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November 2013 issue now available
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See the website for the full newsletter.

How CEOs Can Transform HR into a Revenue Driver
Mark V. Hurd
Mark V. Hurd, President of Oracle, writes, "As I visit with big companies and organizations all over the world, it's clear that most CEOs realize they need to make some dramatic changes in how they recruit people, align and manage performance, make compensation decisions, and optimize talent.

What's not so clear to them is how they make that happen. While HR leaders and their teams are supposed to bring alive the cliché that 'people are our most valuable asset,' many CEOs are not yet leading the way in giving those HR leaders the tools, authority, and organizational opportunity they need to unlock the value of the organizations' talent pools.

Paradoxically, that lack of support from top executives is occurring even as 60 percent of CEOs surveyed by PwC say they're concerned about not having enough talent, and/or the right mix of talent. As a result, those CEOs say, that talent gap is presenting them with some significant challenges:.."

Oracle Mainframe Re-hosting Solutions
By Jerome Cheng: Part One
Jerome Cheng writes, "This paper provides an overview about Oracle Mainframe Re-hosting solutions from a technical point of view. For people who have little Mainframe background, it adds some mainframe basic concept introduction. It is targeted to technical people who are interesting in mainframe modernization technology to understand Oracle solution in this area.

This paper will be split into two parts:

  • Part 1: Background for some basic mainframe concepts
  • Part 2: Oracle solution overview (It will be published later in an other blog)

What is Mainframe Re-Hosting?

Re-hosting is one of the options for modernization of Mainframe legacy system. In the modernization of Mainframe legacy system technology, there are several technical options, according to some common definitions, we can categorize three options:..."

Read on for details.

Oracle SuperCluster M6-32
Webcast Introducing Oracles Most Powerful Engineered System
Introducing Oracle's Most Powerful Engineered System: Oracle SuperCluster M6-32


  • Wednesday, December 4, 2013


  • 8 am PT, 11 am ET, 5 pm CET, 4 pm GMT


  • 30 minutes including Q&A

Imagine being able to run a full range of mission-critical database and enterprise applications on a single system in a consolidated or private cloud environment. The new Oracle SuperCluster M6-32 offers you that advantage, delivering unprecedented performance with the highest levels of availability.

Join Oracle for this webcast and learn how Oracle SuperCluster M6-32 provides:

  • 10-20 times faster performance on business-critical applications such as financial close, cost management, projection, and planning
  • Consolidation of your IT data center with breakthrough hardware and software technology
  • Increased operational efficiencies and significantly lower risks while saving money

Register for this webcast

INPS Halves Primary Healthcare IT Support Costs
Boosts System Performance by 20%, and Reduces Energy Use by 60%
INPS develops, deploys, and supports Vision, a flexible suite of clinical software solutions, used extensively within primary healthcare settings and the wider healthcare environment throughout the UK. Vision is the established clinical system for general practice that also helps clinicians make more informed diagnosis and treatment decisions by sharing patient records securely between accredited clinicians. It also allows patients to book their general practitioner (GP) and nurse appointments and request repeat medication via the internet.

INPS reduced monitoring, maintenance, and support costs by 50% by replacing the traditional multivendor stack of servers, storage units, and switches that supported Vision 360 with Oracle Database Appliance - a self-contained, integrated package of software, server, storage, and networking.

'Oracle Database Appliance gives us plug-and-play deployment, out-of-the-box performance, scalability, and one-stop support.' - Graeme Hodgens, Senior Infrastructure Engineer, INPS

Best Microsoft Windows Virtualization Product of 2013
Bronze: Oracle VM VirtualBox
The WinowsIT Pro annual Community Choice award program allows readers to decide which products are the best of the year. For 2013, the same process as in previous years was used, opening up the Community Choice nomination process to all. At the website you'll find the Gold, Silver, and Bronze winners, as well as quotes from the community about these top products.

This year Oracle VM VirtualBox was awarded Bronze in the category "Best Microsoft Windows Virtualization Product of 2013."

IT - Storage
What To Look For In All-Flash Deduplication
Storage Switzerland, November 20th, 2013
"Many All-Flash Storage Array vendors are counting on deduplication to bring the cost per GB of their systems more in line with traditional hard disk based storage systems. However IT planners need to be careful not to assume that all deduplication technologies are the same. They are not. And the differences have a significant impact on storage performance, efficiency, effective cost and data safety..."
Can We Have an Adult Conversation About Software-Defined Storage?
SearchStorage, November 18th, 2012
"All this talk about software-defined storage seems to be missing the point, according to Jon Toigo. Hasn't software always defined properly constructed IT infrastructure?

I don't know about you, but I'm getting pretty tired of all the marketing taglines and buzz-phrases that are being used as substitutes for technical descriptions of storage products and services. The one that has been grating on my nerves even before this fall's conference season is "software-defined storage." (Actually, software-defined anything irks me -- infrastructure, networks and so on -- but since this is a storage-focused publication, I'll vent my bile on that topic.)..."

Cease Fire in HDD Vs. SSD Price War, November 18th, 2013
"2013 will be remembered where SSD pricing took a new direction - flat.

In previous years PriceG2, a market research and consulting firm with expertise in SSD, HDD, NAS, USB flash drives, and memory cards, observed SSD pricing falling at a linear rate.

