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Tags: IT's Guide to Third Party Monitoring

by System Administrator - Thursday, 9 July 2015, 4:14 PM
 

The True Impact of Tags: IT's Guide to Third Party Monitoring

This eBook addresses the impact various third parties have on your site, the challenges IT/Ops faces to meet both business and performance expectations, and provides a game plan to managing the risk and latency carried by content served from outside your infrastructure.

Please read the attached ebook.

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Taquion Knowledge Base - TKB (KW)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 2 May 2013, 8:38 PM
 

TKB

Definición 2003

HealthDesk© es la primera implementación práctica de la Base de Conocimiento Taquion© de TNG Consultores y la KW Foundation. Dicha base de conocimiento, inspirada en el “Proyecto KW©”, se corresponde con un workflow donde el Usuario Final establece todos los servicios y tareas de su Organización. Desde el día cero de su desarrollo, se fueron implementando todos los componentes para la interoperabilidad, tanto interna como externa, y la posibilidad de que pueda funcionar tanto en equipos portables (notebooks, netbooks, pdas y smartphones) como en servidores corporativos, con cualquier sistema operativo y DBMS.

Taquion Knowledge Base© es una gran Ontología, 100% abierta a cambios y con múltiples implementaciones posibles. HealthDesk© puede recibir, pues, las sugerencias del Usuario Final y transformarlas en funcionalidades informáticas prácticas.

El módulo de Organización le permite ingresar los parámetros de funcionamiento para que  Taquion© HealthDesk© pueda adaptarse a su modelo de gestión. Dependiendo de las necesidades del Usuario Final, esta parametrización puede llegar a ser bastante extensa y abarca las siguientes especificaciones:

Menú Principal del Módulo de Organización (2009)

Taquion Organización

1. Identificación de la Organización.
2. Servidores.
3. Estándares de Codificación.
4. Terminología.
5. Datos geográficos.
6. Procesos de Atención, Prestaciones o Servicios, Tareas del WorkFlow.
7. Estructura Hospitalaria. Incluye Centros de Costos, Equipos, Camas y Móviles para Asistencia Externa.
8. Importación de Datos desde Fuentes Externas y Programación de la Replicación de Datos.
9. Configuración del RUCAF.
10. Plan de Cuentas, Monedas, Formas de Pago.
11. Convenios (o planes asistenciales personalizados) con Financiadores. Configuración de la Emisión, Cobranza, Producción y Remitentes Autorizados.
12. Listas de Aranceles (o precios).
13. Recursos Humanos.
14. Proveedores.
15. Almacenes o Depósitos, Stock e Inventarios.
16. Principios Activos, Fármacos.
17. Perfiles de Usuarios.
18. Documentos ISO.
19. Agendas de Coordinación.
20. Ayuda en Línea.
21. Etc …
 
Más allá de la gran cantidad de funcionalidades que presentaremos en este manual, siempre existirá un margen en el que el proceso será inverso, es decir, la gestión deberá adaptarse a las posibilidades del sistema. Estas restricciones no surgen de nuestra visión subjetiva de lo que debe ser la gestión médica, sino que se fundamentan en los estándares internacionales en el tema. Y esto no es menor, pues apoyar toda la arquitectura en un modelo de datos tipo “world-class” es una clave del éxito de su implantación en cualquier organización cuyo sistema de información sea el soporte de un esquema como el siguiente:
 

Planeamiento Estratégico

Planeamiento Estratégico (Fuente: Curso “Introducción a la Informática Biomédica” del Hospital Italiano de Bs. As., AMIA 10x10 y Oregon Health & Science University)

Planeamiento Estratégico

El problema de los Sistemas de Salud (Fuente: Curso “Introducción a la Informática Biomédica” del Hospital Italiano de Bs. As., AMIA 10x10 y Oregon Health & Science University)

Planeamiento Estratégico

El problema de los Sistemas de Salud (Fuente: Curso “Introducción a la Informática Biomédica” del Hospital Italiano de Bs. As., AMIA 10x10 y Oregon Health & Science University)

Buscar el adecuado equilibrio entre Costos, Calidad y Accesibilidad es un desafío para cualquier Gerente responsable de una Empresa de Producción Sanitaria. La semántica de HealthDesk© V1  le irá guiando a través de las relaciones entre las capas de la historia clínica y la estructura hospitalaria, con registro y trazabilidad de los recursos involucrados directamente o, en aquellos casos de uso general, prorrateados. Profundidad y complejidad de estas relaciones son reguladas por las definiciones que Ud. ingresa en este módulo.

La siguientes figuras representa el flujo mínimo de un proceso de atención:

Planeamiento Estratégico

Al generar un ambiente operativo colaborativo acotado e interoperable, un Sistema de Información completo y bien implantado es capaz de darle un valor agregado formidable a una Organización. Los beneficios son casi inmediatos: escalabilidad y mayor competitividad gracias a una alta capacidad de adaptación a los cambios.

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Technical Debt

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 28 January 2015, 6:47 PM
 

Technical Debt

Posted by Margaret Rouse

In software development, technical debt is a metaphor equating Extreme Programming’s incremental, get-something-started approach with the easy acquisition of money through fast loans. Like monetary debt, technical debt must be repaid.

In software development, technical debt is a metaphor equating Extreme Programming’s incremental, get-something-started approach with the easy acquisition of money through fast loans.

A monetary loan, of course, has to be paid back with interest. In terms of software development, payback requires the developers to refactor the program as they learn more about how it interacts with other applications and which features end users are using, or not using, or wish they had. Just as monetary debt can easily spiral out of control if not managed properly, so can technical debt.

In business, the metaphor is often used to illustrate the concept that an organization will end up spending more in the future by not addressing a technical problem when it first presents itself. The assumption is that if an organization chooses to ignore a course of action it knows should be taken, the organization will risk paying for it in terms of time, money or damage to the organization's reputation in the future. As time goes by, efforts to go back and address the original problem may become complicated by new developments. Eventually the problem may reach a tipping point and the organization must then decide whether or not to honor its original debt and continue investing time and effort to fix the problem. This decision can be made more difficult by something called the sunk cost effect, which is the emotional tendency of humans to want to continue investing in something that clearly isn't working.  

The metaphor is credited to software developer Ward Cunningham, who is perhaps best known for creating the first wiki.  Cunningham proposes that getting software up and working as quickly as possible is not necessarily a bad thing. Cash that has been acquired with a loan can be spent right away. Similarly, a software product that ships quickly can provide immediate benefit to the business that needs it -- while also providing the program's developers with valuable feedback about how their code is working in the real world. 

Ward Cunningham explains why he chose the word debt.

Continue Reading About technical debt

Link: http://searchsap.techtarget.com

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Teleasistencia Móvil (PROTOCOLO)

by System Administrator - Saturday, 1 June 2013, 1:20 PM
 

Protocolo de los sistemas de teleasistencia móvil

Protocol dels sistemes de teleassistència mòbil

UNE_133503

El pasado 30 de abril de 2013, Aenor publicó la norma UNE 133503:2013 sobre Servicios de teleasistencia móvil. Protocolo de comunicaciones entre los terminales y los centros de alarma.

En la actualidad, cada fabricante de dispositivos móviles utiliza su propio protocolo de comunicación para conectar y comunicarse; y esta norma intenta unificar este protocolo.

La norma UNE 133503 define un protocolo de comunicaciones abierto y libre donde los dispositivos de teleasistencia móvil necesitan interactuar con los centros de atención.

Esta norma ha sido diseñada para usar como servicios portadores el servicio de mensaje corto (conocido como SMS), así como para trabajar con servicios de datos móviles basados en Protocolo de Internet (IP).

Para el diseño del protocolo se han tenido en cuenta las siguientes premisas:

  • simplicidad, en la codificación y decodificación de tramas;
  • consistencia, en la estructura de las reglas de codificación;
  • flexibilidad, para poder incorporar nuevos tipos de datos;
  • capacidad para integrar servicios y tecnologías futuras.

Aunque la definición del protocolo se basa en los requisitos reales de los servicios de teleasistencia, el protocolo se ha diseñado para que pueda ser adaptado a diferentes escenarios y procedimientos. Es decir, está diseñado como una herramienta sencilla para permitir el intercambio de información entre los terminales y el centro de servicio (central de alarma, central de atención, etc.), y como consecuencia,  se pueden diseñar una gran variedad de equipos de tal manera que se adapten a los diferentes servicios de teleasistencia.

A pesar de que la norma se centra en la implementación técnica del protocolo, la implantación de la misma tendrá un gran impacto para los actores del mercado (usuarios, fabricantes, proveedores de servicios y la administración pública). Es un proyecto que proporciona las siguientes ventajas.

Ventajas usuarios

Un protocolo abierto facilita la incorporación de nuevos terminales, proporcionando una mayor variedad de terminales para adaptarse a las necesidades de cada usuario. Reduciendo el precio del terminal se favorece que el servicio de teleasistencia móvil sea accesible a un mayor número de usuarios.

Ventajas fabricantes

Permite a los fabricantes centrar sus esfuerzos en el desarrollo de terminales sin desperdiciar recursos en la adaptación de los protocolos de terceros.

