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Microsoft Surface Duo: Rethinking the Smartphone
September 14, 2020
For many of us a phone should predominantly be a way to communicate and aid productivity, as opposed to being a device of distractions. Though we communicate far differently these days, and the apps we use to communicate seem to prefer larger screens. This brings us to Microsoft's Surface Duo, which has twin screens and is very different from the foldable phones with which it will compete.
Linux: 29 Years and Counting as a Powerhouse OS
September 3, 2020
When Linux was born on Aug. 25, 1991, it was little more than a hobby for then 21-year old Linus Torvalds. Today the Linux community is estimated to be more than 86 million users strong. Awareness of Linux in the enterprise was nonexistent 29 years ago. Since then Linux has become the backbone of many large and small enterprises.
Digital Security Is as Easy as PGP
August 17, 2020
To be sure, there are specialized circles that make regular explicit use of PGP. My aim in treating PGP here is twofold. The first is to shed some light on it for the uninitiated. The second, and more importantly, is to teach the daring among you how to wield this powerful tool.
Anatomy of Failure: Why It's Problematic That Zuckerberg Is the Least Trusted Big Tech CEO
August 10, 2020
Last week we ran a survey asking people which of the CEOs that were questioned by Congress last month is the most trustworthy. Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg took the dubious prize for last place. Tim Cook of Apple was voted the most trustworthy. There shouldn't be any competition; Facebook has the tools and information access to assure it is beloved. Yet Apple, which doesn't have anywhere near that level of reach nor engagement, has a far better image. Let's talk about ironic incompetence.
Congress vs. Big Tech: Breaking Up Is Hard (and Stupid) to Do
August 3, 2020
Like a lot of you, last week I watched the congressional testimony from the CEOs of Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google -- and there were a lot of apparent things that were problematic. One is that there are folks in Congress that likely shouldn't be in Congress, and another is that each company has some serious issues they haven't dealt with.
10 Types of Social Proof and What Makes Them Effective
August 3, 2020
Social proof is an individual influencer or group clout that gives "proof" to a product. It is based on the principle that people tend to follow and conform to an influential person or a majority. They do this to be validated -- a result of a need for safety. Here are 10 kinds of social proof strategies -- and how and why they work.
The Case Against Full-Disk Encryption
July 27, 2020
The information security industry, with all its raging debates, has rallied around a small corpus of best practices. One of the highest on this list is full-disk encryption, which security experts regard as sacrosanct. This is the encryption that ensures that someone who snatches your device won't be able to know everything you've got saved on it. I'm here to make the case that most of you are better off not using it.
The Secrets of How IBM Maintains AI Leadership
July 13, 2020
IBM is chasing two of the three technology areas that I think will change the world as we know it over the next two decades. The three technology changes that I'm watching are robotics, AI computing, and quantum computing. IBM's focus has been on AI and quantum computing. I got an update on their AI efforts last week, and they have moved the ball a lot over the last few months.
Mercedes + Nvidia Could Catch Tesla and Create a Truly Smart Car
July 6, 2020
Last month Mercedes and Nvidia announced a relationship. The potential for Mercedes and Nvidia to change the very nature of personal transportation is carried within this partnership. This combination could be magical, both in terms of creating a better alternative to Tesla, and a deeper relationship between you and the company providing your car as a service.
The Trail to the Platform
July 1, 2020
Some years ago, Marc Benioff told me he was not interested in developing back office apps that would compete with SAP and Oracle in the ERP and finance market. Many people, myself included, looked askance at that idea and wondered out loud how the company would continue to grow because, hey, there's front office and back office and nothing else right? Nope.
Tech Products That Make It Easier to Stay Home
June 15, 2020
Being locked up at home can drive people a little nuts. Several technology products have been particularly helpful while sheltering in place, making this semi-forced timeout feel less like a punishment and more like something I could endure. The Atmoph Window 2, for example, looks like a picture on your wall, but inside the frame is a connected 27-inch 4K display that is tied to remote cameras.
Rethinking Remote Education
June 8, 2020
In these trying times, kids have to deal with a lot of stuff they weren't prepared for: a significant loss of weeks of education, damaged GPAs, and no assurance they'll be going back in the fall. However, some schools were able to pivot because they already had implemented remote programs that were mature, easily implemented, and designed by teachers for teachers.
Jack Dorsey and the End of Twitter
June 1, 2020
I'm a member of what is likely a reasonably sizable informal group of people who trained to be a CEO but declined the job -- in my case, several times. So I don't envy the position that Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is in as he tries to figure out a way to do the right thing concerning the spread of false information and defend his company against an attack by the designated leader of the free world.
CRM's K-Wave
May 26, 2020
These are extraordinary times, in case you haven't noticed. One of my contentions these days is that CRM is penetrating society to a point that it is taking on an outsized role -- the "CRMification" of society. In economics we often see a disruptive innovation climb a ladder as it becomes something that society needs, as well as wants, until it becomes essential.
Necessity May Give Us a Virtual Court System
May 25, 2020
One of the exciting things that came out of Microsoft Build was that the company has been working to create virtual court solutions. If done right, a virtual system could fix a lot of court-related problems. It would allow judges to work around their schedules better and give attorneys improved access to online resources. It also might provide a way for jurors to improve their understanding.
Work.com and the CRMification of Society
May 20, 2020
CRMification is the process by which the culture absorbs CRM technology, processes and techniques to achieve some kind of new utility for getting things done better, faster and cheaper. Today we should add safer too. Another way to state it is that CRM is a disruptive innovation in the culture. The next normal will have something to do with CRM.
