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Eim News & Analysis

Do You Really Need Microsoft Office?

Thumbnail image for SoftWatch Office licenses 28 4 2014.jpgTwo things are made clear in the new benchmark report from SoftWatch: 1. Business users spend a lot less time using their Office applications than might be thought. 2. If an organization did an in-depth analysis of Office usage across the enterprise, they might well find that dumping Office and moving to another, cheaper productivity suite could save them an awful lot of money.

IBM Opens Marketplace for Cloud Apps

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IBM's cloud marketplace finally went live this morning, giving users the ability to buy cloud offerings and third-party products that work on the SoftLayer platform with the swish of a credit card.

While the site has only been live for a few hours, it already has a few hundred hosted IBM applications as well as a range of middleware products from its BlueMix platform. About a quarter of those applications can be purchased by credit card directly from the online store.

The Holes in the Enterprise Cloud's Silver Lining

2014-25-April-Pop-Quiz.jpgPop quiz time.

Take out your #2 pencil and select the best answer that completes the following sentence.

Cloud services will revolutionize ______________.

  • A. the way software gets delivered.
  • B. the way software is licensed, by becoming a "pay as you go" option.
  • C. the way workers access services.
  • D. IT implementation, support and infrastructure costs.
  • E. the way business gets done, by letting mobile workers access information anytime, anywhere.
  • F. All of the above.

Unless you have been hiding out in a fallout shelter for the last five years, you probably picked “F. All of the above.” And if you did, you would be correct.

6 Ways Metadata Can Help Businesses

Here are six ways businesses can deal with the SharePoint metadata issue. They range from developing information governance strategies to implementing text analytics and improving SharePoint's native search functions of the SharePoint edition they work with.

The projects were identified in recent research by semantic search vendor Concept Searching (CS), which called them key objectives for companies that want to get the best out of their SharePoint deployments. 

Time Out: You Can Quit Looking for Data Scientists

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Data scientists are hard to find and expensive to keep, but that doesn’t mean that big data insights are beyond your reach.

And, no, we’re not suggesting that you outsource your most important work to a team of analysts in a distant land.

After all, there’s a new generation of advanced, self-service, analytics tools that promise to help business and data analysts discover the same keen insights in short order.

Alteryx, which Gartner calls a Visionary in its most recent Advanced Analytics report, provides a data blending and analytics platform that helps end users glean important, actionable insights without the help of a PhD or even a programmer.

IT as a Business: Now We Have New Tools

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IT should be run as a business, so says Gaurav Rewari, founder and CEO of Numerify, a cloud-based analytical applications company that comes out of stealth today.

And IT is a business that is badly in need of management, especially as on-premise applications move to the cloud.

“We’re in the midst of a great migration,” said Rewari. He compares it to zebras crossing the savanna. Only this migration isn’t as orderly. (Not that the zebras are.)

Why Hortonworks' Hadoop Pitch May Be Perfect

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Hortonworks business strategy certainly has its naysayers. They claim the venture capital backed company won’t be able to generate the kind of revenues Wall Street investors expect without selling proprietary software that compliments or extends open source Apache Hadoop or any other open source software, for that matter.

This sort of talk falls on deaf ears at Hortonworks.

“Our strategy is to build out (Hadoop and Hortonworks Data Platform aka HDP) in open source so that it resonates and deeply increases value for our partners, our customers and for us,“ said Shaun Connolly, vice president of Corporate Strategy at Hortonworks.

Be Pragmatic to Succeed in Information Governance

If I had to encapsulate in one phrase everything I’ve learned about doing information governance (IG) and related disciplines over the last 20 odd years, it’s that you should be pragmatic. Being pragmatic does not mean being shoddy, either by solving the problem at hand in a way that hinders other initiatives or the “big picture,” or by neglecting compliance obligations, or by accepting too much risk. Being pragmatic means being creative and rigorous in how you develop and assess your options to achieve your IG objectives.