Ventajas proveedores de servicios

Gracias a este protocolo común, se facilita la integración de los proveedores de tecnología y su diversificación.

Ventajas administración pública

Un protocolo de comunicación abierto, facilita que los usuarios se puedan cambiar de un proveedor a otro, sin tener que cambiar los dispositivos móviles.

La posibilidad de una mayor competencia entre los proveedores de equipos proporcionará una mayor reducción de los costes del servicio.

Más información: norma@infocentre.eic.cat

Maite Sanz
Gestor de contenidos
Associació d’Enginyers Industrials de Catalunya
Infocentre – Normativa http://normativa.infocentre.es

Link: http://normativainfo.wordpress.com/2013/05/15/protocolo-de-los-sistemas-de-teleasistencia-movil/

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Tendencias (KW)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 2 May 2013, 8:39 PM
 

En mayor o menor medida, cualquier desarrollador de tecnología gestiona el conocimiento propio o ajeno con un propósito puntual, sectorial o global.

Si bien la construcción de ontologías tiene sus orígenes en la prehistoria y las distintas vías de transmisión de conocimiento es, ni más ni menos, la base misma del comportamiento social, la tecnología dista mucho aún de soportarla de una manera sencilla, práctica y proactiva.

Cada hito tecnológico de la humanidad tiende a “envasar” el mismo conocimiento funcional en diferentes componentes de uso privado o masivo. Una nueva instancia genera indudablemente más sofisticación y, a veces, más acceso para más gente (Internet y telefonía móvil son los mejores ejemplos).

El “Knowledge Management” no es, pues, un concepto nuevo, pero tiene una inusitada actualidad por el alto impacto que tiene el acceso e interpretación a datos e información en el seno de las empresas. Se está poniendo de moda el término “conciencia” empresarial, aludiendo a un mayor realismo en visión y misión.

Hay una verdadera preocupación por el enorme capital que significan las “ideas”, con un creciente grupo de profesionales diferentes que rodean la génesis y desarrollo de cada una de ellas.

Las neuronas y el proceso sináptico de nuestro sistema nervioso son los mejores ejemplos posibles sobre lo que significa un componente reusable de conocimiento y la conectividad inteligente de los mismos.

No dudamos que proyectos tales como el GNU-Linux, Protégé (ontologías), Google (búsqueda) y Wiki (enciclopedia) son sinérgicos con el KW.

La oferta actual de productos y servicios está generando “stress tecnológico” en los consumidores. Quienes inundan el mercado con 1.000 opciones “cuasi”-diferentes para hacer lo mismo han subestimado los efectos de la pasividad del Usuario Final. Este cortocircuito genera stress también en los proveedores.

Hay dinero para producción y para consumo, pero no existen buenas ideas, y ya no es novedad la falta de rumbo respecto al posicionamiento frente al Usuario Final, el cual paga la tecnología que usa pero no se siente parte de ella. ¿Cuál es la diferencia exacta entre “Inside” y “Leap Ahead”?. ¿No es similar a la que existe entre un documento Office y un XML que empaqueta una neurona para un sistema de gestión?.

El slogan: “Usted… ¡sí!, Usted, es el principal componente tecnológico”.

Es decir, sería mucho más fácil para las empresas desarrollar productos y servicios que admitan y no sometan al “know-how” del Usuario Final.

¿Cuánto tiempo y dinero tendrán que perder los inversores hasta convencerse que el “embotellado” del conocimiento en productos y servicios no funcionará en la mayoría de los casos?.

Casi todos los sectores de actividad comercial han desarrollado contenidos propios, la inmensa mayoría son no reusables en términos de lógica por los sistemas informáticos. Aquí debemos aclarar, quizás, el último punto oscuro de la visión KW: “una cosa son los protocolos de comunicación, otra es la reusabilidad”. Un sistema médico tradicional puede recibir e integrar un mensaje HL7 con el resumen de historia clínica de una persona, pero no mejora su “inteligencia” al recibir información del laboratorio farmacéutico relacionada con ciertas limitaciones a las prescripciones de algunos de sus medicamentos.

A nivel de protocolos de mensajería entre aplicaciones informáticas se están dando importantes pasos, como la estandarización de los mensajes médicos a través del HL7, IHE, DICOM (sugerimos al lector consultar la web http://www.sueiidiss.org, sitio desarrollado por la KW Foundation) y otros protocolos como el EDI para transacciones bancarias y B2B en general.

La comunidad GNU-Linux lleva la gestión del conocimiento a la libre circulación del código fuente de programación. Un componente de este tipo podría estar empaquetado en un KW de niveles 7 u 8. Otro de nivel 9 podría contener un módulo de inteligencia artificial para darle “vida” a un agente encargado de detectar brotes epidémicos.

En fin, muchas empresas lanzan al mercado ideas prematuras y muy lejos de ser una realidad, apremiadas por la baja cotización de sus acciones o por un plan estratégico que necesite captar más inversión. Esto desorienta al Usuario Final e, injustamente, le pone “marca” a algo que quizás se quede en un pomposo anuncio de prensa. El proyecto KW es, ante todo, algo que le dará simetría al mercado, balanceando tecnología y contenido, algo que se perdió bastante antes que el derrumbe de las empresas .com.

¿Desarrollará la industria sus nuevos procesadores para sostener una red neuronal de ontologías KW creadas por el Usuario Final y/o comunidades KIP?, ¿o lo harán para correr sistemas operativos cada vez más pesados e inútiles respecto a la percepción del consumidor masivo?. ¿Cuántos Usuarios Finales entienden a fondo las herramientas “propietarias” de la nueva versión Office 2007 de Microsoft (empresa que ha perdido el 12% de la comunidad de programadores en el último año, sólo en USA)?.

¿Qué argumento de venta tiene más peso: autogestión del conocimiento/comunidades de intercambio o sistema operativo/procesador?.

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Tesla Powerwall

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 20 May 2015, 9:32 PM
 

Tesla Powerwall

Posted by: Margaret Rouse

Tesla Powerwall is a wall-mounted battery system for storing energy generated by solar power panels and wind turbines. Powerwall is a product of Tesla Energy, a business division of Tesla Motors.

Powerwall, which is aimed at the residential market, is designed to store power generated at peak solar time for use during power outages and out-of-peak solar time, including night. The system’s slim, modular design is adapted from the technology used in those for Tesla's electric cars and can hold up to 7 kilowatt-hours of energy, which is enough energy to power a typical home in the United States for about 7 hours. A similar product, Tesla Powerpack, is aimed at the business and utility market. Both products are based on lithium ion battery technology.

Powerwall will be available in a 7 kilowatt hour (kW) model, designed for daily use applications, and a 10kwh model, designed for backup power. The units weigh about 220 lbs. Total capacity can be upgraded by modular connection of up to nine additional units. Tesla expects to start shipping Powerwall sometime during the summer of 2015.

Tesla provides the following specifications for Powerwall:

  • Mounting: Wall Mounted Indoor/Outdoor
  • Inverter: Pairs with growing list of inverters
  • Energy: 7 kWh or 10 kWh
  • Continuous Power: 2 kW
  • Peak Power: 3.3 kW
  • Round Trip Efficiency: 92%
  • Operating Temperature Range: -20C (-4F) to 43C (110F)
  • Warranty: 10 years
  • Dimensions: H: 1300mm W: 860mm D:180mm

Watch a video introduction to Powerwall:

Link: http://whatis.techtarget.com

 

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The CIO's And CMO's Blueprint For Strategy In The Age Of The Customer

by System Administrator - Friday, 20 February 2015, 4:23 PM
 

The CIO's And CMO's Blueprint For Strategy In The Age Of The Customer

Four Imperatives To Establish New Competitive Advantage

By Kyle McNabbJosh Bernoff 

Put Customer Obsession At The Center Of Your Corporate Strategy

Face it: Your technology-empowered customers now know more than you do about your products and services, your pricing, and your reputation. Technology has tipped the balance in favor of the customer.

Once, Technology Favored Companies; Now, It Empowers Customers

 

They can buy anything instantly and have it delivered to anywhere. And in a world of global sourcing and efficient supply chains, your competitors can copy or undermine the moves you take to compete. Your only successful response — the only way to retain customers and their loyalty — is to become customer-obsessed. Here's what we mean:

A customer-obsessed enterprise focuses its strategy, its energy, and its budget on processes that enhance knowledge of and engagement with customers and prioritizes these over maintaining traditional competitive barriers.

Customer-obsessed enterprises invest differently. Some, like Amazon.com, Macy's, and USAA, have customer obsession in their budgeting DNA. Others, such as Delta Air Lines and Royal Bank of Canada, use the customer life cycle to support a continuous relationship with their customers.

The Customer Life Cycle Shapes Customer-Obsession Decisions

Customer obsession also drives firms, such as Hilton Worldwide and The Home Depot, to spend hundreds of millions on revamping technology to meet customer needs. And it pays off, regardless of whether the customer is a consumer or a business buyer. According to an analysis by Watermark Consulting, 10-year investment returns from publicly traded customer experience leaders (measured by Forrester's Customer Experience Index) were 43%, while investments from customer experience laggards generated negative returns.