The 512GB SSD drive is a great example. From July 2010, until December 2012, the lowest retail price for the 512GB SSD in the U.S. was dropping at a linear rate of y = -9.95x + 1488.2 with an amazing R_ = 95%. The slope of the line changed in December 2012, however, and pricing has been overall flat throughout 2013 (with exception of short term specials)..."

Eat Our Dust, Spinning Rust: in 5 Years, It'll Be All Flash All the Time
The Register, November 15th, 2013
"El Reg's futorologists have looked into the data centre storage area and foresee the banishment of disk drive spindles starting within five years.

Put bluntly, disks suck. They are slow, they fail, they suck up electricity and floorspace. CIOs of companies with performance-focused data centres don't want disks. They look at all-flash arrays, the generation one products appearing, and they see a tantalising vision: data centres with not a single spindle in them, not one.

Organisations like Bloomberg have CIOs building next-generation data centres and looking to get 10-15 years of life out of them. They are hearing from suppliers who have seen Intel's flash road maps talking of 24TB PCIe flash cards coming in the near future, and of flash electricity needs decreasing..."

How the Future of Data Storage Will Stack Up
SearchStorage, November 1th, 2012
"In a previous column, Arun Taneja wrote that the concept of LUNs is dead or at least dying as the primary way storage will be managed in the future. This has become evident with the emergence and increased adoption of products offering advanced virtual machine (VM)-centric storage. Shifting the focus from LUNs to VMs changes the storage game for VM administrators who can continue to work with constructs they understand directly, storage folks who have to elevate their service offerings, and even those pesky end users who might benefit from increased performance and availability (and hopefully lower costs)..."
Java Technology
Nov/Dec 2013 digital edition of Java Magazine is now available
Smartest House on the Street
The Nov/Dec issue of "Java Magazine is now available.





From the Editor

  • Java Nation
  • JCP Executive Series: Q&A with Patrick Curran


  • Java Architect: Agile Adjustment
  • Java Architect: Diabolical Java Performance Tuning
  • Java Architect: Java Concurrent Animated
  • Enterprise Java: Database DevOps with MySQL, Hudson, Gradle, Maven, and Git
  • Enterprise Java: Adding a Member to Your Development Team
  • Enterprise Java: Concurrency Utilities for Java EE
  • Mobile and Embedded: Internet of Things 101
  • Fix This
IT - Technology
12 Creepy New Robots that Could Take Over the World
Network World, November 19th, 2013
"IREX, the largest robotic exhibition in the world, and IROS, the International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems, both recently showcased the cutting edge of technology combined with robotic innovation. But you don't have to travel to Tokyo to see what's new, like 'cute' swarming quadrotors, flying robots, or bots that can assemble themselves or climb rocks and even clothes. It could be seen as cool, or it could be the beginning of a creepy future in which robots take over the world.

  • Attack of the cute swarming quadrotors
  • Cloth-climbing mini robots
  • Insect-inspired flying robot GimBall
  • Flying robot AirBurr sticks to walls for reconnaissance
  • Army of 908 tiny swarming house-cleaning bots
  • 100+ swarming kilobots working together
  • Self-assembling cubes
  • Amphibious snake robot
  • Flying spider drones
  • No escaping from MUWA flying, floating, rolling quadrotor
  • NASA's rock-climbing robot
  • WildCat 4-legged galloping robot

Read on for details.

Think We're in a Tech Bubble? It's Nothing Like 1999
InfoWorld, November 19th, 2013
"Who's the next lucky punk to tell Zuck and Sergey that $3 billion just ain't cool enough? More to the point, is Snapchat's hubris a sign that the private and public tech markets are tasting bubblicious? Maybe a smidgeon.

But we aren't partying anywhere close to like it's 1999.

Let's look at a few comparisons. Take tech public offerings: It may feel like IPOs are floating out of Wall Street as often as ferry boats. But so far in 2013, we've had 36 high-tech IPOs, valued at $7.6 billion for all shares sold, versus the 228 high-tech companies that went public in 1999 to raise a cumulative $26.2 billion, according to Dealogic. And $1.8 billion of this year's tech IPO stock purchases was courtesy of Twitter's debut..."

    The 10 Fastest Supercomputers on Earth
    Network World, November 19th, 2013
    "It's that time again - 2013's second and last Top500 report is out, detailing and ranking the most powerful supercomputers on the planet. Here's our walkthrough of just the top 10, which features a lot of long-standing heavyweights, along with a new face.

    • No. 10: SuperMUC (IBM)
    • No. 9: Vulcan (IBM)
    • No. 8: JUQUEEN (IBM)
    • No. 7: Stampede (Dell)
    • No. 6: Piz Daint (Cray)
    • No. 5: Mira (IBM)
    • No. 4: K computer (Fujitsu)
    • No. 3: Sequoia (IBM)
    • No. 2: Titan (Cray)
    • No. 1: Tianhe-2 (Chinese National University of Defense Technology)

    Read on for details.

    How to Limit Upgrades Beyond a Prescribed Version of Oracle Solaris
    by Bart Smaalders and Alta Elstad
    An article by Bart Smaalders and Alta Elstad begins, "The Oracle Solaris 11 Image Packaging System (IPS) provides various methods to control the operating system version to which a server can be upgraded. One method is to provide a custom incorporation package.

