IBM Invests Big into Enterprise Cloud
Author: John Duckgeischel on December 17, 2014 - 11:01 PM
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IBM has built cloud centers in Mexico City, Frankfurt and Tokyo and plus eight more new locations through a partnership with Equinix Inc. a global data center operator.  With Equinix, IBM will now have access to data centers in France, the Netherlands, Australia, Japan and Singapore, as well as in the U.S. with a cloud network of 48 data centers worldwide. "IBM recognizes that businesses and governments need the cloud to help them innovate, grow and operate more efficiently in concert with their existing IT investments," said Robert LeBlanc, Senior VP of IBM's software & cloud solutions group, in a statement. "Just as we helped major organizations transform in each preceding era of IT, IBM now serves as the cloud platform for the enterprise." The growth in data centers will help IBM grow its hybrid cloud business allowing it to focus on enterprise clients.

Skype Translator Breaks the Language Barrier
Author: John Duckgeischel on December 16, 2014 - 10:24 PM
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This week Microsoft Skype goes to work as it translates voice calls between English and Spanish speaking callers in real-time.   The break through comes after years of work by Microsoft research and Skype as the Skype Translator Preview on Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 Preview, translates voice input from Spanish or English into text and translated audio.  Currently Microsoft is marketing Skype Translator to schools in the United States and Mexico.  Some of the initial trials took place between school children in Tacoma Washington and Mexico City.  Skype is already in use in many classrooms around the world, so translator becomes a natural extension to the current offering.
Why Aren’t Cloud Vendors Pushing Encryption More?
Author: Michael Osterman on December 15, 2014 - 10:03 PM
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Microsoft is currently embroiled in a major legal dispute with the US government. US prosecutors, seeking to gather evidence from a Microsoft cloud customer in a drug-related case, are asking for Microsoft to turn over various customer records even though the data in question is held in an Irish data center. Microsoft has argued that the US government has gone too far with this request because the data is held in a foreign country and that authorities in that country are not involved in gathering the data. The government has argued that this case does not violate the sovereignty of a foreign state, since Microsoft can produce the requested data remotely without use of its staff members in another country. The case, which started in 2013, has been escalating: Microsoft has refused, thus far, to turn over the data and a number of companies (including AT&T and Apple) and others have filed friend-of-the-court briefs in support of Microsoft’s position.
China’s Xiaomi Emerging as a Global Smartphone Maker
Author: John Duckgeischel on December 14, 2014 - 10:31 PM
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Xiaomi worked hard over summer 2014 to take the top spot in China as well as becoming the world’s 3rd largest phone maker.   The company was formed in 2010 to sell smartphones over the internet at bargain prices. A successful social media campaign soon made the company’s smartphones a hit with young Chinese buyers.   The China smartphone market is expected to see 500 million units sold in 2015, a number 3 times as large as the U.S. market says IDC research.

Apple and IBM introduce mobile apps for iOS
Author: John Duckgeischel on December 10, 2014 - 9:56 PM
Apple Messaging Wire

Apple and IBM became teammates in July to begin jointly build apps for iPads and iPhones.   Fast forward to December and now the initial batch of business focused apps for airlines, financial institution, telecom, insurance and governments are now available.  “A lot of the complexity is masked,” says Bridget van Kralingen, senior VP of IBM’s global business services unit. “That’s going to allow business professionals to have a consumer-like experience.” The IBM MobileFirst for iOS suite includes well known clients such as Air Canada, Banort, Sprint and Citi.  The suite will store company sensitive data and companies will be able to be customized and link the app to their own internal business services and it will also provide analytics. “This is a big step for iPhone and iPad in the enterprise, and we can’t wait to see the exciting new ways organizations will put iOS devices to work,” Philip Schiller, Apple’s vice president of marketing, said in a press release. They are “an opportunity to create something different,”  said Apple’s Phil Schiller says.   The apps seem to meet the intent of the collaborative teamwork between Apple and IBM.


Android Case Headed to Supreme Court?
Author: John Duckgeischel on December 8, 2014 - 10:00 PM
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After four years of district court cases and follow-up appeals, Google is asking the Supreme Court to determine if it infringed upon Oracle when it used the Java programing interfaces within the Android mobile operating system.   Oracle which is seeking $1 billion in damages wants to make sure that the case does not go to the Supreme Court. “To hold unprotectable the thousands of lines of code Google copied would strip all code of copyright” Oracle state is reasons to the  Supreme Court this week why the appellate court decision should stand. Meanwhile Google contends that it was forced to copy parts of Java when it developed Android due to its pervasive popularity with programmers that relied upon APIs when writing Java programs.   Google said that “functional” code such as this is not eligible under U.S. copyright law.
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