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Accenture Unveils New Insurance SaaS

Accenture Unveils New Insurance SaaS

Service provider and business software maker Accenture has extended its Life Insurance Platform suite of offerings with a cloud-based interface that covers a lot of ground. The new component unveiled this week supplements the company’s existing portfolio in three main areas. Firstly, it features a ‘decision engine’ that aims to automate certain key process by applying analytics: the tool can identify underwriting risk more accurately, as well as the need for manual intervention from the insurer, and also takes care of request handling to some degree. The second function is an underwriting workbench, which is a fully-featured collaboration platform that streamlines internal... more »
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SAS and Capgemini Track Tax Fraud with Analytics

Business analytics software maker SAS and Capgemini, an IT consultancy, are working together to offer governments a solution that spots tax-related fraud by crunching data and detecting suspicious patterns. At the same time, the two companies are promising to reduce the error margins that can eventually lead to the same bottom line result as well. The whole thing is based on the SAS Fraud Framework for Government, which is implemented in collaboration with Capgemini’s Business Information Management (BIM) unit. The pitch covers not only theoretical technical advantages, but also the fact that the two firms have a track record of collaborating in... more »
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Pinterest Joins the List of $1 Billion Dollar Enterprises

Call it the Facebook effect in the wake of the largest hi-tech IPO offering.  Pinterest is the lastest to enter the exclusive club of companies valued at $1 billion dollars thanks to the recent investment led by Rakuten. The social network has raised $100 million from Japanese e-commerce giant Rakuten along with Andreessen Horowitz, Bessemer Venture Partners and FirstMark Capital along with angel investment, putting the startup's value at $1.5 billion. Rakuten said that this investment helps the site grow in the U.S. and its 17 overseas markets, including entry into Japanese market. “While some may see e-commerce as a straightforward vending machine-like... more »
Cloud Apps for a Smarter, Secure Home

Cloud Apps for a Smarter, Secure Home

These days, we want everything to be connected, and we want to be able to pull data from wherever we are.  But one of the most important ways connected devices are helping consumers in their everyday lives is helping them organize their homes and personal spaces. BrightNest, the online app dedicated to helping people de-clutter and get their homes in order, has recently launched Homefolio.  The app lets homeowners keep important files such as appliance owner’s manuals, paint colors and contractor phone numbers, in a single place. Once users sign up for a free BrightNest account, they can click on Homefolio and organize... more »
Facebook IPO Mania - Intoxicating Yet Elusive - Similar to the Netscape Moment for Silicon Valley; Bubble? No; Future Yes!

Facebook IPO Mania - Intoxicating Yet Elusive - Similar to the Netscape Moment for Silicon Valley; Bubble? No; Future Yes!

On the eve of the Facebook IPO which will be the largest in technology IPO history. Living in Palo Alto, California I can't help feel proud and excited about the big day tomorrow. I love when an entrepreneurial venture hits the big time. For Facebook's founders, early employees, and investors it's a massive pay day. Since its founding in 2004, the company has seen its valuation soar from $4.9 million in 2004 to $104 billion based on today’s IPO pricing. My friend Dan Primack at Fortune has a great summary of who makes what in the... more »
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Chef is Cooking With 715 Contributors in the DevOps Kitchen

As I write this, I'm wrapping up my visit to ChefConf 2012, the inaugural user conference for the very popular Chef open source server configuration automation tool, where it was announced that over the last four years and 54 stable releases, more than 715 contributors have added their code to the pot. And with around 400 Chef users in attendance, you can imagine that most of the conversation revolved around the rising uptake of DevOps methodologies. In addition to the Chef feature release and 1,000,000-download landmark that we discussed here, Opscode - the self-described steward of the Chef project - announced... more »
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Policy Pressure from the White Forces NASA to Cut Back Commitment to OpenStack

NASA is cutting its contributions to the OpenStack community due to the White House "cloud first," policy. It seems ironic. OpenStack is all about the cloud. But NASA never intended to become  cloud platform and now that OpenStack is starting to see enterprise uptake, it's time to back off, said Karen Petraska, service executive for computing services at the office of the CIO at NASA, who spoke at an Uptime Institute symposium this week (hat tip to DatacenterDynamics). Instead, Petraska says that the agency is looking to become a “smart consumer” of public cloud services - all according to the agenda of Federal CIO Steven VanRoekel and... more »
Day Three Recap: SAP Sapphire 2012

Day Three Recap: SAP Sapphire 2012

The Cube’s coverage of SAP’s annual Sapphire Now 2012 in Orlando, FL continued on day three of the conference. This year’s event was another opportunity for SAP to promote its transition from a traditional provider of on-premise ERP solutions to a cool vendor of mobile, cloud, social and big data enterprise solutions. Although everyone might not be sold on the new identity yet, SAP has been gobbling up companies and polishing up its marketing messages with complete confidence that soon everyone will embrace the newer, shinier image. SiliconAngle founder John Furrier, Wikibon Data Analyst Jeff Kelly and Wikibon Co-founder Dave Vellante... more »
Facebook IPO Sets Sights on $1 Trillion as Zuckerberg Inspires His Engineers

Facebook IPO Sets Sights on $1 Trillion as Zuckerberg Inspires His Engineers

Facebook's IPO is the biggest thing to hit the stock market this week (this decade, really). The company name has been filling the headlines with speculation regarding their IPO offering, a billion-dollar figure, and the expectations behind its entry on the Fortune 500 shortlist. Facebook’s business model has also attracted lots of attention with the pending IPO, particularly how they'll develop around advertising, building out their monetization efforts for their burgeoning mobile brand and other media entities. Here's your final roundup of Facebook news before the IPO hits: Facebook tops social on Android - needs to leverage mobile presence According to new SmartMeter data, the NPD Group's Connected... more »
How Sybase 365 is Helping SAP Build "Very Real" Mobile Products [Video]

How Sybase 365 is Helping SAP Build "Very Real" Mobile Products [Video]

The Cube’s Dave Vellante and big data analyst Jeff Kelly sat down with John Sims, President, Sybase 365 at the SAP Sapphire Now conference held this week in Orlando, FL (video below).  Sims was appointed president of Sybase 365 almost a year ago in June 2011. Sybase 365 provides mobile commerce services and controls a significant share of SMS infrastructure market processing 2 billion per day. SAP acquired Sybase in 2010, a move that might have been one of the first signals of SAP’s intention to expand its business from enterprise resource planning (ERP) into mobile products and services. In addition... more »

Premium Research

- 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.