    An incorporation package specifies the versions of other packages that can be installed. An incorporation package ensures that if you install an incorporate dependency package of that incorporation package, only the prescribed version of the dependent package can be installed. You can create your own custom incorporation package to specify the constraints you want. Using a custom incorporation to control the version of software that can be installed enables you to easily maintain different versions of Oracle Solaris on different machines without maintaining multiple package repositories. Each image can install a different version of the custom upgrade control incorporation package. All systems share the same package repository that contains all versions of software needed by any of the systems.

    In the example in this article, a system has been newly installed with Oracle Solaris 11.1. The solaris publisher origin is the Oracle Solaris support repository, which includes many updates since Oracle Solaris 11.1 was released. The IT department in the example company has not yet qualified the most current support updates, and they want to limit administrators to upgrading to only the latest update that is qualified for their environments, not the latest update that is available from the package repository..."

    MySQL 5.6 Developer Certification and Training
    MySQL 5.6 Developer Certification Exam Details Available
    Diana Gray, Principal Curriculum Project Manager, Oracle Universitym writes, "For those of you who work with MySQL, we've got some great news for you!

    A wide range of Oracle MySQL teams, including training, engineering, sales consulting and members of MySQL Support, collected content for the new MySQL 5.6 Developer Certification exam. These team members assist developers and DBAs with MySQL questions on a daily basis. They understand what developers need to know to successfully develop applications against MySQL Server 5.6.

    The MySQL 5.6 Developer Certification Exam details are listed here.

    Naturally, this certification process covers the same ground as Oracle's MySQL Training for Developers course, making it ideal for reviewing topics to help you pass the exam. More importantly, you will learn how to develop successful applications that use MySQL Server 5.6 as a data store..."

    Cloud Computing
    Gogo Deploys Oracle Service Cloud to Support Enhanced Customer Experience
    Gogo is the leading in-flight connectivity and entertainment provider
    Gogo deployed the Oracle Service cloud to build on its position as the leading in-flight connectivity and entertainment provider, and to differentiate itself through a superior customer experience. The flexible, easy to use, cloud customer experience solution is helping Gogo make flying a more pleasurable, social and satisfying experience. In doing so, it has helped Gogo reduce customer service costs, decrease problem resolution time and deliver the best possible customer experience at 30,000 feet. From network troubleshooting to login issues, Gogo handles more than 1,500 real-time customer care interactions each day.
    The Staggering Costs When Your Cloud Goes Down
    Modern Business Nightmare
    Bob Evans writes, "In today's always-on world, businesspeople who've never even stepped inside a data center are learning that data-center breakdowns trigger nightmare scenarios involving staggering amounts of lost revenue, customer disenchantment, plummeting employee productivity, and battered brand image.

    As a result, many companies are placing greater scrutiny than ever before on the cloud providers they choose to handle mission-critical parts of their business. And as cloud computing surges from the fringes of the business world into the mainstream, those decisions are becoming top-priority issues for not just the CIO but the CEO, the CFO, and even boards of directors.

    As the holiday season kicks into full swing, say your E-commerce cloud provider suffers an outage that lasts for a few hours. How much will that cost your business in lost revenue? How many customers will click over to your arch-rival and, within a matter of seconds, strike up a relationship that you spent months or years fostering? ..."

    How is UNIX Solaris for a Linux Admin
    Playing with UNIX on a laptop
    Karim Berrah writes, "The interesting thing, for a Linux Admin, is that he can leverage his Linux Skills and quickly see, play and learn, from Solaris, either by installing the UNIX operating system inside a Virtual machine, or directly download a ready to use VirtualBox Solaris VM.

    Another way is to directly learn some How-To and features, by viewing some live video demos from YouTube..."

    IT - Cloud
    Cloud Computing IQ Test
    InfoWorld, November 18th, 2013
    "PaaS, SaaS, IaaS -- how much do you really know about bits, instances, and transactions in the cloud?

    It's been more than 45 years since Joni Mitchell first peered into the future and wrote the immortal treatise on the quandaries facing the modern enterprise computer shop:

    • I've looked at clouds from both sides now
    • From up and down, and still somehow,
    • It's cloud illusions I recall
    • I really don't know clouds at all

    Do any of us really know cloud computing? Here's a quiz to test your knowledge and see how it measures up to Joni Mitchell's..."

    Read on to try the quiz.

    Confused by SaaS, PaaS and IaaS?
    Business 2 Community, November 19th, 2013
    "We're in the post-PC, mobile, cloud-hosted age - data moves between various systems instantaneously, across email exchanges and social networks. Data has become a battleground that service providers are fighting for. Cloud storage is skyrocketing as more and more services are coming online and storing data in the all mighty cloud. Data is exploding

    It's clear the only way is up, with 61% of the world not connected; the data will continue to come thick and fast. Big data is rapidly expanding, IBM expects 40 zettabytes of data, or 43 trillion gigabytes of data will be created by 2020. Cloud computing is a great buzzword that's seen a huge amount of media exposure in the past few years but this inevitably leads to the question, with so many 'as a service' offerings are up for use, what's the difference?..."

