Cloud adoption in government is increasing, and the reasons are many: Adopting cloud services can lend an organization greater flexibility and agility, and save it dollars. But for those C-level executives who aren’t adopting, it's not because they're being stubborn or encountering significant barriers to adoption: A new study suggests that the "barriers" encountered may primarily be psychological, as the technology is catching up to business need.
The survey from HyTrust, called the State of the Cloud and Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC) 2016, was given to 500 C-level and vice president executives who lead medium- and large-sized organizations, mostly in the private sector, and found that 70 percent of respondents believe cloud services will see increased adoption over the next year. In addition, 60 percent of respondents see that adoption being deployed more quickly than it has been in the past.
As part of an effort to make it possible for applications to have more granular control on wide area network (WAN) connections, Riverbed Technology today unveiled a Riverbed SteelConnect platform managed via the cloud that unifies control of extended networks.
Josh Dobies, senior director of product marketing for Riverbed, says Riverbed SteelConnect is an instance of a software-defined WAN that ties together orchestration of application delivery and network connectivity.
Riverbed SteelConnect can be deployed as a virtual appliance on top of existing infrastructure or deployed as a physical appliance acquired from Riverbed. A SteelConnect Manager portal hosted in the cloud then provides the management plane through which IT organizations can construct a hybrid network using Riverbed switches and access points spanning both on-premise and data center and cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services (AWS). In addition, Riverbed will add support for Microsoft Azure later this year.
Comprehensive survey of senior IT and business executives reveals predictions of increased adoption, faster deployment and security less of an obstacle
MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – We’ve long been moving toward cloud-based and virtualized infrastructures, but in some ways 2016 might just be the year in which the software-defined data center (SDDC) really becomes a fixture in corporate America. There will be increased adoption of this dynamic trend and faster deployment of the technologies and processes involved, leading to greater tangible benefits and a clear return on investment. In fact, there’s almost unanimous belief that optimal SDDC strategies and deployment can quantifiably drive up virtualization ratios and server optimization, thus noticeably benefiting the bottom line. All this because even though data breaches will surely happen, concerns over security and compliance will be far less an obstacle.
(TNS) – How prepared is Iowa when it comes to dealing with a natural disaster or public health scare?
According to a study by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, it’s more prepared than most.
The National Health Security Preparedness Index tracks the nation’s progress in preparing for, responding to and recovering from disasters and other large-scale emergencies.
The index combines measures from more than 130 individual capabilities to determine the preparedness of health security surveillance; community planning and engagement; information and incident management; health care delivery; countermeasure management; and environmental and occupational health.
Hail claims are making headlines following multiple springtime hailstorms in Texas, including one in the San Antonio region that is expected to be the largest hailstorm in Texas history.
While the estimated insured losses from the storms—$1.3 billion and climbing from two storms that hit the Dallas-Fort Worth region in March; as yet not estimated (but expected to be worse) insured losses from a third storm in the Dallas-Fort Worth region April 11; plus a further $1.36 billion early estimate of insured losses from the San Antonio storm April 12—may seem high, property insurers are well-prepared to handle such events.
In a new briefing, ratings agency A.M. Best says it expects limited rating actions to result as affected property/casualty insurers are expected to maintain sufficient overall risk-adjusted capitalization relative to their existing financial strength ratings.
To mark the National Day of Action, there are hundreds of little steps you can take to be better prepared at home, in your community, and on the go. Here are a few quick action steps you can take today!
Sign up for local alerts and warnings. There are different types of alerts and warnings that you can receive about weather conditions and other emergency situations. Check with your local health department or emergency management agency to see how they share emergency information, whether it is through emergency texts, phone calls, digital road signs, social media, or sirens. You can even download an emergency app from FEMA, The Red Cross, or the Weather Channel.
- Create and test communication plans. Have a discussion with your family before a disaster strikes and make a plan for how you will connect to each other.
- Complete a contact card for every member of your family. Make sure to keep these cards with you at all times
- Choose an emergency contact. Keep in mind that it might be easier to reach a friend or relative who lives out of town.
- Identify a meeting place in your neighborhood and your city or town where your family could gather if there is an emergency.
- Build an emergency supply kit. Make sure you have at least a three day supply of food and water for each person in your family. Also include health supplies, personal care items, safety supplies, electronics, and copies of important documents.
- Safeguard documents. Identify financial and legal documents, medical information, household identification, and key contact information you might need after a disaster. Use this helpful checklist to take an inventory and not forget to safeguard any critical documents.
