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HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Warns Of Tough Times!

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Warns Of Tough Times!

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei just warned of tough times ahead, and called for his company to go into survival mode!

Here is what you need to know…

 

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Warns Of Tough Times!

On 22 August 2022, HUAWEI founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei posted a memo on its internal network, stating that “The entire company’s business policy should shift from the pursuit of expansion to the pursuit of profit and cash flow“.

In Ren’s opinion, the global economy will continue to decline and be in the doldrums for the next ten years, putting HUAWEI under great pressure.

He also said that it is unclear if HUAWEI can survive the 2023-2024 financial year, partially blaming its woes on a “continued blockade” by Western countries.

Therefore, he says HUAWEI must focus on its own survival, and shift from expanding to pursuing profit and improving cash flow over the next 3 years. To that end, the CEO said that HUAWEI will completely abandon its business in certain countries.

The HUAWEI CEO also said that the “chill” in business sentiment to be passed down to HUAWEI employees, linking their bonuses and promotions to business results. In addition, he called for responsibilities to be consolidated, which sounds like euphemism for job cuts.

This alarming memo by its CEO comes after HUAWEI – China’s largest company – saw revenue decline by 14% in the first three months of 2022, with its profit margin narrowing to 4.3% from 11.1% just a year ago.

The HUAWEI CEO appears to believe that China will experience a much longer and persistent economic slowdown spreading far beyond the current collapse of its real estate sector.

It is surprising to note that Chinese censors has not removed the memo, which suggests the HUAWEI CEO has enough clout to speak openly. His memo went viral on Chinese social media, and has been discussed and shared by more than 100 million Chinese netizens.

Recommended : Can HUAWEI Phones Get Free Calls + Internet From BeiDou?

 

HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei Tough Times Memo : Key Points

Here are the key points from HUAWEI CEO Ren Zhengfei’s “tough times” memo, machine-translated from NetEase:

Live with quality in the next three years

We have to see the difficulties faced by the company and the difficulties in the future. The next ten years should be a very painful historical period, and the global economy will continue to decline. Now, due to the impact of the war and the continued blockade and suppression by the United States, the world’s economy is unlikely to improve in the next 3 to 5 years. Coupled with the impact of the epidemic, there should be no bright spot in the world. Then the consumption power will be greatly reduced, which will not only put pressure on the supply, but also the pressure on the market.

Under such circumstances, Huawei’s overly optimistic expectations about the future will be lowered. In 2023 and even 2025, we must take survival as the main program to survive, and survive with quality. This slogan is very good. Every business must be carried out carefully.

If we have a little bit of hope in 2025 as planned, then we must first find a way to get through these three difficult years, and the basis of survival must be adjusted to focus on cash flow and real profits, not just sales revenue. The respite period of our life is 2023 and 2024. We are still not sure whether we can break through in these two years, so every mouth should not tell stories, but must talk about realization, especially when conducting business forecasts, do not No more illusions, telling stories to deceive the company, losses will be deducted from your food package, first of all, you must survive, and if you survive, you will have a future.

Blind investment business to shrink

The 2023 budget should maintain a reasonable pace, blind expansion, and blind investment in businesses should shrink or close.

The entire company must use the budget effectively, and cannot blindly close all projects. The manpower saved will go to the front line, continue to optimize the organization’s business, rationally staff the ICT infrastructure, or our black land granary. Competitive complex hardware platforms and complex software platforms, and the projects that hang on to ride on them must be picked out. The legion is to build a basic information platform and sell ICT better. The infrastructure is not for the ecology. The terminal is the foundation for our rise and breakthrough in the future, but it should not be blind. Now we need to narrow the front lines, concentrate our troops to fight the war of annihilation, and increase profits.

Huawei cloud computing should focus on supporting Huawei’s business development in a down-to-earth manner, and take the road of supporting the industrial Internet. Digital energy has increased investment in the strategic opportunity window, created greater value, contracted institutions, and strengthened combat teams. Smart car solutions cannot be rolled out on a complete front. It is necessary to reduce the research budget, strengthen the business closed loop, and take a modular approach to R&D, focusing on a few key components to be competitive, and the rest can be connected to others.

In addition to the main goal of continuous investment for survival and profitability, businesses that cannot generate value and profits in the next few years should be scaled down or closed, and human and material resources should be concentrated on the main channel. We must face the reality and not be too far away. The great ideal is to cut through the mess quickly, and the surplus personnel will be adjusted to the strategic reserve team, and then they will be combined into reasonable positions to grab food.

The peripheral business must be taken out of the strategic core. After the marginal business is taken out, we first evaluate whether it can be done well and how much resources are needed to do it well. If it is not possible to do a business with huge resource consumption, it is better to open it up and let others do it after closing it. We must do it, and if we do not do well enough, we will reorganize the combat team and change cadres. If there are some windows of opportunity, we expand the strategic resource pool of strategic reserve teams and cadres and experts, and form commandos to attack in the window of opportunity.

Adhere to seeking truth from facts, and shrinking in the market must be firm. We used to embrace the ideal of globalization and aspire to serve all mankind. What is our ideal now? Survive and earn a little wherever you have money. From this perspective, we need to adjust the market structure and study what can be done and what should be abandoned.

Give up part of the market

The first focus is on value market value customers, and the main force is used in the middle section of the normal distribution curve. In some countries, we completely give up in the market. We also have a fat meat market, and the people who used to eat bones are transferred to eat fat meat.

Second, for hard-fought countries and regions, as an assessment and training base for new cadres to be promoted in the future, some countries have low output. Although we still have to do it, should we no longer send soldiers to guard the top of the snow, because he will still be a soldier after he comes down? Xueshan Mountain is a test of people, and potential new cadres will have the opportunity to be promoted to army commander. Because it is easy to integrate a small country, he calculates from the estimated budget, contract, tender delivery, working hour quota, and the solution is all done together. When I came back, I passed 5 and 6 on the cadre’s resume and passed the threshold of 11 generals in one day. Of course, some employees have been on the frontier for a long time, and their incomes have decreased when they return to China. There is also the issue of children going to school.

Third, employees returning from overseas should have priority in obtaining skills training and job opportunities. Employees returning from overseas must have a period of protection to protect them from their posts and ensure that they receive certain training. The skills of personnel in difficult countries may be worse than those in China, because they do not have a realistic combat environment. How can they improve? Just like a soldier on the plateau, although he stood very high, he did not absorb any cosmic energy. They paid the price. They could not take the exam as soon as they returned to China, and then they were eliminated. No one wanted to go to such difficult areas, so we have to It is guaranteed that the returning employees have job arrangements and a relaxed study time. As for his ability to catch up during this period, it is another matter.

Financial planning needs to be done for cash flow. In times of crisis, the main purpose is to make blood. Although we say that it will improve in 2025, what if there are no shells by then? So that’s a wonderful plan, we have safe food measures.

The company has two major expenditures to distribute dividends to employees, including wage stability, which is to enhance internal confidence and cohesion, and repayment of loans to banks, which is to enhance the society’s trust in us. For projects that already have obvious potential risks, don’t have any illusions, and surface them as soon as possible, let the audit come to a conclusion, and quantify the risks. At the same time, it is still possible to continue to manage these assets that have been eliminated. Through management, risks can be turned into appropriate returns. We should not have a bubble in our hearts. When we look at the report, we will be very determined, but we will not actually be able to make money. to the money.

Let the chill pass to everyone

Consolidate responsibilities, and link bonuses, promotions and promotions to business results, so that the cold will be passed on to everyone.

First, in this year’s and next year’s assessment, the weight of cash flow and profit should be increased. It is better for sales revenue to decline a bit, but profit and cash flow to increase. The bonus for operating profit growth should be a little more, so as to encourage everyone to compete for profits.

Second, each responsibility center signs the assessment responsibility letter. The company should aim at the KPI-based reciprocal reward mechanism. The normal promotion and upgrading will remain unchanged next year, but the link with the equivalence of responsibility should be strengthened, which makes people feel cold year after year. , but we need to be patient and enthusiastic in our transition. I once told the executive board that the basic salary framework should not be changed. This is a rigid indicator, but if the employees are excellent, they can be promoted and upgraded, and the bonus can be very flexible. Why is it elastic? Encourage everyone to go to the battlefield to grab food, the front line is different from the agency.

Third, the bonuses of various businesses this year must widen the gap, and it is absolutely not allowed to force everyone to achieve the short-term goal of grabbing food. In the past, the company’s policy was basically to settle things down. Everyone didn’t feel the cold in winter. Everyone covered the quilt, but it was a little thicker and thinner. At the end of this year, businesses with more profit and cash flow will have more bonuses, and businesses that cannot create value will have very low bonuses. They don’t even force the business to commit suicide and pass on the cold.

At present, we have to survive, not to fight for our ideals. The legion competition is the year-end bonus, because the bonus is not given by the company, but the profit earned by the legion itself, and part of it is handed over to the company. If we cannot earn food, we must dare to Bonuses are not given because the basic income of the employees covers the necessities of life. Of course, some strategic businesses cannot create value in the short term, which we can determine through evaluation, but many marginal businesses with poor performance must be cut off. This is adjustment, consolidation, enrichment, and improvement.

Invest at all costs at the point of survival crisis

Quality is the primary productive force. We must adhere to this line. R&D must be responsible for the quality and performance of products, and we promise that service experts must have comprehensive capabilities. Poor quality products are a shame for R&D personnel. This sentence should be posted on On the wall of the R&D office area of ​​the R&D office, the rate of network failures around the world is getting higher and higher, and an accident may destroy the trust system of the entire market.

100-1=0, for our research and development, the research and development of single boards, the research and development of single devices, and the research and development of systems must put quality first. Quality is the best support guarantee for R&D and manufacturing personnel to market service personnel. If the quality of the product is not good, it is equivalent to letting the brothers brave the hail of bullets, ice and snow, hot and sweltering heat, and the new crown virus is charging on the front line. Therefore, we need to establish a reverse assessment mechanism. The first-line reverse assessment should not only assess the service organization of the agency, but also extend to the product line. If the quality is not good in the office, then the front line should be narrowed and the competitiveness should be improved.

We need to improve the status of the service system, and service experts must have a comprehensive ability to judge the network experience of accidents. In the past, we paid more attention to R&D than service, but now we also need to pay attention to the service system.

Reasonable, scientific and reasonable control of inventory. We must change from panic-stricken self-rescue in the past to high-quality self-rescue. We must pay attention to reducing inventory reasonably, and do not cause insufficient profits and tight cash flow of the company due to excessive inventory, which constitutes our new crisis. We can invest at all costs on strategic key opportunities and existential crises, but we cannot spend money on non-strategic opportunities.

 

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Why Microsoft Teams Suffered Such A Massive Outage!

Microsoft Teams has finally been restored after suffering a massive outage that lasted many hours!

Here was what happened…

 

Microsoft Teams Suffers Massive Outage!

On Wednesday, 20 July 2022, thousands of users were unable to access Microsoft Teams, and it continued into Thursdays, 21 July 2022.

This was a big problem, because Teams had become an integral part of daily operations for many businesses that had adapted to a hybrid work pattern during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Microsoft Teams users relied on the service to organise their workflow and communicate internally like making calls and messaging each other.

The MS Teams problem also affected other services downstream, with some users reporting issues with Microsoft Office 365 as well.

Microsoft acknowledged the downstream impact to multiple Office 365 services with Teams integration, like Microsoft Word, Office Online and SharePoint Online.

 

Why Microsoft Teams Suffered Such A Massive Outage!

After 1.5 hours after Teams went down, Microsoft announced that they found the root cause – “a recent deployment contained a broken connection to an internal storage device, which result in impact“.

That’s tech-speak for “we installed a system upgrade that pointed to a storage device that does not exist, so MS Teams stopped working“.

They quickly redirected traffic to “a healthy service to mitigate impact“, which have allowed unaffected users to continue using MS Teams, but it did not seem to help those who lost access.

Although they identified the root cause, restoration appears to be taking time. Two hours later, they could only report that “Microsoft Teams functionality is beginning to recover“, which they repeated two hours later.

In the meantime, affected MS Teams users are creatively expressing their “frustration” on social media…

Update @ 3:56 PM (GMT+8) : The Microsoft 365 team announced that Teams availability has “mostly recovered“, but “a few service features” still required attention.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Chinese Netizens Explode Over WPS Office Censorship!