Customer Experience Leaders Outperform The Market

 

A Blueprint For Strategy In The Age Of The Customer

Customer obsession is easy to talk about but hard to do. It requires remaking your company, systematically, to re-orient each element toward improved customer experience. It also requires embracing the technologies that make customer obsession real and actionable. We'll lay out a blueprint for how to do it, based on four key strategic imperatives:

  1. Transform the customer experience with a systematic, measurable approach.
  2. Accelerate your digital business future to deliver greater agility and customer value.
  3. Embrace the mobile mind shift to serve customers in their moments of need.
  4. Turn big data into business insights to continuously improve your efforts.
Four Market Imperatives In The Age Of The Customer

 

1. Transform The Customer Experience With A Systematic, Measurable Approach

While every company says that it's customer-focused, few act systematically on that impulse. In a global survey across all industries, seven out of 10 business leaders said thatcustomer experience is a critical or high priority. Even so, less than one-third of customer experience professionals indicate that their firms consistently take the impact on customer experience into consideration when making business decisions. Customer experience success requires discipline and relentless focus. Here's how to approach it:
 
  • Embrace disciplines to design, implement, and manage customer experience. For example, a systematic approach to improving and measuring customer experience helped Fidelity Investments save more than $24 million per year, even as it grew investments from key customers by several billion dollars. Successful companies improve in four phases: repair, elevate, optimize, and differentiate. At each phase, employees must adopt new, increasingly sophisticated customer experience management practices.
  • Address defects in the customer experience ecosystem. To find unique strengths, opportunities, and differentiators, you need a full view of your ecosystem, including competitors, partners, and regulatory constraints. Delta Air Lines boosted its Customer Experience Index in a heavily regulated industry by embracing the process and operational changes needed to reduce flight cancellations and to improve on-time performance, service recovery, and baggage handling. To start, you must map painful customer journeys, including the parts of the ecosystem you don't control. Then, create improvements in collaboration with all the stakeholders you identify, including customers.
  • Design experiences that exceed customer expectations. Change happens so fast now that quick iterations and rapid prototyping and testing are mandatory. One major US home appliance manufacturer that embraced these Agile methods grew 30% annually for the past six years and is now approaching $1 billion in revenue. These approaches demand design expertise that encompasses customer understanding and empathy; effective prototyping, storyboarding, and envisioning; and building creative digital experiences.
Growth And Customer Experience Improvement Top Business Leaders' Priorities

 

2. Accelerate Your Digital Business Future For Greater Agility And Customer Value

How can you keep up with empowered customers? Be more digital. Your customers, your channels, and your competitors are digital. The future of your business is digital. But you probably lack a clear digital business vision. Executives in eBusiness and marketing often bolt on digital channels and processes rather than retool their company for digital agility. By contrast, truly digital businesses continuously exploit digital technologies to both create new sources of value for customers and increase operational agility in service of customers. This approach is how Mercedes-Benz can use digital sensors to transform the driving experience; Rolls-Royce can use digital sensors in its jet engines to revamp its business model; and Procter & Gamble can test product packaging and shelf layouts in virtual stores before committing to costly manufacturing. Here's how you can be like them:
 
  • Master digital customer experience and digital operational excellence. CMOs and CIOs should work with eBusiness professionals to embrace web and mobile customer touchpoints. Re-envision your business not as a standalone entity but as part of an ecosystem of suppliers that customers assemble according to their needs and an ecosystem of collaborating businesses that share data and services. And infuse all your processes with digital efficiency so you can react more quickly to customer demands.
  • Start your journey toward embracing digital business techniques everywhere.Digital business should be every person's job, every team's task, and every division's modus operandi. The size of this overhaul of your business varies: Some firms, like Amazon, were born digital — they find embracing these digital principles far easier. If you're not this lucky, start with a focus on just one business unit or product line. Use digital to reposition it within the value ecosystem. Then, build on that success.
  • Become comfortable with disruption. Digital disruption is here, and your company could be the next to be disrupted by the likes of Google News, Hailo, or Zipcar. Don't just wait for disruption to come to your industry — learn to disrupt your own business. Big companies from Intermountain Healthcare to Target are already doing this. Their strategy: 1) Define a clear vision of what digital disruption promises and 2) seek a frank understanding of the obstacles your specific organization must overcome to embrace disruption.
Executives Don't Believe They Have A Clear Vision For Digital Transformation
 

3. Embrace The Mobile Mind Shift To Serve Customers In Their Moments Of Need

The most urgent place to apply digital thinking is through mobile devices. One billion smartphones have trained people, your customers, to turn to mobile first. Both consumers and business buyers have experienced a mobile mind shift: They expect that they can get what they want in their immediate context and moments of need.

The Mobile Mind Shift Is Spreading Rapidly 

 

Companies like Citibank (with mobile check deposit) and Starbucks (with mobile payment) have leveraged these mobile moments to reinforce customer loyalty. The new focus on mobile moments differs from PC-based web interactions, and it requires new thinking on how to interact with customers in their moments of need. To embrace it, develop new interactions with the four-step IDEA process:

  • Identify your customers' mobile moments and context. This starts with mapping the customer's journey using your systematic approach to customer experience. Use techniques like ethnographic research to determine moments where mobile can solve problems, reduce friction, or answer questions. For example, Johnson & Johnson uses its bedtime app to solve problems at the mobile moment of getting the baby to sleep, with lullabies and a sleep routine. Air conditioner vendor Trane streamlines the mobile selling moment by enabling its independent reps with a tablet app.
  • Design the mobile engagement. Design is about choosing the moments that matter most — not only the ones that customers value but also those that drive revenue or reduce costs. It's also about using context to deliver more value. For example, American Airlines knows it's your day of travel, knows what seats are available, and knows your frequent-flyer status — and uses this information to present the opportunity to upgrade your seat right from its app.
  • Engineer your platforms, processes, and people for mobile. The true costs of mobile spring from the challenges of updating corporate systems to live up to mobile demands. This is what's behind Hilton Worldwide's $550 million mobile makeover. You'll need to retool your platforms with atomized, responsive APIs; remake your processes with mobile in mind; and reform your design, business, and development talent into agile teams.
  • Analyze to optimize performance and improve interactions. Apps and mobile sites must evolve — and rapidly. That's why it's key to build analytics into every mobile project. Mobile apps and sites spin off lots of performance data, but you'll also want to instrument them to make it easy to measure their impact on business metrics (like room nights for a hotel chain). Because mobile engagement happens so close to the customer, you'll also want to mine this data for new customer insights.
An Overview Of The Steps In The IDEA Cycle

 

4. Turn Big Data Into Business Insights To Continuously Improve Your Efforts

Your understanding of your customers' context will make, or break, your ability to succeed in a customer's moment of need. Thankfully, your customers now create and leave behind digital breadcrumbs through their activity across all their touchpoints, such as websites, mobile apps, store visits, and phone calls. Firms like Lowe's, Macy's, and Walgreens use this data to respond based on context and develop deeper insights. American Express used big data to achieve an eightfold improvement in identifying at-risk customers. Here's what you can do to infuse insights from data into your business:

  • Reset what big data means to you. What's so big about big data? It's the opportunities you uncover when you put increasingly novel sources and types of data to use. Large, diverse, and messy forms of data can create new sources of customer value and increase operational agility in service of your customers. Big data helped Clorox anticipate demand based on social media and achieve record sales of its cleaning products. To exploit big data, CMOs, eBusiness leaders, and CIOs must collaborate to develop the culture, competencies, and capabilities required to close the gap between the data available and your ability to turn that data into business insight.
  • Use data to fuel a real-time contextual marketing engine. Your edge will come from self-sustaining cycles of real-time, two-way, insight-driven interactions with individual customers. Brands that have seized on this potential — such as McCormick & Company, Mini USA, and Nike — are assembling proprietary digital platforms that Forrester calls contextual marketing engines. They create sticky, highly engaging environments for customer interaction and generate unique, proprietary data and insights. The results improve customer engagement, boost revenue, and enhance customer experiences.
  • Accelerate innovation by using big data to anticipate customer needs. It's time to change how, and especially when, you apply and perform analytics. Go beyond static segmentation; embed analytics in your business. Emerging methods like location analytics and device usage analysis can generate the real-time contextual insight you need to deliver engaging, contextual experiences.