- Document and insure property. Different types of insurance cover different types of damage after a disaster. Make sure you understand your insurance policies and minimize potential losses.
- Make your property safer. Make property improvements to reduce damage to your property during a disaster and prevent potential injuries from different types of emergencies.
- Conduct a drill. Practice emergency response actions for disasters that might happen in your community.
- Conduct an exercise of a disaster scenario. Use mock scenarios for different types of disasters to review and improve your emergency plan. You might consider participating in a community-wide tabletop exercise for different emergency situations. In your home, you can practice a fire drill, tornado drill, or earthquake drill.
- Plan with neighbors. Many people rely on their neighbors after a disaster. Make sure you start the conversation about preparedness before a disaster strikes. Know the needs of your neighbors and be ready to help in an emergency.
- Participate in a class, training or discussion. Contact your local emergency management agency to see what trainings are available in your community, or consider enrolling in a first aid or CPR course at your local Red Cross.
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – (PRWEB) April 27, 2016 – DataBank, Ltd., a leading super-regional provider of outsourced solutions for data center, cloud and managed services has announced the deployment of Comcast Business at the company’s East Twin Cities data center in Eagan, MN. The ‘Carrier-Hotel’ site is adding Comcast’s robust national network to the number of top-tier telecom and broadband providers available onsite to DataBank clientele.
Comcast will take advantage of DataBank’s diverse entry routes by deploying equipment into both of the facility’s enterprise-class Meet-Me-Rooms. The addition of Comcast Business as an onsite network provider allows clients of DataBank additional options for secure pathways to their offsite assets and facilities which adds redundancy and improves both network uptime and availability.
“We are very pleased that Comcast Business made the investment to provide services in our facility,” said Kris Edinger, DataBank’s General Manager for Minnesota. “Our enterprise clientele really values the diverse connectivity we can offer. The addition of Comcast’s regional diversity aligns well with our Carrier-Hotel model.”
“At Comcast, we are committed to providing the network infrastructure to transport data in the most secure, reliable manner, and at the highest possible speeds," said Kalyn Hove, vice president, Comcast Business for the Twin Cities. "By partnering with world-class providers like DataBank, we can enhance the connectivity of the Twin Cities enterprise business community as well as attract new interest in the market.”
In addition to the Twin Cities, DataBank has a super-regional footprint that also includes two enterprise-class data centers in Kansas City, and two more in Dallas. To find out additional details on DataBank data center facilities and suite of managed services, please visit the company website at http://www.databank.com. For more information Comcast’s network and ethernet services, visit business.comcast.com/ethernet/products/private-line.
DataBank is a leading provider of enterprise-class business solutions for Data Center, Managed Services, and Cloud. We aim to provide our customers with 100% uptime availability of all their critical data, applications and deployed infrastructure. Our suite of services is anchored by our top-tier data center environments and highly available robust connectivity. We offer customized deployments tailored to effectively manage risk, improve technology performance and allow our clients to focus on their own core business objectives. DataBank is headquartered in the historic former Federal Reserve Bank Building in downtown Dallas, TX and has additional data centers in North Dallas, Minneapolis and Kansas City. For more information on DataBank locations and services, please visit http://www.databank.com or call 1(800) 840-7533.
Slightly Warmer Tropics and a Lack of El Nino will Result in More Activity This Year;
14 Named Storms, 8 Hurricanes, and 3 Major Hurricanes Expected
ANDOVER, Mass. – (April 27, 2016) The Weather Company, an IBM Business has issued their first tropical forecast for the 2016 season, and the forecast indicates a total of 14 named storms, 8 hurricanes, and 3 major hurricanes. These numbers include Hurricane Alex, which occurred in January 2016. Hurricane Alex made headlines earlier this year as the first Atlantic hurricane in January since 1955. The forecast numbers for this tropical season are slightly higher than both the 1950-2015 “normals” of 12 named storms, 7 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes, and are very close to the recent “active period” (1995-2015) “normals” of 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes and 3 major hurricanes.
“The long-term trends in Atlantic Ocean temperatures suggest that the years of hyperactive tropical seasons may be coming to an end for a while,” said Dr. Todd Crawford, Chief Meteorologist, The Weather Company. “Given this trend, along with the background El Nino conditions, the last three seasons have been relatively quiet. However, the expected cessation of El Nino forcing along with reasonably warm tropical Atlantic SSTs should provide for a more normal season this year. And, if the high-latitude Atlantic blocking persists into the summer, the tropical Atlantic SSTs may warm even more, so there is still some upside risk to the current forecast.”
