting, credit scoring, and judicial sentencing.

Life after artificial intelligence

digital transformation man looking up at sky change future forecast by greg rakozy unsplash
Is it moral to augment our abilities with technology if we use those enhanced abilities to end suffering? This isn’t some half-baked grad school discourse, but a question that deserves our thoughtful consideration. AI methods and technologies are improving on a daily basis, so there’s a moral and ethical reckoning waiting for us right around the corner. We’ll have to answer questions exactly like this one sooner instead of later. “Morality” broadly refers to the lowest common denominator of appropriate behavior for the planet’s 7.5 billion people. This is a suboptimal understanding of such an important concept because it allows for massive suffering, but if we had access to a higher level of intelligence, we could use it to address and end that suffering. I think we’ll furthermore see the end of the 40-hour workweek, and I’m not even talking about grand political ideas like basic income. The nine-to-five paradigm is a myth that was invented by humans, and it tends to stand in the way of us achieving personal goals and ambitions. With a new brand of intelligence automating low-level cognitive tasks across the board, we’re going to inevitably generate more downtime in our workdays.

The tech startup scene in India: growing fast as a mobile first economy

The tech startup scene in India: growing fast as a mobile first economy image
India was a bit late to the tech party. But in the last few years, the country has ramped up its efforts. “In terms of growth, the numbers are more impressive than any other economy in the world,” said Turakhia. This rapid growth has led to a mobile revolution — and that has “opened up the possibility of a lot of B2C-focused tech plays around e-commerce, whether that’s transportation, mobility or retail,” he explained. These type of things have played out in the US, UK and elsewhere for some time now — e-commerce in these regions, for example, has been in the mainstream for the last three to five years. Compared to more mature economies “there are cultural and structural differences in a mobile first economy,” Turakhia continued. He also pointed to the whole notion of B2B SaaS as a particular focus in India — the majority of engineering and product development takes place in-house, while sales and marketing is a global activity. “We built our banking technology by leveraging India as a human resource,” said Turakhia, referring to on of his own companies, Zeta.

Network Management: 4 Questions You Need to Ask Yourself

Network Management: 4 Questions You Need to Ask Yourself
Just like any other business-critical technology, it’s important for enterprises to manage each network in their infrastructure. Network management policies ensure that a network team can strategically examine their network at every stage on a multi-layered level. Studying the efficiency of your network and adapting network administration, operation, and provisioning to meet your current business goals is essential for proper network performance. By managing their network, enterprises can meet all those criteria. Network management practices help enterprises intelligently design and operate their networks. It encompasses a series of concepts and ideas that enterprises can employ to effectively maintain every network they operate. While the specific management functions your company focuses on will depend on your business needs, there are some aspects of network management that everyone should adopt. Below, we’ve listed 4 network management questions that your business needs to ask itself if it hasn’t already.

Kubernetes underpins Docker container technology dominance

The big mission of containers turned out to be something totally different than that of VMs. As we evolve toward componentized applications that consist of synchronized, separately hosted components that work cooperatively to do something, these individual components are small, relative to the whole application. VM overhead -- a different OS for every VM instance -- means that, in most cases, the software component you're trying to run uses significantly less resources than the system software that you're trying to run them with. You're wasting more than half of your total resources on multiple copies of an OS. In componentized applications, the mission became, 'I need to do this really efficiently in terms of resources,' so container technology came to focus on these componentized applications. VMs focus on IaaS and true multi-tenancy. And that's what changes the dynamic, because for containerization, there are other considerations that are so much more critical than the minimal potential differences in security.

Hexagonal Architecture in Java

Hexagonal architecture is a model or pattern for application design. It is also known as a ports-and-adapter architecture. The core logic is embedded inside a hexagon, and the edges of the hexagon are considered the input and output. It divides the application into the inside and outside parts. Inside parts are the core logic of the application. The outside part could be the UI, database, messaging connectors, etc. Thus, the application's business logic is isolated from outside concerns. Communication between the two happens using so-called ports and adapters. ... Application users want to connect to the system or core application. The application has exposed the inbound ports; however, application users are presented with primary adapters, which use the inbound port to connect to the system. The system, in turn, uses the outbound port to connect to some external system for its data needs, etc. An outbound port is implemented by secondary adapters to expose a way to connect to the external system.

Quote for the day:

"Real friendship is shown in times of trouble; prosperity is full of friends." -- Euripides

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