A Business Technology Agenda Will Sustain New Competitive Advantage

It's a tall order, remaking your business for the imperatives of customer experiencedigital businessmobile engagement, and big data insights. That's why it will take the combined efforts of your most senior leaders — from the CIO to the CMO. Most likely, your technology is not up to the task of supporting these market imperatives. If you're like most firms, you've concentrated your technology management efforts on traditional IT — supporting and transforming internal operations. Successful companies will refocus their technology efforts on business technology (BT) — technology, systems, and processes to win, serve, and retain customers. Your BT agenda will lead to new competitive advantage if you:

  • Center on technologies that support the customer life cycle. The customer life cycle, and the systematic approach to transforming the customer experience, will push you to prioritize new and different technologies. You'll prioritize life-cycle solutions and engagement platform technologies to deliver seamless and compelling customer experiences.
  • Place a premium on software skills. Software powers nearly all the touchpoints your customers use to engage with your brand. Software is also essential to empowering your employees (in sales and customer service, for example) to address your customer's moment of need. Software is now a core asset to deliver elements of your customer-obsessed brand: trusted, remarkable, unmistakable, and essential. CIOs and their teams must rethink software's role, striving to build a software competency that establishes and maintains a unique advantage.
  • Embrace modern approaches to application and solution delivery. Your BT agenda must be delivered at a new, faster pace to keep up with rapidly changing business and market dynamics. It must focus on iterative delivery and continuous improvement to deliver impact and business value in weeks, not months. Modern delivery approaches will be the de facto expectation when delivering customer-obsessed solutions.
  • Force difficult prioritization and organization conversations. Companies like Delta Air Lines and Wal-Mart jumpstarted their competitive advantage by acquiring software companies. Firms like FedEx and The Washington Post got executive support and had the scale to start on their own. Comcast and UBS turned to software engineering firms for help. What you do will be based on an assessment of what your firm can do with the finite capital and scarce qualified resources it has available.
  • Demand changes to your partner ecosystem. Your BT agenda will redefine what's strategic to your organization and reshape the partner ecosystem you use. CMOs, eBusiness leaders, and CIOs must prioritize the agencies, management consultancies, and systems integrators that help advance your market imperative efforts. You may not replace existing relationships, but you will have an expanded partner ecosystem to both navigate and manage.
Top Technologies To Support The Customer Life Cycle

  

 

What It Means For CIOs
IT Groups Will Wane, And Their Favored Vendors Will Be Replaced

The age of the customer spells the end of power for the traditional CIO. Those that make the BT transition will become valued partners in winning, serving, and retaining customers. But most won't make the transition.

  • The BT agenda will shrink technology departments. In many, half the staff — those with skills focused on maintaining systems — will lose their jobs. Smart CIOs will hire based on creativity and Agile skills with customer-facing technology. This structural change and the unemployment it creates could be the biggest labor retraining challenge of the 2020s.
  • Big tech vendors will lose power to data collectives. The IBMs, Microsofts, and Oracles of the world gain power from software. But power in the age of the customer comes not just from software, but from data. Already, companies like The Coca-Cola Company in consumer packaged goods, FICO in financial services, and UPS in shipping are building data collectives that will provide complete full-service, cloud-enabled shared data warehouses by industry. The vendors of the future will serve data the way that today's vendors serve software.
  • Systems integrators will find themselves competing with cloud players. The cloud is central to the agility required for digital business transformation, mobile engagement, and big data analytics. Cloud leaders like Amazon and Google will build out their software, eventually offering custom-built services similar to the way today's systems integrators build software solutions. The IBMs and KPMGs of the world will find Amazon their toughest competitor.
  • Vendors will merge based on where they live in the customer journey. Mergers in the tech world are commonplace. But in the age of the customer , vendors won't combine based on what department they sell into (marketing versus IT). Instead, they'll attempt to dominate elements of the  customer life cycle. We'll see packaged app suites for discovery, for service, and for closing the sale..

What It Means For CMOs

CMOs Will Shift From Customer Acquisition To Customer Experience

Traditional marketing is out of step with the age of the customer. Instead, CMOs will learn to focus on the contextual marketing that matters most when empowered customers can switch at a moment's notice.

  • The Obama political machinery will become the template for effective marketing. The Obama presidential victory in 2012 came from intelligence about voters, focused in key places on the day that it mattered. In marketing, now every day is decision day. You'll see the shift first in the entertainment industry, which will take a portion of the millions it spends promoting movies and divert it to personalized, contextualized, mobile persuasion. These techniques will spread to any company that needs to catalyze decisions — from car companies to telecom vendors. More and more of the marketing budget will go to buying the data to fuel these algorithms..
  • Companies will reorganize around customer journeys. Customer experience standout USAA already organizes its company around the customer journey. This trend will catch on in highly competitive industries like consumer packaged goods and travel. Instead of product lines, companies will have departments that focus on getting real-time information to buyers, easing the closing process, and turning service into loyalty. Heavy-handed efforts like Comcast's recently revealed crude upselling tactics will be replaced with agile, digitally enhanced, just-in-time offers that buyers will welcome.
  • Get ready for the race to the middle. Forrester's Customer Experience Index reveals that while breakthrough customer experience is still rare, truly poor customer experiences are becoming rarer. In industries from travel to telecom, the lowest performers have realized that there's money to be made going from bad to middling. If you are not above the midpoint in your industry, you'll be left in the dust by this movement.
  • Google will be your new key partner. Google's Nest Labs acquisition is just the beginning. Technology companies that control the intelligent hardware — set-top boxes, home appliances, mobile phones — will know the most about their customers. If your products are intelligent, too, you'll find this to be an advantage. If not, you'll need to come begging to partner with companies that have these intimate customer connections.

 Link: https://solutions.forrester.com

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The digital effect on BPM systems

by System Administrator - Friday, 26 June 2015, 7:14 PM
 

The digital effect on BPM systems

Business processes have changed radically in the past decade, with rapid  developments in cloud, social networking, mobile and analytics driving today's businesses to transform into digital companies. This requires just as radical a transformation in these ompanies' IT systems, a reality reflected in today's modernized breed of business process management (BPM) systems and tools.

In this SearchCIO handbook, CIO expert Harvey Koeppel explains how the "whole new deal" of BPM really lies in the shift from traditional to digital processes itself, and while BPM technologies have been incrementally improved to adapt to this shift, the BPM ifecycle itself remains relatively unchanged. In our second story, CTO Niel Nickolaisen warns about the temptation of defaulting to BPM to deal with complex workflows – at least not until you simply standardize your processes and systems first. And in our last piece, xecutive Editor Linda Tucci explores how a new generation of BPM systems has arisen to help companies make the transition into digital and tailor their applications to the customer experience.

Table Of Contents

  • BPM in the digital age: A whole new game?
  • How not to use BPM systems
  • Going digital with BPM

Please read the attached guide.

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The Hard Disk is Dead: Autopsy

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 11 November 2015, 6:35 PM
 

The Hard Disk is Dead: Autopsy

by Violin Memory

The hard disk is dead. Or at least it should be.

Cause of death? The performance demands of the modern data center. Enterprise storage expectations and needs have changed, but the capabilities of HDDs and even solid state disks (SSDs) have not. So now it's time for a new solution. Storage Switzerland performed a technology autopsy to find out where the hard disk failed and the benefits of switching to a low latency and high performance all flash array instead.

Please read the attached whitepaper.

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The PBX Dilemma: Hosted or Premises-Based?

by System Administrator - Thursday, 3 September 2015, 7:09 PM
 

Infographic: The PBX Dilemma: Hosted or Premises-Based?

by XO Communications

This infographic weighs the pros and cons of hosted and premises-based PBX solutions and shows you why more businesses of all sizes are choosing to go hosted.

Please read the attached infographic file.

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The state of cybersecurity

by System Administrator - Monday, 15 February 2016, 6:03 PM
 

The state of cybersecurity

by Siobhan MacDermottPrincipal of Risk and Cybersecurity at Ernst & Young

“[Though] many people in DC know little about Internet security and privacy…[they] are the ones trying to reform it.” -Siobhan MacDermott

When Siobhan MacDermott began working in the field of cybersecurity in the 1990s, companies across the board could not grasp why they needed Internet security software. It seemed foolish and unreasonable. Jump forward to 2016, and the need is clear. It’s projected there will be one million unfilled cybersecurity related jobs in 2020, if we continue at the current rate of education for this field.

MacDermott is one of the foremost experts on the future cybersecurity and privacy and is principal of risk and cybersecurity at Ernst & Young where she coaches Fortune 100 companies, NGOs, and the government on best practices and strategies for Internet security. She is also the vice chair at the Fund for Peace.

In her talk, MacDermott explored pressing cybersecurity issues such as how to balance surveillance and privacy—a subject gaining global attention, and also one that has been front-and-center in recent US presidential debates.

MacDermott highlighted how, at the diplomatic level, the exchange and security of information is under mass scrutiny, and pointed to additional players, such as “hacktivist” groups like Anonymous, and campaign-aligned corporations.

5 facts about the state of cybersecurity for the holiday season

By Chelsey Levingston | Staff Writer

Holiday shoppers aren’t necessarily more vulnerable than consumers during the rest of the year to having their personal information breached, but during the flurry of end-of-year gift buying, shoppers are reminded to stay aware about fraud, said the chief executive officer of the nonprofit Identity Theft Resource Center.

Identity theft and breaches exposing personal and financial information remain at high levels, said Eva Velasquez, CEO of California-based Identity Theft Resource Center, which tracks reported data breaches and offers free assistance to identity theft victims.

And each new data point collected about you — such as downloading a mobile retail application on a cell phone or signing up for text and email loyalty discount programs — creates a new risk of it ending up in the wrong hands, Velasquez said.

“Is it worth it to you to have all that data collected about you… to get those discounts?” she said.

Key trends in data security this year include changing motivations behind cyber attacks and what defines one’s identity profile, she said. Hackers and other groups might try to obtain personal records to change behavior they don’t like, such as targeting the affairs website Ashley Madison, revealing online profiles of users. Additionally, information collected about purchases, how often you shop and where you travel can give fraudsters clues about your identity, Velasquez said.

