The Apple car rumor gained some legs this week with a Wall Street Journal report that brings some interesting new insight. Though a bit shy on verifiable details -- it cites unnamed people familiar with Apple's plans and vaguely refers to people inside Apple -- the report suggests the company will triple its current 600-person team to 1,800 people as it ramps up its car development effort, code-named "Titan." Previous Apple car reports have linked Apple's hiring of automobile experts to Titan, with some assuming that Apple even poached some employees from Tesla. Earlier rumors also made the assumption that Apple was developing a self-driving car, but the Journal's latest story indicates the first Apple car won't be fully autonomous. It also establishes a timeline, sort of. The target ship date is 2019 -- though there is some doubt about whether that's accurate. All along, it's been expected that the rumored Apple car will be electric. So, Is Apple Building a Car or Not? Apple has … [Read more...] about Apple Car Talk Starts Making Sense
For some businesses, Apple's App Store rules just don't make business sense. It all comes down to Apple's 30 percent cut of App Store-based sales and a business' existing customer base. To reach consumers through the iOS App Store, Apple's basic terms are pretty simple: If an iOS-running Apple customer buys an app, Apple gets 30 percent of the sale price. If the customer buys an add-on product through the app, called an "in-app purchase," Apple also gets a 30 percent cut. In exchange for this 30 percent cut, Apple not only delivers a kick-ass hardware, software, and store experience but also serves up all the data from its data centers and handles all of the e-commerce payment processing. You would think that running e-commerce from the Web or mobile devices would be easy these days, but it's not. It can be surprisingly painful, especially for new developers and growing businesses. For a guy in a garage with a great idea, these terms -- and opportunity -- are pretty amazing. But Not … [Read more...] about What Happens When Apple’s Rules Stop Making Sense
By Jack M. Germain Mar 7, 2008 8:30 AM PT Information technology managers are facing a massive rollout of new demands and computing models that could potentially make inroads in enterprise computing in 2008. As the technology continues to evolve and the landscape continues to change, IT managers have to pick and choose carefully in deciding which new, talked-about technologies to implement in their enterprises. For instance, IT departments are showing more interest in Software as a Service (Saas). In fact, a recent Forrester study notes that decision-makers at North American enterprises will continue to spend an average of 29 percent of their total IT budgets on software-related costs this year. Furthermore, the adoption of SaaS will rise to the level of a top priority for IT departments by year's end. Another corporate need that could further burden an already overtaxed IT departments is the chore of overseeing the good name of its marketing organization. IT managers are being asked … [Read more...] about Making Sense of IT’s Swirling Trends
By Jack M. Germain Aug 12, 2013 5:00 AM PT Cloud storage technology options, along with developing trends such as Big Data, are driving rapid industry growth. Cloud storage developed around three model options: Infrastructure as a Service; Platform as a Service; and Software as a Service. Merging with these cloud service models are technologies providing cloud computing space and cloud backup services. Don't forget to factor in options such as public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud. Coraid Senior Director of Product Marketing Suda Srinivasan One of the biggest tripping points in managing cloud computing is selecting a solution that avoids vendor lock-in. That is where open source technologies have pushed the envelope as an alternative to proprietary, or closed source, solutions. "Most if not all of the really big public clouds, as well as some of the more successful private clouds, are based on Linux or some flavor of an open source operating system," Suda Srinivasan, senior … [Read more...] about Coraid’s Suda Srinivasan: Public Cloud vs. Private vs. Having It All
There's a lot riding on Apple's new Photos for Mac OS X app. At WWDC, Apple briefly showed off an early version of its upcoming Photos app, which will integrate with iCloud and the iOS 8-based Photos app with the iCloud Photo Library service. Naturally, this plan raised some questions about Apple's iPhoto and Aperture products. Late last week, Apple revealed that it has stopped developing new features for Aperture and iPhoto. Instead, the company is focusing on Photos for OS X. The move away from iPhoto makes sense -- why have multiple consumer storage and editing apps? -- but the death of Aperture was an outright blow to professional photographers who took the plunge and invested in it. By investment, I don't mean the US$80 the app costs: Professionals and prosumers have put thousands of hours into learning the app, and they have amassed untold numbers of photos and gigabytes of data using it. They're not happy. Meanwhile, What About iPhoto? Consumers, on the other hand, are less … [Read more...] about Despite Apple’s Aperture Fumble, the Photos for OS X End Goal Could Win It All
