Top Stories

Iran Reports New Cyber Attack On Energy Infrastructure Foiled

Iran Reports New Cyber Attack On Energy Infrastructure Foiled

Iranian media are reporting that the country has managed to repel a new cyber attack on its industrial facilities, which it claims is evidence that its enemies are engaged in “non-stop attacks” against its infrastructure. The attack allegedly occurred at a nuclear power plant in the southern city of Bandar Abbas a few months ago, reports the BBC. However, unlike with previous malware attacks, officials claim that they spotted the infiltration and prevented it from spreading outside of the facility. Iranian news agency ISNA quoted Iranian civil defense official Ali Akbar Akhavan as saying: "A virus had penetrated some manufacturing industries in Hormuzgan... more »
‘Twas the Morning of Christmas and Steam Had an Outage

‘Twas the Morning of Christmas and Steam Had an Outage

Fortunately, for most gamers, this issue was over almost as soon as it was noticed. Today—of all days Christmas day when many e-gifts, some video games, will be unwrapped—the digital distribution network of Valve’s extremely popular Steam had a worldwide outage causing much frustration. Reports from users in the Steam forums reveal that at approximately 8am MST Steam just stopped working. Users began to see “NO CONNECTION” appear in their clients. For most this meant that they couldn’t update or download games, or play anything that required a connection to steam; for others it meant inaccessible single-player games (although that varied... more »
How Will Dell Take its New Marketing Message to the Next Level?

How Will Dell Take its New Marketing Message to the Next Level?

John Furrier and Dave Vellante were together again at DellWorld 2012 this time sitting down with Karen Quintos, Senior Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer at Dell to discuss marketing strategies and the changes that have taken place over the last several years (full video below). Furrier says that, as a company, Dell is exploding and he asks Quintos how marketing is playing a role in that, and how the marketing of the product is growing to which she points out DellWorld in itself is a form of marketing to customers, introducing them to the products and abilities of the company,... more »
The Misconceptions of Anonymous, Pirating and Security in 2012

The Misconceptions of Anonymous, Pirating and Security in 2012

The consumer has become a central figure in today's digital world, where we support brands with the click of a Facebook "Like" button and provide semantic details through Tweets.  Thanks to recent developments in the realm of big data, our consumer behavior is becoming more of an asset by the day, encountering a number of privacy issues along the way.   John Casaretto, contributing editor for SiliconAngle, recently did a recap of the top consumer and privacy related news from the past 12 months in a session hosted on the SiliconAngle's Newsdesk for the holidays (full video below). Casaretto begins by addressing... more »
Malware Regained Supreme Spot in World of Hacking in 2012

Malware Regained Supreme Spot in World of Hacking in 2012

The year 2012 was a year of new platforms and new hacker threats. If recently the main target platform was the Windows operating system, it is now replaced by a variety of software platforms, most notably Android platform. Malware developers are actively using this situation, coming up with new surprises for specialists in the field of IT security. Another trend in 2012 was the revival of the traditional hacking attacks--for example, the spread of the Internet malware. Hackers spent a good part of 2012 to implement what they have in stock for 2013 as it is for large enterprises, governments, strategic military... more »
This Week in the Cloud: Big Launches and One Services Buy

This Week in the Cloud: Big Launches and One Services Buy

Alfresco, MicroCloud and Corona Labs all got their share of the limelight this week with new product announcements and a big EMEA buy. We’re kicking off with Alfresco, which made its flagship file management service available for Amazon Web Services users last Wednesday. The open-source solution now offers improved support for metadata and automatic file allocation, in addition to integration with Amazon’s native monitoring capabilities. These features are coupled with Alfresco’s open architecture, which makes it possible to tailor the platform to specific use cases. Also this week, a Seattle-based startup called 2nd Watch emerged from stealth with a new solution that... more »
Elcomsoft’s Forensic Decryption Software Moves the Needle for Practical Cryptography

Elcomsoft’s Forensic Decryption Software Moves the Needle for Practical Cryptography

Cryptography is the go-to defense for cybersecurity, it’s essentially the strongbox of the computing era—and just like a strongbox it’s not designed to keep the contents perfectly safe from all perpetrators, it’s designed to resist their attempts to get at it. It’s still possible for the Hole In The Wall gang to derail your train, make off with your payroll safe, and blow it open with TNT. However, given that technology to defeat locks advances with technology to make better locks, we can expect more subtle forms of extracting encrypted contents than TNT (brute force.) News is that Elcomsoft just released... more »
Mind-controlled Prosthetic Arm Helps Tetraplegia Patient

Mind-controlled Prosthetic Arm Helps Tetraplegia Patient

A 52-year old woman paralyzed from the neck down and suffering from Tetraplegia has been able to guide a robotic arm with her thoughts with a level of agility closer to normal. This study has been conducted by the researchers at the University of Pittsburg, who ran the experiment over a course of 13 weeks. They implanted two tiny electronic chips with complex algorithm, each with 96 electrodes in the woman's motor cortex, the region of the brain that initiates movements. After a training of 13-weeks, the woman was able to use a robotic limb to perform tasks, such as giving... more »
Why Google And Amazon Won’t Be Wishing Each Other A Happy New Year