Chinese netizens are incensed over evidence that WPS Office was monitoring and deleting their files!

Find out what’s going on, and what it means for the digital privacy of WPS Office users!

 

Chinese Netizens : WPS Office Is Monitoring + Blocking Our Documents!

Chinese company, Kingsoft, is under fire for claims that its productivity suite WPS Office is actively monitoring and deleting user documents that might displease Beijing!

At the heart of this issue is the WPS Cloud platform that works like Microsoft 365, allowing users to store their documents in the cloud, or locally.

Chinese netizens are alleging that WPS Office was actively monitoring their documents, and even deleting those that were detected to contain content that might displease the Chinese authorities.

One novelist who goes by the pseudonym Mitu, claimed that she was unable to access her unpublished 1.3 million character document. Not only was it blocked in her cloud storage, she couldn’t access the local copy using the desktop WPS client.

She was told that “the file may contain sensitive content and access has been disabled“.

Mitu shared her experience on Lkong – an online Chinese literature forum, and the social media platform Xiaohongshu, in late June 2022; and it only began trending in Weibo in early July after an influencer reposted her complaint.

A Weibo post on her complaint appears to have been deleted, but fortunately a screenshot was captured. This was the post in Chinese, machine translated into English :

Simply put, WPS seems to have some kind of sensitive word harmony function, Then after being detected, not only the ones stored on the cloud disk will be harmonized

According to the victim’s complaint, it is not only on the cloud, but also on local files. It’s hard to escape a harmony.

At present, according to some netizens, it may be checked after being saved.Sensitive words are detected and then determined to be files that may contain sensitive information,

Directly blocked, or it may be directly locked after being remotely detected by the background server local files There is no other way but to appeal (and it will be fixed in time) but this Is it remote from the server?

Now there is a lot of panic in the online literature circle, for fear that hundreds of thousands of words of manuscripts will be blocked overnight. Asking both online and offline harmony, many people re-use ms and writing pads write file

Mitu said she reported the problem to Kingsoft, which eventually apologised and restored access to the file within two days. The company admitted that “the file was not problematic”.

However, her story spurred other Chinese netizens to come forward with their own stories. A writer in Guangzhou who goes by the pseudonym Liu Hai also said that his WPS Office document of nearly 10,000 words was similarly blocked on July 1, 2022.

These incidents have sparked concerns about privacy in China. While the Chinese government routinely monitors and censors social media content, monitoring and blocking of personal documents would represent a new level of censorship in China.

 

WPS Office Admits Blocking File Access

After the online furore over claims that WPS Office deleted user files, the software developer issued a terse public statement on July 11, 2022.

It said that WPS Office does not delete the “user’s local files”, and that it was a misunderstanding. They only deleted the “online document link”, and blocked “others from access the link according to the law”.

Here is the Weibo post in Chinese, machine translated into English :

Statement on the exposure of online transmission #WPS will delete the user’s local files

A recent online document link shared by a user is suspected of violating the law, and we have prohibited others from accessing the link according to law. This has been misrepresented as #WPS delete user local files.

To this end, we specifically declare: WPS, as an office software developed for more than 30 years, has always put user experience and user privacy protection first.

WPS Office cleverly claims that it never “censors, locks or delete users’ local files”, which is technically correct but as Mitu and Liu Hai described, WPS Office blocks access to their users’ local files.

It was discovered that the files can still be opened by other software, like Microsoft Word or Tencent Docs. But the blocked files cannot be opened by WPS Office, even if they are stored locally (in the user’s computer).

It should be noted that Mitu never shared her file online. So WPS Office’s claim that they only blocked “others” from accessing the file is misleading.

 

WPS Office Not The Only Cloud Provider Monitoring Content

To be fair to WPS Office and Kingsoft, they are not the only ones monitoring content uploaded to the cloud. They just took things one step further by blocking access to local files.

By default, traffic to and from cloud-based productivity services like Google Docs, Microsoft 365 and WPS Office are not end-to-end encrypted.

That means they can and most likely are reading / monitoring EVERYTHING you type or upload. This includes files uploaded and stored in cloud-based storage services like Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive.

That is the right of cloud service providers, because you are using their servers to store your content.

Google, for example, lists content that can be automatically removed and could even lead to a ban :

  • Account hijacking
  • Account inactivity
  • Child sexual abuse and exploitation
  • Circumvention
  • Dangerous and illegal activities
  • Harassment, bullying, and threats
  • Hate speech
  • Impersonation and misrepresentation
  • Malware and similar malicious content
  • Misleading content
  • Non-consensual explicit imagery
  • Personal and confidential information
  • Phishing
  • Regulated goods and services
  • Sexually explicit material
  • Spam
  • System interference and abuse
  • Unauthorized images of minors
  • Violence and gore
  • Violent organizations and movements

People need to be aware of this, and stop assuming that they have privacy on such cloud services, even if they paid to use them.

So it is not surprising that WPS Office monitors everything its users do. If they stopped at blocking access to the online files that contravened local laws, no one would bat an eye.

What is unusual though is that it also blocked access to the users’ local files! That means that their desktop and mobile apps were specifically designed to enforce a list of blocked files issued by WPS Office / Kingsoft.

If WPS Office / Kingsoft goes to that extent, does it mean that they would also alert the Chinese authorities about users producing content that displease them?

That is something everyone should think about, not just Chinese netizens who are justifiably concerned about WPS Office.

 

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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Cloudflare Went Down, Knocking Many Websites Offline!

Many websites were knocked offline today, after Cloudflare suffered a major outage and went down!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Cloudflare Went Down, Knocking Many Websites Offline!

At around 6:30 AM UTC, Cloudflare – the popular content delivery network (CDN) went down, knocking large parts of the Internet offline.

This is ironic, because many websites rely on Cloudflare to not only speed up page loading for their users, but also to mitigate or prevent downtimes from DDoS attacks and server failures.

Cloudflare declared it a critical P0 incident at around 6:34 AM, noting that “connectivity has been disrupted in broad regions“. Instead of loading, all affected websites would show a 500 Internal Server Error message.

Tech ARP was affected, and so were many popular websites and online services like Discord, Omegle, Medium, Feedly, Epic Games, etc.

 

Cloudflare Now Up, After Down For An Hour!

They finally identified the issue about 23 minutes later. The fix took another 23 minutes, but by 7 AM UTC, they restored connectivity.

After monitoring for about an hour, the Cloudflare team declared the P0 critical incident “resolved”0 at 8:06 AM UTC.

Cloudflare has not revealed what caused the outage, but right now, most people are just glad that they resolved in within an hour!

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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TikTok Leak : China Repeatedly Accessed Private User Data!

Leaked audio from internal TikTok meetings show that private user data has been repeatedly accessed from China!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Privacy Promise By TikTok : Overseas Data Stored In US + Singapore

For many years now, TikTok has repeatedly assured users that all data collected from users outside of China, stays out of China and is thus, not accessible to anyone in China.

To ensure that the Chinese government has no access to the data, one of the measures they took was to store all data collected overseas in servers located in the United States, with backups in Singapore.

This was explicitly stated in their New Privacy Policy :

We store the information described in the What Information We Collect section in servers located in the United States and Singapore.

Most people may not realise this, but they also added a caveat right after that, stating that their Corporate Group (in China) may remotely access the data…

When entities in our Corporate Group need information to help us provide the Platform, they remotely access the information pursuant to authorised and secure access controls.

 

TikTok Leak : China Repeatedly Accessed Private User Data!

Buzzfeed News recently received audio recordings from more than eighty (80) internal TikTok meetings, in which employees admitted that engineers in China accessed private user data.

This was despite a TikTok executive’s sworn testimony at an October 2021 US Senate hearing at the same time period, that a “world-renowned, US-based security team” decides who gets access to the private user data.

Instead, the leaked audio revealed that US staff did not have permission or knowledge of how to access the data. Rather, it was their colleagues in China who determined how and who accessed the private user data.

The leaked tapes ultimately show that TikTok may have misled lawmakers, users, and the public by downplaying the fact that their private data is readily accessible by employees in China, and potentially, the Chinese government.

Everything Is Seen In China

Eight different employees stated in nine statements that they had to refer to their colleagues in China to make those decisions.

Everything is seen in China“, said a member of TikTok’s Trust and Safety department in a September 2021 meeting.

In another September 2021 meeting, a TikTok director referred to a Beijing-based engineer as a “Master Admin” who “has access to everything“.

There’s Some Backdoor To Access User Data…

Fourteen of the leaked audio recordings were with, or about, a team of Booz Allen Hamilton consultants that TikTok brought in to investigate how data flows through TikTok and ByteDance’s internal tools.

In September 2021, one Booz Allen Hamilton consultant told colleagues that the tools felt like they had backdoors to access user data :

I feel like with these tools, there’s some backdoor to access user data in almost all of them, which is exhausting.

Oracle Only Providing Storage For Project Texas

TikTok has been working on what they call Project Texas – securely storing overseas data in Oracle cloud servers to comply with CFIUS (Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States).

Project Texas is limited to protecting the private information of US users, like phone numbers and birthdays – details that are not publicly visible, or have been set to private.

Such data will be stored at an Oracle datacenter in Texas – hence the name, and would only be accessible to specific US-based TikTok employees.

However, TikTok’s head of global cyber and data defense made clear that Oracle was only providing the data storage space for Project Texas. Ultimately, TikTok would be setting up the servers, and controlling everything.

It’s almost incorrect to call it Oracle Cloud, because they’re just giving us bare metal, and then we’re building our VMs [virtual machines] on top of it.

Unique IDs Not Protected Information

In one of the leaked audio recordings from a January 2022 meeting, TikTok’s head of product and user operations announced with a laugh that the Unique ID (UID) will not be amongst the protected content under the CFIUS agreement.

The conversation continues to evolve. We recently found out that UIDs are things we can have access to, which changes the game a bit.

Other Data Not Stored On Oracle Servers

The problem with Project Texas is that it only addresses US users… and only a small subset of their data.

Everything else – including private user data from non-US countries – will stay in their US and Singapore servers that remain accessible to ByteDance’s Beijing offices.

 

Response By TikTok : 100% US Data Traffic Routed To Oracle

TikTok publicly announced on the same day – June 17, 2022, that it changed the “default storage location of US user data“, and that “100% of US user traffic is being routed to Oracle Cloud Infrastructure“.

Although they “expect” to fully pivot to Oracle cloud servers located in the US, they will continue to use their existing US and Singapore servers for backup, and delete US users’ private data over time.

While this may address some of the privacy concerns for US users, it does not address the other privacy concerns revealed in the leaked audio recordings… or the privacy concerns of non-US users.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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Google : You Can Use Gmail For FREE With Custom Domain!

Google just changed its mind and will allow you to continue using Gmail for FREE with your own domain!

Here is what you need to know!

 

Earlier : You Must Migrate Free Gmail To Google Workspace Subscription!

Google officially got rid of G Suite, rebranding it as Google Workspace and introducing a cloud-based solution that is more integrated and offers real-time collaboration.

At that time, they still allowed people with free Gmail accounts to continue using them, with custom domains. Like adrian@mywebsite.com, for example.

That changed in January 2022, when Google announced that it “will now transition all remaining users to an upgraded Google Workspace paid subscription based on your usage“.

In other words – you must pay Google if you want to continue using Gmail with a custom domain.

Google gave everyone until May to migrate their emails out of Gmail, or pay to continue using it. Then they delayed it to 1 June to give people more time to decide.

But they met with a lot of anger, and resistance. It was not just a matter of migrating emails from Gmail to a cheaper or even free email service like Zoho.

Many people also use the same Gmail account with a custom domain, to sign in for various services including Google services and Android smartphones. They would have LOST the ability to retrieve or change their password, or even login in certain instances.

 

Now : You Can Use Gmail For FREE With Custom Domain!

Fortunately, Google appeared to have realised that trying to blackmail loyal Gmail users (albeit free users) into boosting their profit margins was not only bad press, it was counterproductive.

For example, how will Google manage purchases people made in the Google Play Store? Will losing data from so many people be worth it?

In the end, Google folded and quietly allowed people to continue using Gmail for free, and with their custom domain to boot!

From now until 27 June 2022, you will have the option of signing up to continue using Gmail for free, with your custom domain.

Just head to your account’s Google Admin Console, and you should see this option pop-up. Just click Confirm for personal use, and you are done!