The Weather Company provides customized weather information to global commodity traders via its industry-leading WSI Trader Web site. The Weather Company issued its latest seasonal outlook on April 26, 2016, which can be viewed here. The Weather Company will issue its next tropical outlook on May 25, 2016.
The Weather Company, an IBM Business
The Weather Company, an IBM Business, is the world's largest private weather enterprise, helping people make informed decisions – and take action – in the face of weather. The company offers the most accurate, personalized and actionable weather data and insights to millions of consumers and thousands of businesses via Weather’s API, its business solutions division, and its own digital products from The Weather Channel (weather.com) and Weather Underground (wunderground.com).
The company delivers up to 26 billion forecasts daily. Its products include a top weather app on all major mobile platforms globally; the world’s largest network of personal weather stations; a top-20 U.S. website; the seventh most data-rich site in the world; one of the world’s largest IoT data platforms; and industry-leading business solutions.
Weather Means Business™. The world’s biggest brands in aviation, energy, insurance, media, and government rely on The Weather Company for data, technology platforms and services to help improve decision-making and respond to weather’s impact on business. For more, visit www.theweathercompany.com.
New Unified VSP G Series Systems and Software Enhancements Take Virtualization and Cloud Integration to the Next Level to Help Customers Modernize Their IT Environments
SANTA CLARA, Calif. – (Marketwired - April 26, 2016) - Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), today announced new upgrades and additions to its Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform (VSP) G series portfolio designed to reduce the ongoing costs of traditional environments and exploit and monetize data, which is too often trapped in silos of technology. Digital transformation has put data at the center of business strategy and has made IT a key element of corporate success, but is also putting new pressures on IT to modernize processes, systems and skillsets. To help break down data silos and modernize storage management, Hitachi Data Systems has embedded NAS functionality, cloud optimization and enhanced VMware integration into VSP G400, VSP G600 and VSP G800 storage platforms to simplify and accelerate data center modernization efforts.
Optimized for the Cloud
Customers continue to re-assess their IT strategies to find ways to optimize and reduce the ongoing costs of traditional storage and cloud services, but they are in need of flexible solutions that can address disparate environments such as virtualization, remote and core data centers and dynamic cloud strategies, to meet infrastructure requirements for a variety of applications. As a cloud-optimized, unified storage platform, the VSP G series was built to meet these needs and continues to exemplify Hitachi's strong investment philosophy in innovation, with more than 4,000 patents in SAN and NAS -related technologies.
Today's announcement adds the option to include two high-performance NAS modules in the VSP G400, VSP G600 and VSP G800 systems. These modules help to reduce capital expenditures by providing a single, SAN and NAS storage platform for all workloads in a compact form factor. Operating costs also decline, as VSP G series systems require less power, cooling and space in the data center. Adding further cost control, the new unified VSP G series offerings allow customers to leverage existing infrastructure investments regardless of environment -- whether for remote offices where IP infrastructure is dominant to data centers utilizing robust Fibre Channel technology or a cloud environment employing Hitachi Content Platform (HCP), Hitachi Managed Cloud Services, Microsoft® Azure™ or Amazon S3 cloud services. The data migrator to the cloud software feature allows customers to create automated and intelligent, content-aware data management policies. These policies ensure that data is automatically and seamlessly tiered to private, public or hybrid cloud platforms and freeing up critical Hitachi Accelerated Flash resources for Tier 1 applications.
Efficient and Granular Control of Virtual Machines
Hitachi continues to be in lockstep with VMware to deliver on the vision for software-defined storage with full support for VMware vSphere® Virtual Volumes™. This support allows customers to maximize resources, reduce storage complexity and increase efficiency by enabling application-specific storage service levels to be applied to each virtual machine (VM). In addition, Hitachi Virtual Infrastructure Integrator 3.0 delivers scalable VM protection by simplified VMbackup, recovery and cloning services for VMware vSphere-based infrastructures.
Comprehensive Infrastructure Analytics
Available across the Hitachi VSP family, the new Hitachi Infrastructure Analytics Advisor (HIAA) delivers increased performance while reducing costs and risk through intelligent analytics. HIAA quickly and proactively identifies, diagnoses and helps resolve potential performance and capacity issues, including those concerning third-party storage. The software identifies opportunities to improve performance and reduce risk through intelligent analytics with preemptive alerts. Customers can drive down costs with comprehensive capacity and performance planning using enterprise-scale IT analytics with long-term historical trending.