Storage spawns where it’s needed, from sensibly architected SANs serving transaction-intensive systems to storage appliances bought impulsively to fill a departmental need. That leaves IT to manage many islands of storage strewn across the enterprise at a time when the need for centralized storage management has never been greater. Compliance requirements, multimedia-rich applications, and a proliferation of databases are pushing IT departments to increase the size and complexity of storage networks across the enterprise. “I tell our senior management that we grow our storage at a rate of 40 to 50 percent per year and they can’t believe it,” says Lev Katz, datacenter operations manager for EMC storage customer MidAmerica Bank. “But then, if our business grew 30 percent last year, it makes sense for storage to grow the same amount, if not more. You have that many more people, you have that much more e-mail, you have that many more files.” Point … [Read more...] about Making sense of storage management
Microsoft's reorganization makes sense for the world's largest software company, which was getting too big and unwieldy under its former structure to continue to be managed efficiently, industry analysts said Tuesday. Microsoft Tuesday consolidated six divisions into three, each one with its own president: the Microsoft Platform Products & Services Division, led by Kevin Johnson and Jim Allchin as co-presidents until Allchin retires at the end of 2006; the Microsoft Business Division, with Jeff Raikes as president; and the Microsoft Entertainment & Devices Division, with Robbie Bach as president. The new Platform Products & Services Group will comprise the current Windows Client, Server and Tools and the MSN online services division. The business group will consist of the current Microsoft Information Worker group, including Microsoft Office, and the Business Solutions group, which includes CRM (customer relationship management) and ERP (enterprise resource management) … [Read more...] about Microsoft reorganization makes sense for giant
Hewlett-Packard's deal to acquire Mercury Interactive is winning praise from HP software customers and analysts as a smart combination of system and application management tools. HP announced Wednesday that it had reached an agreement with Mercury in a deal worth about $4.5 billion. The buyout had been rumored for at least a year. After the announcement, HP CEO Mark Hurd said the move will double his company's software revenue to more than $2 billion annually, adding that the combination of the companies' product lines will make HP "an end-to-end leader in IT management." That sentiment was echoed today by several HP OpenView (OV) customers. [ Have a tech story to share? If we publish it, we’ll send you a $50 American Express gift card — and keep you anonymous. Send it to [email protected] | We've all been there: 7 hardware horror stories from the help desk. | Follow Off the Record on Twitter and subscribe to the newsletter. ]Mercury products will "enhance or … [Read more...] about Users: HP buy of Mercury Interactive makes sense
Here’s a paradox for you: The latest government stats indicate that the IT job market is positively sizzling right now. Unemployment hovers at a nearly imperceptible 3 percent, and employers everywhere report difficulties finding qualified workers to fill open spots. Yet every week I receive e-mails from frustrated, even angry, IT folks whose jobs were either eliminated or shipped overseas. Although they keep plugging away, they simply cannot find work. And these folks are not just a bunch of cranks; they’re IT pros with real skills and experience to match. Are the rosy employment numbers a lie? Should I stop relying so heavily on my e-mail volume to gauge the job market? I think the answer to both questions is no. Both data sets make sense when you recognize that the skills required for the most sought-after jobs are unevenly distributed across the IT talent pool. Ace project managers and developers versed in cutting-edge technologies can write their own tickets; … [Read more...] about Making sense of the IT job market
Microsoft is nothing if not consistent. The company - despite its feints and dodges with the Linux Lab and what-not - has been highly focused on feeding its anti-open source fetish. Today, that fetish reared its ugly head again. I've been waiting for some time for this Fortune article to hit (I was interviewed as part of Roger's due diligence). Roger Parloff does a good job of wading through the muck and getting to the heart of Microsoft's derision for all things open source. Microsoft must be scared to death by open source. [ Also on InfoWorld: 19 open source GitHub projects for security pros. | Discover how to secure your systems with InfoWorld's Security Report newsletter. ]Whatever Bill Hilf and his team may say (including staging an "open source kumbayah" event at the Open Source Business Conference), it is painfully clear that Microsoft is so dysfunctional when it comes to open source that it is determined to gnaw off the hand that could feed it for the next decade. Microsoft … [Read more...] about Making sense of Microsoft’s open source fetish
With some of the most recognized names in the high-tech industry -- Intel, Arm, Microsoft, Linux, Acer, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Sony, and many more -- hyping netbooks as the next big thing, InfoWorld decided to take a look at a category whose exact definition is still in flux to see how and where they fit into business usage. When it comes to deciding if your IT department should support netbooks, IT must answer two critical questions. [ Considering a netbook? See which netbooks InfoWorld Test Center rates as the best. | Looking for netbook productivity software? Check out these Office alternatives. ] [ The InfoWorld review: The best 13-inch laptops for Windows 10 | Survive and thrive with a new OS: The ultimate Windows 10 survivor kit. | Stay up to date on the industry with the InfoWorld Daily newsletter. ]First, can netbooks play a unique role better than any other device you have? In other words, are they a category distinct from laptops at the high-performance and usability end, … [Read more...] about Netbooks in the business: Do they make sense?
