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Published: 2017-07-13T12:05:13-05:00


DieselGate: We Were Right, Something Smells Awful

Thu, 13 Jul 2017 12:05:13 -05002017-07-13T12:05:13-05:00

Remember back in 2015 when we said something doesn't smell right in the VW diesel scandal? it would be impossible for the whole auto industry to not know what was happening - including execs at these organizations.Well, fast forward a few years and many arrests later and now Mercedes may have to recall over a million vehicles because well, apparently they did see what VW did and decided it was a great idea to emulate.Had you been a reader, you would have known this was coming back in 2015 when we said: If management learned VW engineers were able to achieve the impossible… They found a way to burn diesel in a manner which literally saved billions of dollars for the company, they would naturally want to know how it was done. This was a breakthrough. It is inconceivable that all of management wouldn’t be interested in learning at least something about how the system worked. Basically this means all senior management could likely be liable if logic is a guide here. Likewise, there is no way a BMW engineer or one from Mercedes is going to believe they can’t achieve something Volkswagen engineers can. You see where I’m going here? It is impossible that questions about this new technology wouldn’t have come up in vehicle planning and board meetings. Moreover, auto makers routinely tear apart competitor’s cars… No other auto company evaluated this breakthrough technology in order to emulate it? Finally, none of the diesel engineers ever got hired away by rival companies? Something doesn’t smell right and it isn’t just the extra ton of NOx emissions the cars were giving off. Tags: daimler, diesel, dieselgate, emissions, green technology, mercedes Related tags: something doesn, smell right, something, diesel, impossible, engineers Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries We Called The Fiat Chrysler Emissions Cheating in 2015 - Jan 12, 2017 Nissan Outs Mitsubishi for Cheating. No one Outed #VW - Apr 20, 2016 The VW Diesel Scandal Smells Even Worse Than You Think - Sep 24, 2015 Fuel Cells Power Base Stations - Jul 27, 2008 Daimler Battery Breakthrough - Feb 29, 2008 TSO Logic Enables ConEdison and NY State to help Fund Your New Equipment - May 15, 2015 TSO Logic Leverages Equipment Idle Time to Save Power - Apr 01, 2014 Photoluminescent Paint Markers Could Save Taxpayers Billions - Feb 07, 2013 Liter of Light Turns Plastic Bottles into Solar Light - Jul 30, 2012 Are Switch Lighting's LED Bulbs the Future of Lighting? - Mar 08, 2012 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: DieselGate: We Were Right, Something Smells Awful Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - [...]

StaffAlerter Provides Value in Emergency Notification and IoT

Sat, 08 Jul 2017 21:43:43 -05002017-07-08T21:43:43-05:00

With terrorist attacks and other shooting incidents becoming commonplace, the need to quickly notify large groups of people regarding dangerous situations seems to have never been greater. While many of the solutions on the market are targeted at governments or large police departments, the emergency notification system on a budget market has been neglected. Enter StaffAlerter, the infinitely flexible solution which combines the power of IoT-like sensors with IFTTT real-world flexibility. By this we mean that the system can be easily programmed to sense an emergency button being activated in the freezer and then proceed to unlock the freezer door. This is just an example of the flexibility the system brings to the table but its primary role is to send out alerts on things like suspicious persons, active shooters, school bus route delays (essential for very cold or hot areas), industrial accidents, severe weather warnings and hazardous materials to name a few. The system can be cloud-based and works with any PBX and has especially tight integration with Ericsson-LG iPECS systems. Numerous systems can also be linked together. We recently had a chance to interview Bob Rankin as well as Paul Keith – both live and via phone about the system to get a handle on all it can do. We mentioned IoT above – well a gunshot detector can be one of the inputs which results in notifications which can be broadcast anywhere – phone, email, SMS, social, digital signage and voice notification. The system can have four hard inputs which can expand to 144 and the systems can work together to form a larger mesh of security and monitoring. Other inputs can be temperature, key fobs and RFID. A system can have up to 22 hours of runtime with battery backup, it can be programmed granularly to close a relay for the seconds and then latch or it can pulse a relay for a few seconds. It can also follow a schedule like unlocking a door during business hours. Each system has the ability to failover to 5 SSIDs and connects to a new broadband connection in under five seconds – allowing for example a MiFi to always keep the system connected. Key fobs were mentioned above – the short range variety can have 8 functions while WiFi units can have three functions. Cloud phone systems are compatible as well. An Opti-Switch can be used to take action based on the status of phone lights. An actual example could be setting up 811 as an internal emergency number which rings a phone line on a phone which is detected by Opti-Switch which in-turn takes action. The system also works natively with FXO and FXS lines. Target markets include schools, elder-care, government, retail and industrial. Pricing starts at under $2,000. Going forward, Bob tells me they are working on a keyword spotter in email which can take action based on a word or phrase. The bottom line is StaffAlerter is an inexpensive solution which ties in the benefits of emergency notification with IoT and the flexibility to expand and grow with the needs of an organization. For more check out the distributor Presence Management. Tags: iot, lg ericsson, pbx, presence management, security, staffalerter, terrorism, uc Related tags: emergency notification, action based, notification system, system, phone, emergency Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Tempered Networks Boosts Trust with Identity-Defined Networks - Jun 19, 2017 Cisco, Juniper and Business Insider show how to Transform your Business - May 25, 2017 Mitel Analyst Day 2017 Live Blog - Mar 07, 2017 The Drone Wars Have Arrived - Feb 22, 2017 How Microsoft Just Scared the IT Community to Death - Feb 14, 2017 How ITEXPO Has Transformed into THE Communications Event - Jan 19, 2017 Is Yahoo the Preferred E-Mail of Terrorists? - Oct 04, 2016 Aricent: How to be Digitally Durable - Jun 20, 2016 Uber Picks Dialpad to Fuel its Growth - Jun 14, 2016 Digital Transformation is Powering Vertical's UC Growth - Apr 13, 2016 TrackBack[...]

