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Cloud Computing News & Analysis

IBM Promises a Better Hybrid Cloud at #IBMInterConnect

IBM is making its focus on the hybrid cloud clear at its InterConnect conference in Las Vegas this week.

Big Blue has already announced a series of initiatives, including new releases and new functionality around existing releases, along with news about multiple new data centers. It also revealed plans to move at least half of its cloud development team into is hybrid cloud computing business.

Embracing Change in the Digital Workplace

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Today we begin a new beat here at CMSWire: software-defined systems.  I know. Your marketing buzzword alarm has just sounded, and you may be wondering just how quickly you can reach for the Back button. 

But follow me a moment.  If you’re one of the many dozens of readers I’ve collected over the years, you know that I’ve never been one to swallow the bait — or more importantly, to pass it on to you so you’ll swallow it.

Up to now, technology publications have treated hardware and software as separate fields from one another, as different as geology from astronomy.  So the applications that businesses ran, such as content management systems, were believed to be of interest to a person unique from the one who buys the processors or rigs the network.

But something very important happened in the past five years:  The systems on which services such as the content management systems (CMS) ran moved from a hardware platform to a software platform.  Rather than processors running the CMS — or the enterprise resource planning (ERP), business process management (BPM), digital asset management (DAM) or customer relationship management (CRM) — new classes of processors sustain the software that runs the CMS.  That layer of software, made feasible by virtualization, is fluid, flexible and mobile. 

Why Salesforce Analytics Cloud May Be a Big Deal

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One of the big myths around business analytics, at this point in time, is that it's democratized. That the average business user can grab a dataset, ask questions around it, and glean the insights needed to take informed action on the spur of the moment, regardless of where they are and what kind of screen they‘re staring at.

The next time someone tells you this, say “show me.” Odds are that you’ll discover that when they say “average,” it doesn’t include most of us. And that “democratized” refers to a wider variety of data workers, meaning that they don’t necessarily have to be data scientists, statistical whizzes or know how to work with R, but it’s a pretty good bet that terms like “data profiling,” "data modeling” and Analytics will show up on their resumes more often than “exceeded quota.” 

Can You Name the 3 Leaders in the Public Enterprise Cloud Space?

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Put your money on hybrid cloud computing — and Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft and Rackspace.

But be forewarned: Security (or lack thereof) is still a concern and one of the chief reasons for underuse of cloud resources.

The findings, contained in RightScale’s State of the Cloud Report for 2015, paint a picture of a technology space that is well established but still immature in some respects.

It also confirms that hybrid cloud deployments are the preferred path for enterprises movement to the cloud, which explains why leading vendors have invested so many resources into their hybrid cloud portfolio.

Amazon Muscles Deeper into the Enterprise Space

Amazon Web Services has introduced several upgrades aimed at moving it deeper into the enterprise space.

Its identity and access management (IAM) upgrades, for instance, make it easier for enterprise users and, specifically, systems administrators, to manage and change identities and security settings.

Jeff Barr, Chief Evangelist for Amazon Web Services, explained In a blog post that the upgrade enhances longstanding IAM features, which until now been associated with single users and the identities they governed.

Microsoft Sends Productivity to the Stratosphere via Cloud Integrations

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If Steve Jobs were still alive, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella would give him a kiss. Ok, maybe that’s going too far, but a hug or a warm handshake certainly isn’t. After all, that’s what Nadella offered Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff.

Today Microsoft announced that Office for iPad and iPhone — which have seen more than 80 million downloads to date — is also available for third-party storage providers via an open API. “We want Office to be the preferred way to work with documents no matter where they’re stored,” said Kirk Koenigsbauer, corporate vice president for the Office team.

Or as Damon Tompkins, corporate vice president of worldwide sales and marketing at Microsoft partner Metavis recently explained in a blog post, Microsoft "plans to be the go-to for all you do, in other words, it wants to be your gateway to the cloud.”

Are E-Signatures the Missing Links in Paperless Offices?

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The paperless office is still a dream.

While there are plenty of possible reasons, the most likely involve a combination of technology and management — and, some claim, the failure of even organizations with enterprise content management (ECM) in place to adopt an e-signature strategy.