    Rosetta Stone CIO Pradeep Mannakkara Makes a Rapid Move to the Cloud
    ComputerWorld, November 18th, 2013
    "When Pradeep Mannakkara took the CIO position at Rosetta Stone, he encountered an IT infrastructure that was nearly the same age as the 21-year-old language-learning company. So Mannakkara established a plan to not only update, but also transform Rosetta Stone's technology stack and its 70-person IT department. Since starting in 2011, he has shifted much of the aging infrastructure to cloud-based platforms and added more mobile applications and state-of-the-art technologies. He says the changes achieved his goals of enabling a more efficient workflow and fostering innovation, while also increasing the strategic value of the IT organization..."
    8 Sure-Fire Ways to Screw Up a Cloud Contract
    ComputerWorld, November 19th, 2013
    "Something happened on the way to the cloud: Too many business customers got burned by bad contracts. It's not that cloud services can't deliver value. But in the rush to the cloud, enterprises often end up stuck with contracts that don't fully meet the business's needs, lack accountability and cost considerably more than anticipated...

    Computerworld asked four experts to talk about the most common mistakes that never should have happened, the consequences and what enterprises did to resolve them. If you really want to screw up a cloud service contract, they say, here are eight good ways to go about it..."

    • Pay for all of your cloud services up front
    • Sign a long-term contract without negotiating service-level commitments and penalties for noncompliance
    • Don't vet the contract for hidden charges that might come back to bite you
    • Sign off on the contract before shopping around for better terms

    Read on for details.

    10 Companies That Are Deriving ROI from Cloud
    Information Week, November 18th, 2013
    "Considering the numerous benefits of the cloud model like cost flexibility, business scalability, and ecosystem connectivity, a number of Indian enterprises are evaluating the technology and are preparing to jump on the cloud bandwagon. In fact, according to a recent survey by VMware, 79 percent respondents in India said they currently have a cloud-related initiative in place within the organization or are planning to implement cloud or 'as-a-service' approach, in the next 12 months. Let's take a look at 10 Indian companiesacross various sectors that are frontrunners in cloud adoption and are already deriving business value from cloud..."

    • Hexaware: Unleashing the true potential of cloud with significant cost savings
    • Zovi: Saves USD 200,000 of annual operating expenses due to cloud
    • Narayana Hrudayalaya: Fuelling growth, resilience with the cloud
    • Maharashtra Government: Shows power of cloud with savings of Rs 50 crore
    • Infosys: Using cloud for infrastructure optimization
    • Essar Group: Demonstrating the real power of cloud with superb ROI
    • Maruti Suzuki: Empowering dealers using cloud
    • Thermax: Cloud brings flexibility, security and outreach to remote locations
    • MPS: Saves USD 150,000 per year by moving to the cloud
    • Future Group: Private cloud brings down maintenance costs by 20-40 percent

    Read on for details.

    Cloud Providers' Green Claims are Full of Smoke
    InfoWorld, November 19th, 2013
    "You can't get through a month without hearing a group of cloud providers tell us how green their clouds are by using alternative energy sources instead of carbon-emitting fossil fuels. Although I'm sure they're taking steps to reduce the amount of carbon emissions their new data centers put out, just the fact of data centers the size of a large airport seems counterintuitive to the 'green' claim.

    Last week, for example, the San Francisco Chronicle reported on a panel of cloud providers crowing about how they've forced power companies to switch to non-fossil-fuel sources..."

    Finding the True Value of Cloud Means not Focusing on Infrastructure
    SearchCloudComputing, November 18th, 2013
    "Cloud computing is first and foremost an economic model. Many IT innovations, such as virtualization, have originated from the need to improve the economics of IT; cost increases of more hardware, complexity and administrative requirements eclipsed cost improvements gained from server hardware commoditization. Virtualization had the promise to bring this under control, but the improvements have been modest. The reduced friction to deploy has resulted in an explosion of server instances along with the costs that accompany them.

    And while virtualization offered to solve the economic challenges of enterprise IT, cloud computing affects the economies of building Web-scale applications..."

    Healthcare Finally Warming to Cloud Technology
    CIO, November 18th, 2013
    "The security concerns that hinder the adoption of cloud computing in most industries are magnified in healthcare thanks to the sensitive, private nature of patient data - and the heavy fines that healthcare organizations and their business associates face if that data falls into the wrong hands.

    However, recent surveys from Imprivata and Porter Research suggest an about-face. Healthcare increasingly trusts the cloud, both surveys conclude, and leaders at the organizations behind the surveys say this progress is just the beginning..."

    Multifactor Authentication in the Cloud: Assessing Provider Services
    SearchCloudComputing, November 18th, 2013
    "In recent years, many cloud-based service companies, including Zappos, Evernote and LinkedIn, have been breached, with a countless number of users' passwords exposed as a result. While much has been written about secure password management and storage in reaction to such incidents, reality dictates that access to cloud services needs to transcend simple username and password authentication.

    Fortunately, an ever-growing number of cloud providers are offering stronger authentication measures, as well as more robust authorization and role-based access control. How do the authentication offerings from each provider stack up, however?..."

    Unapproved Cloud Products Put Company Data At Risk
    Help Net Security, November 15th, 2013
    "Egnyte released results from a new survey by Harris Interactive among 2,020 U.S. adults illustrates a major exposure for today's businesses when it comes to the transfer and storage of data through unapproved and insecure cloud-only file-sharing services.

    According to the survey, more than 1 in 4 (27 percent) file-share service users reported still having access to documents from that previous employer and nearly 2 in 5 (38 percent) previous and current users have transferred sensitive files through file-sharing services that are not approved by IT..."

