AWS continues to grow and gain customers. As their competition finds ways to differentiate themselves, Google opened their Deepmind training environment up to the masses and announced they will run their data-centers on 100% renewable energy by the end of 2017.
Speaking of data-centers… Verizon is selling theirs to Equinix for almost $4B to raise cash. Interesting number considering they are spending just over $4B on Yahoo (which I maintain they don’t need since they already own AOL).
President-elect Donald Trump announced the formation of an economic council and IBM CEO Ginni Rometty was the sole technology CEO in the group… good for IBM, bad for an economy that is driven by technological innovation.
- Equinix to Buy Some Verizon Data Centers for $3.6 Billion
Verizon Chief Executive Lowell McAdam said at an investor conference Tuesday that Verizon didn’t have very much scale in data centers so it was better to sell them and put that money to better use. The carrier wants to “trim the branches of the tree so the tree can be stronger,” Mr. McAdam said.
- Oracle Corporation (ORCL) Aims To Benefit From NetSuite Inc (N) Acquisition
Derrick Wood, Cowen analyst highlighted that Oracle did not offer any financial commentary related to the acquisition and the news is likely to come along with earnings report later this month. “NetSuite will be organized as a separate Global Business Unit (GBU) within ORCL, with Jim McGeever being the President and COO of the unit reporting to Mark Hurd. ORCL confirmed its commitment and support for N’s products with plans for investment in sales and distribution, R&D, international expansion and verticalization,” commented Mr. Wood.
- Microsoft’s LinkedIn acquisition approved by regulators, but there’s a catch
In order to receive the approval of those in Europe, Microsoft said that it is doing several things over the next 5 years to preserve competition: ensuring that LinkedIn competitors will still receive access to participate in Office Add-in and promotional opportunities in the Office Store, not entering into agreements with PC manufacturers to pre-install a Windows LinkedIn application or tile that would “favor LinkedIn on an exclusive basis,” and more.
- Google DeepMind Makes AI Training Platform Publicly Available
DeepMind is putting the entire source code for its training environment — which it previously called Labyrinth and has now renamed as DeepMind Lab — on the open-source depository GitHub, the company said Monday. Anyone will be able to download the code and customize it to help train their own artificial intelligence systems. They will also be able to create new game levels for DeepMind Lab and upload these to GitHub.
- Zo is Microsoft’s latest AI chatbot
Microsoft is attempting to do another chatbot after the unfortunate racist hacking of Tay a few months ago…
And now, it seems like Microsoft is ready to introduce its next chatbot. Meet Zo — the software giant’s latest take on chatbots powered by artificial intelligence. The chatbot was spotted by Twitter user Tom Hounsell, and users can give it a try right now. At the moment, Zo is only available on Kik which is definitely an interesting platform to choose. Unlike Tay, Zo isn’t yet available on Twitter and that’s not really a surprise after what happened earlier this year. However, the app will likely come to Twitter, Facebook Messenger, and Snapchat once it’s officially announced.
- IBM creates Watson-powered robot for eldercare assistance
IBM MERA combines Watson AI with a technology called CameraVitals, developed at Rice University, that calculates vital signs using recorded video of a person’s facial expressions. The MERA runs on the IBM Cloud and uses a Softbank Pepper robot interface to estimate an individual’s vital signs, including heart and breathing measurements in a non-invasive manner. It can view and respond if a person has fallen, alerting the caregiver that a patient may be in distress.
- Google says it will hit 100% renewable energy by 2017
While it’s not quite there, Google says it will cross the 100% mark next year due to its commitments to purchase enough direct wind and solar-sourced power to match its annual consumption for the year. Google isn’t being solely charitable with this drive to adopt green power, either; it notes in a blog post that solar, wind and renewables as a general category is becoming the cheapest source of power around, meaning that as its data center operation costs grow with an increasing investment in cloud-based services, it makes the most fiscal sense for Google to continue to invest in creating new renewable sources to help meet its growing demand.
- AWS vs. Azure vs. Google Cloud – Best Prices and Discounts
The charge rate is influenced by a lot of factors such as storage, networking and computing power so users need to pay attention to those details before choosing a cloud service. The most important thing users need to pay attention to is discounts, because all providers offer up different discounts.
- AWS Launches Managed DDoS Protection
Chief Technology Officer Werner Vogels announced Amazon Shield, new layers of protection designed against service interruptions like the cyber attack that took down top websites and affected some Amazon Web Services customers in October.
“This will really help you protect yourselves even against the largest and most sophisticated attacks we’ve seen,” he said on Thursday at AWS re:Invent, a conference in Las Vegas that drew 32,000 attendees.
- Can Oracle Really Beat AWS?
However, Oracle’s biggest risk is that despite its platform and software strength it might gradually become irrelevant with the new waves of open source software hitting the enterprise shores. A well-defined cloud strategy which would help it leverage its strengths can save it in the long run. I believe offering customers the chance to deploy containers on bare-metal is such a strategy. Why? Well, as I said, I believe containers will be used extensively in the cloud IaaS space going forward.