There's a reason the BlackBerry is the corporate standard smartphone and why no other device comes close. And it's not the keyboard (though that helps). It's BlackBerry Enterprise Server (BES), the tool that lets IT manage BlackBerry users' access and security settings to the standards that most regulated companies and government agencies must meet. But as employees continue to put pressure on IT to support the iPhone and other devices, such as the new breed of Android devices, lots of companies are coming out of the woodwork offering mobile management products. Should you bite? [ Stay up on tech news and reviews from your smartphone at infoworldmobile.com. | Get the best iPhone apps for pros with our business iPhone apps finder. | See which smartphone is right for you in our mobile "deathmatch" calculator. ] [ Android is now ready for real usage in the enterprise. Read InfoWorld's in-depth guide on how to make Android a serious part of your business. | Get the best office suite and … [Read more...] about Making sense of mobile management
Sometimes you have to step outside application development to gain insights into how best to manage your projects. A recent article in the New Yorker provided a spark for me on the subject of outsourcing. [ For more insights as to when and what you should outsource, read "Painful lessons from IT outsourcing gone bad" and "4 tasks you fear to outsource but should try" ] [ Have a tech story to share? If we publish it, we’ll send you a $50 American Express gift card — and keep you anonymous. Send it to [email protected] | We've all been there: 7 hardware horror stories from the help desk. | Follow Off the Record on Twitter and subscribe to the newsletter. ]The article, "Water Music" by John Seabrook, was about the new Revson Fountain at Lincoln Center. In it, Seabrook talks to Mark Fuller, co-founder of Wet Design, the fountain designers. (Wet also created the fountains at the Bellagio in Las Vegas.) The new Revson Fountain was constructed entirely on site at Wet, as … [Read more...] about When does outsourcing make sense?
Dear Bob ... Once again, the time for my annual performance review has come and gone without my receiving a performance review. [ Also on InfoWorld: Bob reveals there might be an upside to having an absentee manager in "Can't get hold of your boss? Take advantage of the situation" | Get sage advice on IT careers and management from Bob Lewis in InfoWorld's Advice Line newsletter. ] [ Have a tech story to share? If we publish it, we’ll send you a $50 American Express gift card — and keep you anonymous. Send it to [email protected] | We've all been there: 7 hardware horror stories from the help desk. | Follow Off the Record on Twitter and subscribe to the newsletter. ]Oh, I got my raise and a written document that made a few very brief statements about how well I did. But there was no face-to-face conversation, no in-depth exploration of what I can do to advance my career, and most important (to me), no discussion of the training I think I need to continue to … [Read more...] about Making sense of a feedback-free performance review
Let's say you're not convinced that the Apple iPhone or a Google Android OS-based device is appropriate for your business or as an enterprise app platform. You believe Microsoft isn't yet roadkill in the mobile world, so you decide to bet on the new Windows mobile OS. Which one do you choose? It turns out that Microsoft has four "Windows" mobile options, none of which is compatible with the others. Apple and Google both have or are working on unified mobile operating systems -- iPhone OS (renamed "iOS" yesterday by Apple) and Android OS, respectively -- meant to run on smartphones, slates, and other mobile Internet devices (MIDs). But Microsoft has decided that a one-size-fits-all approach is a bad idea, as different devices are, well, different. (And Microsoft announced plans for a a fifth mobile OS a week after this post originally appeared.) [ Get the best iPhone and iPad apps for pros with InfoWorld's business iPhone apps finder. | Keep up on key mobile developments and insights … [Read more...] about Making sense of Microsoft’s mobile OS four-way
Last week Jason Bloomberg of ZapThink wrote a funny, cutting piece that was meant to rip the notion of the private cloud to shreds. I actually found myself agreeing with some of it -- but not with the blanket conclusion that "private clouds suck." [ In the data center today, the action is in the private cloud. InfoWorld's experts take you through what you need to know to do it right in our "Private Cloud Deep Dive" PDF special report. | Also check out our "Cloud Security Deep Dive," our "Cloud Storage Deep Dive," and our "Cloud Services Deep Dive." ] [ Download InfoWorld's quick guide and get started with Azure Mobile Services for building apps today. | Stay up on the cloud with InfoWorld's Cloud Computing newsletter. ]Let's take Bloomberg's points one at a time. His first is that people associate "the cloud" with public cloud services, where customers pay as they go for the resources they use rather than investing in infrastructure. With a private cloud, the customer necessarily owns … [Read more...] about Does the ‘private cloud’ make sense?
