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Microsoft Windows Azure Makes Good With Linux Virtual Machines

Microsoft is spoiling its own party. Even though Microsoft was expected to deliver updates to its increasingly popular Windows Azure cloud platform at a webcast event tomorrow, the wizards at Redmond decided to steal some of Oracle's thunder by breaking the news early that it's adding real, honest-to-goodness virtual machine support to the offering,  bringing it into the infrastructure-as-a-service market. It's worth noting that as of tomorrow, all the services I mention here will be available in a preview state. Jury's still out as far as general availability. Windows Azure Virtual Machines are based on the virtual hard disk (VHD) open specification,... more »
Cyberthreat Weekly: Flame Virus Discovery and More Reports of Cyber Breaches

Cyberthreat Weekly: Flame Virus Discovery and More Reports of Cyber Breaches

The digital age has only made its ingress but the world has seen a great deal of nasty viruses infecting computers. The most recent one--and perhaps the most lethal--is Flame virus. It was detected by Russian security researchers from Kaspersky Labs, infecting units in Iran and other MidEast countries. Flame gathered private data from compromised computer systems in a very sophisticated manner that it is believed to be state-sponsored. It collected network traffic, take screenshots, remotely change computer settings, initiates and records audio, and intercepts the keyboard input. Another interesting fact about Flame is that it’s such a significantly large piece... more »
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Buffer Using MongoDB for Real-Time Analytics Without MapReduce

In a blog post, Tom Moor - co-founder and chief hacker at social media post scheduling app Buffer - describes how his company uses the NoSQL database MongoDB to gain real-time insight into internal analytics without noticably affecting front-end performance...and without MapReduce. While Buffer uses common solutions like Kissmetrics and Google Analytics for many metrics, it needs to keep track of custom benchmarks, too, for things like Firefox extension usage or API call endpoints. Using atomic 'inc' methods and so-called unsafe save states, Moor writes that he's seen lightning quick access to real-time analytics. The trick is that by Buffer's method, the... more »
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Is Airtime Worth Your Time?

Yesterday was the star-studded launch of Airtime, the social video chat service from Sean Parker and Shawn Fanning, the brains behind Napster.  This new partnership aims to revolutionize video chatting as it would allow people to share interest with friends or even with stranger - haven’t we seen this before?  Yeah, the newly launched service has been already compared with Chatroulette and Google+’s Hangouts. To be fair, let’s look at Airtime on its own. What is Airtime? Airtime is an efficient, easy to use, browser-based video chat service between people via their existing Facebook accounts so users don’t need to download anything.  All... more »
Square Enix Unveils New Gaming Engine

Square Enix Unveils New Gaming Engine

As we all know, E3 is currently in full swing and we’ve extensively tackled Microsoft, Nintendo, OnLive, Sony and Ubisoft’s offerings.  But there’s still more to unearth. So let’s look at some of their other offerings announced at E3. Square Enix Square Enix, the Japanese video game developer, distributor, and publisher, unveiled their next-generation gaming engine - Luminous Studio.  The engine is still in development but they’re seeing it as a solution for a more flexible internal game development environment. "This game engine is still under development, it's not completed yet. So partially, we've started to have discussions with several different people doing... more »
HP is “That Partner You Need” Says DAS CIO

HP is “That Partner You Need” Says DAS CIO

Diversified Agency Services (DAS), the largest company in the Omnicom Group, is the ultimate in federated organizations, made up of more than 100 totally independent agencies that provide customer relationship management, public relations/public affairs, and specialty communications. As CIO of DAS, Jason Cohen has been unifying the IT groups from each of these agencies into a single IT group with a unified architecture. This, he says, “allows us to provide state-of-the-art IT offerings” that the agencies' customers need, while allowing the agencies to continue operating independently. Essentially, he says, “we are a private cloud service provider.” This huge project has been... more »
After 6.5 Million Passwords Leaked from LinkedIn Experts Urge Password Change

After 6.5 Million Passwords Leaked from LinkedIn Experts Urge Password Change

Earlier today, numerous reports hit blogs and news sites that a large file full of hashed passwords from LinkedIn has been released at the web. A Russian blog became the recipient of 6,458,020 hashed passwords from the social networking site LinkedIn with a user bragging about the one who breached their site and released them. As of this posting, LinkedIn is still looking into the veracity of the claim and the actuality of the passwords. However, the clarion reply from security experts across the web is that people should change their passwords immediately. If you have a LinkedIn account and haven’t changed... more »
The Evolution of Instagram’s Breakout Success

