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In honor of Geek Pride Day, what is a geek?

In honor of Geek Pride Day, what is a geek?

Long before geek became a fashion statement, it was a subcultural movement that could include everyone from band kids to mathletes and everything in between. The geek label has been applied so liberally lately that it is hard to define just what exactly a geek is anymore, and with today being Geek Pride Day, now is a good time to talk about what makes up a geek. The word geek originally referred to sideshow freaks, the sort who would bite the heads off snakes. Today, if you go by Wikipedia (which is itself a geek haven), the word geek "typically connotes an expert or enthusiast... more »
Educational games are more effective when they're hands-on, study finds

Educational games are more effective when they're hands-on, study finds

Using video games as an educational tool is not a new concept, and edutainment titles have been around since at least the days of Oregon Trail and Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego? Lately, educational games have been moving into the mobile space much like everything else, but a recent study by researchers at Carnegie Mellon University shows that mixing games with real world interaction is substantially more effective than touchscreen games alone. "As screen-based technologies such as tablets or computer games become increasingly more appealing for children, it is worth asking whether real-world interaction is really needed to enhance learning and enjoyment," researcher Nesra... more »
Interested in getting banned from World of Warcraft? HonorBuddy bots are back

Interested in getting banned from World of Warcraft? HonorBuddy bots are back

Despite Blizzard Entertainment's massive ban of thousands of players earlier this month for using bots to play World of Warcraft for them, the makers of the HonorBuddy have said that they are staying in the automated cheating business and will soon re-launch their service. If the online game community were high school, then the bot making groups behind tools like HonorBuddy are the smug dweebs who sell their homework to other students. Of course, the difference here is that those smug dweebs are slowly eating away at the system that sustains them by breaking game balance and ruining the play experience for non-cheaters. The primary purpose behind HonorBuddy is to... more »
3 reasons why Microsoft’s Edge browser is way superior to Internet Explorer...and might give Google something to worry about

3 reasons why Microsoft’s Edge browser is way superior to Internet Explorer...and might give Google something to worry about

Formally known as Project Spartan, Microsoft’s Edge (default browser for Windows 10) is currently available in the Windows 10 Technical Preview as part of the Windows Insider Program. According to Microsoft the browser is still a bit rough around the edges (excuse the pun), although its performance has already started people talking about a new heavyweight in browser wars. What we can expect we are told is a much more superior, safer browsing experience to that of the oft-maligned Internet Explorer (IE will remain available as a legacy engine). Here are some things set to impress: It’s faster Part of the reason... more »
5 smart home accessories on Kickstarter to secure and manage your home

5 smart home accessories on Kickstarter to secure and manage your home

To join in the smart home revolution, you don't necessarily have to rush out and replace all of your 'dumb' appliances and home accessories with fancy, expensive Internet-connected smart devices. A number of inventors and tech entrepreneurs are launching smart accessories to help you retrofit your existing appliances, door locks, light bulbs, and more. Below we've rounded up five of the most interesting and useful smart home accessories on crowdfunding site Kickstarter right now: Peeple: caller ID for your front door   Who is behind it: Building 10 Technology, Inc. Location: Austin, TX Kickstarter goal $50,000 Funds raised: $56,422 from 409 backers with 32 days to go Peeple is a camera... more »
BlackBerry announces fresh round of lay-offs as it pursues profitability

BlackBerry announces fresh round of lay-offs as it pursues profitability

It's been a rollercoaster ride for BlackBerry Limited ever since CEO John Chen took over the leadership reins, and after all the optimism earlier this year, things are now looking a bit glum with reports saying the company is set to lay-off staff in an effort to remain profitable. As The Wall Street Journal reported, the lay-offs were announced shortly after BlackBerry said it was considering closing down its Sweden office. Nevertheless its not clear if it means BlackBerry will axe any of its Swedish staff. BlackBerry did actually achieve a small profit in Q4 of its fiscal 2015 ending in February,... more »
Wikibon analyst says Hadoop pessimism is part of natural adoption cycle

Wikibon analyst says Hadoop pessimism is part of natural adoption cycle

Gartner Inc. caused a bit of a ruckus last week when it poured cold water on our hopes for Hadoop with a somewhat pessimistic report highlighting the low rate of adoption among enterprise users. Gartner found that only one-quarter of the 284 technology and business leaders it surveyed were actually using Hadoop, with an even smaller subset operating their analytic clusters on any meaningful scale. That might not have come as a surprise, as previous surveys have shown similar low rates of adoption, but what did raise eyebrows was Gartner's assertion that a mere 18 percent of respondents said they plan... more »
Microsoft tried and failed to buy Salesforce

Microsoft tried and failed to buy Salesforce

It's been 'revealed' that Microsoft was the mystery suitor interested in acquiring Salesforce.com Inc., but the deal reportedly collapsed after the latter company's CEO Marc Benioff rejected the offer. Talks between the two companies reached a “serious level”, CNBC reported, citing anonymous sources.   Microsoft reportedly offered an eye-watering $55 billion to acquire the San Francisco-based cloud-computing firm. However, Benioff held out for a reported $70 billion, which Microsoft wasn't prepared to offer, leading to a stalemate. Salesforce is currently valued at some $49 billion, CNBC reports. Microsoft could theoretically afford to buy Salesforce because it's said to have more than $95 billion... more »
Bitfinex Bitcoin exchange hot wallet hacked, estimated 1474 BTC stolen