Linux has long lingered in the single digits in terms of desktop market share. But some recent comments by Linus Torvalds at LinuxCon have brought renewed hope that someday Linux might achieve a more dominant position. eWeek looks at what Linus had to say about about the desktop and a range of topics at LinuxCon. According to eWeek: Linux kernel developer Greg Kroah-Hartman moderated the discussion and commented that Linux already runs everywhere. He asked Torvalds where he thinks Linux should go next. "I still want the desktop," Torvalds said as the audience erupted into boisterous applause. The challenge on the desktop is not a kernel problem, Torvalds said. "It's a whole infrastructure problem. I think we'll get there one day." More at eWeek I can sympathize with Linus' desire for Linux to have a larger share of the desktop market. It would be wonderful if we all woke up one day to find that Linux had 30% or more of the desktop market. There would be many celebrations among Linux … [Read more...] about Does it still make sense for Linus to want the desktop for Linux?
The enterprise collaboration market is increasingly crowded with apps and services that target distinct needs for messaging and communication. With its growing suite of apps that target the market from many different angles, Microsoft represents the challenge of modern collaboration. Collaborative work-related activities increased significantly during the last five years, and apps such as Microsoft's Yammer, Skype for Business, and the recently launched Teams are quickly becoming a bigger part of the way people work, according to Bryan Goode, Microsoft's general manager of Office 365. As the average age of today's worker trends younger and more employees work remotely, businesses flock to cloud-based collaboration tools, Goode says. [ Office 365 is now ready to deploy across all your clients. InfoWorld shows you: How to make document sharing really work in Office 365. • What works and what doesn't in Office 365 collaboration • What works in Outlook on Windows, MacOS, … [Read more...] about Make sense of Microsoft’s messy collaboration strategy
In a fairly listless Consumer Electronics Show this year, one announcement stood out: Jide's Remix Android version will be made available for all Intel-based PCs, not merely delivered through the $70 Remix plug-in device. But why would anyone want Android as their PC's OS? For no good reason I can think of. [ Also InfoWorld: Find out which is the best browser for Android smartphones. | Get a digest of the day's top tech stories in the InfoWorld Daily newsletter. ] In my annual geek gadget gift guide, I recommended the $70 Remix box as a way to get Android on your PC's screen for when a small screen was too constrained. Giving presentations and playing games were uses that came to mind. Basically, the Remix box made sense for use as an occasional adjunct to an Android tablet or smartphone. But making an Android variant that is meant to run as your full-time desktop OS? That I can't buy. There are very few apps in the Google Play Store that are not already available for Windows or … [Read more...] about Android simply doesn’t make sense on the desktop
“How do you take a big collection of things and make sense out of it?” asks Gary Flake, founder and director of Microsoft Live Labs, a division of the software giant that designs experimental Web tools. The problem is becoming more common, even for the average user, because the Web makes huge quantities of information readily available. Flake’s lab’s answer to this question is Pivot, a tool released to the public earlier this month in conjunction with a demonstration Flake gave at the TED conference in Long Beach, CA. Pivot presents data in the form of a collection of images accompanied by textual data. Sorting through data collated from Wikipedia, for example, means creating thumbnail images to accompany that information. The user can zoom into this collage of images to see individual pieces of data more closely, or zoom out to see items grouped according to various criteria. Though other tools can be used to organize data in various configurations, Flake hopes … [Read more...] about Making Sense of Mountains of Data