Hitachi Data Systems is the only IT vendor to address customer workload requirements from entry to mainframe with a single storage software platform. The powerful software capabilities built into Hitachi Storage Virtualization Operating System (SVOS) allow the entire VSP family to offer flash optimization. SVOS further supports native heterogeneous storage virtualization and multi-site, active-active storage as well as fully compatible data migration, replication and management from a single interface. Hitachi SVOS provides system element management and advanced storage functions, such as storage virtualization, thin provisioning, service-level controls, performance instrumentation and security across multiple storage platforms.
"Hitachi Data Systems continues to invest heavily in innovation and in its industry-leading Virtual Storage Platform to help customers transform and modernize their IT infrastructures. The ever-changing fundamentals of IT demand that storage systems are agile, reliable and cost-effective. The enhanced VSP family meet those needs and beyond," said Bob Madaio, senior director for Infrastructure Solutions, Hitachi Data Systems.
"Achieving greater cost-efficiencies is paramount to our success. The automation and simplified management of the Hitachi VSP G series gives us the tools to effectively manage our storage requirements without compromising functionality or performance," said Janez Groznik, systems administrator, National University Library - NUK.
"VMware and Hitachi have had a long-term partnership, and together, we continue to empower our mutual customers to simplify their IT operations and accelerate the adoption of the unified hybrid cloud. Hitachi's unified storage solutions combined with support for VMware vSphere Virtual Volumes will enable enterprises to reduce storage complexity and cost, while increasing efficiency on their journey to a modernized, software-defined data center," said Skip Bacon, vice president, storage and availability, VMware.
"As our multi-decade partnering continues, Cisco and HDS are driving to provide innovative data center solutions for our joint customers. Cisco's industry-leading network infrastructure provides high levels of flexibility and scalability demanded by software-driven dynamic IT application workloads and virtualized data centers. Cisco MDS Storage Directors and Nexus Switches fully enable Hitachi's Virtual Storage Platform, and help ensure that customers can easily deploy and manage their enterprise and data center environments to scale, while delivering architectural flexibility and consistent networking across physical, virtual and cloud environments," said Sachin Gupta, vice president of product management, Cisco Switching.
"The escalating volume of virtualized and cloud-based workloads is placing severe strain on the networks. Hitachi Data Systems and Brocade have long partnered to deliver Fibre Channel and IP storage networking solutions that provide our mutual customers with greater application performance, reliability and security," said Jack Rondoni, vice president, storage networking, Brocade.
"With demand increasing around virtualized environments, IT applications and data availability, customers can't afford a misstep. They need a reliable, scalable, high-performance solution that lowers risk, reduces operating and management costs, minimizes overprovisioning and maximizes existing assets. The Hitachi Virtual Storage Platform with native NAS functionality is a slam dunk," said Cheryl Neal, vice president, Avnet Data, Networking and Security business unit in the Americas.
Find Out More
- Digital Transformation Requires New Architectures for Network Attached Storage
- Hu Yoshida
- Unified Data Protection for Unified Storage
- Rich Vining
- For Digital Transformation, Take the Road to a Software-Defined Infrastructure
- Paula A. Phipps
About Hitachi Data Systems
Hitachi Data Systems, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hitachi, Ltd., builds information management and Social Innovation solutions that help businesses succeed and societies be safer, healthier and smarter. We focus on big data that offers real value - what we call the Internet of Things that matter. Our IT infrastructure, analytics, content and cloud solutions and services drive strategic management and analysis of the world's data. Only Hitachi Data Systems integrates the best information technology and operational technology from across the Hitachi family of companies to deliver the exceptional insight that business and society need to transform and thrive. Visit us at HDS.com.
About Hitachi, Ltd.
Hitachi, Ltd. (TSE: 6501), headquartered in Tokyo, Japan, delivers innovations that answer society's challenges with our talented team and proven experience in global markets. The company's consolidated revenues for fiscal 2014 (ended March 31, 2015) totaled 9,761 billion yen ($81.3 billion). Hitachi is focusing more than ever on the Social Innovation Business, which includes power & infrastructure systems, information & telecommunication systems, construction machinery, high functional materials & components, automotive systems, healthcare and others. For more information, please visit the company's website at http://www.hitachi.com.
HITACHI is a trademark or registered trademark of Hitachi, Ltd. All other trademarks, service marks, and company names are properties of their respective owners.