Sharing email and other information might be worth the savings promised from retailers, she said. Her advice this season is this: be aware and be prepared with a plan for how to respond in case your information is used to make a fraudulent charge or loan application.

“The potential risk of exposure for your information remains high,” Velasquez said. “All of the data we’re creating about ourselves creates extra vulnerabilities.”

Thursday kicks off one of the biggest shopping weekends of the year. Here are five facts about the state of cyber security to keep in mind:

1. Number of breaches could plateau. According to the latest figures from Identity Theft Resource Center, 669 data breaches have occurred as of Nov. 18 this year in the United States, exposing nearly 182 million records.

The counseling center compiles media reports and records obtained from federal sources and state attorneys general to come up with the count. Many incidents affect an unknown number of records. It’s likely the actual number of breaches is greater due to delayed reporting or businesses unaware their systems are compromised, said Velasquez.

But the number of known breaches are tracking about 4 percent lower than last year’s record pace, according to the nonprofit.

The surge in data security failures leading to the record level of breaches wasn’t sustainable, likely leading to a slowdown in the rate of reported new breaches, said Daimon Geopfert, the national leader of security and privacy consulting for accounting firm RSM.

“The sheer number of breaches isn’t going down. Because of the market saturation, it can’t increase any faster,” Geopfert said.

Mega breaches found at Target Corp., T-Mobile and Anthem Inc. are the outliers, he said.

“Small and medium size businesses have been the primary target and will continue to be so,” he said. “The main issue for a lot of the smaller organizations is they’re less capable of knowing when they’ve been breached.”

2. Threats are going mobile too. Cyber threats are following higher web traffic on cell phones to mobile platforms too, said Chris Hart, operational risk director for Cincinnati-based First Financial Bancorp.

Online banking is still the most preferred banking method for U.S. adults (32 percent), but mobile banking is now preferred by 12 percent of consumers, according to a recent American Bankers Association survey cited by Hart. Mobile banking preferences have grown 3 percent over the last five years, according to Hart’s information.

Malware hasn’t become very common yet for the average mobile user, but mobile is becoming a more active space for junk applications and unwanted software programs that can infect devices, according to information provided by Hart.

“It used to be the bad guys would just focus on the laptop computers because that’s where most of the population did their online banking, for example,” Hart said. “You’re seeing a lot more of what you call the mega breaches… but I think the targets of where those exploits are occurring… are moving more and more towards the mobile devices.”

Apple Pay allows transactions to be verified using the phone’s fingerprint scanner, adding an authentication factor to the payment process, Hart added. Moreover, Apple Pay and Android Pay secure payment card credentials in cloud storage or on the device, which makes it difficult for the physical cards to be compromised and counterfeited, he said.

However, not all merchants are able to accept these payment methods due to the equipment required to support their use, he said.

Whether using plastic cards or virtual ones, consumers are protected from all unauthorized activity charged to their accounts as long as notice is provided to their financial institution, in writing, within 60 days after the bill with the disputed charge was sent, Hart said.

3. Liability has changed. New rules went in effect Oct. 1 for when banks or merchants are held liable for fraudulent charges, said Al Druso, ATM and cards director for First Financial.

Previously, if a card was counterfeit, the retailer where the fake card was used had no liability. Now, if the counterfeit debit or credit card contains a new electronic chip and the fake card is used at a merchant that doesn’t have the equipment to process the chip, the merchant takes the loss, Druso said.

But if a fake chip card is presented at a merchant that has a chip reader, the bank still takes the loss, he said.

A magnetic stripe swiped by users of traditional cards contains the card number, name, expiration date, service code and security value. Data thieves can use fake card readers and skimmers to steal that information. While not foolproof, a chip card is believe to be safer because the chip’s security value changes each transaction, so even if it’s stolen, the value will be a different number next time, he said.

“We’re seeing out of all of our fraud at least 50 percent or more is magnetic stripe, counterfeit fraud, not lost or stolen,” Druso said. “I think by the end of next year, if not earlier, all debit cards and credit cards will be chip cards.”

4. Not all breaches are equal. Fraudulent charges can cause financial harm. But a stolen identity can hurt you for life, Geopfert of RSM said. Personally identifying information such as Social Security numbers, driver’s license numbers and medical records is more valuable to thieves who can sell the information for a higher price. It can be used to apply for credit and loans in your name, Geopfert said.

Automatic fraud detection systems might catch a bad attempt to charge an account or customers will notice transactions they didn’t make. One of the first signs of identity theft is finding credit applications or checks on a credit report, he said.

“Be very, very careful about what entities you give your information to,” he said.

Various types of data breaches include breaking into computer systems to steal consumer names, payment card numbers, medical records and other information, as well as devices infected by malware due to phishing emails and other scams, Hart, of First Financial, has previously said.

5. Small businesses are “low-hanging fruit.” Businesses without a plan to respond to a data breach are like drivers without car insurance, said attorney Jamie Ramsey, chair of the law firm Calfee, Halter & Griswold LLP’s privacy and data security practice group.

“It’s just a cost of doing business now,” Ramsey said.

Basic things companies can do to help keep their and customer information safe is employee training, encouraging a privacy culture, reviewing vendor agreements and developing a plan for how to respond if something happens, Ramsey said.

Training not to click on fishy websites, locking computers and writing strong passwords, for example, should be offered for new hires as well as existing employees.

Just like many companies have a culture of safety on the job to prevent falls and life-threatening hazards, privacy should also be a top priority including making employees comfortable reporting problems, he said.

Also, he said it’s necessary to review all contracts with vendors to determine who’s responsible for what if a breach happens, such as a network provider agreement, he said.

“The incident response plan is the most important document you could have in place,” Ramsey said, and should spell out who to call if a breach happens, who the spokesperson is, and whether a forensics investigation will be conducted in-house or outsourced, he said.


HOLIDAY SHOPPING TIPS

The Ohio Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section since January has received more than 24,600 complaints involving a variety of issues. Top problem areas include billing, misrepresentation, failure to deliver, poor service or shoddy work, and refund problems, according to the state government office.

Suspect an unfair business practice? Visit www.OhioAttorneyGeneral.gov or call 800-282-0515.

The Ohio Attorney General offers the following advice to consumers shopping this holiday season:

• Check exclusions and limitations of an offer, which must be clearly disclosed in advertisements including online;

• Find out if rain checks apply. If a seller advertises a product at a certain price but sells out of that product by the time you respond to the ad, you may have the right to a rain check. However, sellers are not required to provide rain checks if they clearly disclose the number of goods available at that price or if they clearly state that no rain checks will be given;

• Understand return policies before buying. In Ohio, sellers can choose to set their own return policies including “no returns,” but they should clearly tell you what their policy is before you complete the transaction;

• Look out for misrepresentations. Sellers may not misrepresent important characteristics of a product or use “bait-and-switch” tactics to lure you in with one advertised product only to encourage buying more expensive items;

• Know that “free” must really mean free. Sellers may not advertise goods or services as “free” when the cost is passed on to the consumer. For example, if a seller is advertising a buy-one-get-one-free sale, the seller can’t raise the base price of the first item in order to offset the cost of the “free” item;

• Check delivery dates. Generally when ordering a product or service, the seller has eight weeks to deliver the product or to offer a refund or substitution;

• Keep receipts. Maintaining a complete record of a sale will help handle problems that may arise. Keep copies of receipts, sales agreements, advertisements, photos of products, or other documentation of a sale until the transaction and billing process are complete;

• Monitor your accounts. Regularly check credit card and bank accounts for unauthorized charges or unexpected activity. If problems are found, immediately notify your credit card provider or bank; and

• Watch for scams. Con artists operate year-round. If you receive a message saying you’ve won the lottery, the IRS is coming to arrest you, or a family member is out of the country and in need of money immediately, it’s likely a scam.

Link: http://www.daytondailynews.com

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Threat Reduction

by System Administrator - Tuesday, 10 November 2015, 7:40 PM
 

Threat Reduction: How agencies are addressing the attack surface in an era of rising cyber incidents

by F5

Federal agencies face numerous threats from multiple points across their enterprise. Within this ever-growing threat surface, they have to make sure that their employees and users can access and use data and applications so they can do their work seamlessly and without incident.

FierceGovernmentIT presents the challenges, issues, perspectives and advancements for federal agencies and other public-sector organizations in managing the threat surface.
 

Download this eBook to learn:

  • How agencies view the threat surface as they continue to drive their missions.
  • What steps agencies are taking to manage the threat surface, including addressing access and new technologies and practices and implementing new tools.
  • The future of the threat surface, how the Internet of Things is changing the game and what the government must do to manage it.
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Tips to create flexible but clear manuals

by System Administrator - Tuesday, 29 August 2017, 9:53 PM
 

Good application deployment manuals are thorough but usable. Follow these tips to create flexible but clear manuals that contribute to release management best practices.