Top 8 IoT Trends for 2017

Fri, 07 Jul 2017 17:42:41 -05002017-07-07T17:42:41-05:00

The IoT market is accelerating as growth comes from numerous directions and markets and as it does, one thing is very clear, the internet of things will have a major effect on every market. It will also usher in opportunities in these spaces to start new businesses and grow existing ones.The number one question we get asked at TMC is what are the hottest trends in IoT? Here is a solid list of what you need to know and where opportunity exists: Industrial IoT is responsible for ushering in a new industrial revolution. This is a non-trivial change in the way factories and industry operate. Massive new efficiency will be gained as a result and the global economy will change as a result. Enterprise IoT has some crossover with industrial but really applies to all businesses from retail to logistics. Again, it will be a game changer - transforming businesses - making them more efficient and competitive. IoT Security continues to be  a major issue as billions of devices will be exciting new attack vendors for hackers everywhere. There are global cybersecurity implications here as a malicious user can and already has taken devices like cameras and used them to form a botnet which launched DDoS attacks. Bottom line, if protecting computers and mobile devices is  tough job, imagine how much tougher it will be to protect a market with 10 times as many devices. Smart Cities are becoming crucial as larger parts of the population want to live in these cities. In the past few years our home state of Connecticut in fact lost GE to Boston and Aetna to Manhattan. Connecticut tax policy had a lot to do with the move but it is clear that if the costs are similar, companies who can move to big cities, will. Some of the benefits of smart cities will include smart parking, smart buildings and better traffic control. Connected Home is another huge area - how can I connect my Ring doorbell to my Nest to my smart-speaker? How can I add the latest skills? How can I get all this new technology to pay for itself in my home by lowering my electric or insurance bills?  IoT Ecosystems powered by APIs between devices and open platforms will allow companies to leverage large user-bases to sell their wares. The first-mover advantage will be very important - this is an exciting space to watch.  Connected Cars will be mesh-networked and work with smart cities to reduce traffic and accidents - not only between vehicles but between vehicles and pedestrians. Analytics and Big Data to figure out how to make use of all this data will be crucial to advancing careers and increasing competitiveness. We've written before that one great opportunity is to come up with industry averages based on IoT data to allow companies in various sectors to compete more effectively. For example if your smart-farm uses 10% more water for every pound of output than the average, there is room for improvement. Bonus: Wine tech is an opportunity. We reached out to Andy Abramson the visionary tech blogger about Amazon's foray into the wine biz - Andy is a well-known figure in the wine space as well and he told us he is doing more in the wine tech biz these days. This probably won't be a huge opportunity but who knows? After Amazon makes all our jobs obsolete, perhaps we'll all have more time to attend wine tastings.  That's all for now. Wait, we almost forgot, our company is putting on an event called IoT Evolution in a few Weeks in Las Vegas and we will be covering all of these topics in depth - except #9. But there will be drinks served so perhaps that qualifies.  We hope to see you there - July 17-20th, 2017 at Caesar's Palace. Tags: amazon, autonomous, enterprise, iiot, iot, m2m, robot, smart car, smart city Related tags: smart cities, allow companies, between vehicles, smart, devices, cities Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries IoT Time is Back! Amazon, Lemonbeat, Korea and More - Dec 01, 2015 Yes, Consumers Will Buy Self-Driving Cars - Ap[...]

Google Dandelion to Popularize Geothermal?

Fri, 07 Jul 2017 11:31:29 -05002017-07-07T11:31:29-05:00

Geothermal energy is pure perfection for heating and cooling homes in climates which are very hot or very cold because the ground stays around 50 degrees Fahrenheit which means, if you can access this area, you can inexpensively heat or cool a home or building. It is better than solar because it isn't god-awful ugly - yes, we know Elon Musk may one day make solar pretty. It's better than wind because it is constant.The problem with the technology is in the northeast, you can get estimates of $60,000 or more to install such a system.Its ironic, there is virtually unlimited heating and cooling under our feet but we just can't get to it affordably.Enter Google-X and the Alphabet spin-off, Dandelion, they are going to start installing geothermal in New York state to start and they say they have found a way to inexpensively and quickly dig the small holes needed to reach about 1,000 feet.Some of the fastest-growing businesses have been based on arbitrage - many people in the IP communications space saw this for themselves and before that, the international call-back market. Mobile phones helped arbitrage away the need for a camera and flashlight among other devices - and we see how fast that market grew.We're just spit-balling here but if Google can get the price of an install down to $20,000 and the average homeowner can save $3,000 a year, the payback is under seven years.Is this a feasible number? Well, Massachusetts heating oil users spend about $2,000/year on heat, let's assume they spend about $1,500 on electricity for A/C they would need to save most of these amounts to make the numbers work. BTW, Americans spend around $22 billion a year on air conditioning, wow! Here is how to calculate your spend.But, for new homes, the numbers are a lot easier to wrap your head around because you will hopefully need to spend less on auxiliary heating and cooling systems. If Dandelion is not overly-optimistic, geothermal could become a big producer of heat and cooling worldwide in the not-too-distant-future. Tags: alphabet, dandelion, geothermal, google, green, green energy, x Related tags: heating cooling, spend, geothermal, cooling, because, heating Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries TSO Logic Enables ConEdison and NY State to help Fund Your New Equipment - May 15, 2015 Google Birthday Reminders: Is Google+ Pushing Too Hard? - May 13, 2013 Google+ Growth, Dropbox Killer: Google IS the Tech News - Feb 09, 2012 Google: Can it be Everything to Everyone? - Jan 27, 2012 The Worst News Day so far for Google and Apple - Jan 20, 2012 Google Holiday Promo For Your New Gadgets - Dec 27, 2011 Will Companies Be Forced into Google+? - Dec 24, 2011 Time for Carol Bartz to Leave Yahoo!? - Jul 19, 2011 Google+ Targets Facebook not Twitter - Jul 15, 2011 SEO Webinar: Last Minute Butterflies - Jul 12, 2011 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: Google Dandelion to Popularize Geothermal? Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

