The cloud offers a wide range of tangible business benefits, but don't let these common blunders cast a shadow on your company's success.
Stories by John Edwards
Responding to a cyber security incident has its own unique objectives and requires its own recovery plan.
When John Campbell talks about Purdue University's soon-to-be implemented modular data center, he can hardly hide his enthusiasm.
Glenn Phillips, president of Pelham, Ala.-based Forté, says that the dedicated Windows workstations his company sells to hospital emergency room administrators must not only be secure, but absolutely tamperproof as well. After all, lives depend on the machines' flawless operation.
In an IT world full of elusive goals, there's probably no target as slippery and generally elusive as server uptime.
Joe Latrell, IT manager and lead programmer for GetMyHomesValue.com, a real estate data services company in Lancaster, Pa., knows that it's all too easy for even a knowledgeable and experienced IT veteran to make mistakes while managing a complex server-consolidation project. "You have to think about everything," he says. "It can be a minefield."
Tom Gonzales is planning to shrink his company's data center footprint from 45 feet by 15 feet to a mere 12 feet by 12 feet -- and he couldn't be happier. "We're using more space than we need," he says. "We're going to return some of that to the company."
Jeff Haynie reached a crossroads last summer. Haynie, CEO of Appcelerator, a firm that develops open source cross-platform application development software, made a decision filled with implications for his company's future. That decision: to toss away his upcoming product's Gnu General Public License (GPL), the best-known and most popular free software license, in favor of what he viewed as a more business-friendly alternative. "We initially started the product with a GPLv3 license and we decided last summer to move the license to Apache," Haynie says.
Many large IT operations are extensively using open-source technology -- in operating systems, applications, development tools and databases. So why not in routers, too?
Virtualization promises to make IT departments more flexible, more efficient and -- perhaps most crucial in these tough times -- more frugal. But one advantage the technology doesn't provide is an escape from the need for strong security measures.
As cloud computing's security gaps become more visible, users are finding ways to safeguard their data.
They're highly portable, inexpensive, very popular — and a potential security nightmare. Running against the trend of mobile computers featuring progressively larger processors, memory, storage, screens and price tags, ultraportable notebooks promise to streamline and simplify their users' lives. Easy to carry, capable of running only a handful of modest applications and affordably priced, ultraportables have emerged over the past year or so to become one of the hottest mobile computing trends.
September 2008 will certainly go down as one of the blackest months in Wall Street history. Venerable financial institutions such as Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch, and AIG abruptly vanished or were radically overhauled. Investors lost loads of money -- in some cases, fortunes -- and ordinary taxpayers are now finding themselves funding an industry bailout that could cost a staggering US$700 billion, perhaps even more.
The news that US telecommunications provider AT&T has joined the rapidly growing ranks of cloud computing providers reinforces the argument that the latest IT outsourcing model is well on its way to becoming a classic disruptive technology.
For a long time, Google has led a largely blissful existence, fostering a widespread perception -- sometimes in direct contradiction to the facts -- that it can do no wrong. Yet the company's controversial Android mobile platform venture threatens to seriously dent this notion, at least with some of the people it needs most.