Bitfinex Bitcoin exchange hot wallet hacked, estimated 1474 BTC stolen

Bitfinex, Hong Kong-based Bitcoin exchange operated by iFinex Inc. (Bvi), was hacked on Friday and has warned users to suspend bitcoin deposits until the potential compromise has been resolved. What’s known so far back the hack is that hackers accessed the exchange’s hot wallet and stole approximately 0.5% of the company’s total held bitcoins. Shortly after the attack, Bitfinex released an urgent message to customers: Dear Customer although we keep over 99.5% of users' BTC deposits in secure multisig wallets, the small remaining amount in coins in our hot wallet are theoretically vulnerable to attack. We believe that our hot wallet keys... more »
GlassHouse Systems finds success with Power | #IBMEdge

GlassHouse Systems finds success with Power | #IBMEdge

IBM Mainframe Business Partner GlassHouse Systems, Inc. recently invested in technical training and customer awareness to become a specialist in IBM Power Systems. The effort has paid off for the Toronto-based company in more ways than one. “Power has been a great platform for us, and we’re seeing a resurgence,” John Callisto, VP of Business Development for GlassHouse Systems, told theCUBE during IBM Edge2015. “If you were to look at the trends in the open system environment five years ago or less, it would show the growth of [Oracle] x86 as a platform and the demise of everything else. If you... more »
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- Stuart Miniman

The emerging PaaS platforms (Cloud Foundry, Heroku, OpenShift, Docker) are all evolving to capture the mindshare of developers. While the PaaS battles are still in early days, Cloud Foundry is emerging as a leading open source platform and ecosystem to build and deploy the new Cloud Native applications that are driving these economic changes via software. But this Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) model requires changes to technology, skills (people) and internal IT processes. This means enterprises need to become familiar with this development and operational model to best understand how they can accelerate using Cloud Native applications to give themselves a business differentiation.

- David Floyer

Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) is a full application lifecycle cloud service including initial development, testing, deployment, operations and maintenance. Wikibon defines three different PaaS cloud services, 1/ PaaS integrated with IaaS, an integrated platform (e.g., IBM Bluemix, EMC Pivotal Cloud Foundry), 2/ PaaS on top of IaaS, combining development services onto a specific platform (e.g., AWS, Microsoft Azure) and 3/ PaaS on top of SaaS, a development front-end to a SaaS platform with its underlying infrastructure (e.g., ServiceNow, SalesForce). Wikibon will be using this topology to define its PaaS analysis and forecasts.

- Jeff Kelly

When I began covering the Big Data market for Wikibon back in early 2011, it was early days. Big Data technologies such as Hadoop and NoSQL, while still early in their development, were becoming better known by enterprise practitioners. The market for commercial Big Data technologies and services was small but on the verge of rapid growth. But from a business use case perspective, Big Data was long on promise but short on specifics. A lot has changed over the last four years. Without question, Big Data technologies have developed at breakneck speed due in large part to a vibrant open source community of developers. Hadoop in particular has taken great strides. What was once a batch processing, unsecure and somewhat finicky framework is now a much more comprehensive, enterprise-grade, multi-application supporting Big Data platform.

- Steve Chambers

Hybrid cloud is being touted as the best solution for enterprises today but it is under attack. Complex enterprises have complex needs which means they are unlikely to get everything they need from one hybrid cloud. Investing in a single hybrid cloud to glue one private and one public cloud together is not the ultimate answer, as recognised by many referring to hybrid cloud as "a journey". However, the danger is that if you design for a dual-element hybrid cloud then you will not equip yourself for the extensibility required to snap in/out new/old cloud elements over time, and you will still be down a dead end.

- Jeff Kelly

MarkLogic held its annual customer and partner conference in San Francisco earlier this month. The company, whose NoSQL database evolved from a simple XML data store and is beginning to disrupt the traditional RDBMS market, is experiencing solid growth. For the calendar year 2014, the company reported total revenue in excess of $100 million for the first time in its 14-year history. It is the largest of the NoSQL pure-play vendors and recently added JSON support, semantic and bitemporal analytics capabilities, and incremental back-up capabilities to its flagship database.

- Steve Chambers

Enterprise IT has been ignited by the Digital Economy and exploded into thousands of users, devices, applications and questions: When users are using their laptop over coffee-house wifi to look up a customer on their public cloud SaaS CRM system, before logging into email on-premises to send an invite to the customer: are they using one identity, or two? Without a single, unique trusted identity across hybrid cloud, there is no hybrid cloud because it looks like a discombobulated and fragmented set of "stuff" to the user, whether that's an infrastructure administrator or a business administrator. This pounding headache has to be addressed with modern hybrid identity systems.

- Stuart Miniman

After thousands of interviews with technology leaders on cloud, big data and infrastructure - now for something completely different. JOHN CLEESE ON THECUBE!

- David Floyer

Wikibon concludes that for the majority of enterprise performance applications, the FaME architecture will be the most performant, the lowest cost to develop applications, the lowest cost to maintain and manage, and be enterprise reliable. Wikibon believes that FaME systems will appear in 2015. Wikibon believes that CIOs should ensure that FaME architected systems are installed early, and should be asking their brightest and most creative staff to use FaME to implement advanced application functionality, such as implementing automated decision support within an operation system. These techniques will be vital to IT to guide the organization to avoid being disrupted, and to be competitive in the second machine age.

- Steve Chambers

In the UK, large enterprise, household named, logos in all markets are using AWS and not only for virtual machines and storage. Enterprises are consuming features such as identity, data warehouse, search, content delivery as AWS increase the size of the set of undifferentiated heavy lifting due to the hundreds of features they are releasing and improving.

- Steve Chambers

Containers, and specifically Docker, allows the management of applications to be freed from the shackles of infrastructure. This article examines the state of containers and the booming Docker ecosystem and how enterprise IT should get started at embracing this important technology.