Not only will you get to continue using Gmail for free, and retain your custom domain, you will also :

  • retain access to free Google Workspace services like Google Drive, Google Meet, Google Search, Google Maps and YouTube
  • keep your purchases in Google Play, and data stored on Google Workspace

However, Google “may” remove business functionality, and will not provide support.

If you had earlier agreed to pay for Google Workspace after getting the migration prompt, but wish to switch to this “non-commercial personal use” option, you need to contact Google Support.

 

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He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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KKM : MySejahtera Was NOT Sold To Private Company!

The Malaysia Ministry of Health has clarified that the MySejahtera app and its data was not sold to any private company.

Here is what you need to know!

 

Claim : MySejahtera Was Sold To Private Company!

Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim claimed that MySejahtera will be sold to a private company – MySJ Sdn. Bhd. through direct negotiation.

The MySejahtera application was rolled out in April 2020, under the Malaysia Ministry of Health (KKM). It was built by KPISoft (now Entomo) as a corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative.

According to his statement, the government appointed MySJ Sdn. Bhd. through direct negotiation to take over MySejahtera on 26 November 2021.

Then in December 2021, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) proposed that the government should take over MySejahtera since it is now “an integral part of the national health system”.

 

KKM : MySejahtera Was NOT Be Sold To Private Company!

On 27 March 2022, the Malaysia Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin issued a press statement, clarifying that the government did not sell MySejahtera to any private company.

Here are the key points of his statement on the claims that MySejahtera was sold to MySJ Sdn. Bhd. :

  1. On 26 November 2021, the government decided that MySejahtera is owned by the government, and the Ministry of Health (KKM) was appointed as the main owner of the application.
  2. The government did not pay KPISoft any money for the development of MySejahtera, which was carried out from 27 March 2020 until 31 March 2021.
    This was based on the company’s offer to let the government use the app for one year for free, as a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) initiative.
  3. After the CSR period ended on 31 March 2021, the government agreed to extend the use of MySejahtera, and work with KPISoft to expand its features.
  4. On 26 November 2021, the government ordered KKM to form a Price Negotiation Committee comprising of stakeholder agencies to negotiate the purchase and service maintenance of MySejahtera for two (2) years.
    The scope of the procurement and management of the MySejahtera app included operating MySejahtera, system development including additional modules, maintenance, datacenter management and third-party services like Google Map and Places API, as well as SMS services.
  5. On 28 February 2022, the Ministry of Finance approved KKM’s procurement of the MySejahtera app.
  6. MySejahtera data has been under KKM’s supervision from the first day it was used, and the data is processed according to KKM procedures.
  7. KKM does not share MySejahtera data with any government agency, or private companies.
  8. All data from the MySejahtera app are uploaded to a cloud server network, and can only be accessed by the MySejahtera app only.

In short, the MySejahtera app was not sold to any private company, and was purchased by the Ministry of Health with approval from the Ministry of Finance on 28 February 2022.

 

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Ranhill Selects Maxis As Voice + Cloud Provider!

Ranhill just selected Maxis as their voice and cloud connectivity provider!

Here is what you need to know…

 

Ranhill Selects Maxis To Boost Voice + Cloud Connectivity

On 12 January 2022, Ranhill SAJ Sdn Bhd (Ranhill) selected Maxis as their voice and cloud connectivity provider, leveraging their portfolio of converged solution capabilities.

Maxis will now connect 77 Ranhill sites across Johor, including their headquarters and water treatment plants through its Managed Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN).

Once implemented, the higher bandwidth and resilient network will allow Ranhill to have real-time visibility of their data, allowing them to make quicker and better decisions to increase productivity and efficiency of their 2,000 employees.

“We are pleased to be selected by Ranhill as their connectivity, voice and cloud solutions provider. Through our unique capabilities and experience, we are able to offer Ranhill a fully managed service portfolio from onboarding right up to 24/7 support with greater cost effectiveness and flexibility.  As their partner, we want to ensure that their connectivity needs are met so that they can operate efficiently and have the peace of mind of being well prepared for their digital transformation journey and to Always Be Ahead in a changing world, said Paul McManus, Chief Enterprise Business Officer, Maxis.

“Selecting Maxis as our service provider and partner is an integral step to realising our vision of becoming a world-class water utility company. By connecting all our sites with the latest technology from Maxis, we will be better equipped to support the people of Johor through efficient management of quality water supply. We now have the necessary infrastructure and platform to unlock the benefits of digitalisation as part of our on-going effort to further enhance customer experience,” said Nor Ifuan Md Nor, Chief Executive Officer, Ranhill SAJ. 

Maxis will also address Ranhill’s voice communication needs, providing high quality voice services, which is particularly important in rural areas.

Maxis and Ranhill are also exploring future collaboration related to Internet of Things (IoT), cloud services and cybersecurity, as part of Ranhill’s next phase of digitalisation of their organisation.

 

Maxis Managed SD-WAN Services That Ranhill Will Use

The Maxis managed SD-WAN services that Ranhill will use, runs on Cisco Meraki technology, which simplifies operational tasks like configuration, management and maintenance through automation and intelligence.

Ranhill will have access to a converged connectivity solution that is flexible, scalable and cost-effective. On top of that, the built-in security in SD-WAN also enables end-to-end secure communications, and network-wide security policies.

 

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Support my work through a bank transfer /  PayPal / credit card!

Name : Adrian Wong
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Dr. Adrian Wong has been writing about tech and science since 1997, even publishing a book with Prentice Hall called Breaking Through The BIOS Barrier (ISBN 978-0131455368) while in medical school.

He continues to devote countless hours every day writing about tech, medicine and science, in his pursuit of facts in a post-truth world.

 

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NTT Launches Fifth Data Center In Malaysia – Cyberjaya 5!

NTT Ltd just launched their fifth data centre in Malaysia – Cyberjaya 5 (CBJ5)!

Here is a quick look at what NTT Cyberjaya 5 offers!

 

NTT Launches Fifth Data Center In Malaysia – Cyberjaya 5

On 3 February 2021, NTT Ltd announced the launch of their fifth data center in Malaysia – Cyberjaya 5 (CBJ5).

Located within the NTT Cyberjaya Campus, this new 107,000 square feet data center is designed for hyperscalers and high-end enterprises in Malaysia’s growing digital economy.

CBJ5 supports 6.5 megawatts of flexible and scalable power, and boasts a Tier IV-ready, compact and modular design, with a cooling wall system that handles up to 15 kilowatts per rack.

NTT clients will have greater access to flexible, scalable and secure infrastructure in Malaysia – a regional data center hub.

“The demand for data storage and managed hosting services is expected to grow exponentially across Malaysia. This fifth data center will meet the expanding needs of organizations to reach their digital business objectives, in particular the FSI sector, as our data center complies with the Risk Management in Technology (RMiT) guideline set by Bank Negara Malaysia. We hope to play a key role in providing the vital data capacity at a high speed to keep Malaysia’s digital ecosystems and the digital economy ticking.” said Henrick Choo, CEO, NTT Ltd. in Malaysia.

 

NTT Cyberjaya 5 : Part Of Strategic ASEAN Hub

CBJ5 is connected to the existing Asia Submarine-cable Express (ASE) and Asia Pacific Gateway (APG) cable system, and will eventually be linked to the upcoming MIST cable system.

The MIST cable system will be available by end 2022 and it is a strategic joint venture for international submarine cables in South East Asia, with Orient Link Pte. Ltd.. It will enable NTT Ltd. to expand its offerings into India and beyond, while the ASE and APG cable systems provide global connectivity from Asia to United States.

This new expansion in Malaysia is part of NTT Global Data Centres division’s growth strategy. Malaysia is a prime data centre market in the ASEAN region, due to the abundant availability of resources, and favourable government policies.

“NTT places Asia Pacific as a tactical key region, and Malaysia – a strategic hub for the submarine cables operated by NTT such as the new MIST cable system, as well as the existing Asia Submarine-cable Express (ASE) and Asia Pacific Gateway (APG). Furthermore, CBJ5 will drive business opportunities in Asia through the upcoming MIST cable system which will link all our large-scale data centers in the region. Our continued commitment to Malaysia will help position NTT as a technologically innovative leader to address the industries of the future,” said Ryuichi Matsuo, Executive Vice President for NTT Ltd.’s Global Data Centers division.

“The pandemic also illustrated the importance of effective connectivity and reliable infrastructure to ensure business continuity. NTT’s global data center platform offers flexible, scalable and secure infrastructure along with a full-stack of customizable solutions that clients can utilize to support their digital transformation needs and maintain critical applications in a comprehensive, hybrid IT environment,” he concluded.

 

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2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP Series IDPA : What’s New?

Dell Technologies just announced the 2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP Series appliances!

Here is what you need to know about the next-generation integrated data protection appliances!

 

2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP Series : What Is It?

The 2020 PowerProtect DP series is the next-generation family of integrated data protection appliances (IDPA) from Dell Technologies.

They offer a complete solution for backup, recovery, replication, deduplication, cloud readiness with disaster recovery, and long-term rotation to the public cloud!

The 2020 Dell EMC DataProtect DP series are all-in-one data protection solutions that offer :

  • Storage capacities from 8 terabytes to 1 petabyte
  • Greater efficiency, with up to 65:1 data reduction
  • Up to 38% faster backups, and up to 45% faster restores, compared to previous generation.
  • Instant access and restore of up to 50% greater IOPS, compared to previous generation.
  • Consumes up to 23% less power than the previous generation
  • Cloud long-term retention, and cloud DR-ready
  • VMware integration

The 2020 Dell EMC DataProtect DP series is also guaranteed under the Future-Proof Program, and is part of the Dell Technologies on Demand program.

 

2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP Series : Models + Key Specifications

The 2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP series consists of four models – DP4400, DP5900, DP8400 and DP8900. Here are their key specifications.

Specifications DP4400 DP5900 DP8400 DP8900
Physical Capacity 8 TB to 96 TB 96 TB to 288 TB 192 TB to 768 TB 576 TB to 1 PB
Physical Capacity
with Cloud Tier
Up to 288 TB Up to 864 TB Up to 2.3 PB Up to 3 PB
Logical Capacity Up to 4.8 PB Up to 18.7 PB Up to 49.9 PB Up to 65 PB
Logical Capacity
with Cloud Tier
Up to 14.4 PB Up to 56.1 PB Up to 149.7 PB Up to 195 PB
Max Throughput Up to 9 TB/hr Up to 33 TB/hr Up to 57 TB/hr Up to 94 TB/hr
Drive Type SAS 12 TB SAS 4 TB SAS 8 TB SAS 8 TB
Networking 8 x RJ45, or
8 x SFP
4 x 40 GbE uplinks
Each Quad SFP port can be split into 4 x 10 GbE
Max. Power 475 VA 2,830 VA 5,480 VA 7,250 VA
Thermal Rating 1,620 BTU/hr 9,300 BTU/hr 17,800 BTU/hr 23,400 BTU/hr

 

2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect DP Series : Availability

The 2020 Dell EMC PowerProtect series appliances – DP4400, DP5900, DP8400 and DP8900 – will be available globally in December 2020.

 

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Google Play Music Is Dead : How To Download Your Music?

Google Play Music is officially dead across the world, and you have until December 2020 to migrate your music library and playlists to YouTube Music.

Find out how to download your music library and playlists from Google Play Music before they are deleted forever!

 

Google Play Music Is Dead : Whaaaaat???

On 4 April 2020, Google dropped the bombshell – they announced that they were replacing Google Play Music play with YouTube Music by December 2020.

They would kill off Google Play Music starting September 2020 in New Zealand and South Africa, and October 2020 for the rest of the world.

Users will no longer be allowed to stream from, or use the Google Play Music app from that point onwards. They will only be allowed to transfer their music libraries to YouTube Music.

Even that migration offer is limited to December 2020, after which the Google Play Music libraries will be deleted and will no longer be available to download or transfer to YouTube Music.

 

Google Play Music Is Dead : Download Your Music Now!

Google offers the option to migrate your Google Play Music libraries and playlists to YouTube Music, but you may not want to do that for these reasons :

  • 128 kbps quality limit for free subscriptions
  • you can’t upload your own music through the app, only using an Internet browser
  • offline playback of your own music requires you to upload and then download the same music

Before deciding what to do next, the first thing you should do is download your music library.