HPE Composable Infrastructure Turns Data Centers into a Mini-Google

Mon, 26 Jun 2017 11:29:58 -05002017-06-26T11:29:58-05:00

Fans of search engine history likely know that Google benefited greatly due to the timing of its launch. Whereas Yahoo! launched when dotcom money flowed, allowing it to buy million-dollar SUN servers like they were going out of style (they were), Google had limited resources and made an OS which scaled across off-the-shelf, low-budget equipment, assuming high levels of failure.This approach, taken by Google still gives it a huge advantage when it acquires companies and ports their IP to its software-OS and it also allows the company to try new ideas quickly and not worry about scale or capacity issues.The idea is similar to cloud but more complex as it integrates more tightly with applications - into a holistic unit.Its sort of  a holy grail to replicate this technology and be able to sell it and that is exactly what HPE is attempting to do.HPE defines Synergy, its composable infrastructure as: Fluid pools of resources - a singular system where components are abstracted - allowing them to work across physical, virtual and container. Software intelligence to define the pools - they define the exact footprint needed for applications. Specify permanence and availability requirements for applications and it takes it from there. A Unified API across compute, network and storage allowing automation tools such as Chef or Puppet to reach into system and create and automatic network infrastructure. src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0">Our colleague Erik Linask writes:  With advanced compute, storage, network fabric, management, orchestration, security, and performance technologies leveraging HPE Synergy and Intel’s (News - Alert) Xeon processors, businesses are able to build new, agile, cloud and virtualized platforms that provide the foundation for an agile, customer-first economy. Through a partnership, ePlus, Intel, and HPE ensure their collective customers are building their digital futures on the back of vetted and proven technologies and solutions, allowing them to innovate and build faster. Chuck Hooke (HPE), Megan Gawlik (Intel), and Mark Henson (ePlus) are delivering a session on June 28, 2016 to discuss exactly how the three technology companies are working together to bring their next-gen-optimized solutions to customers. Specifically: How HPE Synergy (News - Alert) Aggregates compute, storage, network fabric, and management into a hardware foundation; How ePlus and Intel drives HPE Synergy compute modules, providing orchestration, security, and enhanced performance; How ePlus and Intel work together to design and deploy the right solutions for the customer’s unique needs; and Why the new Intel Xeon Processor (News - Alert) Scalable family is the new foundation for secure, agile, multi-cloud datacenters and represents the biggest platform advancements in this decade. If you’re looking to bring new revenue opportunities to your business, you will certainly benefit from this discussion on how to bring your infrastructure into the modern era, including leveraging cloud and virtualization.  Don’t miss this chance to hear from these three experts who are already turning that vision into reality for businesses worldwide.  Register today for the June 28 Webinar, Harness the Power of Cloud and Virtualization to hopefully become as agile as Tags: api, cloud, eplus, google, hpe, intel, orchestration, processor, security, synergy, virtualization, xeon, yahoo Related tags: eplus intel, network fabric, compute storage, cloud virtualization, orchestration security, intel Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries GENBAND Makes NFV, SBC and fring Alliance news at MWC16 - Mar 03, 2016 Time for Carol Bartz to Leave Yahoo!? - Jul 19, 2011 ITEXPO Launches Startup Camp - Investors Take Note[...]