Microsoft Pushes Analytics, Collaboration Into Office 'Mix'

Microsoft is on a roll with a fast and steady stream of upgrades and offerings for its Office suite. In the latest announcement yesterday, it offered a limited preview of its new PowerPoint ‘Mix.’

PowerPoint is unlikely to set anyone’s world on fire — but the enhancements may at least gain your attention if we told you this one includes basic analytics and interactive tools like video recording and document sharing. Oh, and one more thing. The upgrades are free of charge.

5 Key Steps for Migrating SharePoint to the Cloud

5 Key Steps for Migrating SharePoint to the CloudNo longer the latest IT buzzword, cloud computing has become a reality for a growing number of organizations as they seek to reduce IT costs, expand capabilities and improve their networks.

For SharePoint users in particular the cloud offers a way to replace the administrative burden and costs of managing and maintaining on-premises SharePoint platforms. Migrating to the cloud can be somewhat complex since SharePoint migration tools are limited in functionality or non-existent. So while the cloud can certainly reduce administrative burden, getting there requires having a plan that takes into consideration your overall business goals, your existing infrastructure and content, and your user’s needs.

Your Crib Sheet for Microsoft's World of Data

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When Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and his data team took the stage in San Francisco on Wednesday to talk about the company’s strategy, they used a few terms that are not yet in the vernacular. But they soon will be.

And while you’re certainly welcome to figure out what they are and, more importantly, what they mean once you hear them, we figure that, at least some of readers, will want to be among the first to use them.

Selectica CEO Boasts 'We're Like a CMS on Steroids'

Blaine.jpgSelectica CEO Blaine Mathieu said the latest version of his company's contract management solution makes it easier for corporate executives and their teams to control risk, create opportunities and deliver business value.

The company's Contract Lifecycle Management (CLM) version 6 release includes a host of additional features, including advanced integrations with DocuSign and Salesforce, added support for Microsoft Office and new contract packages that enable users to create and version multiple contracts with a variety of templates as well as check-out, check-in and compare documents simultaneously.

It also offers a variety of customer experience enhancements, including improved search, faster navigation and an improved user interface.

Google's New Terms of Service Raise Privacy Concerns

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Google has more rights to the personal content users share than most people may have realized.

In its recently updated terms of service, the company acknowledges that it not only scans email, but retains the right to use personal content for marketing and internal development purposes.

If that's not enough to make you jittery, consider this: There could be even less privacy down the line. Google has significant mobile ambitions, including its modular smartphone dubbed Project Ara. Google previewed the phone, now in the earliest stages of development, at a developer event in Santa Clara, Calif. this week.

Cell phones pose multiple privacy problems, including lack of anonymity, location tracking and easy interception.

We're Still Playing at Work - and IT Admins are Still Unhappy

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Knock me over with a feather: A new survey shows a lot of people waste time at the office doing all sorts of things they shouldn't … including playing games, browsing social networks and looking for new jobs. 

Last month, TeamViewer, a provider of remote control and online meeting software, asked 300 IT administrators to list some common behaviors of office workers and explain how those behaviors have affected both IT administration and the company’s bottom line.

The only thing surprising about the resulting IT Admin Behavioral Study is that the company described the results as surprising — and the fact that only 92 percent of IT admins report troublesome habits among office workers using company computers. Are the other 8 percent of IT admins ignorant or just naïve?

The SharePoint Information Governance Problem

The SharePoint Information Governance ProblemIf you have any experience with SharePoint as a document management platform today, you know that most organizations struggle to use it effectively. You’re also likely familiar with the negative impacts that typically result from using SharePoint ineffectively: a proliferation of sites, often on a proliferation of SharePoint versions, with no clear standards on what documents should (and shouldn’t) be stored there or how, no clear guidelines for users on how to classify their documents, little to no capabilities for promoting effective information lifecycle management, little to no end user governance or oversight for things like site and document library structures, security and access settings, or document hygiene, and dozens, hundreds or even thousands of orphaned sites that, taken together, represent a digital landfill of staggering proportions.

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