You have until the end of December 2020 to download your music, so do it now!

  1. Open Google Play Music.
  2. Tap on Manage Your Data.
  3. Tap on Download your music library.

  1. Leave Google Play Music checked.
  2. Select to export once.
  3. Select the more common .zip file format, or the .tgz alternative
  4. Select the maximum file size you prefer – 1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB, 10 GB or 50 GB.
    Google will split your files into multiple compressed files based on the maximum size you selected.
    Newer operating systems (Windows 10, macOS) can support files larger than 4 GB.

  1. Tap Create export and let Google archive and compress your music library.
  2. You will receive an email with a download link when it’s done.

 

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Samsung Cloud Termination : What You Need To Know!

The end is almost here – Samsung Cloud will soon be gone, replaced by Microsoft OneDrive!

Here is what you need to know about Samsung Cloud’s shutdown process, and what you need to do.

 

Samsung Cloud Termination : What You Need To Know!

It is official. Samsung Cloud will be replaced by Microsoft OneDrive, and it starts with the termination of its Gallery Sync and Drive services.

Samsung Cloud users have all been notified about this move, and if you haven’t seen the notice yet, check your email spam folder.

Shutdown Process Group 1 Group 2
– Gallery Sync + Drive stops working
– OneDrive migration available
– Data download available
5 October 2020 onwards 1 December 2020 onwards
– Gallery Sync and Drive no longer available
– OneDrive migration no longer available
– Premium storage subscription terminated
1 April – 29 June 2021 1 June – 30 August 2021
– Data download no longer available 30 June 2021 31 August 2021

Phase 1 : Limited Service

Depending on where you live, you will have until March 2021 (Group 1) or May 2021 (Group 2) to migrate your data to Microsoft OneDrive.

You can choose to download your data, or migrate to OneDrive.

  • If you choose to download your data, it will be completely deleted from Samsung Cloud 90 days after that.
  • If you select to migrate to OneDrive, your data stored in Samsung Cloud will be transferred to OneDrive, and deleted.

Phase 2 : Service Discontinued

From 1 April 2021 (Group 1) or 1 June 2021 (Group 2) onwards, Gallery Sync and Drive services will be disabled, and premium subscriptions automatically cancelled.

The OneDrive migration option will no longer be available, but you will still be allowed to download your data.

Phase 3 : Data Deleted

Samsung will give you until 29 June 2021 (Group 1) or 30 August 2021 (Group 2) to download your data, after which everything is deleted.

 

Samsung Cloud to Microsoft OneDrive Migration

You will receive a OneDrive integration notification in Gallery, My Files or the Samsung Cloud app, and opt to begin the process.

Alternatively, you can choose to begin the migration process through these apps :

  • Samsung Cloud app : More > Settings > Link with OneDrive
  • Gallery app : More > Settings > Cloud Sync or Switch to OneDrive
  • My Files app : More > Settings > Make the Switch to OneDrive

Once you start the process, follow these instructions :

  1. Tap Move to OneDrive
  2. Check “I agree to Samsung Cloud Service Changes”
  3. Tap Connect
  4. Tap Connect accounts and sign into your Microsoft OneDrive account
  5. Let the data sync finish and then tap Done

 

Download Data From Samsung Cloud

You can download your Samsung Cloud data through the Download my data menu :

  • Samsung Cloud app : Download my data
  • Gallery : More > Settings > Download content from cloud

Once you start the process, you will have 90 days before the data is deleted completely in Samsung Cloud :

  1. Tap Download my data
  2. Select the data you want to download
  3. Tap Download
  4. Let the download process complete

You can check the download process in the notification bar. But note that if you choose to cancel, it will cancel the entire download process, and you will have to start afresh.

 

Samsung Cloud Termination Process : Country Grouping

This is done automatically, based on your Samsung account information.

Group 1 : Albania, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, United States, Vietnam

Group 2 : Afghanistan, Algeria, American Samoa, Andorra, Angola, Anguilla, Antarctica, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Armenia, Aruba, Azerbaijan, Bahamas, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belize, Benin, Bermuda, Bhutan, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, British Indian Ocean Territory, British Virgin Islands, Brunei, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Cape Verde, Cayman Islands, Central African Republic, Chad, Chile, China, Christmas Island, Colombia, Comoros, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Cuba, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, East Timor, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Falkland Islands, Faroe Islands, Fiji, French Guiana, French Polynesia, French Southern Territories, Gabon, Gambia, Georgia, Ghana, Gibraltar, Greenland, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guam, Guatemala, Guernsey, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Hong Kong, India, Iran, Iraq, Isle of Man, Israel, Ivory Coast, Jamaica, Japan, Jersey, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Kiribati, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Lesotho, Liberia, Libya, Macao, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Marshall Islands, Martinique, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mayotte, Mexico, Micronesia, Moldova, Monaco, Mongolia, Montenegro, Montserrat, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, Netherlands Antilles, New Caledonia, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Niue, Northern Mariana Islands, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Palestinian Territory, Panama, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Qatar, Republic of the Congo, Reunion, Russia, Rwanda, Saint Helena, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Pierre and Miquelon, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, San Marino, Sao Tome and Principe, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Solomon Islands, Somalia, South Africa, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Suriname, Svalbard and Jan Mayen, Swaziland, Syria, Taiwan, Tajikistan, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo, Tokelau, Tonga, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Turks and Caicos Islands, Tuvalu, U.S. Virgin Islands, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United States Minor Outlying Islands, Uruguay, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu, Vatican, Venezuela, Wallis and Futuna, Western Sahara, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

 

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Hitachi Vantara : 2020 HCI Portfolio Updates Revealed!

Hitachi Vantara just unveiled their 2020 HCI (Hyperconverged Infrastructure) portfolio, with updates to the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP). Here are the details…

 

Hitachi Vantara : 2020 HCI Portfolio Updates

Hitachi Vantara today unveiled their 2020 HCI (Hyperconverged Infrastructure) portfolio, featuring updates to Hitachi UCP HC and Hitachi UCP RS.

  • Faster provisioning with new Hitachi UCP Advisor
  • Certified support for SAP HANA workloads
  • New Intel Cascade Lake Xenon Refresh processors for increased performance
  • Enhanced lifecycle management capabilities for non-disruptive upgrades

The updated 2020 Hitachi Vantara HCI solutions unify cloud infrastructure management with interoperability across their customer’s environments, whether they are using traditional storage, HCI-powered hybrid clouds or public clouds.

These new HCI offerings include a scalable and simplified foundation for hybrid clouds, allowing customers to rapidly scale-out, when increased datacenter resources are required.

Unified Cloud Management

Customers have the flexibility to build a cloud infrastructure with seamless workload and data mobility across on-premises and public cloud environments.

Hitachi UCP Advisor accelerates provisioning up to 80% faster compared to previous HCI management tools and reduces management complexity across the environment.

Scalable Performance

Greater performance, scale and density support IT departments’ ability to rapidly scale data center resources for business-critical applications and lower operational overhead for better TCO.

The updated HCI platforms provide certified support for SAP HANA workloads on HCI. Intel Cascade Lake Refresh Xeon processors increase performance for workload consolidation while avoiding resource contention issues.

Hitachi HCI solutions help reduce CapEx and OpEx overhead with advanced automation and data efficiency technologies.

Simplified Consumption

Everflex from Hitachi Vantara provides simple, elastic and comprehensive acquisition choices for the entire Hitachi Vantara portfolio, including the UCP Family, with consumption-based pricing models that align IT spend with business use and help lower costs by up to 20% with pay-as-you-go pricing.

Customers can also accelerate time to production with pre-validated and optimized bundles and starter packs, including solutions enabling remote work.

 

2020 Hitachi Vantara HCI Portfolio : Availability

The 2020 Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC and Hitachi Unified Compute Platform RS are available from Hitachi Vantara and their global network of business partners, with immediate effect.

 

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Google Cloud Confidential VM With 2nd Gen AMD EPYC!

Google recently introduced Confidential Computing, with Confidential VM as the first product, and it’s powered by 2nd Gen AMD EPYC!

Here’s an overview of Confidential Computing and Confidential VM, and how they leverage the 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processor!

 

Google Cloud Confidential Computing : What Is It?

Google Cloud encrypts customer data while it’s “at-rest” and “in-transit“. But that data must be decrypted because it can be processed.

Confidential Computing addresses that problem by encrypting data in-use – while it’s being processed. This ensures that data is kept encrypted while in memory and outside the CPU.

 

Google Cloud Confidential VM, Powered By 2nd Gen AMD EPYC

The first product that Google is unveiling under its Confidential Computing portfolio is Confidential VM, now in beta.

Confidential VM basically adds memory encryption to the existing suite of isolation and sandboxing techniques Google Cloud uses to keep their virtual machines secure and isolated.

This will help customers, especially those in regulated industries, to better protect sensitive data by further isolating their workloads in the cloud.

Google Cloud Confidential VM : Key Features

Powered By 2nd Gen AMD EPYC

Google Cloud Confidential VM runs on N2D series virtual machines powered by the 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processors.

It leverages the Secure Encrypted Virtualisation (SEV) feature in 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processors to keep VM memory encrypted with a dedicated per-VM instance key.

These keys are generated and managed by the AMD Secure Processor inside the EPYC processor, during VM creation and reside only inside the VM – making them inaccessible to Google, or any other virtual machines running on the host.

Your data will stay encrypted while it’s being used, indexed, queried, or trained on. Encryption keys are generated in hardware, per virtual machine and are not exportable.

Confidential VM Performance

Google Cloud worked together with the AMD Cloud Solution team to minimise the performance impact of memory encryption on workloads.

They added support for new OSS drivers (name and gvnic) to handle storage traffic and network traffic with higher throughput than older protocols, thus ensuring that Confidential VM will perform almost as fast as non-confidential VM.

Easy Transition

According to Google, transitioning to Confidential VM is easy – all Google Cloud Platform (GCP) workloads can readily run as a Confidential VM whenever you want to.

Available OS Images

In addition to the hardware-based inline memory encryption, Google built Confidential VM on top of Shielded VM, to harden your OS image and verify the integrity of your firmware, kernel binaries and drivers.

Google currently offers images of Ubuntu v18.094, Ubuntu 20.04, Container Optimized OS (COS v81), and RHEL 8.2.

They are currently working with CentOS, Debian and other distributors to offer additional OS images for Confidential VM.

 

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GrabFood : Restaurant Availability Not Based On Commission!

GrabFood has responded officially to the allegations that they are turning off restaurant availability according to commission rates.

We also asked them some questions of our own, and will update the article with their replies when we get them!

 

GrabFood Restaurant Availability Controversy : What Happened?

In case you missed the recent kerfuffle, Burgertory – a gourmet burger restaurant – recently accused GrabFood of quietly switching off their restaurant’s availability because of their lower commission rate and sales bucket.

You can read more about their allegations in our earlier story – GrabFood : How Burgertory Exposed Potential Discrimination!

 

GrabFood Clarifies Restaurant Availability Controversy!

Sean Goh, the Managing Director of Grab Malaysia, issued this press release to address those allegations.

First and foremost, we would like to address the misconception: we do not turn off any of our stores / restaurants based on commissions.

Secondly, during rainy days, or when there is a lack of delivery riders in a specific area, we automatically reduce the service distance to ensure that we can maintain our service levels. Once the availability of delivery riders has recovered, our service distance would resume to normal levels. Occasionally, this may result in stores being unavailable in a nearby location, but available in a further location. For example, Customer A may reside in Bangsar but only see restaurants available in PJ, because we have insufficient delivery partners within the Bangsar area at that specific time.

Thirdly, during festive seasons where some of our restaurant partners may be closed, we practice a precautionary ‘temporary pause’ based on feedback from delivery riders who cite that a restaurant is closed despite being available in our app. This is done to ensure we do not disappoint customers who may continue to order from restaurants who have not updated their operating hours especially during the festive season. Such was the case experienced by this specific restaurant partner.

Prior to Raya holiday period, we sent out multiple communications (emails and SMS) to remind our restaurant partners to update operating hours and how to easily reactivate their restaurants in case of a ‘temporary pause’. In this case, we apologise that we were not attentive enough to ensure our partner received and acknowledged our communications.

We also note that information that was provided by our support staff was inaccurate, and apologise for the heartache and impact to our restaurant partner.