Warranty Master a Must for MSPs

Fri, 23 Jun 2017 16:48:13 -05002017-06-23T16:48:13-05:00

Many of you know I am the CEO of a tristate MSP/IT services company primarily serving NY, NJ and Connecticut and it helps me really understand how the IT market works. Most tech writers just stay in the vendor world where things work perfectly I am in the world of reality where things often don't work as advertised. The perspective is invaluable.Even the companies with stellar reputations for simplicity and service have some products which make you want to flush them down the toilet from time to time. But you have to either use them or resell them to know this. Every PR and marketing person who gives you new product briefing will tell you all the positives but rarely disclose the drawbacks. Frankly, I am not even sure they know because many of them don't actually deploy the products themselves.Being involved in an MSP helps me advise other MSPs how to do things better - I try to separate my roles as much as I can BTW to avoid any conflicts. In all, I believe my dual-role has worked out well for readers.Case in point, MSPs - go out, no, run out and look at Warranty Master. In short it goes through your customer technology list and determines what is out of warranty and helps your customers come up with a payment plan to replace it all using charts and graphs.Our MSP management actually looked to hire a person to do this for us but now we have a software solution which takes care of it for us.Today, my team printed out reports for managers and customers and they are both straightforward and easy to understand. The amount of replacement revenue I just came across was truly staggering and it doesn't even include the time to build servers, etc.Warranty Master is the rare product that pays for itself and helps the MSP and the customer at the same time. After all, older, slower machines can often slow productivity and effectiveness. Will all your customers out of warranty want to upgrade immediately? Probably not but the first step in getting them to think about new technology is alerting them that its around the time to start thinking about it.One of my goals is to get this company to be at MSP Expo next February in Fort Lauderdale because they seem to be well hidden and their product is so great, they should be promoting it to the hilt. Tags: hardware, msp, networking, pc, server, warranty, warranty master Related tags: warranty master, warranty, helps, product, customers, master Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Portnox Adds Visibility and Control To Help Secure Networks - Jun 20, 2017 Array Networks Goes Virtual, Gives MSPs a new Revenue Opportunity - Jun 05, 2017 Prediction: Meg Whitman Lasts at HP 12 Months Max - Sep 22, 2011 Interop 2009 New York Day One - Nov 18, 2009 Podcast: Ken Lamneck - President The Americas, Tech Data - Apr 10, 2008 Brand Marketing Position in Telecom - Apr 08, 2008 ExtraHop Takes Operations Intelligence to the Next Level - Jun 19, 2017 Tempered Networks Boosts Trust with Identity-Defined Networks - Jun 19, 2017 Extreme: Enterprise Networks Needs More Simplification, Orchestration and Automation - May 31, 2017 How Microsoft Just Scared the IT Community to Death - Feb 14, 2017 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: Warranty Master a Must for MSPs Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

See a Top 10 Tech Speaker at IoT Evolution in July

Thu, 22 Jun 2017 16:22:03 -05002017-06-22T16:22:03-05:00

The tech space is moving so incredibly quickly that you have to attend conferences, webinars and scour the news to be aware of the latest trends and ideas taking place. There is no other way to be sure what to implement, when. There are two types of businesses these days, the quick and the dead. No, I am not talking about a movie title here - this is the reality of business thanks to digital transformation and IoT.No company can afford to miss out on what's happening in the world of tech and business and networking with peers and attending conferences with well-chosen speakers is the best way to ensure you are proving your value to your organization.To that end, it's worth pointing out Inc. Magazine just ran a piece on the 20 tech speakers that will wow your crowd. In the top 10 is one of the speakers at next month's IoT Evolution conference in Las Vegas.Here is an excerpt 9. John Horn John Horn is CEO of Ingenu, a company that's elevating the discussion surrounding the Internet of Things. As a corporate founder with immense knowledge, Horn's a go-to speaker on the tech circuit. From talking about the current landscape of cellular technologies to discussing alternatives for IoT app developers -- like purpose-built platforms such as Ingenu's Machine Network -- he's a guaranteed star. His keynote at IoT Evolution Expo is worth checking out to get a sense of his stage presence and commanding, yet conversational, style. Those of you who have eagle-eyes, you probably noticed the mention of last year's IoT Evolution in the description. If you want to check out his talk from that event we've included it below for your viewing pleasure.We hope to see you at this year's event and especially at his keynote, July 19th, 2017 at 4:00 pm. Please Register now. src="" width="560" height="315" frameborder="0"> Tags: carl ford, conference, ecosystem, education, event, ingenu, iot, iot evolution, john horn, keynote, m2m, speaker, trade show Related tags: evolution, speakers Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries PRVibes: IoT Evolution, The Enterprise IoT Event - Feb 20, 2017 Thank You IoT Evolution Community! - Feb 14, 2017 ITEXPO and IoT Evolution Show Brochures now Available - Feb 02, 2017 Google Gmail VoIP, Cloud Computing and Other News August, 25 2010 - Aug 25, 2010 M2M Market to Grow to $18B in 5 Years - Aug 17, 2010 How T-Mobile Can Take its Rightful Place - Jan 11, 2010 Good Morning, Quick Shout Out to IoT Evolution Sponsors - Thanks! - Jan 20, 2017 How ITEXPO Has Transformed into THE Communications Event - Jan 19, 2017 ITEXPO Offers Displaced Carnival Workers Special Offer - Dec 25, 2016 ITEXPO Austin 2012 Show Guide and More - Sep 26, 2012 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: See a Top 10 Tech Speaker at IoT Evolution in July Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

