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Cloud Computing News & Analysis

Wake Up! Your Businesses Needs A New Business Model

Every so often you find a “wake-up-and-smell-the-coffee-people” report. Gartner’s recently released 2015 CEO Survey: Committing to Digital is one such piece of research. The wake-up call here is for CEOs who think they're ready for digital business. Based on this research, it seems most are not.

Fixing this, according to Mark Raskino, research vice president at Gartner, will require substantial investment in the business itself. But that’s not all. What is really requires is a change in the way business is done.

Is Box Planning a New Trick?

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There’s something Aaron Levie can do even better than pulling a rabbit out of a hat — charm VC’s into investing in his ideas.

As the co-founder and CEO of money-losing Enterprise File Sync and Share service Box, Levie, an amateur magician, had to make a big move to assure doubting Wall Street investors that he was on to something big.

Yesterday he began to do exactly that at his company’s developers’ conference in San Francisco. He tried to convince the 1500 plus coders gathered there that Box could provide the platform and the tools they need to become the big enterprise application builders of the future. Sort of like the next Aaron Levies.

His pitch went way beyond bringing tech luminaries like Salesforce’s Marc Benioff and Google’s Eric Schmidt onto the stage. He also pulled out a bag of cash. Not his own money, mind you, but that of Silicon Valley venture capital firms, Bessemer Venture Partners and Emergence Capital. They have each committed to invest as much as $20 million into startups that build applications on Box’s platform.

But it will take more than the lure of cash and a pep rally to get developers going. They’ll also need great tools so they can build on Box’s platform.

Kofax Digitizes Transaction Management

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Kofax, recently acquired by Lexmark, is back again — and this time, it's offering end-to-end digital transaction management.

Not the hottest end of the document management space, you might think.

However, with the new capabilities added to the Kofax TotalAgilty platform, you get some serious functionality that can securely automate both your financial transactions and the paper-based transactions around it.

Now that’s pretty hot.

Office 365 is a Disaster Waiting to Happen

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I'm hesitant to add another blog to the pile about Office 365, because there are more than enough talking heads out there prognosticating.

But I spent the last week at the Houston ARMA Spring Conference talking to clients, vendors and other service providers. And I realized that -- unless something changes -- Office 365 is an information management disaster in the making for organizations.

Here’s the gist of why I think so.

4 Reasons ECM Needs To Go Digital

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Enterprise content management (ECM) can't seem to get any respect. In just the past few months, several researchers have independently warned the whole space is being disrupted by forces outside of enterprise control.

Alfresco, which has long offered on-premises, cloud and hybrid options, just produced a new report to look at these forces are and how they are disrupting the landscape. To find out more, we talked to Alfresco co-founder and CTO John Newton.

While ECM is in a state of disruption, Newton claims the basic material needed to carry out business tasks remains the same. That basic material is content.

Metalogix Moves Into Social Media Archiving

Metalogix is back to business-as-usual after the MetaVis buy with the announcement this morning of a triple release across its Files and Exchange offerings, as well as new module that protects enterprise brands in social media settings.

The Archive and Files upgrades promise universal mobile access along with enhanced security and compliance features. But the company expects the new social module to be the real crowd pleaser.

To find out more, we talked with Hudson Casson, the company's global director of marketing and product strategy.

VMware, Microsoft Push Microservices at Their Own Pace

The software architecture of the future is microservices. That much is certain, but what’s up in the air now is whether that future can be pushed far enough ahead for investments in present architecture to be fully amortized before they’re finally allowed to expire.

VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger started off his company’s announcements today around virtualized microservices with a bridge metaphor. When you see a vendor break out the bridge metaphor, you realize it’s not a ferry or a steamboat or an airplane. It’s something that stays grounded on both sides.

Don't Hold Your Breath: SharePoint Release Delayed

Microsoft is significantly delaying the release of SharePoint Server 2016 — creating what one industry expert described as a "ripple of sadness" across the Internet.

In a blog post yesterday, Microsoft revealed a new delivery plan for the next on-premises version of Sharepoint. It confirmed that SharePoint Server 2016 will become generally available in the second quarter of 2016, with a public beta in the fourth quarter this year. That is about a year later than originally expected.