In view of the pandemic, we empathise with our merchant partners whose income has been affected due to the lockdown and restricted operating hours, and have had to rely only on delivery services to generate income. We are continuously looking at different initiatives to help drive demand for them, such as our Local Heroes and Grab Small-Biz Relief fund which this specific partner was also a part of, but will strive to balance this with the need to ensure we continue to uphold our highest service level.

We welcome any partner who has any queries on this to reach out to us directly so we can address your concerns.

 

Our Questions To GrabFood On This Controversy

We took the opportunity to ask GrabFood to clarify some points not covered in their press release. We will update this article with their answers when we get them.

  1. If bad weather or a lack of riders is an issue for a particular area, why was XXX restaurant marked as Unavailable, while other restaurants in the same vicinity are still Available?
  2. Is there a verification protocol for your rider reports? Does GrabFood call the merchant to verify that they are closed, after a rider reports it?
  3. The press release mentioned that GrabFood requested that restaurant partners update their operating hours. Did Burgertory or the other affected partners change their operating hours? If not, wouldn’t the operating hours remain the same?
  4. What is this Temporary Pause you refer to? Why is there a need for it, and what exactly was the procedure to reactivate their restaurant?
  5. The Raya holidays ended on 26 May 2020, but why are they still experiencing these issues?
  6. Is there any reason why GrabFood support staff would claim that availability of a restaurant is based on the commission level, if that was never the case?
  7. If the percentage of commission does not determine availability of the restaurant, does it affect prioritisation or visibility on GrabFood?
  8. Can GrabFood explain to our readers the difference in commission paid by the various restaurants, and what advantage they would have for paying GrabFood more commission, as opposed to less?
  9. Does sales bucket affect store availability? Does it also affect prioritisation or visibility on GrabFood?
  10. There are concerns that the commission levels are too high – some 25% to 35%? Can you tell us the exact commissions, and breakdown of what goes to the riders, and what goes to GrabFood?

 

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GrabFood : How Burgertory Exposed Potential Discrimination!

Burgertory recently complained about how GrabFood was discriminating against them, in favour of larger businesses, or those who can pay them higher commissions.

Find out what happened to Burgertory, and why GrabFood could be manipulating what you can or cannot order, to make more money!

 

Burgertory vs GrabFood : A Quick Primer

Burgertory – a small gourmet burger restaurant – had been using GrabFood for food deliveries for more than a year.

However, they recently noticed that GrabFood kept listing their business as unavailable, even though they were open for business.

Oddly, other restaurants in the vicinity were listed as available, just not Burgertory. When they complained to GrabFood, they were told that restaurant availability was turned on or off based on :

  • differences in commission rate – commission per order (25% to 35%)
  • differences in sales bucket – the value of each order

In other words, what you see on GrabFood is not what’s really available, but rather – which restaurant is more willing to pay them more commission, or can generate them more money.

If you want to know more about what Burgertory posted, please scroll to the bottom of this article.

Recommended : GrabFood Clarifies Restaurant Availability Controversy!

 

Burgertory vs GrabFood : Some Updates!

First of all, Grab issued an official press release, stressing they do not turn restaurants off based on commission rate, but there was no mention of the sales bucket.

In a Facebook comment, they said that Burgertory was switched off the first time, because a GrabFood rider arrived and found them closed.

However, Burgertory pointed out that they kept Grab updated on their operating hours, and the rider arrived late – after they closed at 8 PM, and they were not alerted to the rider’s report, or that they were being switched off.

Burgertory also posted a separate update, sharing that Grab told them other merchants “has paid campaigns with them, and the difference in the discoverability radius is to help with the campaign ROI“.

 

GrabFood Discrimination : Bad For Almost Everyone

If what they were told is true, then GrabFood is intentionally turning off visibility to potential customers, in favour of higher profits from their merchants.

They are no longer acting as a neutral platform, but becoming a gatekeeper of sorts, giving those who can pay more, greater access to customers.

This is naturally bad for merchants, who already have to pay rather exorbitant commission – 25% to 35%. With such a discriminatory system, they will be forced to pay more just to stay visible on their platform.

This is also bad for customers, because our choices will be limited to what GrabFood decides makes them more money, not what’s actually available.

They would be essentially deciding who you should order your food from. And limiting you, not to those with better food ratings, but those who can pay them more.

Eventually, food prices will go way up, because merchants have to increase their GrabFood commissions to “stay visible”, and the additional cost will be added to your meals.

It’s not bad for everyone though. As long as customers remain ignorant, restaurants will be “encouraged” to pay GrabFood more money. It will work out great for GrabFood.

 

Burgertory vs GrabFood : What Happened?

Here are the details of the Burgertory vs GrabFood scandal. It started with a Facebook post by Burgertory on 4 June 2020 :

We are really disappointed and upset with the partnership with GrabFood.

We have been on-boarded to GrabFood for more than a year now, and we have been a cooperating partner.
Not until recently that we found out GrabFood has been very non-transparent in their assignation for restaurants availability in terms of radius.

We have been receiving a lot of complaints from our customers about GrabFood not showing the availability to deliver within reasonable distance, and we thought this is due to GrabFood system that is set to be within a specific distance in each area.

However what triggered the following case was on 26 May 2020, when we were alerted by our staff that GrabFood was unavailable for that day (imagine the sales that we lost, especially during this COVID period whereby businesses are struggling). Our sales from GrabFood on that day is ZERO. Upon checking, we realized other restaurants in same area is available but not us.

Hence we reached out to GrabFood merchant support via live chat and given the response that they off our restaurant availability from the back-end due to differences in commission rate by different restaurants, which means the restaurants which signed higher commission rate with them will get the priority and ‘be available in more places’. And they switched on our availability back after our call.

We were very upset and escalated to the manager. He then gave us another explanation that GrabFood will allow restaurants with larger ‘sales bucket’ to appear in more places. If that’s the case, it’s discrimination against small businesses, or any businesses that have menu selling items with lower price.

We gave feedback to them that this is not acceptable. And the manager promised to get back to us again after discussing with the team. It’s been a week and we hear nothing from them.

Yet it happened again today..! We realized they ‘turned off’ our restaurant again after checking from the app. Hence we wrote a complaint again, and same cycle happened… (same canned response, and they switched back on)

We are deeply disappointed with such partnership relationship. Does this mean that we have to always check if our restaurant has been hidden from the platform? These occurrences have broken the trust, we don’t know when their system will discriminate against us again and only switch back on after we found out and reach out to them each time. This is totally unfair to small and medium businesses.

After the public uproar, GrabFood quickly reached out to them the very next day to “discuss the issue”.

They clarified that Burgertory did not get “switched off” because of their lower commission, but did not explain why some restaurants get “switched off”, while others don’t.

We are truly humbled by the support from many of you and empathy shown by some of the business owners as well. Just want to give a quick update for those who has asked us about any update from GrabFood after the post yesterday:

They have reached out to us this afternoon to further discuss the issue, and clarified that the switch-off wasn’t due to commission factor, though we still don’t know the reason behind why certain restaurants in the same area are switched off unknowingly. We will continue to discuss and provide feedback to their team and hope that this will not happen again.

The reason why we decided to share the experience is to clarify what it might have impacted many of us as small & medium businesses. This is a year like no other and we empathise with all local businesses that are struggling to survive. We’re touched by some the responses we received yesterday, this is the time we strongly feel what brings Malaysians together. 🇲🇾

Apart from this, all of us from Burgertory team is really thankful for all the support to our business shown by our community, especially everyone of you, in what are the toughest of times. We always strive to sustain and provide a better F&B experience to all our customers. Hope all of us can stand strong together in unity through this tough times. Stay safe! 💪

Grab has since issued an official press release, which you can read @ GrabFood Clarifies Restaurant Availability Controversy! We also asked them some additional questions on this controversy.

 

Burgertory vs GrabFood : What Are Other Merchants Saying?

Here is a selection of what other merchants posted on their own experiences :

Renee Tan : Happens to my restaurants all the time especially “crunch time”. Suddenly customers calls & dm come flooding our inbox’s asking why does our restaurant appear “offline”?!

Juan Lyn : I’m currently handling a chain of restaurant online delivery support and we are also facing the very same issue with you. The same reasons given above “sales bucket” size. And our ticket size on average is already around RM50.

Voxism Lim : Happens to our outlet as well.. Exactly what happen.. The store beside is always open, where as mine is turned off (unavailable)

Alief Nurudin : My shop Meteora Cafe paid 28% commission to Grab. We NEVER appeared on the app unless you searched for us manually. We have experienced the SAME thing. Suddenly, NOT AVAILABLE.

 

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Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool Guide!

The Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool has just been released globally, giving you the freedom to move your photos and videos off Facebook!

Find out how to download all of your Facebook photos and videos, or transfer them to a third-party service like Google Photos!

 

Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : What Is It?

The Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool is a new feature that was rolled out as part of the Data Transfer Project.

It allows Facebook users to port their data, photos and videos in this case, to other services.

This gives you the freedom to back-up your data, or leave Facebook without worrying about losing the photos and videos you uploaded.

 

Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : How To Use It?

Here is a quick pictorial guide on how to use the Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool to download or transfer your photos and videos to a third-party service.

 

Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : Step By Step

Here is our step-by-step guide on using the Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool :

  1. Go to Facebook settings.
  2. Select Your Facebook Information, and click on the View link.

  1. You will be asked to verify your identity. Key in your Facebook password, and click Continue.

  1. You can now choose to Download Your Information directly, giving you the option of selecting everything from your photos and videos, to your posts, comments, friends, groups, profile information, etc.
  2. Alternatively, you can choose to transfer your data to a third-part service.
    Currently only Google Photos is supported, and you are given the option of transferring either your photo or videos to Google Photos.

  1. After clicking Next, you will be asked to key in your Google Photos password, to kickstart the transfer.
  2. Once your Facebook photos / videos have been transferred to Google Photos, you will receive a notification on Facebook, and an email.

 

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Cyber Crime WhatsApp Warning Hoax Debunked!

The Cyber Crime hoax on WhatsApp is circulating, warning people that they are being monitored by the government.

Well, not to worry – unless you are living in China – this is yet another Internet hoax. Here is why we know that…

 

The Cyber Crime WhatsApp Warning Hoax

This is the Cyber Crime warning hoax that has been circulating on WhatsApp :

From tomorrow onwards there are new communication regulations.

All calls are recorded

All phone call recordings saved

WhatsApp is monitored

Twitter is monitored

Facebook is monitored

All social media and forums are monitored

Inform those who do not know.

Your devices are connected to ministry systems.

Take care not to send unnecessary messages

Inform your children, Relatives and friends about this to take care

​​Don’t forward any posts or videos etc., you receive regarding politics/present situation about Government/PM etc.​​

Police have put out a notification termed ..Cyber Crime … and action will be taken…just don’t delete …

Inform your friends & others too.

Writing or forwarding any msg on any political & religious debate is an offence now….arrest without warrant…

This is very serious, plz let it be known to all our groups and individual members as group admin can b in deep trouble.

Take care not to send unnecessary messages.
Inform everyone about this to take care.

Please share it; it’s very much true. Groups please be careful.

Note that it’s generic enough that it can apply to almost any government in the world.

 

The Cyber Crime WhatsApp Warning Hoax Debunked!

And here is why this is nothing more than yet another Internet hoax :

Only China Is Capable Of Doing This

The only country that has accomplished most of what was shared above is China, but it took them decades to erect the Great Firewall of China.

It’s not just the massive infrastructure that needs to be created, it also requires legislation to be enacted, and considerable manpower and resources to maintain such a system.

That’s why China is leaning heavily on AI and cloud computing capabilities to automatically and quickly censor information deemed “sensitive”.

However, no other country has come close to spending the money and resources on a similar scale, although Cuba, Vietnam, Zimbabwe and Belarus have imported some surveillance technology from China.

WhatsApp, Instagram + Facebook Messenger Have End-to-End Encryption

All three Facebook-owned apps are now running on the same common platform, which provides end-to-end encryption.

End-to-end encryption protects messages as they travel through the Internet, and specifically prevents anyone (bad guys or your friendly government censor) from snooping into your conversation.

That is also why all three are banned in China…

The Police Cannot Enact Laws

There are cybercrime laws in most, if not every, country in the world. But they are all enacted by legislative bodies of some sort, not the police.

The police is the executive arm in a country, empowered to enforce the law. They do not have the power to create a law, and then act on it.