Portnox Adds Visibility and Control To Help Secure Networks

Tue, 20 Jun 2017 20:41:58 -05002017-06-20T20:41:58-05:00

Networks have become so complex that securing them has become an increasingly complex challenge. As the number of attack vectors increase seemingly endlessly, corporations need to have a commensurate solution which scales with device growth, allowing IT to protect their networks from the various threats they encounter. Ofer Amitai the CEO of security vendor Portnox believes visibility is the first step in protecting yourself followed by monitoring the devices to control the risk. He continues by saying that networks should be segmented to ensure things like cameras are not on the same network as users – or available from the outside. He believes you also need a solid plan allowing you to react to changing behavior on the network. Not coincidentally, his company allows IT Managers, CSOs, CISOs, MSSPs, etc. to see and manage devices on the network – including IoT and BYOD. In addition, the solution allows insight into services running. This knowledge can be the difference between being hit with Wannacry or staying protected. If you do get hit with ransomware, you can quarantine and remediate – and further take action by blocking devices The company has made a lot of news this year – as you likely read on TMCnet – in February, they announced their latest version of Portnox CLEAR, the SaaS offering which touts ease of use, multi-factor authentication over the VPN and visual dashboards among its many features. In May, TMCnet ran the news the company introduced IoT Radar via its Portnox CORE Spring Version which brings automated policy decision-making to the world of the Internet of Things. The management GUI has been unified across cloud and premise according to Ofer via an in-person interview we conducted with him. In addition, facet navigation gives a LinkedIn like view – allowing you to create filters and see connections between devices. There are also custom dashboards useful to people based on titles, roles and responsibilities such as network managers, security admins, network admins, etc. This cloud version also has subscriber management built-in, allowing MSPs to become MSSPs A few weeks back the company also released news about its new options for threat prevention and access control across 802.1x, guest network and subscription plans management with the following features: Subscription Plan Management for Organizations and MSPs: The ability to manage their customers' subscription plans in an easy and streamlined way, all from the cloud. Additionally, the feature allows organizations, via MSPs, to move from a CAPEX model to an OPEX model while reducing TCO by up to 50%. Certificate Based Authentication in the Cloud: Allows for 802.1x with client certificate and cloud-based public key infrastructure (PKI) capabilities, making users and devices on the corporate network more secure. It simplifies 802.1x solutions, turn-key and low-touch configurations for network access control as well as reduces TCO. Advanced Guest Network Onboarding: Introduced onboarding capabilities for guest access by text-based SMS, which allows for simple and fast guest access onboarding and improved security. The bottom line is networks are getting more populated and complicated and each additional device becomes a new potential attack vector. Automated tools allowing you to manage and control the fast-growing network are the only ways to manage the hodge-podge of devices, phones, sensors, printers, cameras and other devices on your network. Best of all, Portnox allows the solution via premise or cloud and also provides it via MSPs soon to become MSSPs.  Tags: byod, capex, ciso, cloud, cryptolocker, cso, msp, mssp, networking, opex, patches, pki, ransomware, saas, security, sms, vpn, wannacry Related tags: access control, guest access, guest network, subscription plans, devices network, network Fol[...]

ExtraHop Takes Operations Intelligence to the Next Level

Mon, 19 Jun 2017 19:29:59 -05002017-06-19T19:29:59-05:00

"We provide operations intelligence which borders on business intelligence,” said Jesse Rothstein CEO of ExtraHop in an interview we had some time back. Since that time the company's machine-learning anomaly detection solution Addy was introduced to leverage the cloud to help companies get a handle on their data center - slowing down the spread of RansomWare by integrating with SIEM solutions."ExtraHop Addy brings our environment into focus," said David Johnson, Enterprise Systems Support Specialist with the State of Washington. "With this service, we're alerted to issues we didn't know we had, and it makes us much more proactive in resolving them before the effects are widespread. We now have the data we need to be smarter about how we operate." Recently, we sat down with Eric Thomas, Director of Solutions Architecture and Rachel Pepple (pictured to the right and below), Director of Marketing Communications to learn about the company's new  professional services. Cloud and Datacenter Migration migration experts map the entire IT infrastructure across on-premises, hybrid, and cloud environments to discover all assets, map dependencies, separate clients and servers, and categorize shared services like DNS and Active Directory. Based on this comprehensive analysis which can last for five weeks, ExtraHop experts build a comprehensive plan, including move groups and migration order, to ensure seamless migration without outages.Microsegmentation: Leveraging the automatic device discovery and mapping capabilities of the ExtraHop platform, ExtraHop Solutions Architects work with internal teams to develop and implement a segmentation strategy that takes into account industry-specific considerations, such as medical devices in healthcare and PCI compliance in retail. ExtraHop takes a vendor-agnostic approach that fits with the network virtualization technology selected by the customer, and delivers a comprehensive view of every network-connected device, its communications, and a plan for how to best segment its traffic. This is ideal for detecting RansomWare early.Application Mapping: Leverage ExtraHop IT analytics to observe all interactions between IT systems including asset discovery, dependency mapping, and identification of core dependencies and shared services. In addition to these specialized projects, ExtraHop offers implementation and integration services to configure the ExtraHop platform to a company's unique needs and build a strong foundation for success. Experts use the Open Data Stream and Open Data Context API to integrate the ExtraHop platform seamlessly with IT and security platforms such as ServiceNow, threat intelligence, and SIEM platforms. Other reasons to work with the company? Saving money. In a past interview we pointed out ExtraHop found a single process in an infinite loop which ate up an extra million dollars worth of storage. In addition, Eric told me the solution can find orphaned VMs and also elasticity workloads - extra VMs which aren't needed.Going forward, they want to price professional services based on outcomes as opposed to cost which should help make it easier for CIOs to budget more accurately. Tags: anomaly detection, cloud, data center, extrahop, machine learning, microsegmentation, networking, ransomware Related tags: extrahop platform, professional services, extrahop takes, shared services, operations intelligence, extrahop Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Portnox Adds Visibility and Control To Help Secure Networks - Jun 20, 2017 Forward This Post to Employees To Protect From Hackers - Feb 22, 2017 Go!Foton Hopes to Advance Data Center and Carrier Fiber Transformation - Nov 23, 2016 InfoVista and Ipanema Technologies Poised to Enable New Car[...]

