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Summer Journal

Volume 29, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

It's up to those in the resiliency profession to help companies be in a position to continuously deliver their services.

In the cognitive era, organizations are using technology to process data more quickly than ever and correlate results that could be difficult to imagine in the past. These capabilities are crucial for resiliency.

Cognitive computing is changing how industries do business by providing access to data that enables critical decision-making, reduces time frames for key business deliverables, and ensures products get to market efficiently and effectively.



Oracle is beefing up its services to marketing and advertising-focused customers with the acquisition of an Israeli company that tracks how users engage with advertising and media.

Oracle announced that it will buy Crosswire, a provider of machine-learning based cross-device data that can help marketers track cross-device advertising, personalization, and analytics.

Oracle did not disclose the conditions of the deal, but press reports say Oracle paid approximately $50 million for the venture-funded startup founded in 2013.



(TNS) - It has been nearly a year since heavy storms and rains in late spring of 2015 brought widespread damage and flooding to the region. With the floods on Father’s Day, which saw high water in areas not known for flooding, still a recent memory to many, city officials are looking for ways to prevent similar events from occurring again.

City officials are currently working on updates to Denison’s Flood Damage Prevention Ordinance, which presents guidelines for development about how to prevent flooding issues at the site and further downstream.

“Our goal is to reduce the probability of flood damage happening around our drainage areas,” City Manager Jud Rex said on Thursday, referring to drainage ditches, culverts and other features designed to handle runoff from storms.



Virtualisation continues to grow in popularity as it offers different ways of backing up our data, in addition to being able to ensure that business-critical systems remain online in the event of an emergency.

Some people have even hailed virtualisation as the next frontier of computing. But do you know what is computer virtualisation and how can you or your clients benefit from it? Let’s take a step back and first review what virtualisation is and how it works.



After a billion dollars and many years spent deploying a state-of-the-art earthquake warning system, there are still important lessons to be learned from the Tohuko and Kumamoto earthquakes.

The Kumamoto Prefecture, located in the center of Japan’s southwestern Kyushu island, was recently struck by two sizable earthquakes. As of this writing, more than 40 people have been reported dead, with at least 11 missing. The damage sustained has been quite severe for earthquakes of this magnitude (6.4 followed by 7.3), which may, to some extent, be associated with older building stock that was constructed before modern seismic building codes were implemented. Some of the damage can be seen on the Japan Times website.

A number of people (including Emily Chang on Bloomberg West) are wondering how our earthquake warning capability compares to the Japanese system. I might summarize these concerns as:



Over the next four years, 35 percent of the core skills you have today will change. As a storage engineer, what do you think these changes might be?

I recently had an interesting meeting with storage engineers who were considering a move to a commodity type storage infrastructure with little or no data management capabilities.

They were so enamored by the technical specifications of the new equipment that they said they were quite comfortable giving all of the data management capabilities that were inherent in their existing storage array up to the virtualization layer or to the applications themselves. Basically all of the value that used to be offered like data management, data protection, and replication capabilities were going to be given to other teams in the organization.



Will the cold storage data center of the future include a DNA synthesizer? According to a new research paper by the University of Washington and Microsoft, it’s a strong possibility.

Today, we generate data faster than we can increase storage capacity. The volume of digital data worldwide is projected to exceed 16 zettabytes sometime next year, the paper’s authors wrote, citing a forecast by IDC Research. “Alarmingly, the exponential [data] growth rate easily exceeds our ability to store it, even when accounting for forecast improvements in storage technologies,” they said.

A big portion of the world’s data sits in archival storage, where the densest medium currently is tape, offering maximum density of about 10 GB per cubic millimeter. One research project has demonstrated an optical disk technology that’s 10 times denser than tape.



Pivotal kills its own Hadoop distribution. Google uses machine learning to help you reach your goals. Dell updates Statistica to make it easier for so-called citizen data scientists. Workday enhances its analytics -- and more in this week's Big Data Roundup.