5 Ways Digital Work Will Change Data Centers

The structure of data centers is changing. Gartner attributes this to the growth of the Internet of Things (IoT) and increased investment in what it describes as the Nexus of Forces — technologies primarily built for cloud, social, mobile and information management.

For much of the past 40 years, data centers have been staples of the IT ecosystem. However,  IT departments need to develop new strategies for managing their data centers or business agility and competitive strength will be compromised.

The solution, Gartner suggests, is to develop new data center strategies for the digital world, according to a recently released report.

Like Windows? Docker Does, Too

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Server-based applications built for Linux and packaged in Docker containers will be able to run on a Windows platform. 

This a result of Docker Inc.’s release today of its Docker 1.6 package, which features a Windows-based Docker client console contributed to the project by Microsoft itself.

The importance of this development may not be self-evident, so I’ll explain: For several years, the Linux operating system has been able to run on a Windows platform by way of virtual machines (VMs). 

But beyond the ability for a developer who happened to be using Windows to test her work in progress in a Linux environment, there was little other value to this.

Windows Server Changes: What You Need to Know

The operating system upon which a majority of the world’s business applications are managed is transitioning from a monolithic host of massive programs into a minimalistic provider for microservices.

This is from the person responsible for executing this transition for Microsoft: its general manager for Windows Server, Mike Neil.

Whether your CMS, CRM, ERP or any other business applications platform runs in a Windows Server virtual machine or on a Linux system, its underpinnings are in the midst of being swapped out. The entire server world is now an active construction zone.

“From an evolutionary path, it is the direction that we’re going,” Neil said in an interview with CMSWire. “The next stage along that path is really focusing the core pieces of our operating system, for delivery in containers.”

Tomorrow's Too Late: App Delivery in Digital Time

Ouch!

It takes only four letters to describe the sting that line of business users feel about the rate at which their IT departments bring new applications to market. According to a September study by Harvard Business Review Analytic Services, companies need to dramatically change the way in which IT and business users work together to build applications as well as the IT infrastructure on which they’re deployed.

And this isn’t just supposition.

“Success in the digital economy is increasingly driven by a company’s ability to leverage information for real-time decision making, or to improve customer experience via customer-facing products and services,” the study noted.

Enterprises that are “digital masters” are 26 percent more profitable than peers in their industries, according to cross-industry research conducted by Didier Bonnet of Capgemini Consulting together with George Westerman and Andrew McAfee of MIT.

These companies are leveraging information from social, mobile, cloud, analytics and big data. In addition, IT and the business are working together to build applications collaboratively and in short order. And when it comes to deployment, there’s a fraction of the lag time.

This means that yesterday’s systems development life cycles, reliance on coding, and old IT infrastructures may actually prove to be a disadvantage.

Cloud, mobile, social, big data, the Internet of Things and digital have disrupted the status quo and changed the game.

For quick-thinking business leaders and technology providers this spells opportunity.

Today, Mendix and Pivotal Cloud Foundry announced a new partnership to speed Enterprise IT’s journey to the digital era.

Is Adobe Building A Productivity Cloud?

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It’s been a busy week in the document management space. Adobe let loose its Document Cloud, Accusoft and EMC teamed up on a release, and Microsoft shared some new releases and promises of things to come.

Hello Nano: Your Guide to Microsoft's New Server

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To quite possibly no one’s surprise Wednesday, Microsoft made it official that its “dramatically refactored” Windows Server operating system will be entitled Nano Server. It further acknowledged a preview edition would be made available to testers within a few weeks.

Nano Server will be Microsoft’s minimalistic approach to serving applications, stripped down to the bare essence.

In itself, it's certainly not Windows because it will not have windows, mouse pointers, menu bars or anything else related to a graphical environment.

It's a back-end system and nothing else — a concession, at long last, to the fact that the only thing a server needs to do is manage its share of the workload.

Microsoft Adds More Security to Select Office 365 Plans

Microsoft is introducing a new security layer to Office 365 with advanced threat protection for Exchange for Office 365 government and business users.

Now in testing, Microsoft expects it to be generally available later this summer.

While Microsoft has made much about the security of Office 365, it's a constant challenge to stay ahead of spammers and other malware producers.

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