The week in review
Big changes are underway in big data, data centers, and cyber security. And businesses better know and adapt to them. Some help is on the way. Mozilla, University of Michigan and others are giving us all keys to universally encrypted Web browsing. Google is also creating a new website monetization model, while IBM debuts a promising new business e-mail system. Meanwhile, look forward to a continuously growing cloud and expanded mobile bandwidth that promises to transfer more data, faster.
- Interactivity is critical to get the most out of big data. Steve Mills, a Booz Allen Hamilton consultant, says that the ability to extract data and splice it is no longer enough: workforces need to learn to gain insights from the data, visualize it and let users interact with it. To do this, companies should create their core teams, “and supplement it with consultants and outside expertise.”
- Companies move away from data centers and towards the cloud. Keith Townshend of Tech Republic foresees companies moving away from Software as a Service (Saas) and toward Platform as a Service (PaaS). Instead of companies paying a vendor to store their data, companies will store their data in the cloud and pay a vendor for tools and components to create their own applications for utilizing the data. Microsoft Azure is a good example.
- Soon, we can pay not to see browser ads. Websites could make profits without any advertisers with a forthcoming Google app called Contributor. Consumers sign up to Contributor and pay a small monthly membership fee, the proceeds of which go to participating websites. In return, the users won’t see any ads when they visit the websites.
For those in software development
- Better security in 2015… The Electronic Frontier Foundation, Mozilla, the University of Michigan, and other partners are teaming up to make a free, officially sanctioned SSL/TLS certificate, which enables HTTPS, available to users everywhere. HTTPS Web browsing is entirely encrypted, so users will all be able to spy-proof their Web activity.
- …with a “zero-trust” approach helping to secure networks. Current cyber-security strategies aren’t working, according to Ahmed Banafa of Computer World. He suggests that companies shift to a “zero trust model” (ZTM) of security, by which they monitor all data transmissions and all traffic, grant as few employee access privileges as possible, and operate as though there are no “trusted” interfaces, networks, or users. ZTM is more manageable if companies integrate big data analytics to maintain a comprehensive view of the security landscape and latest risks.
- More productivity out of your inbox. A new IBM e-mail system called IBM Verse, purports to cut the amount of time that working professionals spend in their inboxes. It culls together emails along with calendar events, to-do lists, and meeting documents into one “at a glance” view. It also highlights the highest priority items and creates visual trees of all connected users and their connections to each other.
- The cloud is growing fast. Whereas 57% of enterprises had apps or infrastructure in the cloud in 2012, today 69% of companies have a cloud infrastructure, according to an IDG study. The study also forecasts that 24% of IT budgets will be allocated to cloud-based solutions in 2015, with the largest share going to Software as a Service (SaaS) models.
Innovation of the Week
- Better way to send and receive data. A new “circulator” device could double mobile and Wifi bandwidth. Developed by engineers at the University of Texas-Austin, it enables a Wi-Fi or LTE radio to send and receive data simultaneously, which was impossible up till now.