Even The Government Has Debunked It!

Just in case you are still not convinced, even the Malaysian government issued a fact check on this hoax, debunking it as fake news :

Basically, it states “The Ministry of Home Affairs has NEVER recorded telephone calls or monitored social media in this country“.

 

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Jeff Clarke : Tech Predictions For 2020 + Next Data Decade!

Dell Technologies COO and Vice Chairman, Jeff Clarke, reveals his tech predictions for 2020, the start of what Dell Technologies considers as the Next Data Decade!

 

Jeff Clarke : Tech Predictions For 2020 + Next Data Decade!

It’s hard to believe that we’re heading into the year 2020 – a year that many have marked as a milestone in technology. Autonomous cars lining our streets, virtual assistants predicting our needs and taking our requests, connected and intelligent everything across every industry.

When I stop to think about what has been accomplished over the last decade – it’s quite remarkable.  While we don’t have fully autonomous cars zipping back and forth across major freeways with ease, automakers are getting closer to deploying autonomous fleets in the next few years.

Many of the every-day devices, systems and applications we use are connected and intelligent – including healthcare applications, industrial machines and financial systems – forming what is now deemed as “the edge.”

At the root of all that innovation and advancement are massive amounts of data and compute power, and the capacity across edge, cloud and core data center infrastructure to put data through its paces. And with the amount of data coming our way in the next 10 years – we can only imagine what the world around us will look like in 2030, with apps and services we haven’t even thought of yet.

2020 marks the beginning of what we at Dell Technologies are calling the Next Data Decade, and we are no doubt entering this era with new – and rather high – expectations of what technology can make possible for how we live, work and play. So what new breakthroughs and technology trends will set the tone for what’s to come over the next 10 years? Here are my top predictions for the year ahead.

2020 proves it’s time to keep IT simple

We’ve got a lot of data on our hands…big data, meta data, structured and unstructured data – data living in clouds, in devices at the edge, in core data centers…it’s everywhere. But organisations are struggling to ensure the right data is moving to the right place at the right time. They lack data visibility – the ability for IT teams to quickly access and analyse the right data – because there are too many systems and services woven throughout their IT infrastructure. As we kick off 2020, CIOs will make data visibility a top IT imperative because after all, data is what makes the flywheel of innovation spin.

We’ll see organisations accelerate their digital transformation by simplifying and automating their IT infrastructure and consolidating systems and services into holistic solutions that enable more control and clarity. Consistency in architectures, orchestration and service agreements will open new doors for data management – and that ultimately gives data the ability be used as part of AI and Machine Learning to fuel IT automation.  And all of that enables better, faster business outcomes that the innovation of the next decade will thrive on.

Cloud co-existence sees rolling thunder

The idea that public and private clouds can and will co-exist becomes a clear reality in 2020. Multi-cloud IT strategies supported by hybrid cloud architectures will play a key role in ensuing organisations have better data management and visibility, while also ensuring that their data remains accessible and secure.  In fact, IDC predicted that by 2021, over 90% of enterprises worldwide will rely on a mix of on-premises/dedicated private clouds, several public clouds, and legacy platforms to meet their infrastructure needs.

But private clouds won’t simply exist within the heart of the data center. As 5G and edge deployments continue to rollout, private hybrid clouds will exist at the edge to ensure the real-time visibility and management of data everywhere it lives.

That means organisations will expect more of their cloud and service providers to ensure they can support their hybrid cloud demands across all environments. Further, we’ll see security and data protection become deeply integrated as part of hybrid cloud environments, notably where containers and Kubernetes continue to gain momentum for app development. Bolting security measures onto cloud infrastructure will be a non-starter…it’s got to be inherently built into the fiber of the overall data management strategy edge to core to cloud.

What you get is what you pay

One of the biggest hurdles for IT decision makers driving transformation is resources. CapEx and OpEx can often be limiting factors when trying to plan and predict for compute and consumption needs for the year ahead…never mind the next three-five years. SaaS and cloud consumption models have increased in adoption and popularity, providing organisations with the flexibility to pay for what they use, as they go.

In 2020, flexible consumption and as-a-service options will accelerate rapidly as organisations seize the opportunity to transform into software-defined and cloud-enabled IT. As a result – they’ll be able to choose the right economic model for their business to take advantage of end-to-end IT solutions that enable data mobility and visibility, and crunch even the most intensive AI and Machine Learning workloads when needed.

“The Edge” rapidly expands into the enterprise

The “Edge” continues to evolve – with many working hard to define exactly what it is and where it exists.   Once limited to the Internet of Things (IoT), it’s hard to find any systems, applications, services – people and places – that aren’t connected. The edge is emerging in many places and it’s going to expand with enterprise organisations leading the way, delivering the IT infrastructure to support it.

5G connectivity is creating new use cases and possibilities for healthcare, financial services, education and industrial manufacturing. As a result, SD-WAN and software-defined networking solutions become a core thread of a holistic IT infrastructure solution – ensuring massive data workloads can travel at speed – securely – between edge, core and cloud environments. Open networking solutions will prevail over proprietary as organisations recognise the only way to successfully manage and secure data for the long haul requires the flexibility and agility that only open software defined networking can deliver.

Intelligent devices change the way you work and collaborate

PC innovation continues to push new boundaries every year – screens are more immersive and bigger than ever, yet the form factor becomes smaller and thinner. But more and more, it’s what is running at the heart of that PC that is more transformational than ever. Software applications that use AI and machine learning create systems that now know where and when to optimise power and compute based on your usage patterns. With biometrics, PCs know it’s you from the moment you gaze at the screen. And now, AI and machine learning applications are smart enough to give your system the ability to dial up the sound and colour based on the content you’re watching or the game you’re playing.

Over the next year, these advancements in AI and machine learning will turn our PCs into even smarter and more collaborative companions. They’ll have the ability to optimise power and battery life for our most productive moments – and even become self-sufficient machines that can self-heal and self-advocate for repair – reducing the burden on the user and of course, reducing the number of IT incidents filed. That’s a huge increase in happiness and productivity for both the end users and the IT groups that support them.

Innovating with integrity, sourcing sustainably

Sustainable innovation will continue to take center stage, as organisations like ours want to ensure the impact they have in the world doesn’t come with a dangerous one on the planet. Greater investments in reuse and recycling for closed-loop innovation will accelerate – hardware becomes smaller and more efficient and built with recycled and reclaimed goods – minimising eWaste and maximising already existing materials. At Dell Technologies, we met our Legacy of Good 2020 goals ahead of schedule – so we’ve retired them and set new goals for 2030 to recycle an equivalent product for every product a customer buys, lead the circular economy with more than half of all product content being made from recycled or renewable material, and use 100% recycled or renewable material in all packaging.

As we enter the Next Data Decade, I’m optimistic and excited about what the future holds. The steps our customers will take in the next year to get the most out of their data will set forth new breakthroughs in technology that everyone will experience in some way – whether it’s a more powerful device, faster medical treatment, more accessible education, less waste and cleaner air. And before we know it, we’ll be looking forward to what the following 10 years will have in store.

 

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Here Are The Top 10 Tech Trends In 2020 From Alibaba!

Alibaba, specifically its research institute – the Alibaba DAMO Academy, just published their top 10 tech trends in 2020.

Here are the highlights from those top 10 tech trends that they are predicting will go big in 2020!

 

Here Are The Top 10 Tech Trends In 2020 From Alibaba!

Tech Trend #1 : AI Evolves From Perceptual Intelligence To Cognitive Intelligence

Artificial intelligence has reached or surpassed humans in the areas of perceptual intelligence such as speech to text, natural language processing, video understanding etc; but in the field of cognitive intelligence that requires external knowledge, logical reasoning, or domain migration, it is still in its infancy.

Cognitive intelligence will draw inspiration from cognitive psychology, brain science, and human social history, combined with techniques such as cross domain knowledge graph, causality inference, and continuous learning to establish effective mechanisms for stable acquisition and expression of knowledge.

These make machines to understand and utilize knowledge, achieving key breakthroughs from perceptual intelligence to cognitive intelligence.

Tech Trend #2 : In-Memory Computing Addresses Memory Wall Challenge In AI Computer

In Von Neumann architecture, memory and processor are separate and the computation requires data to be moved back and forth.

With the rapid development of data-driven AI algorithms in recent years, it has come to a point where the hardware becomes the bottleneck in the explorations of more advanced algorithms.

In Processing-in-Memory (PIM) architecture, in contrast to the Von Neumann architecture, memory and processor are fused together and computations are performed where data is stored with minimal data movement.

As such, computation parallelism and power efficiency can be significantly improved. We believe the innovations on PIM architecture are the tickets to next-generation AI.

Tech Trend #3 : Industrial IoT Will Power Digital Transformation

In 2020, 5G, rapid development of IoT devices, cloud computing and edge computing will accelerate the fusion of information system, communication system, and industrial control system.

Through advanced Industrial IoT, manufacturing companies can achieve automation of machines, in-factory logistics, and production scheduling, as a way to realise C2B smart manufacturing.

In addition, interconnected industrial system can adjust and coordinate the production capability of both upstream and downstream vendors.

Ultimately it will significantly increase the manufacturers’ productivity and profitability. For manufacturers with production goods that value hundreds of trillion RMB, If the productivity increases 5-10%, it means additional trillions of RMB.

Tech Trend #4 : Large Scale Collaboration Between Machines Become Possible

Traditional single intelligence cannot meet the real-time perception and decision of large-scale intelligent devices.

The development of collaborative sensing technology of Internet of things and 5G communication technology will realise the collaboration among multiple agents – machines cooperate with each other and compete with each other to complete the target tasks.

The group intelligence brought by the cooperation of multiple intelligent bodies will further amplify the value of the intelligent system:

  • large-scale intelligent traffic light dispatching will realise dynamic and real-time adjustment,
  • warehouse robots will work together to complete cargo sorting more efficiently,
  • driverless cars can perceive the overall traffic conditions on the road, and
  • group unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) collaboration will get through the last-mile delivery more efficiently.

Tech Trend #5 : Modular Chiplet Design Makes Chips Easier & Faster To Create

Traditional model of chip design cannot efficiently respond to the fast evolving, fragmented and customised needs of chip production.

The open source SoC chip design based on RISC-V, high-level hardware description language, and IP-based modular chip design methods have accelerated the rapid development of agile design methods and the ecosystem of open source chips.

In addition, the modular design method based on chiplets uses advanced packaging methods to package the chiplets with different functions together, which can quickly customise and deliver chips that meet specific requirements of different applications.

Tech Trend #6 : Large Scale Blockchain Applications Will Gain Mass Adoption

BaaS (Blockchain-as-a-Service) will further reduce the barriers of entry for enterprise blockchain applications.

A variety of hardware chips embedded with core algorithms used in edge, cloud and designed specifically for blockchain will also emerge, allowing assets in the physical world to be mapped to assets on blockchain, further expanding the boundaries of the Internet of Value and realising “multi-chain interconnection”.

In the future, a large number of innovative blockchain application scenarios with multi-dimensional collaboration across different industries and ecosystems will emerge, and large-scale production-grade blockchain applications with more than 10 million DAI (Daily Active Items) will gain mass adoption.

Tech Trend #7 : A Critical Period Before Large-Scale Quantum Computing

In 2019, the race in reaching “Quantum Supremacy” brought the focus back to quantum computing. The demonstration, using superconducting circuits, boosts the overall confidence on superconducting quantum computing for the realisation of a large-scale quantum computer.

In 2020, the field of quantum computing will receive increasing investment, which comes with enhanced competitions. The field is also expected to experience a speed-up in industrialization and the gradual formation of an eco-system.

In the coming years, the next milestones will be the realization of fault-tolerant quantum computing and the demonstration of quantum advantages in real-world problems. Either is of a great challenge given the present knowledge. Quantum computing is entering a critical period.

Tech Trend #8 : New Materials Will Revolutionise Semiconductor Devices

Under the pressure of both Moore’s Law and the explosive demand of computing power and storage, it is difficult for classic Si based transistors to maintain sustainable development of the semiconductor industry.

Until now, major semiconductor manufacturers still have no clear answer and option to chips beyond 3nm. New materials will make new logic, storage, and interconnection devices through new physical mechanisms, driving continuous innovation in the semiconductor industry.

