IBM Continues to Think Ahead Clearly

IBM recently concluded its first IBM THINK conference in Las Vegas. In THINK, IBM combined several former events into one comprehensive conference that covered the breadth and depth of the entire corporation. Although the 40,000 some attendees could explore in depth particular products or services in a plethora of educational sessions or at the huge exhibition hall, in a sense THINK was a coming out party that showed how IBM is reinventing itself in what is called the “data-driven” era. What turns the future into the era of data? The Economist has stated that the most valuable resource is no longer oil, but data, and supported this mammoth assertion in a seminal May6, 2017 article entitled “Data is giving rise to a new economy.” Therefore, both IBM and the Economist are responding to broader business and societal events. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Think 2018 – IBM’s Power9 System…

I’m at IBM’s huge Think event this week and, holy crap, there are a lot of IT folks here. It continues to amaze me how much IBM has changed over the years and yet remained the same. The changes are tied to platforms that are designed to be deployed in the cloud using open platforms, and the things that have remained the same is an almost rabid focus on the needs of its customers. How this last is demonstrated is an unmatched ability to get big recognized customers on stage behind their global brands to advocate for IBM. These events are often very similar to a religious experience given the level and quality of customer testimony. One of the more interesting events was the Power9 event. What makes this interesting is Power started out along with a number of other architectures competing with X86 and Intel but while the vast majority of other alternatives failed, IBM saved Power by doing something un-IBM like. They opened it up and Open Power has been successful thanks to that. Interestingly, Oracle, this week who copied IBM’s old lock in strategy missed their financial expectations while IBM has been doing impressively well. This goes back to IBM’s core culture professed by its most iconic CEO Thomas Watson Jr. who passed down to his successors one preeminent rule, “be willing to change anything but what you are”. IBM remains focused on meeting customer needs but everything else has largely changed and Power9 is representative of that change. Let’s talk about some of those changes. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Cisco: Driving Diversity Where It Counts

This is Women’s History Month and I think it is important to highlight companies that are going the extra mile. Cisco stands out because—unlike most tech companies, where diversity is in the lower ranks—Cisco is diverse at the top. Cisco has also fielded the Office of Inclusion and Collaboration, and the Cisco Empowered Women’s network. Finally, Cisco funds the Women of Impact Conference which was held back on the 7th right at the start of Women’s History Month. Let’s talk a bit about each of these events and why it is important for firms like Cisco to give diversity in the workplace more than lip service. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Apps Go Better with AI – IBM, Apple and Coca-Cola

One of the most profound corporate IT shifts during the past decade is in developers’ roles as agents of business and technological change. That began with the critical positions developers took in cloud computing and bring your own device (BYOD) adoption. The process accelerated as organizations leveraged their developers to shift focus from massive, monolithic business applications to quickly created, continually evolving apps and mobile services. As a result, how and how well businesses support developers and their communities have become important points that can eventually impact a company’s market position and ability to compete. While there’s no single, unchanging answer, how vendors work and work together to facilitate developers’ efforts is an important issue to track. The latest evolution of the four-year-old partnership between IBM and Apple certainly qualifies in that regard. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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dinCloud Continues to Forge a Path in Hosted Workplaces

The “cloud” continues to manifest itself in a very wide range of incarnations and use cases. Specialty clouds in the form of [whatever]-as-a-service address special purpose needs. For example, Los Angeles-based dinCloud plays in the desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) arena as part of its larger focus on hosted workspaces and cloud infrastructure services. Hosted Workspaces: Offering VDI as DaaS In essence, DaaS is a virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) hosted as a cloud service. DaaS has found its greatest success in small to medium businesses (SMBs) so dinCloud targets the mid-market of say 100 to 700 users where the IT staff is typically very small, but the targeted businesses have to have the same requirements as much larger organizations. With VDI, a desktop operating system is hosted on a virtual machine (VM) that runs on a centralized server where all processes, applications and data reside and run. The primary benefits for customers are in reduced administrative burdens as trying to upgrade, provision and manage a large number of devices — not only desktops, but other devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones in a BYOD (bring-your-own-device) world — can be a real headache. The challenges that face VDI from an IT perspective are maintaining security, avoiding downtime, and the general complexities and high initial costs of VDI purchase and deployment. In contrast to on-premises offerings, a cloud-hosted VDI solution can provide the necessary security, high levels of uptime and greatly reduce complexity, while at the same time providing economic benefits. A roll-your-own VDI infrastructure also tends to be CAPEX (capital expense) heavy whereas a DaaS solution contained within a hosted workspaces cloud is OPEX (operating expense) friendly, with a monthly subscription fee per user model. Organizations can thus easily plan their monthly expenses and alter them to account for unexpected changes in headcount which is always desirable. In its hosted workspaces model, dinCloud includes not only DaaS per se, but also the data and the applications — most notably Microsoft applications, such as Office 365 (which is also subscription-based). But dinCloud does not stop there as it wants to further leverage its cloud-based environments to offer more services to its hosted workspaces customers, as well as provide potential services to non-DaaS customers. It does so under the label of cloud infrastructure, including dinServer (hosted virtual server) and dinSQL (SQL database-as-a-service), To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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