      IT - CxO
      CIOs and CMOs: Feuding in the C-Suite
      CIO, November 18th, 2013
      "An Accenture survey of 252 CIOs and 405 CMOs shows that, despite IT's years of work toward business alignment, it remains far removed from marketing.

      Apparently, more IT executives care about the IT-marketing relationship than marketers do: 77 percent of CIOs believe there's a need for alignment between marketing and IT, but only 56 percent of CMOs feel the same way. And few are happy with their relationships as they stand. Only 11 percent of CIOs and 13 percent of CMOs report that there's enough collaboration between the two disciplines in their organizations.

      The survey results read like a heated argument..."

        Clay Christensen Warns CIOs that Smart Managers are Doomed to Fail
        SearchCIO, November 18th, 2013
        "Business thinker Clayton Christensen spoke softly to CIOs at last week's annual meeting of the Society for Information Management (SIM), and he also carried a big stick. But will CIOs heed the warning?

        Christensen is this century's preeminent expert on the theory of disruptive innovation -- the concept that a simple technology starting at the bottom of a market with no competitors can in time move up-market to displace industry leaders..."

        A Tiered Approach To Data Protection
        Storage Switzerland, November 21st, 2013
        "Data protection is seldom a one size fits all solution. Recovery objectives will vary based on the criticality of the application, as well as the situation in which the recovery needs to occur. Most applications will require a suite of recovery technologies to meet all the various application recovery objectives. As a result, a tiered approach to application recovery is required in order to meet these various demands. These tiers of protection should be independent for maximum resiliency and flexibility. The problem is that some backup applications are trying to offer them all in a single software package, creating a single point of failure in data protection in the process..."
          Why the Chief Digital Officer Role Is on the Rise
          CIO, November 19th, 2013
          "Today, technology is coming at organizations from seemingly every angle thanks to social media, mobile technology, big data, analytics, reporting, infrastructure, storage and more. How can older 'traditional' companies' compete in a digital world with newer companies that were born in the digital age?

          A Chief Digital Officer (CDO) may be the answer. However, this role is new, untested and is still in a state of evolution. "The current CDO will not have a 'fixed in stone' job description and will constantly watch for the other skills and roles that other CDOs play", says Andy Gilman, president and CEO of CommCore Consulting Group..."

          How BYOD Puts Everyone at Legal Risk
          CIO, November 21st, 2013
          "If your BYOD user policies are too strict, then you might be running afoul of the law.

          The General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), a group tasked with the investigation and prosecution of unfair labor practice cases, is taking aim at newfangled social and BYOD company policies that violate Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act.

          In a case last year, the NLRB made the unprecedented argument that an at-will employment policy could 'chill an employee's ability to communicate with others about wages, hours and working conditions or to engage in otherwise protected activity.'..."

          IT - PM
          3 Stooges and a Bozo Make a Mockery of the IT Department
          InfoWorld, November 20th, 2013
          "Mediocrity is acceptable -- at least according to one company where I spent some time. I've been in IT for 25 years and have tackled many a consulting project. On occasion, I told myself I'd seen it all, but of course, something else always lurked around the corner.

          In this instance, I was assigned to a project at a company that provided electronic educational material to schools. My job was as a technical lead/architect of a team developing a new program. I found out later that I was the third person to fill that role on the team within a year..."

            IT - Networks
            Forget Terabit Ethernet, the Next Step is 400 Gig . if We Can Afford the R&D
            The Register, November 21st, 2013
            "The current top-end Ethernet standard may be 100 gigabits per second, but don't expect the next step up to be one terabit per second. The days of Ethernet speeds improving by an order of magnitude are gone. Why? Because nobody wants to pay for the necessary research and development - nobody in the US or the EU, that is..."

            "My view is that 10X Ethernet increases are not going to happen anymore," said Scott Kipp of Brocade and the Ethernet Alliance, but representing just himself during a discussion session at the SC13 supercomputing conference in Denver, Colorado, on Thursday.

            GPUs Would Make Terrific Network Monitors
            PCWorld, November 21st, 2013
            "A network researcher at the U.S. Department of Energy's Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory has found a potential new use for graphics processing units - capturing data about network traffic in real time.

            GPU-based network monitors could be uniquely qualified to keep pace with all the traffic flowing through networks running at 10Gbps (gigabits per second) or more, said Fermilab's Wenji Wu.

            Wenji presented his work as part of a poster series of new research at the SC 2013 supercomputing conference this week in Denver..."

              How To Define SDN: Understanding Its Function and Value
              SearchStorage, November 18th, 2012
              "Software-defined networking is enjoying a lot of attention lately -- and a lot of that is generated by vendors who see an opportunity to chip away at the stranglehold Cisco Systems has held on the networking space for the last couple of decades.

              The questions for data storage professionals are: What exactly is software-defined networking (SDN), and why would you -- or should you -- embrace it?

              There are plenty of people claiming to provide the only clear way to define SDN. Most of their definitions seem clear as mud to me..."

              Why Network Security is the Foundation for Cyber Strategy
              CSO Online, November 19th, 2013
              "As government organizations continue to deal with an increasing number of cyber threats, one thing has become clear to those who protect our digital assets: there is no silver bullet.