4 Amazing Things Nvidia Showcased at Its Virtual GTC
May 18, 2020
Nvidia just held its GTC event, and of the virtual keynotes I've seen so far, CEO Jensen Huang's was the best. That's because the company made the decision to cut it into segments, mostly under 16 minutes, so viewers didn't have to watch things they weren't interested in. Also, Jensen mixed up the content between the speaker, videos and static images, so it was interesting to watch.
How to Stay Safe on the Internet, Part 4: Fighting the Power
May 15, 2020
Category 2 adversaries are nothing to sneeze at, but their resources are finite. If you armor up enough, they will give up, and move onto an easier comparable target. In confronting the threat of category 3, everything you have learned ratchets up to a whole new level of paranoia. Category 3 adversaries have functionally unlimited resources for pursuing top targets.
What's Going On With Oracle?
May 14, 2020
Oracle appears to be undergoing a kind of resurgence during the coronavirus crisis. Financial analysts are saying nice things about its ability to pay dividends even in tough times. Its technology, which always has been good, is seeing an interesting uptick. All of this is buffing the company's image after years of, yes-but responses from the market.
IBM's Strategic Approach to Diversity
May 11, 2020
IBM's outgoing CEO Ginni Rometty gave a compelling talk at IBM Think last week on how the company is fighting strategically for diversity. I know of only one other company, Cisco, that is taking a genuinely holistic, strategic view of the problem, resulting in a broad positive impact. The reason I can name only two companies is that most are taking a tactical approach.
Information Security: New Rules
May 8, 2020
Warren Buffet once said, "Only when the tide goes out do you discover who's been swimming naked." You can cover over a host of sins when times are good, but bad or unsafe practices will be exposed when times are rough. Time and experience have borne out the accuracy of this witticism in the financial arena -- and we're now seeing its applicability to the intersection of infosec and COVID-19.
3 Improvements the COVID-19 Pandemic May Force
May 4, 2020
The pandemic may force certain improvements but I'm not sure that it will, because political distractions are doing a rather good job of drawing our focus away from fixing things now. For instance, we should be ramping domestic manufacturing of PPEs and ventilators permanently to prepare for a likely huge fall spike in COVID-19 infections. Still, we aren't.
How to Stay Safe on the Internet, Part 3: Drive the Black Hatters Mad
May 1, 2020
Like conventional criminals, criminal hackers choose easy, lucrative targets. One group in the crosshairs is made up of companies that have data on millions of users, such as private sector entities with a Web presence. Why go after one user at a time when data is collected in one place? Criminal hackers also like to hunt small organizations that have modest capital but weak information security.
Cultural CRM-ization
April 29, 2020
You can reduce the story of CRM to a lot of things, especially its many component parts. Social networking, cloud computing and analytics are mentioned often. We don't need an exhaustive list, but if we stop there I think we miss a lot. To me CRM isn't about the parts, although like most people following the industry, I get a modicum of joy when a vendor adds something new to the toolbox.
Zoom Oracles Its Way to Center Stage
April 28, 2020
Oracle and Zoom just entered a deal that for once is more about technological audacity than about dollars -- a partnership to host Zoom on Oracle Cloud Infrastructure. In just a few months -- basically since the beginning of the novel coronavirus pandemic -- Zoom has seen demand for its service grow from about 10 million daily meeting participants to more than 300 million.
HP's COVID-19 Response: There Should Be an Award for This
April 27, 2020
Some of the troubling reports of corporate responses to COVID-19 include forced work in unsafe areas, not enough -- or any -- protection gear, massive layoffs and furloughs, and the sense that a critical mass of well-paid CEOs and politicians don't get that many people live paycheck to paycheck. There are exceptions though, and HP stands out, thanks to HR VP Tracy Keogh and CEO Enrique Lores.
How to Stay Safe on the Internet, Part 2: Take Canaries Into the Data Mine
April 24, 2020
More than any other factor, it is our asset that determines our adversary. For most of us, our asset is the corpus of sensitive personal details used for online transactions. This all comes down to how much data an adversary can glean from you, and how thoroughly it can analyze it. If your data passes through some software or hardware, its developer or maintainer enjoys some measure of control.
Contact Tracing With Salesforce
April 22, 2020
Contact tracing is a big job, like trying to drain an ocean with a teaspoon. It involves finding people who have been exposed to the coronavirus and testing them to determine if they are infected or are carriers. Public health officials then can take necessary steps to prevent the virus' spread. It's a perfect fit for CRM, and Salesforce's core technology is coming to the forefront.
Getting Back to Work: Could Intel's Bunny Suits Be in Our Post COVID-19 Future?
April 20, 2020
The reason governments had to shut down economies is that in the face of a pandemic, we could not tell who was sick and who was not. While widespread testing followed by a vaccine eventually will curb this virus, what about the next one? As we have seen, it takes months to develop tests and remedies for a new disease and more than a year to develop a vaccine.
How to Stay Safe on the Internet, Part 1
April 17, 2020
At this point, remarking that people now are more concerned about online privacy than ever before is not a novel observation. What's fascinating, though, is that interest in personal digital security has remained high since the issue exploded about seven years ago. In other words, instead of experiencing a short-lived spike, digital privacy awareness has been sustained. This is encouraging.
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What is the greatest challenge to organizations implementing Artificial Intelligence?
A shortage of talent with the skills to utilize AI to its full potential.
AI can be expensive and the return on investment is questionable to decision makers.
AI is an unfamiliar and complex technology that is not yet fully trusted.
AI has its own set of cybersecurity concerns which require additional resources.
Dependability of AI technology is still in doubt.
Many view AI as an unnecessary luxury.