The Evolution of Instagram’s Breakout Success

“We’re a bit disappointed here…We were aiming for $2 billion and they only gave us one…But, you know, sometimes s--- happens.”  Although Instagram CEO Kevin Systrom kept a serious tone when offering this sarcastic response, he finally erupted in laughter.  It’s still unclear how Facebook will leverage it’s recent acquisitions and, despite it’s announcement of the Camera app, critics are unsure why Facebook paid $1 billion for a company with only one product, which it gives away for free.   What is certain, however, is that Instagram has been the breakout leader in artistic photo-sharing apps and mobile technology.  KISSmetrics details... more »
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Dell Boomi Summer 12 Adds Crowd-Powered Analytics

Dell Boomi is a cloud-based service that helps enterprises link their applications to data and other applications, for a monthly subscription. That fee is still considerably less than what an organization would have to spend to achieve the same end result via alternative routes. This week the company announced that the Atomsphere 12 Summer edition is rolling out, bringing with it a host of new features. The most notable one among these is something called Assure, which leverages the crowdsourcing model and the goodwill of customers in hopes of improving the platform. It lets users submit their integration processes, and as a... more »
Server Virtualization Not the Answer says DR Planning Consultant

Server Virtualization Not the Answer says DR Planning Consultant

Is server virtualization the answer to utilization and IT budgetary problems that it is widely purported to be? No, says prominent blogger, consultant and 26-year DR planning veteran John W. Tiogo, founder of Tiogo Partners International. “The preponderance of virtualized systems are low-traffic Web servers and file servers that don't need virtualization at all,” he argues. “Many companies are abandoning their server virtualization projects when they are about 20% complete, which is good news. I don't trust virtualization with my most mission-critical applications, and neither do my clients.” Virtualization, he said in an interview in the SiliconAngle Cube from IBM Edge 2012, is... more »

Premium Research

- George Gilbert

Mainstream IT, LoB execs and application development professionals each provide different yet critical perspectives to Systems of Intelligence. IT exes must be in a position to deliver the right infrastructure (e.g. cloud, on-prem, etc.) with the proper performance and SLA profile to support LoB requirements. Line-of-Business execs must have enough knowledge to specify the real-time needs of applications while application development pros must ensure the right skills are in place to deliver and maintain services to Systems of Intelligence over a full life cycle.

- George Gilbert

Premise 16 years ago proprietary flavors of Unix domina […]

- Stuart Miniman

Hyperconvergence is the current state – next generation of converged – better, faster, more distributed than original converged, but still just the beginning. Wikibon’s Server SAN research agenda is to show where we are today and give guidance for the future of this space.

- David Floyer

Wikibon recommends that CIOs put in place a four-point plan for implementing an all-flash datacenter strategy: 1/ Migrate to an All-flash Datacenter by 2016 2/ Proof of concept for Developer Data Sharing - Expect 2 x Productivity & 3 x Code Quality 3/ Reorganize Data Center Operations around Principle of Application Data Sharing 4/ Use IT Budget Savings to Fund Systems of Intelligence This research provides a technology understanding, the business case, and the strategic first steps on the road to an all-flash datacenter.

- David Floyer

IT will sound like yesterday’s news if it continues to advocate tiering, advocate putting the most important data on high performance storage, and declaring that less expensive lower performing storage is key and necessary. Today’s flash reality is that a single compressed/de-duplicated physical version of data must be shared between as many different applications as possible, because the incremental cost of creating and sharing another copy is close to zero.

- George Gilbert

Systems of Intelligence will power the next generation of enterprise applications built on big data. Line of business executives charged with digital transformation must understand the dynamics of Systems of Intelligence well-enough to be effective sponsors of new systems. IT executives must be effective partners and understand how to build Systems of Intelligence on top of Systems of Record. They will also need to understand how to build a radically new infrastructure to support these systems.

- Stuart Miniman

OpenStack is now positioned as an Integration Engine - not the entire stack, but like Linux, could grow into a critical component of IT over the next decade. This article examines the real state of OpenStack after the Kilo release and 2015 OpenStack Summit in Vancouver.

- David Floyer

Wikibon believes CIOs should put the highest priority in developing an all-flash datacenter strategy, and implement it so that all storage acquired and deployed is 100% all-flash by 2016. The key short-term focus for CIOs is to ensure that data sharing is optimized, and that IT organization and objectives support and drive increases in data sharing. The key long-term focus is to release the potential of the best and brightest in the organization to imagine an organization supported by applications without data limits.

- 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.