              It is important to acknowledge the need for more robust planning and to understand that simply throwing the latest 'magic box' at the problem is not going to outsmart the sophisticated cyber criminals we face today. This is especially true as points of entry into our networks expand to a mobile workforce and a vast collection of new devices and sensors - what we refer to as the Internet of Things..."

                IT - Operations
                Why the Cloud Requires a Totally Different Data Center
                Network World, November 18th, 2013
                "If there's one mind-blowing statistic about Amazon Web Services, it's the company's scale.

                The cloud is a nascent technology, but AWS is already a multi-billion-dollar business and its cloud is reportedly five times bigger than its 14 top competitors combined, according to Gartner. Amazon's Simple Storage Service (S3) stores more than a trillion files and processes 1.5 million requests per second. DynamoDB, the AWS-designed NoSQL database, is less than a year old and last month it already had more than 2 trillion input or output requests.

                Supplying all those services at that scale requires a lot of hardware. The cloud division is growing fast though, which means that AWS is continually adding more hardware to its data centers..."

                This is How Amazon Cleans Its Servers when Customers are Done with Them
                Network World, November 20th, 2013
                "Every day thousands of customers spin up and down virtual machines and make billions of requests for processes on the storage being held in the Amazon Web Services cloud. But what happens when a customer is done renting that hardware?

                At AWS great lengths are taken to ensure its servers are clean, the company's chief information security officer Steve Schmidt says. In addition to the VMs being cleared when the customer finishes paying for them, the company also wipes them clean before giving them to another customer. 'Test it yourself,' Schmidt challenged users, inviting customers to check to see if a VM has any data on it when it's given to them..."

                IT - Security
                90% of Workers In Britain Cannot Resist Clicking on a Web Link
                Help Net Security, November 18th, 2013
                "90% of UK workers surveyed have clicked on a web link embedded in an email with two-thirds (66%) admitting they very rarely first check to ensure the link is genuine, according to Sourcefire.

                Not only does this expose the individual to a high risk of an IT security breach, it potentially leaves companies open to a hack attack as cybercriminal gangs target individuals to gain access to corporate networks and sensitive data.

                The study identified three types of clicking behavior:..."

                6 Common Password Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)
                Business 2 Community, November 18th, 2013
                "One of the easiest ways to have your online security compromised and open yourself to an attack by a hacker, or simply a nosy co-worker, is to have a bad password. Take a look at these six common password mistakes and learn how to correct them..."

                • The four password mistakes everyone should know better than to make by now
                • Not taking advantage of extra security measures
                • Entering password information on an unsecured server
                • Not using services that make security easier
                • Storing passwords on email accounts
                • Using 'secret' questions that everyone already knows the answer to

                Read on for details.

                A Look at IT Security Health Checks
                Help Net Security, November 14th, 2013
                "Over the past few days, one thing got my attention which I think in many ways sums up the state of our industry. While on a shopping trip with my wife, she noticed a billboard from a certain health insurance organization with the slogan, “Our focus is health, not shareholders.”

                Probably because I'm becoming an increasingly grump old man, I tend to be increasingly cynical about the state of the IT Security industry. Just ask yourself how many CEOs will give keynotes about Google driverless cars and talk about how these cars will be potentially hacked, and why we all need better security. Then they go on to imply that they will be in the forefront of doing just that..."

                Biometrics Researchers See a World Without Passwords
                CIO Today, November 24th, 2013
                "Some Purdue University researchers are working on technology that could see all those passwords that computer Relevant Products/Services users must punch in replaced with steps such as iris and fingerprint scans.

                The basement lab of Purdue University's International Center for Biometrics Research is where such emerging biometric technologies are tested for weaknesses before going mainstream.

                Iris and fingerprint scans as well as facial and voice recognition are just a few of the tools that can improve security Relevant Products/Services while making lives easier, said Stephen Elliott, the center Relevant Products/Services's director..."

                Dealing with Advanced Threats
                SearchSecurity, November 18th, 2013
                "There have always been sophisticated hackers, just not all that many of them. Now there seem to be more than ever, and they have branched out in numerous directions to find different, novel avenues of attack. This Essential Guide takes on what's become a genuinely essential task: keeping up with each new class of attack as it's created. Here's a look at the threats to embedded systems, to the mobile device and app ecosystem, and to all manner of stealthy attacks on conventional systems that are harder than ever to detect before significant damage has been done..."
                  People's Ignorance of Online Privacy Puts Employers at Risk
                  CSO Online, November 14th, 2013
                  "Study finds that more than half of respondents have not read most recent privacy policy for social media accounts...

                  People say they are responsible for their own online safety, yet do very little to protect the information they share on social media, which increases the risks to themselves and employers, a study shows.

                  Nearly two thirds of respondents to a Harris Interactive survey of more than 2,000 U.S. adults embraced individual responsibility in protecting privacy. Only 12 percent said social media, used by more than four out of five American adults, was responsible for the online safety of users..."

                    The Security Industry Remains Strong with Computer Science, but Weak on IT
                    Network Computing, November 18th, 2013
                    "Last week, I was in Silicon Valley meeting with a parade of CISOs and security vendors. Business travel is no 'day at the beach,' but these trips really help me keep up with the latest enterprise security challenges and potential technology solutions.

                    It was also nice to spend time in the Valley and re-charge my batteries toward the security industry. There was a lot of excitement out there as a result of business growth, VC investment, and the wildly successful FireEye IPO.