Tempered Networks Boosts Trust with Identity-Defined Networks

Mon, 19 Jun 2017 17:14:24 -05002017-06-19T17:14:24-05:00

If you missed Paula Bernier’s article (free registration required) in our IoT Evolution Magazine, you may not have known Tempered Networks is the new name for Asguard – which is pronounced the same way as Thor’s home-world but spelled with and added letter u. The idea behind the company is to build trust between systems to go beyond encryption by using Host Identity Protocol for encryption and IF-MAP. “This is a way to have inherent security in your network because it doesn’t happen at the application layer, it happens at the protocol,” said Jeff Hussey, who established F5 Networks and is now President and CEO of Tempered Networks. Some months later the company outlined their vision – or the problem they are out to solve in more detail: Implementing traditional security products—such as firewalls, VPNs, or VLANs—to protect M2M communications over shared networks is notoriously complex and cumbersome. As the scale and diversity of endpoints and systems increases, so does the complexity. And those security solutions still rely on IP or MAC addresses to establish identities, which is what hackers try to spoof to compromise the network. This really nails it but the article goes into more depth: Cellular carriers offer MPLS VPNs as enhanced security infrastructure for wireless communications, but dedicated MPLS networks are extremely costly, especially at scale. MPLS connectivity for a single site can average $1200 a month. Imagine a car manufacturer with 5 sites or a retailer with 100 sites to connect. That quickly adds up to an annual bill of $72,000 for 5 sites and more than $1.4 million for 100 sites. With all of the security, cost, and control and issues around M2M  connectivity, it’s no wonder that businesses and industries that have the potential to gain huge advantages have been slow to take on M2M initiatives. But, there are solutions that can take the cost and complexity out of securing M2M communications over cellular networks, and they are available today. Recently, we caught up with Marc Kaplan, VP of Solutions Architecture  to get an update. He went over how the company accomplishes its goals – to build secure networks dynamically by creating isolation via the HIP protocol. Network switches go behind HIP switches to determine a host identity, a digital certificate he refers to as DNA. It’s a layer of abstraction beyond MAC or IP address and it is designed to work over unsecured networks and to allow such operation assuming all networks are not secured. The IDN fabric is designed to be forward and backward compatible providing a trusted, cloaked, segmented, encrypted overlay. The network consists of a Conductor and HIP Services endpoints which are software services supporting both physical and virtual appliances. The solution applies to level 2 and level 3 simultaneously and also allows the changing of IP addresses on the fly – allowing a company to move machines to the cloud and back or to different clouds with ease. The company’s latest release adds a relay concept so devices can directly and securely communicate anywhere on the globe. The details of the technology are as follows: Device A & B connect via TCP/IP to physical hardware or software. The cryptographic identity is bound to the host device The Conductor authenticates and authorizes the HIP services via their provable host identities and then white lists both HIP switches to communicate with each other. Once whitelisted, the HIP services build a tunnel between them for encrypted communications. The Conductor defines policy but no traffic passes through it. Even if offline, HIP services continue. The company’s goal is to provide their technology to all devices, from servers to mobile and IoT. The bottom line is[...]

Solving the Data Analytics Skills Gap

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 13:32:03 -05002017-06-15T13:32:03-05:00

Data analytics is doing absolutely amazing things for companies... Recently, Vodafone worked with a venture-backed company Celonis to improve efficiency. The results have been nothing short of staggering. Process costs per purchase order were cut by 11% and time to market by 20% - all in less than six months. Solutions like this are touted as MRI for your business in a Forbes article from Gil Press. See graphic below.Data mining, big data and analytics have the potential to transform businesses and many companies are investing now to accrue the benefits before the competition.You literally can't look at the tech news of the day without seeing a wealth of analytics stories. For example, an IoT Evolution piece from Cynthia Artin discusses how Amazon AWS Greengrass is allowing for improved analytics - including examples from Lenovo.Larry Dignan at ZDNet further discusses Salesforce Einstein Analytics contextual suite of self-service apps throughout its platform. See graphic below.The increased focus on analytics hasn't been missed by the media. In fact, in March 2017, Dun & Bradstreet and Forbes Insights explored the current state of analytics adoption across the enterprise via a survey of more than 300 executives in North America, the U.K. and Ireland across a range of industries. Some of the findings are fascinating (emphasis added by us): • Senior executives finally understand the value of analytics and are making investments in technology, people and processes. • Data analytics skills gaps persist across the enterprise, as 27% of analytics professionals surveyed cite this skills gap as a major impediment in their data initiatives. • Data analytics has moved from IT and finance to the majority of business functions. • Analytical methods and tools trail both the appetite and ambition of most business leaders: 23% of analytics professionals are still using spreadsheets as their primary tool for data analysis. • There is a dire need for better data analytics best practices, with 19% using only basic data models and regressions. • People capital is a major factor for data analytics success. • While data analytics has gone mainstream, the C-suite and senior leadership need to do more to drive the cultural change needed for better utilization of analytics, as 38% of those surveyed say their companies need to do more. • To move to a data-driven enterprise, business leaders need to do more with all the data their teams are consuming and analyzing. Only 38% of respondents strongly felt that business leaders took full advantage of their analytics initiatives. In short, there is a skills gap and an opportunity gap with a small but growing number of companies beginning to take advantage of data analytics to save money and find new customers.The opportunity is not going to go away - companies need to be on the leading edge of this curve to stay competitive.One way to be on the forefront is to attend the IoT Evolution, Business Intelligence and Analytics track where you will hear from companies like Tellient, Uptake, GLOBECOMM, IBM, Cradlepoint and many more. Register now - the event takes place July 17-20 in Las Vegas. Tags: analytics, data analytics, forbes, iot, salesforce Related tags: business leaders, analytics professionals, analytics skills, analytics, business, companies Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Cbeyond Rides the Hosted Wave - Mar 14, 2009 StaffAlerter Provides Value in Emergency Notification and IoT - Jul 08, 2017 Top 8 IoT Trends for 2017 - Jul 07, 2017 See a Top 10 Tech Speaker at IoT Evolution in July - Jun 22, 2017 Tempered Networks Boosts Trust with Identity-Defined Networks - Jun 19, 2017 Extreme: Enterprise[...]