- Netflix to Hand Over Infrastructure Management to Amazon Cloud Service
ZDNET reported Netflix CPO, Neil Hunt, gave a presentation at AWS re:Invent conference in Las Vegas yesterday, revealing that AWS will now manage the entire infrastructure of the world’s leading online TV network, particularly where it is not Netflix-specific. With this, the streaming titan’s development team can rather focus on providing features that can deliver “most compelling service” to its subscribers.
- Connectria Certifies Microsoft Azure Hosted HIPAA Compliance
“Connectria has supported customers in Azure for the past two years,” said Rich Waidmann, Connectria President and CEO of Connectria Hosting. “We’re excited to now enable customers to host HIPAA Compliant environments in Microsoft Azure. Our extensive background in HIPAA Compliance, combined with our close partnership with Microsoft, will help ensure that healthcare providers and healthcare software companies can meet their HIPAA requirements when they store electronic PHI in Microsoft’s Azure Cloud.”
- Infinidat CEO Moshe Yanai on providing speedy, affordable, reliable storage
We think the trend in 2017 is the rise in “hyper storage”. That is ultra-high density, enterprise-class, software defined, flexible storage for the cloud and enterprise data centers.
One of the main characteristics of that will be that it will run on any hardware — it does not have to be proprietary, or hard wired into a particular model. People want to see a hardware stack that can adapt to any media type.
- Dell posts $2B loss, but sees accelerating growth
Dell said legacy revenues were flat but that the addition of EMC increased total revenue by 28 percent. Officials cautioned that the consolidation with EMC and its operating companies makes year-over-year comparisons extremely difficult, adding that the discontinuity is likely to continue for several years. As a quasi-public company, Dell isn’t required to issue guidance on future revenues or profits.
Dell said it has already cut the $57.4 billion in debt it incurred at the time of the acquisition of EMC to $50.5 billion. The recent divestiture of its software, services and content management divisions added $7 billion to its cash hoard, enabling the company to accelerate the payment of its debt obligation and end the quarter with $15 billion in cash.
- Slack and Google announce partnership focused on better integrating their services
One of the new integrations is a Google Drive Bot that will post comments and requests for access into Slack. Recipients can then approve or reject requests from Slack, or settle comments, or they can launch Google Docs to work with the files directly.
Slack will also allow users to preview Google Docs files in the app itself, and, when shared, Slack will check the permissions on the file. If you’re sharing with people who don’t have access currently, Slack will prompt you to update your sharing settings.
- Microsoft’s Plans for LinkedIn Sound Awful
This article is a little dramatic… but it does provide a solid overview of potentially new features.
Tying a LinkedIn identity into Outlook and MS Office is more problematic. Let’s say I tie my LinkedIn ID to my Outlook account here at New York. Next week I am fired after fabricating several interviews and many key facts for my post “Why Google, Facebook, and Apple Are Merging Right Now at This Very Second.” When I eventually find a new job writing for one of the web’s fastest growing sites, PatriotNewsTruth.net, how will I disconnect my LinkedIn ID and my old Outlook account and connect it with my new one? Will an Outlook admin need to do it? Why did I link my LinkedIn profile to my Outlook account anyway, considering Outlook is widely only used by people at work, and LinkedIn is mainly a place to look for other jobs?
- There’s only one tech CEO on Trump’s economic advisory team
Rometty is an interesting choice for a lot of reasons. She’s not from the center of the tech universe, Silicon Valley. IBM is headquartered in New York. We don’t know if she knows Trump personally or not, but as a fellow New Yorker, its likely they’ve at least hobnobbed a time or two.
- “Bullsh*t and spin”: Autonomy founder mocks HP’s $5B fraud suit against him
HP originally paid Lynch $730 million for his stake in Autonomy. Now its trying to recover that money and what it thinks it overpaid for the big data company. HP ended up having to write-down nearly $9 billion of the $11 billion buyout after Autonomy fell apart in its arms. Lynch is countersuing for $160 million, claiming the fraud suit ruined his reputation.
- Two top EMCers bail from Dell EMC
The two are Core Technologies Division President Guy Churchward and Emerging Technologies Division President CJ Desai.
Churchward was responsible for products spanning the bulk of EMC revenues; Avamar, Data Domain, Networker, RecoverPoint, Spanning, Unity, ViPR, VMAX, VNX, VPLEX, and XtremIO. Desai looked after Isilon and IsilonSD Edge, ECS, DSSD and ScaleIO.
This leaves Chad Sakac, rently promoted as President of Converged Platforms (Vblocks, VxRail, VxRack, XC Appliances) as the sole remaining Tucci-era product business line manager of consequence.
- Nadella confirms Microsoft isn’t stepping away from Windows phones
What we are going to do is focus that effort on places where we have differentiation. If you take Windows Phone, where we are differentiated in Windows phone is it’s manageability, it’s security, it’s continuing capability that is the ability to have a phone that in fact can even act like a PC. So, we are going to double down on those points of differentiation. In fact, the HP X3, which came out recently, is perhaps a great example of a differentiated device built using the Windows phone platform and that sort of points for the direction. We will keep looking at different forms, different functions that we can bring to mobile devices, while also supporting our software across a variety of devices. So, that’s the approach you will see us take.
A look at the X3:
Photo: Matt Palmer