For example, topological insulators, two-dimensional superconducting materials, etc. that can achieve lossless transport of electron and spin can become the basis for new high-performance logic and interconnect devices; while new magnetic materials and new resistive switching materials can realize high-performance magnetics Memory such as SOT-MRAM and resistive memory.

Tech Trend #9 : Growing Adoption Of AI Technologies That Protect Data Privacy

The compliance costs demanded by the recent data protection laws and regulations related to data transfer are getting increasingly higher than ever before.

In light of this, there have been growing interests in using AI technologies to protect data privacy. The essence is to enable the data user to compute a function over input data from different data providers while keeping those data private.

Such AI technologies promise to solve the problems of data silos and lack of trust in today’s data sharing practices, and will truly unleash the value of data in the foreseeable future.

Tech Trend #10 : Cloud Becomes The Center Of IT Innovation

With the ongoing development of cloud computing technology, the cloud has grown far beyond the scope of IT infrastructure, and gradually evolved into the center of all IT technology innovations.

Cloud has close relationship with almost all IT technologies, including new chips, new databases, self-driving adaptive networks, big data, AI, IoT, blockchain, quantum computing and so forth.

Meanwhile, it creates new technologies, such as serverless computing, cloud-native software architecture, software-hardware integrated design, as well as intelligent automated operation.

Cloud computing is redefining every aspect of IT, making new IT technologies more accessible for the public. Cloud has become the backbone of the entire digital economy.

 

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NTT To Build 5th Data Centre In Cyberjaya, Malaysia!

NTT Limited just announced that they will construct their 5th data centre at the NTT Cyberjaya Campus in Malaysia!

Here are the details…

 

NTT To Build 5th Data Centre In Cyberjaya, Malaysia

As part of their expansion plans, NTT will build their fifth data centre at their Cyberjaya campus in Malaysia. This Tier-4 ready, compact and modular data centre, called CBJ5, is scheduled to be complete in 2020.

Once it comes online, NTT says that it will provide their clients with “a flexible and scalable power and cooling solution coupled with an industry leading Service Level Agreement (SLA) that is the first of its kind in Malaysia.

This announcement comes after Malaysia’s Budget 2020 was tabled, with a focus on driving economic growth through digital transformation. There will be additional grants and incentives for organisations to digitally transform their businesses.

As such, NTT believes there will be increased demand for their services, which CBJ5 will be ready to fulfil.

“CBJ5 is designed to meet the requirements of hyperscalers and high-end enterprises, especially those that require solid power management capabilities. CBJ5 is able to accommodate progressive power increments and cooling of up to 10kW/rack. This is revolutionary as it will allow our clients to maximize the power resources in their chosen data center,” said Henrick Choo, CEO, Malaysia for NTT Ltd.

 

NTT Data Centre Capabilities

With CBJ5, NTT aims to become the leading Digital Infrastructure Provider in Malaysia, attracting both domestic and global traffic into its carrier-neutral data centre campus that also includes NTT’s global Tier-1 IP network, Multi-Cloud Connect platform and domestic Internet Exchange.

The NTT Cyberjaya Campus  features a high-density fibre network facilitating inter-connection among our clients to create a digital supply chain ecosystem.

Bank Negara Malaysia recently announced a set of guidelines defining Risk Management in Technology (RMiT) for financial institutions, meaning security becomes a crucial consideration as they are now responsible for the safety of the bank’s information infrastructure, systems and data.

NTT will address these new requirements by working together with financial institutions, so they are able to comply to BNM’s guideline. Henrick also stated that security will be heightened as the company grows.

“NTT’s physical data center access control will be increased to safeguard all data center blocks within the NTT Cyberjaya Campus. We will also be introducing smart security technology integrating Visitor Management Systems with facial recognition technology. Essentially, we will double our security cover with the two combined,” he added.

NTT clients are able to choose from multiple architectures from on-premise, to cloud and even multi-cloud. All solutions will come with managed security solutions to offer data protection while minimising business disruptions.

 

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DiDi Adopts NVIDIA AI + GPUs For Self-Driving Cars!

At GTC China 2019, DiDi announced that they will adopt NVIDIA GPUs and AI technologies to develop self-driving cars, as well as their cloud computing solutions.

 

DiDi Adopts NVIDIA AI + GPUs For Self-Driving Cars!

This announcement comes after DiDi spliced out their autonomous driving unit as an independent company in August 2019.

In their announcement, DiDi confirmed that they will use NVIDIA technologies in both their data centres and onboard their self-driving cars :

  • NVIDIA GPUs will be used to train machine learning algorithms in the data center
  • NVIDIA DRIVE will be used for inference in their Level 4 self-driving cars

NVIDIA DRIVE will fuse data from all types of sensors – cameras, LIDAR, radar, etc – and use numerous deep neural networks (DNNs) to understand the surrounding area, so the self-driving car can plan a safe way forward.

Those DNNs (deep neural networks) will require prior training using NVIDIA GPU data centre servers, and machine learning algorithms.

Recommended : NVIDIA DRIVE AGX Orin for Autonomous Vehicles Revealed!

 

DiDi Cloud Computing Will Use NVIDIA Tech Too

DiDi also announced that DiDi Cloud will adopt and launch new vGPU (virtual GPU) cloud servers based on NVIDIA GPUs.

The new vGPU licence mode will offer more affordable and flexible GPU cloud computing services for remote computing, rendering and gaming.

 

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Intel oneAPI Unified Programming Model Overview!

At Supercomputing 2019, Intel unveiled their oneAPI initiative for heterogenous computing, promising to deliver a unified programming experience for developers.

Here is an overview of the Intel oneAPI unified programming model, and what it means for programmers!

 

The Need For Intel oneAPI

The modern computing environment is now a lot less CPU-centric, with the greater adoption of GPUs, FGPAs and custom-built accelerators (like the Alibaba Hanguang 800).

Their different scalar, vector, matrix and spatial architectures require different APIs and code bases, which complicates attempts to utilise a mix of those capabilities.

 

Intel oneAPI For Heterogenous Computing

Intel oneAPI promises to change all that, offering a unified programming model for those different architectures.

It allows developers to create workloads and applications for multiple architectures on their platform of choice, without the need to develop and maintain separate code bases, tools and workflow.

Intel oneAPI comprises of two components – the open industry initiative, and the Intel oneAPI beta toolkit :

oneAPI Initiative

This is a cross-architecture development model based on industry standards, and an open specification, to encourage broader adoption.

Intel oneAPI Beta Toolkit

This beta toolkit offers the Intel oneAPI specification components with direct programming (Data Parallel C++), API-based programming with performance libraries, advanced analysis and debug tools.

Developers can test code and workloads in the Intel DevCloud for oneAPI on multiple Intel architectures.

 

What Processors + Accelerators Are Supported By Intel oneAPI?

The beta Intel oneAPI reference implementation currently supports these Intel platforms :

  • Intel Xeon Scalable processors
  • Intel Core and Atom processors
  • Intel processor graphics (as a proxy for future Intel discrete data centre GPUs)
  • Intel FPGAs (Intel Arria, Stratix)

The oneAPI specification is designed to support a broad range of CPUs and accelerators from multiple vendors. However, it is up to those vendors to create their own oneAPI implementations and optimise them for their own hardware.

 

Are oneAPI Elements Open-Sourced?

Many oneAPI libraries and components are already, or will soon be open sourced.

 

What Companies Are Participating In The oneAPI Initiative?

According to Intel, more than 30 vendors and research organisations support the oneAPI initiative, including CERN openlab, SAP and the University of Cambridge.

Companies that create their own implementation of oneAPI and complete a self-certification process will be allowed to use the oneAPI initiative brand and logo.

 

Available Intel oneAPI Toolkits

At the time of its launch (17 November 2019), here are the toolkits that Intel has made available for developers to download and use :

Intel oneAPI Base Toolkit (Beta)

This foundational kit enables developers of all types to build, test, and deploy performance-driven, data-centric applications across CPUs, GPUs, and FPGAs. Comes with :

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  • Intel oneAPI Data Parallel C++ Compiler
  • Intel Distribution for Python
  • Multiple optimized libraries
  • Advanced analysis and debugging tools

Domain Specific oneAPI Toolkits for Specialised Workloads :

  • oneAPI HPC Toolkit (beta) : Deliver fast C++, Fortran, OpenMP, and MPI applications that scale.
  • oneAPI DL Framework Developer Toolkit (beta) : Build deep learning frameworks or customize existing ones.
  • oneAPI IoT Toolkit (beta) : Build high-performing, efficient, reliable solutions that run at the network’s edge.
  • oneAPI Rendering Toolkit (beta) : Create high-performance, high-fidelity visualization applications.

Additional Toolkits, Powered by oneAPI

  • Intel AI Analytics Toolkit (beta) : Speed AI development with tools for DL training, inference, and data analytics.
  • Intel Distribution of OpenVINO Toolkit : Deploy high-performance inference applications from device to cloud.
  • Intel System Bring-Up Toolkit (beta) : Debug and tune systems for power and performance.

You can download all of those toolkits here.

 

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Facebook Introduces New Multi-Colour Brand Logo!

Hounded by criticism over fake news and misleading political ads, Facebook is responding with a new multi-colour brand logo to highlight their “clarity”, “empathy” and “support for people and their stories”.

This is really the best thing since sliced bread. Don’t believe us? Look at how much effort they put into it!

 

The New Facebook Multi-Colour Brand Logo

The new Facebook multi-colour brand logo was designed with custom typography and capitalisation to create a visual distinction between Facebook the company, and Facebook the app.

Facebook really spent A LOT of time, money and effort to design that new multi-colour brand logo.

  • Conducting listening tours with their employees as well as people and businesses using their products
  • Bringing together people from across Facebook to design and work together on that logo
  • Refining the design with designers across Facebook to ensure it works in product, hardware, marketing and physical phases

Facebook is spending so much time, money and effort on the rebranding effort, because they want the new brand logo to convey three clear messages :

  • Clarity : Facebook is a brand that simplifies and builds understanding
  • Empathy : Facebook is a system that is respectful of context and environment
  • Creating Space : Facebook supports people and their stories

It is easy to read between the lines, to see how criticism over their refusal to tackle fake news, or even promising not to accept misleading or political ads is a factor.

However, we seriously doubt a rebrand will change anyone’s minds about how Facebook is facilitating the spread of fake news and misleading political ads.

 

The New Facebook Logo In Instagram + WhatsApp

Facebook will be using the new logo to rebrand their other services – Instagram, WhatsApp, Oculus, etc. Beginning in June 2020, they will include “from Facebook” to all of those services and apps.

This is what Instagram will look like eventually :

And this is what WhatsApp will look like :

And they will start using the new brand logo in their products and marketing materials, including a new company website.

 

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Samsung – IBM AI IoT Cloud Platform For 5G Mobile Solutions!

At the Samsung Developer Conference 2019, Samsung and IBM announced a joint platform that leverages Samsung Galaxy devices and IBM cloud technologies to introduce new 5G, AI-powered mobile solutions!

Here is what you need to know about this new Samsung-IBM AI IoT cloud platform, and the 5G AI-powered mobile solutions it’s powering for governments and enterprises.

 

Samsung – IBM AI IoT Cloud Platform For 5G Mobile Solutions!

Built using IBM Cloud technologies and Samsung Galaxy mobile devices, the new platform will help improve the work environment for employees in high-stress or high-risk occupations.

This will help reduce the risks to these public employees who work in dangerous and high-stress situations. This is critical because nearly 3 million deaths occur each year due to occupational accidents.

This new, unnamed Samsung-IBM platform will help governments and enterprises track their employee’s vitals, including heart rate and physical activity. This will allow them to determine if that employee is in distress and requires help.

 

The Samsung – IBM AI IoT Cloud Platform In Use

5G mobile solutions based on the new Samsung-IBM AI IoT platform is being piloted by multiple police forces to monitor their health in real-time, and provide situational awareness insights to first responders and their managers.

The platform can track in real time, the safety and wellness indicators of first responders equipped with Samsung Galaxy Watches and Galaxy smartphones with 5G connectivity.

It can instantly alert emergency managers if there is a significant change in the safety parameters, which may indicate the first responder is in danger of a heart attack, heat exhaustion or other life-threatening events.

This allows them to anticipate potential dangers, and quickly send assistance. This should greatly reduce the risk of death and injuries to their employees.