Why Google And Amazon Won’t Be Wishing Each Other A Happy New Year

The bitter rivalry between Amazon and Google is set to become even more intense over the next 12 months, with both companies likely to raise the stakes on multiple frontlines, including vital markets such as e-commerce, cloud computing, consumer hardware and advertising. Reuters provides a timely and in-depth analysis of the current state of affairs between two internet giants, and finds that there will be little love lost between the two increasingly bitter rivals as they continue to encroach on each other’s spheres of influence. One particular area of contention will be advertising, traditionally the lifeblood of Google, and a source... more »
Ho Ho Ho, Where’s Santa Now? Google and Bing’s Tracking Tools Disagree...

Ho Ho Ho, Where’s Santa Now? Google and Bing’s Tracking Tools Disagree...

Given that Bing and Google simply love tearing each other to pieces, going head-to-head in just about every single aspect of web search they can think of, it probably doesn’t come as a surprise that the two web giants are now battling it out over who gets to track Santa this year. Bing made the headlines last week when it was announced that NORAD, which has religiously tracked Santa’s progress down our chimneys since the 1950s, had dumped Google Maps in favor of its arch rival’s version. But in true Christmas spirit, it seems that Google is determined to give its younger... more »

Premium Research

- Ralph Finos

Users considering public cloud for business and IT workloads should evaluate the types of use cases and workloads that have wide successful deployment in the public cloud today. In order to help users to better understand the customers and workloads being served in the public cloud today, Wikibon examined the brief descriptions of approximately 650 customer solution stories on the Amazon Web Services (AWS) website and classified each according on a number of characteristics. This research reveals some interesting insights about the public cloud leader’s business, and therefore about public cloud utilization generally.

- David Floyer

The Wikibon premise in this research is that this converged environment is a win-win environment for both vendors, ISVs and enterprise IT. Testing of the converged system solution is more robust, and the reduction in the number of solution types significantly lowers testing and installation costs for the vendor. ISVs can lower the cost of deployment, deliver application value faster, and drive additional upgrade value much faster. Converged enterprise IT systems (private clouds) are more agile, more reliable, more secure and have the similar costs to public clouds.

- Brian Gracely

Wikibon looks at the emerging Cloud-native application architectures. This research focused on the scope of microservices, the domains of interaction between services, and how data services and sources are changing with these new applications.

- Brian Gracely

Faced with the choices of modernizing existing applications or starting new projects, IT organizations have many options. Wikibon looks at the vast number of options today, with a methodology to evaluate choice vs. risk.

- David Floyer

There are no enterprise organizations that have married the business, digital creativity and IT as seamlessly as Weta Digital.

- Stuart Miniman

Oracle is using it's licensing might to enter the converged infrastructure (CI) market by making database pricing extremely attractive for its own Private Cloud Appliance (PCA), relative to alternative solutions (including non-Oracle public cloud options). To gain this pricing advantage, Oracle is applying certain restrictions to non-Oracle solutions and allowing more licensing flexibility for virtualized environments on PCA. Discussions with PCA customers indicate three main benefits, including: 1) reduced Oracle database license costs (of 50% or more); 2) greater flexibility to allocate processor cores to optimize workloads and 3) very high bandwidth and performance (via an Infiniband point-to-point architecture).

- Ralph Finos

Big data and public cloud share a natural affinity, but are not a perfect match. Wikibon estimates that worldwide big data revenue in the public cloud was $1.1B in 2015 and will grow to $21.8B by 2026 - or from 5% of all big data revenue in 2015 to 24% of all big data spending by 2026. Doers should explore public cloud options for their big data workloads because public cloud offers a simple way to scale up and down workloads running mostly using open source software.

- David Floyer

The premise for this research is that high value computing has unique compute, network and storage infrastructure requirements. The key systems requirements are low or very low latency, high bandwidth and high availability designed to lower software costs, improve time-to-value and help maintain high levels of data integrity and system availability. Wikibon researched the differences between performance optimized and cost optimized systems for a sample high-value compute environments, and concluded that the total 3-year cost of a sample cost-optimized configuration and software were 63% high than a performance optimized configuration. The key differences are higher costs for performance optimized hardware, but lower costs for the software required in high value compute application, as well as lower operational costs.

- Brian Gracely

As the market for Hybrid Cloud services and solutions evolve, every vendor and cloud provider is attempting to align their offerings to market demands. Wikibon looks at the current offerings and provides guidance to vendors on how to succeed in this market.

- George Gilbert

In this report we look at ad-tech as an example of Systems of Intelligence. Using ad-tech applications, combinations of advertisers, ad agencies, consumers, and publishers -- the advertiser’s marketing ecosystem -- collaborate in real time to personalize an optimal customer interactions with the brand. One software company pioneering video ad-tech, Altitude Digital, pulls all these different pieces together, and highlights the types of function big data ecosystem apps must support.