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Summer Journal

Volume 27, Issue 3

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Jon Seals

By now, you’ve heard all the hoopla over IBM’s new brain-like chip. There’s little doubt that this is significant chip innovation, but what interests me is what this new development means for data.

Most of the news has focused on the similarities between SyNapse's TrueNorth and the human brain. Actually, as revealed last week, the technology represents 16 million neuron chips, which is a good deal short of the 100 billion neurons in the human brain, according to the UK’s University of Manchester Computer Engineering Professor Steve Furber.

Furber is a co-designer of the original ARM processor chip in the 1980s. For the past three years, he has worked on a project that would model 1 billion neurons, according to the UK Register.

...

http://www.itbusinessedge.com/blogs/integration/what-ibms-new-chip-means-for-data.html

During the process of developing a Business Continuity Plan or strategy it is easiest to focus on the larger picture; to understand the major impacts and potential roadblocks.  But when putting that Plan on paper (figuratively or literally) it is time to think about more granular logistical needs and issues.  One that is often overlooked is where – and how – the money will come from to pay for that recovery strategy.  A good plan must document that process, or create one if it doesn’t already exist.

Even if one assumes that the organization will pay any price to recover its business operations in the most timely manner possible, questions remain:

  • Who has the authority to approve expenditures?
  • What are the limitations of that authority?
  • What is the process needed to gain approval of expenditures?
  • How will expenses be documented?
  • How will vendors and suppliers be paid?

If the Business Continuity Plan calls for moving personnel to another office many miles away, how will their transportation costs (airline or train tickets, fuel reimbursement) and lodging be paid?

...

http://ebrp.net/who-holds-the-purse-strings-on-incident-management-spending/

CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand — You don’t see it, but you certainly know when it’s not there: infrastructure, the miles of underground pipes carrying drinking water, stormwater and wastewater, utilities such as gas and electricity, and fiber-optics and communications cables that spread likes veins and arteries under the streets of a city.

No showers, no cups of tea or coffee, no flushing toilets, no lights, no heating, and no traffic lights — a modern bustling city immediately shuts down. Factor in damaged roads, bridges, and retaining walls above ground, and the situation is dire.

That calamity hit Christchurch, New Zealand, in a series of earthquakes that devastated the city in 2010 and 2011.

Most people here don’t see the extent of repair work going on underground. They just notice roadworks and seemingly millions of orange cones that have sprouted up all over the city. Yet the organization created to manage Christchurch’s infrastructure rebuild has a vital role, and it’s become something of a global model for how to put the guts of a city back together again quickly and efficiently after a disaster.

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/disaster/Christchurchs-SCIRT-Model-for-Rebuilding.html

By Charlie Maclean-Bristol

The first death caused by Ebola (officially Ebola virus disease (EVD)) outside Africa caught my eye this week, this was a Saudi national who had been visiting Sierra Leone.

Over the last few months the number of deaths from the illness has been growing, infecting people from Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.

At the time of writing there have been 932 deaths and over 1500 cases.

Apart from the first death outside Africa, the illness has recently spread to Nigeria, with one death and a number of other cases.

Nigeria, with its large population and strong links to Europe, makes it more likely that the illness could spread further.

...

http://www.continuitycentral.com/feature1213.html

By Tom Salkield

2014 started badly - by severely testing the UK’s flood defences. Information security professionals have a similarly precarious feel, as they work to continuously hold back a flood of ever more sophisticated attacks and protect their information assets. Cybercrime, like the weather, is often unpredictable, but organizations can gain a competitive advantage by making risk–based decisions and investments to focus resources and get the best return on investment to prevent costly breaches to their defences.

The coverage of the flood damage to many areas of the UK dominated the news earlier this year. The debate still rages between those who argue that more should have been invested in planning and delivering effective defences, and those who claim that the volume of rain meant there was little more that could have been done to prevent the devastation.

...

http://www.continuitycentral.com/feature1214.html

Tripwire, Inc., has published the results of a survey of 215 attendees at the Black Hat USA 2014 security conference in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Industry research shows most breaches go undiscovered for weeks, months or even longer. Despite this evidence, 51 percent of respondents said their organization could detect a data breach on critical systems in 24 to 48 hours, 18 percent said it would take three days and 11 percent said within a week.

According to the Mandiant 2014 Threat Report, the average time required to detect breaches is 229 days. The report also states that the number of firms that detected their own breaches dropped from 37 percent in 2012 to 33 percent in 2013.

“I think the survey respondents are either fooling themselves or are naively optimistic,” said Dwayne Melancon, chief technology officer for Tripwire. “A majority of the respondents said they could detect a breach in less than a week, but historical data says it is likely to be months before they notice.”

...

http://www.continuitycentral.com/news07317.html

Agile project methodologies have their roots in the software industry, but the overall principle of staying close to market requirements can be applied in any sector. When risk management becomes difficult because of uncertainties like the weather or the economy, short agile cycles encourage a focus on objectives. This may make more sense than detailed planning that tries to put everything in place for the mid to long term. Efficiency and business continuity can be improved, on condition that communications remain open and productive with all stakeholders. So with these advantages, why don’t all organisations and projects jump on the agile bandwagon?