Ways to make the application deployment process clear and flexible

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Top 10 Considerations when Selecting a Secure Text Messaging Solution

by System Administrator - Monday, 13 July 2015, 5:25 PM
 

Top 10 Considerations when Selecting a Secure Text Messaging Solution

Evaluating Secure Text Messaging solutions can cause anyone’s eyes to glaze over in dreaded anticipation. But the process doesn’t have to be laborious, overwhelming, or fraught with perils when you know the right questions to ask.

Please read the attached whitepaper.

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Top 10 Database Security Threats

by System Administrator - Monday, 12 October 2015, 9:34 PM
 

Top 10 Database Security Threats

by  Imperva

Practical applications for Big Data have become widespread, and Big Data has now become the new "prize" for hackers. Worse, widespread lack of Big Data security expertise spells disaster. These threats are real. This whitepaper explains common injection points that provide an avenue for attackers to maliciously access database and Big Data components.

Please read the attached whitepaper.

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Top 10 ways to have your project end up in court

by System Administrator - Thursday, 13 August 2015, 2:03 PM
 

Top 10 ways to have your project end up in court

By David Taber

David Letterman may be off the air, but his Top 10 List format remains in the comedic canon. In his honor, here’s David Taber-man’s Top 10 list of these worst practices for agile projects.

As someone who’s sometimes called to be an expert witness, I’ve had to testify in arbitrations and court proceedings about the best practices in agile project management. Of course, when things devolve to the point of legal action, there haven’t been a lot of “best practices” in play by either side. Suffice it to say I’ve seen more than a few blunders by clients.

Here are the ones that show up over and over again:

10. Give the consultant ambiguous requirements, then start using rubber yardsticks*

Nothing’s more comforting to the client than the idea that they'll get exactly what they want, even if they never put sufficient energy into specifying exactly what that is. This goes double for the high-risk area of custom software development. So state your requirements vaguely, to make sure that anything you dream up later can be construed as being within the bounds of your original wording. This tactic works best when you don't really understand the technology, but you do know you need the deliverable to be infinitely detailed yet easy enough for your grandmother to use without training. This tactic is even more effective when you start having detailed conversations about requirements during acceptance testing, when there are no development funds left.

[Related: Top 10 project management certifications]

[*What’s a rubber yardstick? Instead of being like a regular yardstick that is a straight line of fixed length, the rubber yardstick stretches and shrinks and even bends and twists to connect dots that aren’t even on the same plane.]

9. Don't put decisions in writing or email

Writing things down merely ties you down, and that just limits your flexibility in the future (see #10). Much better to give verbal feedback in wide-ranging meetings that never really come to a conclusion. During these meetings, make sure that many attendees are texting or responding to fire-drills unrelated to your project, so they lose focus and have no recollection of what was said. When it comes to signing off requirements, monthly reviews or acceptance testing – just ignore this bean-counting detail!

8. Under-staff your team

You're paying good money for the consultant to do their job, so there's no point in over-investing in your own team members. Put in no-loads and people who don't care, so that the people who actually know what they’re doing can stick to their regular tasks. Once you have your drones in place, make sure to undercut their authority by questioning every decision. No point in motivating anybody – you're already paying them more than they deserve!

7. Blow off approval cycles, wireframe reviews and validation testing

You've got to focus on the big picture of making your business more profitable, so you don’t have time to get into the niggling details of this software project. Besides, business processes and policy decisions are boring and can be politically charged. So when some pesky business analyst asks you to validate the semantic interpretation of a business rule, just leave that mail in your inbox. It'll keep. Later, when it comes to testing and reviews, just send a flunkie with no decision-making authority to check things out.

6. Blatantly intimidate your team

Review meetings should be an expression of your personal power, prestige and authority. Change your mind endlessly and capriciously about details. Change the subject when substantive issues are brought up. Discuss how much your new shoes cost. Punish any questioner. Trust no one (not even your own team members), and make sure that trust never gets a chance to build within the team. Make sure team members know to hide bad news. Use blame as a weapon.

5. Focus on big-bang, slash cut projects with lots of dependencies

Crash programs are the way to get big things done in a hurry. Incrementalism is for wimps and weenies without the imagination to see the big picture. Since complex projects probably involve several vendors, make sure that nothing can progress without your direction and approval. Do not delegate – or if you do, don't empower the delegate to do anything. You wouldn't want to lose control!

4. Switch deadlines and priorities frequently

If the generals are right in saying that all your plans go out the window as soon as the first shot is fired, there's no point in planning realistically in the first place. Make sure to have deadlines for things with lots of dependencies, and then move those deadlines three or four times during the project. This’ll ensure that the project will involve inordinate waste and overhead – but hey, that’s the consultant’s problem, not yours.

[Related: Agile project management lessons learned from Texas Hold'em]

3. Have no contingency plan and no tolerance for budget shifts

It's pedal to the metal – nobody has time for insurance policies. You can't afford to run two systems in parallel, validate live transactions or reconcile variances before full production use. Make sure you dedicate 100 percent of your budgetary authority to the vendors, so there's no way to reallocate funds...let alone have a buffer to handle the unexpected. This works even better when your company enforces a use-it-or-lose-it financial regime.

2. Squeeze the vendor as early in the project as you can

Get your money’s worth. It's never too early to start squeezing your vendors to get the most out of them. Their negative profit margin is not your problem. Show 'em who's really boss. As the project nears its end-game, start modifying the production system yourself, and begin phase-2 work before phase-1 work has been signed off. Configuration control is for weenies.

And the #1 way to make sure your project ends up in court…

1. Don't monitor your own budget and pay little attention at status reviews

Ignore invoices and progress-against-goals reports. Make sure the integrator doesn't know you are not paying attention. Don’t ask questions at project review meetings. Delete emails that bore you. The vendor is there to deliver, so the details and consequences of project management are not your problem. As the project nears its deadline, insist on extra consultant personnel on site without giving any written authorization for extra charges.

Before I say anything more, I have to make it really clear that I’m not an attorney, and none of this is to be construed or used as legal advice. (Yes, my lawyer made me write that.) So get counsel from counsel about the best ways to remedy or prevent the issues above.

As I said at the start, projects that are deeply troubled have problems rooted in the behavior of both the client and the consultant. Next time, I’ll have a Top 10 list for consultants to make sure they end up in court, too.

Link: http://www.cio.com

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Top Development Terms to Know

by System Administrator - Friday, 7 August 2015, 5:54 PM
 

Top Development Terms to Know

Use this quick guide to bone up on your knowledge of the 15 most popular development terms right now.

Please read the attached whitepaper.

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Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)

by System Administrator - Tuesday, 16 June 2015, 9:00 PM
 

Two-Factor Authentication (2FA)

 

Posted by Margaret Rouse

Two-factor authentication is a security process in which the user provides two means of identification, one of which is typically a physical token, such as a card, and the other of which is typically something memorized, such as a security code.

Two-factor authentication is a security process in which the user provides two means of identification from separate categories of credentials; one is typically a physical token, such as a card, and the other is typically something memorized, such as a security code.

In this context, the two factors involved are sometimes spoken of as something you have and something you know. A common example of two-factor authentication is a bank card: the card itself is the physical item and the personal identification number (PIN) is the data that goes with it. Including those two elements makes it more difficult for someone to access the user’s bank account because they would have to have the physical item in their possession and also know the PIN.

According to proponents, two-factor authentication can drastically reduce the incidence of online identity theft, phishing expeditions, and other online fraud, because stealing the victim's password is not enough to give a thief access to their information.

What are authentication factors?

An authentication factor is an independent category of credential used for identity verification. The three most common categories are often described as something you know (the knowledge factor), something you have (the possession factor) and something you are (the inherence factor). For systems with more demanding requirements for security, location and time are sometimes added as fourth and fifth factors.

Single-factor authentication (SFA) is based on only one category of identifying credential. The most common SFA method is the familiar user name and password combination (something you know). The security of SFA relies to some extent upon the diligence of users. Best practices for SFA include selecting strong passwords and refraining from automatic or social logins.

For any system or network that contains sensitive data, it's advisable to add additional authentication factors. Multifactor authentication (MFA) involves two or more independent credentials for more secure transactions.

Single-factor authentication (SFA) vs. two-factor authentication (2FA)

Although ID and password are two items, because they belong to the same authentication factor (knowledge), they are single factor authentication (SFA). It is really because of their low cost, ease of implementation and familiarity that passwords that have remained the most common form of SFA. As far as SFA solutions go, ID and password are not the most secure. Multiple challenge-response questions can provide more security, depending on how they are implemented, and standalone biometric verification methods of many kinds can also provide more secure single-factor authentication.

One problem with password-based authentication is that it requires knowledge and diligence to create and remember strong passwords. Passwords also require protection from many inside threats like carelessly discarded password sticky notes and old hard drives and social engineering exploits. Passwords are also prey to external threats such as hackers using brute force, dictionary or rainbow table attacks. Given enough time and resources, an attacker can usually breach password-based security systems. Two-factor authentication is designed to provide additional security.

2FA products

  • There are a huge number of devices and solutions for 2FA, from tokens to RFID cards to smartphone apps.
  • Offerings from some well-known companies:
  • RSA SecureID is still very common (although its SecurID was hacked in 2011).
  • Microsoft Phonefactor offers 2FA for a reasonable cost and is free to small organizations of 25 members or less.
  • Dell Defender is a multifactor authentication suite that offers biometrics and various token methods for 2FA and higher.
  • Google Authenticator is a 2FA app that works with any supporting site or service.
  • Apple’siOS, iTunes store and cloud services all support 2FA to protect user accounts and content.