 

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Yahoo Groups To Delete All User Content! Download ‘Em Now!

Yahoo Groups is planning to take a massive dump of all user content, so make sure you download all of your content ASAP!

Here is EVERYTHING you need to know about the shocking decision by Yahoo Groups, and what it means for Yahoo Groups users!

 

Yahoo Groups To Delete All User Content

No, it’s not a joke or a hoax.

On Wednesday, 16 October 2019 – a day that will live in infamy (for Yahoo Groups users at least), Yahoo Groups announced their decision to eventually delete all user content.

Beginning 28 October 2019, users will be no longer be allow to upload new content. You can only share information with your group using email.

And on 14 December 2019, Yahoo Groups will permanently remove and delete all user content.

 

No, Yahoo Groups Is Not Shutting Down

Unlike what some major news websites have stated, Yahoo Groups isn’t really shutting down. At least not yet.

Yahoo Groups will continue to exist. However, there will be significant changes on how things will work :

  • There will no longer be any public groups.
  • All public groups will be made private or restricted
  • You will be allowed to search for private groups.
  • However, new group members will need to request an invite, or be invited by a group administrator.
  • Group administrators will still be able to manage group settings.
  • However, some admin functionality will be limited or eliminated.

Recommended : Yes, Yahoo Mail Is Still Alive… And They Have A New App!

 

What User Content Are They Deleting?

Basically, EVERYTHING you ever posted or uploaded to Yahoo Groups :

  • Files
  • Polls
  • Links
  • Photos
  • Folders
  • Calendar
  • Databases
  • Attachments
  • Conversations
  • Email Updates
  • Message Digest
  • Message History

 

How Can I Download My Yahoo Groups Content?

Yahoo Groups is giving you until 13 December 2019 to download your content.

A. Downloading Photos From Yahoo Groups

  1. On your group’s main page, click Photos.
  2. Mouse over the image you want.
  3. Click the Download icon (Down arrow) to download it.

B. Downloading Files From Yahoo Groups

  1. On your group’s main page, click Files.
  2. Click a file you want to download.
  3. Select Save File and click OK.

C. Download Your Yahoo Groups Data

  1. Go to the Privacy Dashboard page of your Yahoo Groups
  2. Scroll down to “Download a summary of your data“.
  3. Click Request a download.

  1. Click Next.
  2. Enter an email address to receive the notification when the download is ready. It can take up to 30 days for a request to process.
  3. Click Request Download.
  4. Once you receive the notification email, go to the Privacy Dashboard page of your Yahoo Groups.
  5. Scroll down to “Download a summary of your data“.
  6. Click Your download requests.

  1. Click the Download link next to your download request.

 

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Dell EMC PowerProtect DD for Multi-Cloud Data Protection

At Dell Technologies Forum 2019, Dell Technologies announced their next-generation Data Domain protection storage appliances – the Dell EMC PowerProtect DD Appliance.

They also announced changes and improvements to Dell EMC Cyber Recovery and PowerProtect Software.

Here is everything you need to know about the new Dell EMC PowerProtect DD Appliances, as well as Cyber Recovery and PowerProtect software updates.

 

The Need For Dell EMC PowerProtect DD

As businesses become more data-driven, there is a corresponding increase in the amount of data they create and retain.

According to Dell EMC, organisations in Asia Pacific and Japan manage an average of 8.13 petabytes of data in 2018 – a 384% increase over 2016.

All that data is vulnerable, even if they are stored in the cloud. That’s where Dell EMC comes in with their PowerProtect DD Series Appliances.

They are designed to protect a business’ data storage, with the ability to quickly restore their systems in times of disruption to ensure business continuity.

 

Dell EMC PowerProtect DD for Multi-Cloud Data Protection

The new PowerProtect DD appliances are the latest addition to the Dell EMC PowerProtect portfolio. Designed to offer data protection for multi-cloud workloads, PowerProtect DD offers :

Faster Performance

The PowerProtect DD appliances offer up to 38% faster backups, and up to 36% faster restores.

They can provide instant access and instant restores of up to 60,000 IOPS for up to 64 virtual machines, with support for 25 GbE and 100 GbE network speeds.

Greater Efficiency

PowerProtect DD can provide up to 1.25 PB of usable capacity in a single rack, with hardware-assisted compression to increase logical capacity by up to 30%.

Its small footprint also saves power and cooling requirements by up to 35%, increasing ROI for organisations.

Scalability

PowerProtect DD is scalable, with grow-in-place capacity expansion from 1 terabyte all the way to 1.25 petabytes.

Data Protection For Multi-Cloud Workloads

PowerProtect DD supports multiple public clouds, and can natively tier deduplicated data. It can also scale across on-premise and hybrid cloud environments.

Single Pane of Glass Management

Its PowerProtect DD Management Center allows for the aggregated management for multiple systems. Customers can monitor the health and status of all their appliances on-premise and in the cloud, as well as manage capacity and replications.

 

Improved Cyber Recovery + PowerProtect Software

Dell EMC also announced improvements to Cyber Recovery and PowerProtect Software :

  • Cyber Recovery now supports workloads protected with PowerProtect Software and stored on the new PowerProtect DD Series Appliances
  • Cyber Recovery can now automate restores from a secure and isolated vault, giving customers an additional layer of data protection
  • PowerProtect Software adds more integrated with VMware vSphere, offering simplified data protection management and self-service recovery
  • PowerProtect Software also now supports Dell EMC Cloud Disaster Recovery, allowing the automated disaster recovery of VMware workloads in the public cloud

 

Dell EMC PowerProtect DD Availability

The three new PowerProtect DD Series Appliances – PowerProtect DD6900, PowerProtect DD9400 and PowerProtect DD9900 – will be available globally 30 September 2019 onwards through Dell Technologies channel partners

Dell EMC Data Domain Virtual Edition and Dell EMC Data Domain DD3300, now branded Dell EMC PowerProtect DD Virtual Edition and Dell EMC PowerProtect DD3300, are available now

Enhancements to Dell EMC PowerProtect Cyber Recovery and PowerProtect Software are available globally, with immediate effect.

 

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Red Hat Partners Are Driving APAC Hybrid Cloud Adoption!

Red Hat just announced that their partners are driving a rising interest for hybrid cloud in the Asia Pacific region.

Here is everything you know about their update on the Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program!

 

Red Hat Partners Are Driving APAC Hybrid Cloud Adoption

At Red Hat Forum 2019, Red Hat revealed that there is a rising interest for hybrid cloud in Asia Pacific, driven by an increasing number of cloud and managed service providers joining the Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program.

The Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program currently have over 300 cloud, system integrators and managed service providers in Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand, The Philippines and Vietnam.

Red Hat shared a list of some APAC cloud and managed service providers that have recently enrolled in the program :

  • Australia : Bulletproof
  • China : Shanghai DaoCloud Network, Shanghai Yungoal Infotech
  • India : Cyfuture India Pvt. Ltd, Netlabs Global IT Services Pvt. Ltd, GAVS Technologies, Kaar Technologies, Sensiple Software Solutions
  • Japan : BBC Co Ltd, i2ts Inc.
  • Korea : Codefarm
  • Singapore : Fujitsu Singapore
  • Thailand : Internet Thailand Public Company Limited
  • The Philippines : Micro-D International
  • Vietnam : Sao Bac Dau Telecom JS

These Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers can gain access and leverage Red Hat solutions like Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform and Red Hat OpenStack Platform, to improve operational efficiency and flexibility, as well as expand their hybrid cloud and ISV solutions.

 

Red Hat Innovation Awards For HLB + Alliance Bank!

Red Hat also announced that the two winners for the Red Hat Innovation Awards 2019 :

  • Digital Transformation and IT Optimisation : Hong Leong Bank
  • Digital Transformation and Agile Integration : Alliance Bank

 

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3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture by Alibaba Cloud Explained!

At the Apsara Conference 2019, Alibaba Cloud announced that they will be introducing the 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture for their cloud servers!

Here is a quick PRIMER on the new 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture!

 

What Is X-Dragon?

X-DragonShenlong in Chinese – is a proprietary bare metal server architecture developed by Alibaba Cloud for their cloud computing requirements.

Built around a custom X-Dragon MOC card, it delivers what Alibaba Cloud calls Elastic Compute Service (ECS) capability in a bare metal server.

The ECS bare metal instances it offers combine the benefits of bare metal servers, and virtual machines.

For example, it offers direct access to CPU and RAM resources without virtualisation overheads that bare metal servers offer, with the instant deployment and image migration capabilities of virtual machines.

The downsides? ECS bare metal instances, once deployed, cannot be upgraded or downgraded. In addition, if there is a hardware failure, a failover occurs and the data remains stored in the instance’s storage drives.

 

What’s New In The 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture?

Basically – SPEED.

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According to Alibaba Cloud, the 3rd Gen X-Dragon architecture is able to increase Queries Per Second (QPS) by 30% and decrease latency by 60% in e-commerce scenarios.

In tandem, they also announced the 6th Gen ECS instance, which delivers a 20% boost in computing power, a 30% reduction in memory latency, and a 70% reduction in storage IO latency.

Not new, but also important is the fact that because it is cloud-native by design, it eliminates power wastage from idle bare metal servers. Alibaba Cloud claims that alone reduces the unit computing cost by 50%.

 

3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture Availability

Alibaba Cloud will start rolling out the 3rd Gen X-Dragon architecture upgrade to millions of their cloud servers around the world from 2020 onwards.

 

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Kambyan ManUsIA + AleX Laser Cutting Drone Technology!

Kambyan Network recently invited us to a demonstration of their AleX laser cutting drone, which is designed to harvest oil palm fruits.

They also invited David Cirulli from the Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, and Associate Professor Sagaya Amalathas from Taylors University, to talk about the ManUsIA digital agriculture technology and the future jobs available to young teens today.

 

Kambyan ManUsIA Digital Agriculture

Kambyan Network has been working with David Cirulli of the Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in Singapore to develop what they call the ManUsIA digital agriculture technology.

Manusia is actually a Malay word for human, and it is an apt moniker because according to David Cirulli, ManUsIA stands for Man Using Intelligent Applications.

ManUsIA is a digital agriculture platform that Kambyan is developing as a SPaaS (Solution Platform as a Service) offering to improve yield and reduce manpower in agriculture.

It combines the use of drones with artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities on the cloud to make use of surveillance data and weather information to maximise yield and reduce manpower requirements for dirty, difficult and dangerous jobs.

ManUsIA will start with drones that are remotely controlled using mobile device integration, and eventually hope to integrate intelligent drones that work independently.

 

Future Jobs For Teens Today

Kambyan also invited Associate Professor Dr. Sagaya Amalathas, a Programme Director at Taylors University to talk about future jobs that teens today should consider.

She points out that the future will be highly dependent on new digital skills in the areas of Big Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence, as well as Blockchain technology, and the Internet of Things.

She also shared some really useful information on what careers will remain stable in the fast-changing times, and what jobs will be lost and what new opportunities will arise.

 

The reason why Kambyan invited her was because their training arm, Adroit College offers a Drone Operator & Robotics course.

The Professional Certificate in Robotic Process Automation – Field Operations (RPA-FO) course combines a 5-week intensive workshop with an apprenticeship and internship program at Kambyan, allowing the student to graduate with a Professional Certificate in 11 months.

 

Kambyan AleX Laser Cutting Drone Demonstration

The star of the event was the Kambyan AleX laser cutting drone – the Airborne Laser Cutter Mark 1.

Designed to be a laser harvesting drone for the oil palm industry, it weighs 3 kilograms and is approximately 70 cm in diameter.

Powered by a 150 watt pulsed laser in the operational model, it is capable of cutting through 6 inches of plant material.

Piloted remotely by a drone operator in the current iteration, it will be used to trim the fronds of the oil palm trees and cut through the stem of oil palm fruit bunches to harvest them.

Using drones will not only reduce manpower, it will allow plantations to let their oil palm trees grow much higher, reducing the need to cut them down so often.

This will increase profit over the long term, while reducing the oil palm industry’s impact on the environment… in particular their contribution to the slash and burn activity that results in terrible haze in Southeast Asia.

In the demo, they used a less powerful laser for safety reasons. But as this video shows, that itself is a danger!

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Fortunately, the operational drone uses a much more powerful laser to cut at a safer distance. This would prevent the drone from getting hit by falling oil palm fruits or flying debris.

 

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