...

http://www.opscentre.com.au/blog/agility-business-continuity-and-communications-a-new-abc-for-some/

(MCT) — It’s been a little more than three months since the April 28 tornadoes ravaged a portion Limestone County, and efforts continue to get residents back on their feet.

United Way of Athens-Limestone County has played an integral role in those efforts.

After the tornadoes, the nonprofit organization took on 75 long-term recovery cases, but that doesn’t include those who were provided other services, according to United Way Executive Director Kaye Young McFarlen.

Some need quick, easy help on the front end. Others were more long term and more involved.

...

http://www.emergencymgmt.com/disaster/United-Way-Chief-Alabama-Tornado-Recovery.html

GFT will also sponsor the Big Data Trailblazers Award

LONDON, UK - The highly successful Tech Trailblazers Awards today announced a new category for the awards, the FinTech Trailblazers, which is being created with new sponsor GFT, a leading IT solutions provider in the banking sector. The new category will reward and recognize the best of breed FinTech startups who are blazing trails in the financial services sector.

GFT, an expert in big data in the financial services industry, will also sponsor the Big Data Trailblazers category.

The new category opens up the first of vertical markets for the leading independent enterprise technology startup awards. Its stablemates include the new category of Internet of Things and existing Cloud, Infosecurity, Big Data, Storage, and other awards categories. Startups have until August 29th to complete their entries.

Christopher Ortiz, Managing Director of GFT UK, commented “GFT is already a big supporter of the startup ecosystem with its groundbreaking CODE_n innovation platform. The opportunity for GFT to recognize excellence in the FinTech startup community reinforces our commitment to innovative approaches such as harnessing big data to the challenges faced by banking today.” The Tech Trailblazers Awards is an independent international awards platform for startups which gives more than just recognition to the best ideas and innovation. Winners are awarded with prizes worth thousands of dollars from an estimated US $1 million prize fund, to fuel the growth of their business. These include expert mentoring, exposure to investors, business development tools and more. The Tech Trailblazers Awards prize fund, again projected to be worth in excess of $1m, is supported by sponsors and industry partners including the Cloud Security Alliance, Computing, Gigaom, Innovation Warehouse, IP EXPO Europe, Mynewsdesk, RealWire, VMware, and many others.

Enterprise IT startups can enter the following categories: big data, cloud, emerging markets, IoT, mobile technology, networking, IT security, storage, sustainable IT and virtualization. All entrants will also be automatically entered free of charge for Regional Trailblazers Cups – a further chance to win an award, and be crowned Trailblazer for their geographical region.

Rose Ross, Tech Trailblazers Awards founder and Chief Trailblazer, explained, “It is very exciting to welcome GFT, a key player in both the big data and the financial services market, to the Tech Trailblazers Awards and bring another strong startup ambassador into the Tech Trailblazers ecosystem. GFT’s ability to connect our winners with other key players within the innovative space of financial services is a great benefit for our winners. We have been toying with adding vertical market foci into the categories for a while and GFT’s support means we can kick that off with the very active FinTech startup space.”

The Tech Trailblazers Awards will be determined by a combination of public voting and an extensive expert panel of judges from around the world. Industry analysts, editors, entrepreneurs, startup specialists and CTO’s from all backgrounds in enterprise technology make up this year’s panel, and are eager to review a new wave of startup talent and crown this year’s Tech Trailblazers.

Testing completed with CacheAdvance Application Acceleration Software on MySQL using Seagate 1200 SSD
 
SAN CARLOS, Calif. – CacheBox, Inc. has announced the addition of Seagate's 1200 SSD to the company's Hardware Compatibility List. A 12G SAS drive, the 1200 SSD joins other enterprise SSDs that CacheBox has qualified for use with CacheAdvance™, CacheBox's unique application acceleration software that enables significant improvements in application throughput and processing with no disruption to a company's compute or storage infrastructure.

"Delivering consistent and predictable application performance continues to be a top challenge to IT teams in today’s data centers," said Lorenzo Salhi, CacheBox CEO. "Leveraging easy to deploy, high performance enterprise SSDs like Seagate’s 1200 family, goes a long way to realizing this requirement."
Gary Gentry, senior vice president and general manager, SSD at Seagate said, "CacheBox takes application acceleration to the next level. Their innovative approach combined with Seagate 1200 SSDs help delivers business value to the enterprise data center."

CacheBox's internal testing of CacheAdvance shows significant performance improvements and latency reductions over hard disk storage with MySQL, and enables customers to realize the most cost-effective solution for bridging the application requirements of performance and capacity.
CacheAdvance is a software-only, application centric solution that removes application input/output (IO) bottlenecks in a targeted manner. It works by monitoring application IO requests and intelligently determines which data to accelerate to provide optimal performance and user experience

About CacheBox, Inc.
CacheBox is a privately funded, early stage global company with offices in Silicon Valley and Pune, India, that is focused on using its advanced application centric architecture to vastly improve application performance. The CacheBox team includes software and storage industry veterans from several top-tier companies. For more information, visit www.cachebox.com.