2FA for mobile authentication

Apples iOS, Google Android and Blackberry OS 10 all have apps supporting 2FA and other multifactor authentication. Some have screens capable of recognizing fingerprints; a built-in camera can be used for facial recognition or iris scanning and the microphone can be used in voice recognition. Many smartphones have GPS to verify location as an additional factor. Voice or SMS may also be used as a channel for out-of-band authentication. There are also apps that provide one time password tokens, allowing the phone itself to serve as the physical device to satisfy the possession factor.

Google Authenticator is a two-factor authentication app. To access websites or web-based services, the user types in his username and password and then enters a one-time passcode (OTP) that was delivered to his device in response to the login. The six-digit one time password changes once every 30-60 seconds and serves again to prove possession as an authentication factor.

Smartphones offer a variety of possibilities for 2FA, allowing companies to use what works best for them.

Is two-factor authentication secure?

Opponents argue (among other things) that, should a thief gain access to your computer, he can boot up in safe mode, bypass the physical authentication processes, scan your system for all passwords and enter the data manually, thus -- at least in this situation -- making two-factor authentication no more secure than the use of a password alone.

Higher levels of authentication for more secure communications

Some security procedures now require three-factor authentication (3FA), which typically involves possession of a physical token and a password used in conjunction with biometric data, such as fingerscanning or a voiceprint.

An attacker may occasionally break an authentication factor in the physical world. A persistent search of the target premises, for example, might yield an employee card or an ID and password in an organization’s trash or carelessly discarded storage containing password databases. If additional factors are required for authentication, however, the attacker would face at least one more obstacle.

The majority of attacks come from remote internet connections. 2FA can make distance attacks much less of a threat because accessing passwords is not sufficient for access and it is unlikely that the attacker would also possess the physical device associated with the user account. Each additional authentication factor makes a system more secure. Because the factors are independent, compromise of one should not lead to the fall of others.

Link: http://searchsecurity.techtarget.com/

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Type 2 hypervisor (hosted hypervisor)

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 10 December 2014, 7:57 PM
 

Type 2 hypervisor (hosted hypervisor)

 

Posted by Margaret Rouse

A Type 2 hypervisor, also known as a hosted hypervisor, is a virtual machine manager that installs on top of a host's operating system (OS). 

A Type 2 Hypervisor is a virtualization layer that is installed above a host operating system (OS), such as Windows Server, Linux, or a custom OS installation.  The host operating system has direct access to the server's hardware and is responsible for managing basic OS services.  The Type 2 Hypervisor creates virtual machine environments and coordinates calls for CPU, memory, disk, network, and other resources through the host OS.

A Type 1 Hypervisor, by contrast, is installed directly on physical host server hardware.  It does not require the presence of a full host OS and has direct access to the underlying physical hardware.  Regardless of the implementation, virtual machines (VMs) and their guest OS's are typically unaware of which type of Hypervisor is implemented, as they interact only with the hypervisor itself.

From an implementation standpoint, there are potential benefits and drawbacks of both types of Hypervisors.  For example, the requirement of a full host OS can be seen as an advantage in some areas (including hardware and driver compatibility, configuration flexibility, and reliance on familiar management tools), or as a potential liability (based on potential security issues exposed by the host OS, possible performance overhead, and management burdens for configuring and maintaining the host OS).  It is also important to note that current virtualization platforms can exhibit characteristics of both Type 1 and Type 2 Hypervisors and that vendors have provided features that can mitigate potential issues in both approaches.

Continue Reading About Type 2 hypervisor (hosted hypervisor)

Glossary

'Type 2 hypervisor (hosted hypervisor)' is part of the Virtualization Glossary

U

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U (BUSINESS)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 2 May 2013, 9:53 PM
 
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U (DATA CENTER)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 11 July 2013, 5:26 PM
 
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U (ICT/TIC)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 2 May 2013, 8:48 PM
 
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U (MARKETING)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 2 May 2013, 10:35 PM
 

 

U

UbicuidadUMTSUnica visitaUploadURLURL PersonalizadaUsabilidadUSENETUseneteroUsernameUTCUtilidad.

 

=> Ubicuidad: Característica de un sitio web consistente en estar disponible en Internet y poder ser localizado y visto su contenido. Consta de dos partes, la capacidad de poder ser encontrado o "buscabilidad" y el poder ser visto o "visibilidad".

=> UMTS: Acrónimo de las palabras inglesas: Universal Mobile Telecommunications System. Es decir, sistema universal de telecomunicaciones móviles. Propuesta europea para lograr un estándar internacional en la tercera generación de los sistemas de telefonía móvil. Más información en:http://www.umts-forum.org/servlet/dycon/ztumts/umts/Live/en/umts/Home.

=> Unica visita: Dirección IP correspondiente a un usuario que entra a un sitio web en un día (u otro periodo de tiempo especificado). Los visitantes únicos constituyen la audiencia de un sittio web en un plazo de tiempo dado.

=> Upload: Ascenso de archivos, transferencia de ficheros entre el ordenador donde se confecciona una página web hasta el ftp del servidor donde se hospeda en Internet.

=> URL: Acrónimo de las palabras inglesas: Uniform Resources Locator que, en español, significan: "localizador uniforme de recursos". Es la dirección en Intenet. Por ejemplo, en la siguiente dirección: "http://www.domain.com/dir/subdir/file.html" , el conjunto sería la URL. "http", indica el nombre del protocolo usado. "www" el nombre del servidor, "dir" es un directorio, "subdir" un subdirectorio y "file" el nombre de un archivo.

=> URL Personalizada: URL personalizada: Dirección en una Red Social que apunta directamente al perfil de un usuario en la misma. Por ejemplo: “http//www.facebook.com/mar.monsoriu”. Sirve para mejorar la localización del perfi por medio de buscadores como Google y también dentro de una Red Social para ser encontrado con mayor facilidad por parte de amigos, contactos profesionales y seguidores en caso de tenerlos. En inglés: Vanity urls.

=> Usabilidad: Característica resultante de la suma de la utilidad, facilidad de uso y satisfacción percibidas por parte de los usuarios que visitan un sitio web. El análisis de la misma, forma parte de una de las áreas que se estudian en una Auditoría Web.

=> USENET: Organización que arbitró, en 1979, la creación de los grupos de noticias, más conocidos por los internautas veteranos como news por influencia de la acepción en inglés: "newsgroups" El nombre de Usenet le viene de: "USEr NETwork", o Red de Usuario y se inició entre dos Universidades de Carolina del Norte, en Estados Unidos. Más información en: http://usenet-addresses.mit.edu/.

=> Usenetero: Internauta que participa activamente en los grupos de noticias tanto para ayudar a otros usuarios respondiendo a sus preguntas, como para encontrar información o pedir ayuda ante las dudas que le vayan surgiendo en su quehacer personal o profesional. En la práctica es lo contrario a un lurker.

=> Username: En español, "nombre de usuario". Es decir, el nombre por el que un usuario decide identificarse ante cualquier programa, web, base de datos, cuenta de FTP o lo que sea en Internet. Por ejemplo, una internauta llamada Luzdivina Méndez, como username perfectamente podría tener algo así como: "lmendez".

=> UTC: Siglas de las palabras inglesas: Universal Time Coordinated. En español: "hora universal coordinada". Denominación de la hora de Greenwich.

=> Utilidad: Función concreta de tipo informático que supone un atractivo para la clientela online. Los portales web son un acopio de utilidades. No es lo mismo que servicio. Un servicio, o más técnicamente un "servicio de valor añadido" sería, por ejemplo, el envío de un Ezine a nuestro público objetivo bajo las condiciones que estimemos más oportuno. Una utilidad es permitir que, vía web, los usuarios puede acceder a una red de IRC.

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U (OPEN SOURCE)

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 10 July 2013, 7:44 PM
 
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U (PMI)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 9 May 2013, 2:53 AM
 

--------------------------------------------------

  • Usabilidad: Es la medida en que un elemento tiene la capacidad de ser utilizado, o es conveniente y práctico de usar.
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U (PROGRAMMING)

by System Administrator - Thursday, 11 July 2013, 6:26 PM
 
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U (STORAGE)

by System Administrator - Friday, 31 May 2013, 11:18 PM
 
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U (WEB SERVICES)

by System Administrator - Saturday, 1 June 2013, 3:23 PM
 
  • UDDI (Universal Description, Discovery, and Integration) - an XML-based registry for businesses worldwide to list themselves on the Internet.
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UID

by System Administrator - Tuesday, 30 April 2013, 1:38 PM
 

UIDUnique IDentifier.

The UID can contain an OID (Object IDentifier - Object Identifier) and optional extension. These definitions are often confused. The use of UIDs is the basis for interoperability, where is necessary that same objects have the same identifiers. The extension has a reason when the OID only indicates the master table  where the extra value will be validate.