                    I had a number of meetings with security vendors, discussing the threat landscape, anti-malware technologies, emerging trends in network security, and my latest pet topic, big data security analytics..."

                    Uncontrolled Privileged Access Still a Major Issue
                    Help Net Security, November 20th, 2013
                    "The NSA's notorious insider breach has caused 52 percent of IT security professionals to reconsider their approach to user and systems administrator privileges, yet the majority aren't taking action, according to Avecto. Its findings reveal that organizations continue to lag when it comes to controlling the use of administrator rights in their IT environment.

                    Conducted at the McAfee FOCUS 2013 conference in October, the survey comprises responses from 348 decision-making information security professionals. While the majority of respondents said the recent Edward Snowden affair has heightened concerns around IT admins with excess privileges, 73% admitted that their organizations' privilege management policies remain unchanged..."

                    Base Your Server Consolidation Plan On Availability and Failover Needs
                    SearchServerVirtualization, November 18th, 2013
                    "How should we approach a server consolidation project, and how much spare capacity should we leave on each server?

                    Consolidation projects are important steps toward optimizing a data center, but they involve a great deal of consideration and planning, rather than simply placing more workloads onto fewer servers as resources allow. IT planners must understand the relationships and dependencies between workloads, provide adequate network bandwidth and storage IOPS to handle the demands of multiple VMs, and decide on a coherent strategy for workload failover and restoration. Any server consolidation plan should be implemented in cautious phases and tested thoroughly before being rolled out to the entire data center..."

                    IT - Careers
                    IT: Don't Let the CEO Wonder What You do All Day
                    ComputerWorld, November 18th, 2013
                    "Robert Handler, an analyst at Gartner, will never forget one of his earliest consulting jobs. 'I was asked to gather enough data on a CIO to fire him,' he recalls. Handler dutifully began researching the CIO's current and past activities but could find no obvious missteps. In fact, the man in question was the best CIO he'd ever met.

                    Eventually, he returned to the CFO who had given him the assignment to ask why the CIO was to be fired. The CFO answered, 'He's spending a lot of money, and everything seems to be working just fine,' Handler recalls. 'And I thought, 'I don't ever want to be a CIO!'..."

                    How to Close the Technology Skills Gap
                    CIO, November 18th, 2013
                    "The first two articles in this series on the technology skills gap focused on numbers. Lots of numbers. Numbers of Americans unemployed and underemployed. Numbers of open jobs that firms cannot fill because they claim applicants do not have the needed skills. And the shocking numbers earned by American students in international assessment examinations that rank them 32nd in the world in mathematics and 22nd in science. Not a beneficial return on investment for another stunning number: the $600 billion American taxpayers spend annually on public education in the United States.

                    But this final segment of the series will shove aside numbers to focus on "people." People who have crafted innovative public/private partnerships that are demonstratively closing the science and math skills gap in America..."

                      Negotiation Tips for IT Pros
                      ComputerWorld, November 18th, 2013
                      "You know what you want. From your company: Stretch assignments, more training, a promotion. From your vendor: Better service, cheaper pricing. All you have to do is convince the other party to give you what you desire.

                      Are you up for the task? Probably not.

                      An August 2013 CareerBuilder survey found that about half of all workers take the first compensation package offered, even though 45% of employers are willing to negotiate. And a LinkedIn survey last year found that 39% of professionals feel anxious about negotiating. It's a particular concern for IT folks, who aren't as likely to pick up negotiation experience as their business-side colleagues.

                      For a crash course on how to negotiate, IT-style, read on..."

                        IT - Compliance
                        How Can IT Help Us Comply with the Sarbanes-Oxley Act?
                        Business 2 Community, November 17th, 2013
                        "With the biotech industry booming, some companies are electing to go public even before they have fully developed a marketable product. Making the jump has certain advantages, but it is not a decision to be made lightly. Publicly traded companies are subject to significantly more rules and regulations than their private counterparts.

                        Public companies need to have systems and procedures in place to meet the standards for data security and auditability required by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act..."

                        International Data Law Compliance
                        Big Data Republic, November 18th, 2013
                        "Last week we held an online Q&A with Paul McCormack, an associate in IP, technology, and sourcing at DLA Piper, and didn't we just spark up some interest? McCormack has graciously answered the overflow of questions we didn't manage to address in the chat.

                        @sarapeters: I suppose one question would be what's the most common legal conflict he sees. Also what's the trickiest or most frightening conflict? And who's navigating this data law quagmire well, and who's failing miserably?..."

                          IT - Backup
                          Are Disk-To-Disk Backup Solutions too Slow for Modern Recovery?
                          SearchDataBackup, November 18th, 2013
                          "Virtualized server infrastructure has benefited from two recent advancements. First, the integration of flash is allowing primary storage to respond better to the random I/O nature characteristic of virtualized environments. Second, many backup applications can now recover and launch a failed VM directly off of a disk-based backup appliance. While seemingly unrelated, these two benefits are in conflict with each other.

                          Because of flash, users of virtual machines have become accustomed to rapid storage performance. If they are forced to run their virtualized application directly from a backup appliance, however, they will notice significant performance degradation since these systems don't use flash. Worse still, the back end of these appliances don't even use high-performance hard drives. Instead, they typically use slow, high-capacity HDDs in order to make the economics of disk backup viable..."

