Flash: Enabling the “Mission-Critical Business”

By Brian Feller, VP & GM EMEA, Whiptail

Imagine how your business might benefit if you processed 1,000 more transactions per second. If you concluded an analysis 20 minutes sooner. If a batch processing job was reduced from eight hours to two – or even less.

Those are some of the benefits offered by flash storage for business applications and data, as opposed to traditional mechanical, hard disk-drive storage devices.  It’s a fundamental business transition from selecting some applications to push towards peak performance into an enterprise where every application accelerates to its maximum potential. Flash enables a high performance “mission critical business,” which efficiently manages data center resources while leveraging personnel more effectively. Continue reading

Mobile data recovery: a growing cause for concern

By Robert Winter, chief engineer, Kroll Ontrack

According to the International Telecommunication Union, the number of mobile phones worldwide is expected to exceed the world’s population by 2014, with overall penetration rates reaching 96 percent globally by the end of 2013.

Consistent with the widespread adoption of mobile devices, Kroll Ontrack saw a 55 percent increase in mobile device recoveries for phones and tablets from 2010 to 2011, and a 161 percent increase from 2011 to 2012. With more and more people storing valuable personal and business data on their mobile devices, there is no doubt the demand for recovery when something goes wrong will continue to climb. Continue reading

Data Governance and Social Media: First Things First

By  Peter Walker, UK country manager at Information Builders

The power of social media as a business tool is rapidly proving its worth, time and time again, despite a few lingering sceptics who would question its value. Furthermore, in the world of business intelligence (BI), social media tools offer myriad new resources for companies looking to gather information about their clients and develop a holistic viewpoint of each customer, which will ultimately help them improve products, service and the customers’ overall experience.

Indeed, social media can deliver huge BI value to corporations. But there’s also a flip side to consider. When not properly approached, defined and executed, social media can pose serious challenges to the business, its reputation and risk brand damage. Continue reading

Erasing the Battle Lines with Visual Analytics

By Guy Cuthbert, managing director at Atheon Analytics

With upwards of 30% of retail turnover now coming from promotions, it is becoming essential to ascertain the most appropriate promotions metric for each product category or customer demographic. Brands and retailers need to work together to maximise opportunities, minimise promotional spend and meet evolving customer demands for value.

Yet the reality is very different: far too often one partner is using its business intelligence weight to dominate the relationship, enforce performance measures or demand certain discount activity. Continue reading

Half of companies have lost a device with important data

By Abigail Phillips

Half of companies have lost a device with important company data on it, causing security implications for over a fifth of organisations, according to research conducted by Varonis.

Further, 57% of employees believe that BYOD puts their personal data at risk as well. Despite these concerns, the study also revealed that 86% of the workforce are obsessed with their devices. Continue reading

Big Data and the potential for the financial sector

By Jim Manzi, Chairman and Cofounder of Applied Predictive Technologies

Big Data has been receiving increasing amounts of media attention – but very little of this publicity focuses on how Big Data should be used to make smarter financial decisions. The value of Big Data lies not in the size of the database or its contents, but in the ability of organisations to leverage it to increase profits. The organisations that invest in solutions that sit on top of this data and help to make sense of it will drive a sustained competitive advantage.

What does Big Data actually mean? Big Data exists because data storage costs are now decreasing faster than processing costs. Storage productivity doubles every year, while processing productivity doubles every year-and-a-half.

The cumulative effect of this difference in productivity growth rates is creating huge pools of data that are unused because organisations can’t work out how to process and analyse the data that they collect at a feasible cost. Therefore, the real goal is to convert Big Data to ‘small’ data faster than competitors do. Achieving this goal requires an innovative approach. Continue reading

Turning everyday workers into data rockstars

By Jock Mackinlay, director of visual analysis, Tableau Software


Data is an invaluable asset. It can tell a business the average number of complaint calls the customer services team gets before it loses a client; what time of day the company makes the most significant sales, or highlight the most successful marketing campaigns by click through rates or incoming calls.

Data is one of the most important assets to any business, but it all depends on how it is viewed and accessed by employees. The only wrong way to look at data is to assume it is only for the technical geek in the IT department. Quite the opposite – data is for everyone! Continue reading

Seeing is believing – Cloud versus the physical data centre

By Jane Brett, Sales Director, Allied Telesis UKISA 

Despite the best efforts of cloud vendors to commend the virtues of migrating to the cloud, CTOs are still reluctant to put their trust in large cloud providers, preferring instead to store sensitive data and mission critical applications in their own data centres. It’s a human control characteristic – if you can see and touch you are safe.

Visualising that their data is ‘out there somewhere’ is frightening requiring the Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy when it all goes pear shaped. Bring a CFO into the conversation and the pitfalls could bring on a whole new dimension of cost consideration again – if I can see it, I know what I am paying for. If I can’t see it how do I know I am getting a fair deal? Continue reading

2013: The Year the Cloud Becomes Invisible

By Scott Crenshaw, SVP of Strategy and CMO, Acronis


The “Information Superhighway” sounds pretty silly to us these days. It harkens back to when the Web was more of a promise than a reality. Lately, we hardly even hear people talking about the Internet. That’s because the Internet is part of our everyday life and is basically invisible to its users. Maybe now it should be, “You’ve Always Got Mail.”

We forget that smart phones, streaming services like Netflix, and, to a great degree, the way we pay our bills and manage our finances all rely on the Internet. We take it for granted, but that’s because we can afford to. Continue reading