President Tim Cook?

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 11:31:49 -05002017-06-15T11:31:49-05:00

Last December we analyzed 28 CEOs that could potentially become the next president of the United States. At the time, Mark Zuckerberg was rumored to be considering a run. This past May in fact it was discovered there is a PAC looking to draft him into considering it.Tim Cook just had an interview with BusinessWeek and as Gizmodo noticed, some of his answers seem more political than you might expect. Not overtly but in the sense that he seems to be positioning himself to appeal to moderates.Some examples include that he feels responsible for growing U.S. jobs, pushing for programming courses in schools, pushing for improved healthcare for veterans.This is what we said about him last year: Tim Cook would obviously run as a Democrat as he has already aligned himself quite closely with the DNC. He has the operational skill to run a large enterprise but it is unclear if he has the charisma to get the job done. We still think he has the operational smarts to do the job and his moderate view puts him in similar company with Michael Bloomberg but he hasn't gotten more charismatic in the past six months so its doubtful he'd get very far. Tags: apple, election, michael bloomberg, silicon valley, tech, technology, tim cook Related tags: Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Microsoft, Yahoo, Apple and Google News Make Historic Week - Jul 29, 2009 Most Successful Woman in Tech Earns $41 Million! - Jan 16, 2017 How TaskRabbit's CEO Can Help Diversify Tech - Dec 19, 2016 2017 Predictions From Rich Tehrani - Dec 09, 2016 EEOC Finds Silicon Valley filled with Racist, Sexist Criminals - May 27, 2016 New Award Helps Attract Tech Workers in a Competitive Market - Feb 01, 2016 Tech to Eliminate Fast Food Minimum Wage Workers - May 21, 2015 Monoprice USB-C Cable Line Provides Real Value - May 12, 2015 A Candid Talk with Ford about Connected Cars and the Future - Mar 04, 2015 Can Apple's Haunted Empire Still Make Hits? - Mar 20, 2014 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: President Tim Cook? Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

Don't Judge the Microsoft Surface Pro by its Reviews

Thu, 15 Jun 2017 10:24:55 -05002017-06-15T10:24:55-05:00

Disclosure: we use an iPad Pro and iPhone and a Microsoft Surface Book on a daily basis so you can see we really have no bias. Still, we were offended when we saw the headline today from Todd Haselton at CNBC: Microsoft's Surface Pro is a good tablet, but it's way too expensive for most people.The concern we had was why the value judgement in the headline? Who is this guy, we thought to tell us what is too expensive for us?As it turns out his review is spot on - great job Todd (no, we don't believe we know or have met him.)His main concerns are that a fully configured device with a Core i7 will run you $2,200 without a keyboard or pen!You can get one for as little as $799 which is likely good enough for most people but it comes with a Core m3.Microsoft touts photos like this to hawk the Surface Pro but how many of us have a table at the beach? More than likely we have a chair meaning the kickstand will dig into our legsWhat we've learned from experience is that if you want to use this device as a laptop on your lap as opposed to a desk, the kickstand can dig into your leg after a while and can be uncomfortable. We recommend the Surface Book if you can afford it as you get a tablet and real laptop in one. Another option if you don't need a tablet is the Surface Laptop - just be sure to switch out from Windows S to Windows 10 Pro which you can do for free until December of this year. We expect Redmond might extend this date based on customer demand.Bottom line: Microsoft makes some great hardware these days and the intersection of tablet and laptop is where much of the excitement is in mobile these days. Expect the battleground to get more fierce as Apple and Microsoft both target this coveted segment. Tags: apple, ipad, microsoft, surface book, surface pro, tablet Related tags: microsoft surface, microsoft, surface, laptop, tablet Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Surprise! Microsoft Surface Pro 3 Not Airplane Friendly - Jul 01, 2014 Microsoft's Surface Pro 3 is an Ultrabook in Tablet's Clothing - May 21, 2014 Looking Under the Surface and Filing Suit Against Microsoft - Nov 15, 2012 The Bearish Case on Apple - Nov 13, 2012 For Microsoft Surface, Is it Mission Impossible? - Oct 16, 2012 What the Auto Market can Teach us about Mobile - Aug 14, 2012 Can Discounted Hardware Compete with Apple? - Jul 10, 2012 Surface Tablet: Microsoft's Desktop Hail Mary - Jun 19, 2012 Microsoft Taking Tablet Control - Jun 02, 2011 An Honest Critique of Microsoft and Steve Ballmer - May 26, 2011 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: Don't Judge the Microsoft Surface Pro by its Reviews Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