                          Done with the Cloud? Alternatives for Online Backups
                          PCWorld, November 14th, 2013
                          "The need to back up your data is indisputable, but how you do it is a matter of choice. Cloud backup services are the most hassle-free option, but they can be costly, and they require a stable, high-speed broadband connection that isn't available for everyone. And NSA surveillance has certainly made it difficult to trust sensitive data to a third-party provider.

                          Alternatives exist. With a combination of hardware, apps, and services, you can create secure, easily accessible data backups without relying on the cloud..."

                            IT - Mobile
                            5 Reasons Why You Need To Be Mobile Ready For 2014
                            Business 2 Community, November 11th, 2013
                            "Despite statistics to the contrary, many businesses continue to ignore the need for mobile solutions when it comes to their customers.

                            On this blog alone, I've shared why you need a responsive design for your site; how mobile was already starting to be a major player back in 2012; and how design trends are being shaped by the mobile customer..."

                            • Mobile and the Research Stage
                            • Mobile and Search
                            • Mobile and GeoLocation Benefits
                            • Mobile and the Immediacy of Purchase
                            • Mobile and the Point of Purchase

                            Read on for details.

                              IT - Big Data
                              2014 Will Be the Year of Data
                              InfoWorld, November 18th, 2013
                              "The Harvard Business Review devoted its entire September issue to big data, rightfully focusing on Hadoop. Inside, the data scientist was anointed as the job of the future and experts dispensed advice on how to bring big data technologies to your company.

                              As someone who started his own business and grew it into a multi-million-dollar concern, I am a frequent reader of HBR. I don't have a business degree. I learned what I know from watching others..."

                              Big Data Crunch Pushes Formula One into Supercomputer Frenzy
                    , November 18th, 2013
                              "It is often said that Formula One cars are works of art, with lines and curves that flow like the wind. The creation of such art requires not only a dab hand but also a vast IT back end, something with which today's F1 teams are constantly playing catch-up.

                              As the hunger for data ramps up, the Formula One racing teams have a choice: run more efficiently or overhaul their systems. And that's a significant undertaking..."

                                IT - BYOD
                                BYOD's Dark Side: Data Protection
                                Storage Switzerland, November 18th, 2013
                                "Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) is now the norm at most large businesses and enterprises. Even those environments that don't have a BYOD policy have seen the use of laptops proliferate. Users can now be productive anywhere, often on the platform of their choice. There is a dark side to this improved user productivity and flexibility, data protection. According to IT research firm Gartner approximately 70% of corporate data is on a PC. That means that if there is not a specific strategy to protect user laptops that over 2/3's of an organization data is at risk..."
                                Some Hidden Pitfalls of Government BYOD
                                GCN, November 14th, 2013
                                "Last week I moderated a fascinating panel discussion at GCN's Third Annual Government Mobility Forum, on the topic of how mobile technology is changing the government enterprise. The event featured two very knowledgeable speakers: Francois Lascelles, the chief architect for Layer 7 Technologies, and Michael Tucker, the mobility application sales manager for AT&T. Each approached government concerns and audience questions from different angles. Tucker more focused on devices and user experience while Lascelles talked about the back-end that makes it all happen.

                                I wanted to touch on a few of the concerns that surfaced about bring your own device [BYOD] initiatives, including some areas I had never considered. The reaction of the audience seemed to suggest that they hadn't really thought much about it either..."

                                Top Ten Articles for last few Issues
                                Vol 189 Issues 1 and 2; Vol 188 Issues 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5; Vol 187 Issue 4
                                We track how frequently each article is viewed on the web site to determine which the readers consider the most important. For last week, the top 10 articles were:

                                • Why people don't patch and upgrade?!?
                                • Java for LEGO Mindstorms EV3
                                • Report from Oracle's Innovation Forum
                                • Oracle Big Data Appliance X4-2
                                • Focus on Oracle Solaris
                                • The Old School Sysadmin - A Dying Breed?
                                • Oracle VM 3.2.6
                                • Success of Oracle CloudWorld Sparks Extended Roadshow with Expanded Nine City Engagement
                                • Optimizing OS performance
                                • ADNOC talks about 50x increase in performance

                                The longer version of this article has list of top ten articles for the last 8 weeks.

                                  IT - Encryption
                                  How Major Tech Companies are Encrypting Your Data
                                  IT World, November 20th, 2013
                                  "In light of the ever-growing, disturbing revelations about the NSA's mass surveillance program, it's good to know how the web services we're using protect our information. The Electronic Frontier Foundation has surveyed and analyzed several major service providers--from Amazon to Yahoo!--to see if them have implemented strong encryption.

                                  The good news is, many of them have adopted encryption standards that make backdoor surveillance more challenging for the government, protecting user data from being seized without a warrant. Four companies - Dropbox, Google,, and SpiderOak - implement all five encryption measures...."

                                  Welcome to the Era of Encryption by Default
                                  InfoWorld, November 21st, 2013
                                  "With Yahoo promising "encryption everywhere," Google moving to 2,048-bit certificates by year's end, HTTP 2.0 to be automatically encrypted, and a renewed interested in secure email, we've entered a new phase: the era of encryption by default over the network -- and maybe everywhere else, too.

                                  Encryption has long been thought of as a bonus, a luxury, a sidecar add-on that only people who really, really need it should bother with. Now it looks like we all really, really need it..."

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