Multiple Scenario Planning Takes Center Stage as CFOs Strive to Remain Agile
PALO ALTO, Calif. – (Marketwired - Apr 26, 2016) - Adaptive Insights, the worldwide leader in cloud corporate performance management (CPM), today released its global CFO Indicator Q1 2016 report, revealing that while chief financial officers (CFOs) remain worried about growing economic volatility, the vast majority of the 377 CFOs surveyed remain confident in their forecasts, and believe that the combination of big data, analytics, and scenario planning will likely be the key to navigating their organizations through the current financial uncertainty.
Enabling them to accelerate the pace of change and remain agile, scenario planning is viewed by 48% of CFOs as the activity that will provide the most strategic value to their organizations during a downturn. Seventy-eight percent believe that applying financial data analysis to achieve profitability will provide the most strategic value overall to their organizations. Other key findings in the report include:
- High forecasting confidence: 85% of CFOs feel moderately, very, or completely confident in their forecasts for the first half of 2016
- Strong trust in the value of big data and analytics: 43% believe big data and analytics will have the single biggest effect on their future role
- Agility highly valued: 59% rank transformation and innovation experience as the second most beneficial attribute to their performance -- second only to technical and analytical skills (65%)
"A strategic CFO is an agile CFO -- one who can pivot on a dime and react decisively regardless of what the future holds," said Robert S. Hull, founder and chairman at Adaptive Insights. "When the financial outlook seems unclear, planning for multiple scenarios can significantly contribute to agility. While transformation and innovation experience helps inspire myriad possible outcomes, technical and analytical skills can be applied to more rapidly model multiple actionable plans -- helping financial leaders to remain agile as they navigate even the most turbulent markets."
Technology Savvy CFOs Chart Course in Turbulent Markets
Driven by such factors as potential changes in regulatory requirements and taxation laws, economic uncertainty is the only certainty for today's CFO. In fact, potential changes in regulatory requirements alone is driving 64% of CFOs to plan for multiple outcomes. It's no surprise then that scenario planning has been identified as a key task for driving strategic, agile decision-making.
To support strategic activities, 56% of CFOs indicated that they were either very or completely likely to invest in dashboards and analytics and identified cloud-based, or SaaS, solutions as their preference. According to the study, CFOs estimate that 33% of their IT infrastructure is SaaS today, and they forecast this to grow to 60% of their infrastructure in 4 years. CFOs cited collaboration (24%) as the top reason for implementing SaaS solutions, followed by less reliance on IT (21%), and significant cost savings (17%).
And with growing reliance on technology and scenario planning, CFOs are not only feeling confident in their forecasting capabilities but also in their use of technology. Ninety-three percent report they are moderately, very, or extremely proficient in technology.
Shifting Priorities for CFOs
While most CFOs (93%) see compliance as their top priority today, only 62% see this as a priority three years from now. Rather, over the next three years, they expect to begin focusing on talent management (78%) and transforming financial data into intelligence to drive growth (77%). Tied for third in the study, both at 74%, are understanding how to leverage IT to take advantage of evolving market opportunities and overseeing corporate governance.
These findings will be highlighted at Adaptive Live, the Adaptive Insights user conference being held April 27-28 at the San Jose Convention Center. The gathering of 1400+ finance professionals provides an opportunity for attendees to gain insights, attend training and network.
About the Adaptive Insights CFO Indicator
The Adaptive Insights CFO Indicator reports what is top of mind for CFOs, as well as unveils key attributes that define the modern CFO. This report surveyed 377 chief financial officers across the globe online over a two-week period ending March 28, 2016. For previous reports, visit the Adaptive Insights Learn Center.
About Adaptive Insights
Adaptive Insights is the leader in cloud corporate performance management (CPM). Via its software as a service (SaaS) platform, the company offers capabilities for budgeting, forecasting, reporting, consolidation, dashboards, and analytics that empower finance, sales, and other business leaders with insight to drive true competitive advantage. The Adaptive Suite is sold direct or is available through Adaptive Insights' robust cloud CPM channel ecosystem of 200+ partners, including Accenture, Armanino, BDO, Cohn Reznick, Intacct, KPMG, McGladrey, Plex Systems, and Workday. NetSuite also offers Adaptive Planning as its NetSuite Financial Planning Module.
More than 3,000 companies in 85 countries use Adaptive Insights. These range from midsized companies and nonprofits to large corporations, including AAA, Boston Scientific, CORT, Epcor, Konica Minolta, NetSuite, Philips, P.F. Chang's, and Siemens. Adaptive Insights is headquartered in Palo Alto, Calif. For more information, visit www.AdaptiveInsights.com, the Adaptive Insights Blog, and follow Adaptive Insights on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.