The Electric Car Market is About to be Shaken up

Fri, 09 Jun 2017 12:29:04 -05002017-06-09T12:29:04-05:00

Expect AAA to raise insurance prices on Teslas by a whopping 30%! It turns out claims numbers are a lot higher than anticipated and so is the cost of repairing the car. Bottom line, any car with supercar like performance will eventually see higher insurance premiums - even if the care is a sedan which doesn't look like a supercar or have a V12 engine. Speaking of V12 engines (or lack thereof), you may may have noticed that electric cars make no noise meaning they are more likely to get into accidents because they can't be heard on approach. We've all undoubtedly been started by electrics in the parking lot as they sneak up on us silently. Rob Enderle writes on our sister site TechZone360 about the situation and has some very intelligent advice for Tesla. Considering Tesla's became a more valuable company than BMW as of today, they probably want to heed his advice to help keep this new newfound position.We suspect the electric car market will never be the same as Rob's points will eventually become implemented in a widespread manner. Tags: autonomous, bmw, electric, enderle, tesla Related tags: electric Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Does Tesla Know Proprietary is Typically Wrong? - Aug 04, 2014 Hey Luddite CEO, Your @ss is Fired - May 22, 2017 Top 8 IoT Trends for 2017 - Jul 07, 2017 Communications Transformation is Just Beginning - Apr 04, 2017 The Challenge for Samsung In Years Ahead - Oct 31, 2016 Samsung's Service Problems may have Doomed it for Years - Sep 30, 2016 A Quarter Century Intel Wound From AMD and How to Respond - Apr 22, 2016 Politically Motivated Hackers Hit Nissan, Are You Prepared? - Jan 15, 2016 Uber lets You Test Drive a new BMW 7 Series - Oct 16, 2015 The VW Diesel Scandal Smells Even Worse Than You Think - Sep 24, 2015 TrackBacks | Comments | Tag with | Communications and Technology Blog - Home | Permalink: The Electric Car Market is About to be Shaken up Copyright Communications and Technology Blog - Sponsored by Apex Technology Services, a leading IT Services company[...]

Array Networks Goes Virtual, Gives MSPs a new Revenue Opportunity

Mon, 05 Jun 2017 19:42:21 -05002017-06-05T19:42:21-05:00

The load balancing market evolved into ADCs and these devices are now competing with cloud-based solutions. As this evolution has taken place, Array Networks saw an opportunity to take a page from the carrier market and explore virtualizing network functions. In an exclusive interview with Paul Anderson, Senior Director of Marketing, he told me the company has a new network functions platform for deploying virtualized application delivery and security functions with guaranteed performance. In their testing, the company took a Fortinet firewall (with the appropriate licensing of course) and realized they could get five times better performance using software over hardware. The point here is you can begin to look at your data center in a new way – adding more flexibility than you might have thought possible. Their new AVX Series consists of an entry-level AVX3600, AVX7600 and AVX10650 with 35Gbps, 64Gbps and 128Gbps of throughput respectively. The 3600 is a 1RU device while the latter two are 2RU devices - all with with dual power. Aside from the Fortinet firewall, there is also support for a Positive Technologies Web Application Firewall and an Array Networks Virtual ADC and Virtual Secure Access Gateway. Third-party solutions are also able to run on the platform – the good news is the virtual to physical port mapping is provided by the OS. The company’s WebUI allows admins to drag-and-drop network functions as needed and service chaining is supported as well. Is this solution for you? The company is targeting a few segments… 1)      Companies looking to refresh their ADC platform and wanting to evaluate a new approach. Using software, they could conceivably save on power and cooling while increasing agility. Paul tells me the company will consult to advise whether a hardware or software solution makes the most sense for a customer. He said for example, sometimes a software solutions adds unneeded complexity. 2)      Replacing an overloaded appliance – using virtual machines with guaranteed performance means a company can predict more reliably what real-world performance will be. 3)      Supplying a service creation platform to MSPs. This is without a doubt an amazing opportunity for the reseller market sick of seeing their margins erode, only to make hardware companies wealthy. The way it works is a managed service provider doesn’t sell $20,000 worth of networking equipment to their customer, instead they provide services to their customer and perhaps charge $1,000 per month. Of course, the MSP would need to know how to provide the service, have a redundant data center, etc. but the idea is to generate more revenue via recurring services. Software continues to eat the world with the help of managed services. Array Networks has made a bold move to become the platform of choice for NFV solutions to data centers worldwide. Tags: array networks, firewall, load balancing, msp, networking, nfv Related tags: array networks, network functions, fortinet firewall, using software, guaranteed performance, company Follow me: Facebook Profile Google+ Profile Twitter Profile Related Entries Warranty Master a Must for MSPs - Jun 23, 2017 Portnox Adds Visibility and Control To Help Secure Networks - Jun 20, 2017 InfoVista and Ipanema Technologies Poised to Enable New Carrier Services - May 27, 2015 CloudGenix Gets Funded to Fuel SD-WANs - May 12, 2015 ExtraHop Takes Operations Intelligence to the Next Level - Jun 19, 2017 Extreme: Enterprise Networks Needs More Simplification, Orchestration and Automation - May 31, 2017 [...]