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Uncloud (de-cloud)

by System Administrator - Wednesday, 11 November 2015, 4:06 PM
 

Uncloud (de-cloud)

Posted by Margaret Rouse

Uncloud is the removal of applications and data from a cloud computing platform.

In recent years, organizations ranging from small and medium-sized businesses to large enterprises have turned to the cloud to run applications, store data and accomplish other IT tasks. Over time, however, an organization may elect to uncloud one, a few or, possibly, all of its cloud-based assets. Examples could include shutting down a server instance in a public cloud and moving the associated software and data to an in-house data center or colocation facility. De-cloud is another term used to describe this reverse cloud migration.

In the process of unclouding, the cloud customer or, potentially, a channel partneracting on its behalf, will work with the cloud vendor to extract the customer's applications and data. The task involves locating the data and mapping the application's dependencies within the cloud vendor's infrastructure. The unclouding customer -- and its channel partner -- may encounter higher levels of complexity in the case of a public multi-tenant cloud setting. A customer  may have to wait for the cloud vendor's scheduled downtime to migrate its applications and data or the cloud provider may limit the customer's use of migration tools so as not to interfere with the application performance of other customers

Customers may cite a number of reasons for wanting to uncloud. Factors include security issues, liability concerns and difficulty in integrating cloud-based applications with on-premises enterprise applications and data. Frustrated expectations with respect to the cloud's cost efficiency may also influence de-clouding decisions. Anecdotal evidence suggests that customers citing cost as a factor may elect to move applications to an in-house, hyper-converged infrastructure as the better economic choice.

Reverse migration on the rise: Channel partners see customers uncloud

by John Moore

Channel partners report that a small but increasing number of customers are moving some or all of their applications off the cloud.

Channel partners say some of their customers have begun to uncloud and are asking for help migrating back to in-house data centers or colocation facilities.

While cloud computing, in general, remains a high growth area, a counter trend of reverse migration has started to surface. Organizations, industry executives said, cite a number of reasons for moving some or all of their applications off the cloud: security and compliance concerns, frustration over elusive cost savings, and the changing data center economics of hyper-converged architecture.in

At Trace3 Inc., cost and hyper-convergence played key roles in one customer's off-the-cloud migration. Trace3, based in Irvine, Calif., focuses on data center, big data and cloud technologies. Mark Campbell, research principal and director of Innovation Research at Trace3, said a retail client recently completed a "back-sourcing" exercise in which it migrated its entire cloud footprint into a colocation data center, where the retailer could control the infrastructure.

"Cost was the primary driver," Campbell said of the retail customer. "They were estimating they could save 40% over their cloud IaaS [infrastructure as a service] and PaaS [platform as a service] provider by building their own private cloud built on hyper-converged and commodity infrastructure," he said.

Campbell noted that he hasn't had the opportunity to follow up with the company to see whether it actually realized the projected savings.

Getting off the cloud

Nevertheless, other Trace3 customers have taken steps to uncloud, a pattern Campbell began noticing last year. He said a few customers -- numbered in the dozens, out of a client base of some 2,000 companies -- have encountered issues in the cloud.

"The vast majority of our customers have moved at least some of their enterprise applications to the cloud, and the vast majority of those are continuing in the cloud," Campbell said. "There is a small minority, however, that are moving some or all of their applications back into their own data centers or colocation sites more under their control."

"We are exiting the honeymoon stage, and that is always a rude awakening -- and expectation readjustment -- for both parties."

Paul Dippell CE, Service Leadership

Irwin Teodoro, senior director of data center transformation atDatalink Corp., a data center services provider based in Eden Prairie, Minn., has also observed declouding among his company's customers. He said for every 10 companies pursuing some form of cloud computing, he has seen two or three looking to get out of the cloud.

"This is definitely a trend we are going to see more of."

The counter-cloud migration may signal a resetting of expectations among channel partner customers. Paul Dippell, CEO of Service Leadership Inc., a company based in Plano, Texas, that provides a financial and operational benchmark for channel companies, said cloud vendors tell customers that their offerings are "wonderful, weightless, agile, low cost, mobile [and] fantastically free of the impediments of past computing models."

But that vision doesn't always line up with reality.

"What the customers are experiencing is different enough that a material number of customers are declouding or significantly changing -- reducing -- their cloud strategies to regain a more solid computing foundation and rational cost," Dippell said.

"I don't expect cloud to fail, by any means, and I do expect it to grow," Dippell said. "But we are exiting the honeymoon stage, and that is always a rude awakening -- and expectation readjustment -- for both parties."

Dippell added that he's heard anecdotal accounts of solution providers winning new customers by agreeing to decloud them.

When customers uncloud: Top factors

A number of factors influence migration decisions. Unforeseen security issues, for example, may drive some applications back in-house. In general, risk and liability concerns are tempering enthusiasm for the cloud, said Dan Liutikas, managing attorney at InfoTech Law Advocates P.C., and chief legal officer and secretary at CompTIA.

Channel partners, as well as customers, are questioning whether cloud is the correct answer for every customer. While the cloud adoption wave continues, more and more service providers are weighing whether cloud is the right approach for a particular customer or a subset of customers, Liutikas said. The latter includes companies in highly regulated industriessuch as healthcare and financial services.

"Sometimes … on-premises is the better answer based on their customers' needs," he said.

Organizations may also struggle to achieve deep integration between their cloud applications and their on-premises legacy applications and data, according to industry executives. But beyond legal and technical hurdles,cost has become a sticking point for some cloud users.

Unexpected cloud costs may stem from a customer's failure to quantify all the necessary services in its initial calculations. Campbell said most customers tend to be accurate in estimating traditional infrastructure and capacity costs for servers, storage capacity and bandwidth, among other components. But on the other hand, they tend to underestimate the cost of items beyond their data centers. Those items include the cost of creating multiple storage snapshots to back up data, the cost of data replication and the cost of restoring data.

"This leads to budgetary surprises," Campbell said.

Cloud sprawl can also stress budgets.

"Much like [virtual machine] sprawl, it is not uncommon for the initial targets of a cloud installation to grow as both the IT and business discover new applications, features and snap-of-the-fingers capacity bursts," Campbell explained. "These all add line items to the monthly bill."

In addition, cloud offerings may run afoul of conventional budget controls.

Campbell said traditional IT organizations built their financial processes and controls to monitor big-ticket items such as projects and large Capexpurchases and smaller items such as consumables and onetime Opexexpenditures handled on an approval basis.

"This works great in a data-center-centric operation, but imagine the befuddled expression on the comptroller's face when he gets his first 23,000-line-item bill from Amazon," Campbell said. "It is very hard to even decipher what these expenditures are for, let alone garner business justification."

Customers disappointed with cloud cost savings may end up migrating applications to hyper-converged infrastructures.

"Some [companies] are pulling in applications from the cloud to their data centers," Campbell said. "If they do that, we are seeing hyper-convergenceas being one of those enabling mechanisms."

In addition to cost, corporate culture can play a role in a cloud reversal.

"Executives who are not fully aware of the concepts of the cloud feel somewhat apprehensive that data is somewhere else and feel lack of control," Teodoro said.

Managing the declouding challenge

Assisting customers as they back out of the cloud can prove difficult. Teodoro said public clouds in which multiple customers share a common infrastructure represent the greatest challenge. Dealing with maintenance windows is one issue. A customer can't just extract an application based on its own ad hoc maintenance timetable; they have to wait for the cloud provider's scheduled downtime.

"You can't move when you want to move," Teodoro said. "You've got to move at somebody else's pace and schedule."

Determining a cloud-based application's dependencies with respect to the cloud provider's infrastructure is another consideration. A channel partner working on an off-the-cloud migration project needs to figure out what virtual machines the application resides on and identify the virtual LANs and subnets in the compute infrastructure to which the application can be traced, Teodoro explained. The goal: extract the application without breaking something in the environment.

"The keys for us are really to understand the dependencies in the environment -- down to the infrastructure -- and find ways to carve out the environment into smaller chunks or workgroups," Teodoro said.

Another complication: Migration tools can help channel companies uncloud customers, automating the tasks of data gathering, analysis and forensics. But in a shared, multi-tenant cloud, service providers can't use their own tools, since they could impact a cloud provider's other clients, Teodoro said.

Seeking a happy balance

Customers juggling multiple IT environments provide yet another degree of difficulty. Jim Piazza, vice president of service management at CenturyLink Inc., which offers colocation, public cloud and IT services, said customers such as software as a service providers may offer multiple versions of their software to support different clients. And those different versions may be hosted on different computing platforms: in-house private clouds, colocation centers and public clouds, for example.

"It's an interesting mix … that is really quite a challenge to manage," Piazza said.

Piazza said CenturyLink, based in Monroe, La., provides customers a service catalog to help them keep track of what version of their software is deployed where. In addition, the company has built interconnects between customers' colocation footprints in CenturyLink facilities and CenturyLink's public cloud. The service catalog and interconnects enable the company's clients to move their end customers from one platform to another, Piazza said.

Piazza likened migrating customers and their workloads among the various platforms to supporting a 3D jigsaw puzzle.

For Campbell, the cloud conundrum boils down to harmonizing the computing platforms now available to customers.

"It's finding that happy balance -- what lives best in the cloud and what lives best in-house."

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