This time let's start with Workday. This cloud-based HR software application provider -- or human capital management (HCR) as it's called today -- this week announced a new set of enhancements to its analytics capabilities. The company unveiled new finance and workforce-related scorecards and dashboards that enable customers to gain insight into real-time transactional data and predictive analytics, the company said in a statement announcing the news.

Specifically, Workday said, the new dashboards and scorecards will let customers predict and manage their customer collections. For instance, organizations can use the predictive capabilities to determine the likelihood of an invoice being paid on time. Workday said this can help revenue managers address accounts receivable issues and do a more accurate job of forecasting revenue.



“Quantum Leap” Over Aging Infrastructure Provides Business Advantage


Gridstore™ the leader in hyper-converged all flash infrastructure today announced that MacRoberts LLP, one of Scotland’s leading commercial law firms has chosen Gridstore’s Hyper-Converged Infrastructure (HCI) to manage over 40 million documents across the practice’s three sites as a result of a major infrastructure refresh.


The implementation of 4U of Gridstore flash-based hyper-converged appliances which replaces six racks of servers and storage, has drastically cut the physical footprint and power use, as well as bringing near real-time replication. The Gridstore solution replaced three racks of 42U each at its Glasgow and Edinburgh sites. These were comprised of approximately 40 HP DL580 and 380 G6 generation servers plus a HP Lefthand SAN deployment, all of which were over-burdened and beyond capacity.


This ageing infrastructure presented a business risk to the organisation, limiting its ability to meet its partner and customer demands for fast document access and responsive infrastructure. Limited scalability and onerous management overhead, along with slow performance caused multiple issues, including risk of losing data.


Data protection was also becoming a major issue. Given the fact that MacRoberts estimates it has over 40 million documents stored – a figure that grows each day – then the ability to run regular backups was business critical.


To address these issues MacRoberts conducted an evaluation of solutions from Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Cisco, EMC, Nimble Storage and Nutanix, but none met its need for performance, simplicity, or integration with Microsoft.


Robert Crichton, Enterprise Infrastructure Architect, MacRoberts LLP, stated: “We had 40 different systems, with different VMs and in some cases, limited virtualisation, with direct attached storage. It was a business risk and what we really needed was to consolidate and reduce the complexity and gain capacity.


“Many factors were considered when choosing Gridstore including the simplicity of Gridstore’s system compared with different VMware-based systems. It is a solution based on Microsoft technology and this meant that not only were we working within an environment we knew, we were getting the benefits of working with Windows Hyper-V technology, while future proofing our investment.”


The company has around 75 virtual machines deployed on Gridstore HyperConverged Appliances across both key sites. It has also added additional storage capacity for a total of 112TB at each site using Gridstore Hybrid Storage Nodes. This additional bulk capacity is being used for backups at both sites. Following the implementation of Gridstore systems are now being backed up at least once a day, decreasing risk of critical data loss.


“We virtualised our physical workloads into the all-flash solution and we then added on DR replication. We’ve actually duplicated that technology across sites, so our Glasgow office is replicated instantly, and just five minutes over the wire to our Edinburgh site. We brought in the hybrid storage to back up that live production system as well as for replication on premise,” added Robert.


David Flint, Senior Partner MacRoberts, added: “When we came across the Gridstore solution the immediate reaction was yes, this is a quantum leap in what we're doing - this will provide the infrastructure advantage which we're looking for within the business. The fact that it is based on a Microsoft stack and the virtualisation is Hyper-V is really important because ultimately we were looking for a long-term solution.”


Watch the video of this story: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b10bMVGDkvY


About Gridstore

Gridstore’s award winning HyperConverged Infrastructure, is delivered as an appliance that offers market leading price/performance, efficient scaling, and scale-to-fit design. The Gridstore HCI is easy and fast to deploy while reducing management time and effort. Leveraging its patented software, a Gridstore HCI delivers 75% less physical infrastructure and a 65% lower price-per-VM than traditional solutions. The Gridstore HyperConverged Appliance is an ideal platform for infrastructure refreshes and specific workloads such as VDI, SQL Server, Dev/Test, Private Cloud and ROBO.