The problem is not a lack of available e-signature solutions, but the failure of C-Suite executives, including Chief Information Officers, to deploy or develop IT strategies that include digital signatures because of security and legal concerns.

Information Management Challenges in the Cloud and Mobile Era

2015-13-February-Uphill-Climb.jpgAlthough technology is one of the great enablers, for every issue it addresses, it brings new ones to replace it. Take information management. It has changed beyond recognition over the last decade. Enterprise Content Management (ECM) systems have made the storing, management and use of traditional content easier than it would ever have been thought possible.

But other technologies have meant that the sheer volume of content in a modern enterprise is growing at a rate that makes keeping track of every last plan, proposal, video, tweet, email, white paper and article a thankless task.  

6 Reasons Hackers Love the Internet of Things

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Haven't jumped on the Internet of Things (IoT) because of security concerns? New research from HP Fortify shows there's reason for caution.

HP Fortify researchers reviewed ten IoT-connected home security systems and found all of them are vulnerable to account harvesting via the cloud connection or interface.

But that’s not all. They also found all systems could work with weak security passwords, all of them were lacking an account lock-out mechanism, 90 percent didn’t have a two-factor authentication option and 70 percent had problems with systems updates.

IBM Shuffles the Deck with Revamped Partner Program

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It looks as if IBM is taking a page out of Microsoft’s book. Last night it announced the launch of its new One Channel Team operations strategy, as it works to turn itself around after some poor quarterly figures.

According to Marc Dupaquier, general manager for IBM Global Business Partners, IBM developed this strategy to align core IBM business units around a single channel team.

Plan for Migration Success with Search

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Migrating a website or an intranet to a new CMS or new information architecture comes with considerable challenges. Automated tools can support the process, but almost inevitably a great deal of discussion and work will need to take place around specific areas of the site. Having information management policies and strategies in place goes a long way in helping to define content quality, metadata and a taxonomy for the new site. Moving file shares and other repositories into a cloud storage and application environment such as Google Drive has emerged as another requirement.

Effective search will play a vital role in adoption if the migration results in any changes to the intranet structure, and will continue to do so until users have found their way around the information architecture (IA), new content types and repositories.

You Go Girl! Jive's Got a New CEO

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Silicon Valley isn’t known for its plethora of female CEO’s, but now it can proudly claim one more — Jive Software’s Elisa Steele.

Steele, who joined the social business software provider only 13 months ago, has proven herself in short order. She started as the executive vice president (EVP) of strategy and chief marketing officer in January 2014, was promoted to EVP of marketing and products last August, and to president of Jive in November when former CEO Tony Zingale retired.

Cryptzone Company Promises to Secure Office 365 Data #SPTechCon

Although Microsoft has been building up Office 365 at a furious rate, the development of its security features haven't kept pace. Enter the Sheriff — or at least Cryptzone’s version of it.

HiSoftware, a Cryptzone company, now offers Security Sheriff for Office 365, which extends the features and functions of its on-premises solution for inspecting, classifying, securing and auditing content to Office 365.

Austin's 1st #SPTechCon Meets in the Less Weird Part of Town

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Austin’s famous for a number of things: breakfast tacos, live music, a thriving startup and tech community and the number of places one can go with virtually no clothing and not get arrested.

But the city’s first SharePoint Tech Conference took place in the other part of Austin, in the northwest suburbs, close to Microsoft and Dell’s corporate headquarters and number of upscale retail chains.

Excuse Me SharePoint: A Crossroads or an On-Ramp? #SPTechCon

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It may be time for SharePoint to pick a new analogy. After all, how long do you stay “at the crossroads?” And isn’t it true that, at crossroads, you pick one direction and forgo the other?

I don’t think there’s a hybrid solution to a crossroads. And what SharePoint is doing looks more like an on-ramp to a cloud-based superhighway than crossroads.

But at the 2015 SharePoint Tech Con in Austin, Texas yesterday, the keynote panel was packed with IT professionals talking about SharePoint at the crossroads, as they’ve been doing for a few years now, ever since Microsoft started ooching the platform toward the cloud.

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