Alfresco delivers its next generation of leading, tightly integrated ECM and BPM solutions with Ness SES development and test services


TEANECK, NJ – Ness Software Engineering Services (SES), a leading provider of software product engineering services, today revealed how it has contributed to the successful release of the latest versions of Alfresco One and Activiti by Alfresco Software, the leading open-source provider of Enterprise Content Management (ECM) and Business Process Management (BPM) solutions. Alfresco is enabling companies to meet their digital transformation goals through platforms its customers trust to take full advantage of their content, people, and business processes. Ness is helping Alfresco by providing ongoing software development, support and test engineering services.


Major organizations are choosing Alfresco’s software suite to increase user productivity because the solutions offer simplified business workflows that are better informed by content, easy to use, and readily integrate with other enterprise software solutions. Customers enjoy a smoother transition from their legacy systems to Alfresco’s modern, open standards-based ECM and BPM solutions because the company offers a flexible platform that supports current business requirements that readily adapts to future needs with enterprise scale and platform modularity and security.


These latest Alfresco software releases build upon the successful, advanced product engineering partnership established between Alfresco and Ness SES in 2014. A dedicated team of Ness SES software engineers has collaborated closely with Alfresco’s product development experts to utilize advanced testing techniques and extend the integration capabilities of Alfresco’s software platforms further.


Mark Heath, vice president of product development and engineering at Alfresco Software commented, “We're focused on delivering the best possible solutions to managing process and content in today's business environment. Our solutions deliver value faster with intuitive workflows that require very little user training. Instant access to Ness's software engineering expertise, including testing and integration resources has contributed to our growing business providing solutions that connect people, process and content in powerful ways.”


Pete Rogers, senior vice president & general manager, Europe at Ness SES said, “Working with technologists at the forefront of the evolving Digital Economy is extremely rewarding, and we’re excited to be contributing to Alfresco’s success in the ECM and BPM markets. Like us, they’re working with leading-edge organizations that are making major progress in how they are transforming their businesses digitally. For Alfresco and its customers, the assurance of software quality and exceptional performance is of prime importance, and Ness SES is proud to help Alfresco achieve this vital and challenging goal. We are looking to further extend our partnership with Alfresco in the coming months with a particular focus on helping deploy Activiti with Alfresco’s major clients.”


About Alfresco

Alfresco provides modern enterprise content management (ECM) and business process management (BPM) software built on open standards that enables organizations to unlock the power of their business-critical content. With the controls that IT demands and the simplicity that end users love, Alfresco's open source technology enables global organizations to collaborate more effectively across cloud, hybrid and on-premise environments. Innovating at the intersection of content, collaboration and business process, Alfresco’s software manages over seven billion documents, powering the daily tasks of more than 11 million users worldwide. Select Alfresco customers include: Amnesty International, Cisco, DAB Bank, FOX, NASA, PGA Tour, and Sony Entertainment. Founded in 2005, Alfresco’s U.S. headquarters are in San Mateo, California and European headquarters are in Maidenhead, UK. Please visit us at http://www.alfresco.com.


About Ness Software Engineering Services (SES)

Ness Software Engineering Services (SES) is a premier provider of digital transformation and software engineering services. Ness SES helps organizations compete and grow in today’s digital economy by providing deep expertise in products and platforms, data and analytics, and experience engineering. With access to world-class software engineering resources, Ness SES’s clients create advanced, new products and services, enter new markets, win new customers, and streamline operations to radically reduce costs. Ness SES delivers consumer-grade experiences with commercial-grade quality and stability through its global delivery model that offers the flexibility and efficiencies of on-site, on-shore, near-shore and off-shore sourcing, leveraging sophisticated distributed Agile techniques. Visit www.ness-ses.com for more information.