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Showing posts from February, 2015

Welcome to the Failure Age!

When you pull off Highway 101 and head into Sunnyvale, Calif., the first thing you notice is how boring innovation looks up close. This small Silicon Valley city, which abuts both Cupertino, the home of Apple, and Mountain View, the site of the Googleplex, is where Lockheed built the Poseidon nuclear missile. It’s where the forebear of NASA did some of its most important research and where a prototype for Pong debuted at a neighborhood bar. Countless ambitious start-ups — with names like Qvivr, Schoolfy, and PeerPal — appear in Sunnyvale every year. Aesthetically, though, the city is one enormous glass-and-stucco office park after another. Its dominant architectural feature, the five-story headquarters of Yahoo, a few minutes from Innovation Way, looks about as futuristic as a suburban hospital. Read the full article at the NY Times here .

Barclays rolls out face-to-face video banking

Barclays is to offer a “video banking” service that allows customers to have a “face-to-face” conversation with an adviser via their smartphone, tablet or computer, wherever they are in the world, whatever the time of day. The bank said the move was “a UK banking first”. Read the full article on the Guardian here .

How male octopuses avoid being eaten by hungry females

Male octopuses have a big problem: female octopuses. Each male wants to mate and pass on his genes to a new generation. The trouble is, the female is often larger and hungrier than he is, so there is a constant risk that, instead of mating, the female will strangle him and eat him. Read the full BBC article here .

Top Video Conferencing Trends for 2015

Read the guide to learn about the new features of video conferencing, including: Trends in room-based and destop video conferencing Video portals Video collaboration And much more! Get the guide here !

Passwords Are Dead: Biometrics And The Future of Banking Security

Voice biometrics, fingerprints, iris scans, and other authentication options are beginning to replace passwords as a means to verify a user's identity and simplify the login process when banking online or via a mobile device. The key is to provide enhanced security against hackers while improving the overall user experience. Read the full article by Sandeep Sood , CEO, Monsoon Company here .

Fault tolerance: its more than just duplication

Fault tolerant systems need to be more that just a duplication of hardware and paths. Mechanisms need to exist to monitor and notify and suitable operational processes implemented to deal with them. Read the full article on LinkedIn's Pulse here . 

Do graduates make good hires?

I recently watched the movie Neighbors . I did feel empathy for the couple living next to a house full of students. I graduated from the University of Stellenbosch and lived in a student house opposite the local railway station. The scenes from the movie did feel erringly familiar. My dad (read about him here ) saved up his entire life to be able to have some funds to send his kids to University. He never had the opportunity so was proud to have his children be provided the privilege. I graduated with a BSc, majors in Computer Science and Mathematics. But sorry, dad I wasn't always the perfect student: Read the full article on LinkedIn's Pulse here .

Eating your own dogfood

The term "Eating our own Dogfood" first came into prominence in 1988 when Microsoft's Paul Maritz coined the term in an email to a colleague challenging him to increase the internal usage of the company's products. The term exists to this day at Microsoft.   Read the full article on LinkedIn's Pulse here .

The corporate culture of social media ignorance in South Africa

Corporate South Africa treats social media as a necessary evil. The extent of social media participation by the majority of corporates in South Africa is to have the obligatory icons of facebook, twitter and maybe LinkedIn on their web site. However, their social media pages are updated infrequently and are as boring as Oom Schalk Lourens search for his cows. Read the full article on LinkedIn's Pulse here .

Every hurricane and cyclone detected since 1842

This map shows the paths of every hurricane and cyclone detected since 1842 -- nearly 12,000. NOAA keeps the track info in a single database, and made this map which shows the frequency of the storms. You can clearly see that more storm tracks have overlapped in the western Pacific ocean and northern Indian ocean. This is largely because of the length of the typhoon season, which basically never stops in the warmer waters there. NOAA also mapped the storm intensities.  Read more about the map over at Wired here .

How Hootsuite Helps: A Social Media Toolkit for Banks

We are now living in the “age of the customer” and modern banks stand to reap the benefits of their already-sophisticated customer service experience. Social media gives the financial industry a direct line to reach their current customers as well as find new ones, while promoting and protecting their brand and products. So why is social media adoption still lagging in financial services? Read the blog post here on Hootsuite.

Learning from great leaders, Deneys Reitz

The greatest war story was written by a young man racked with malaria banished to an island far from his homeland. He was banished because he showed unwavering loyalty to his father, who refused to live under the rule of the conquering British flag. That war story was the journal Commando, which Field Marshall Smuts called an unvarnished tale and you can read it here . It is a gripping story that has no equal. Reitz served Smuts in opposing the British and then later in life was loyal to him in supporting the British, especially during the two World Wars. Smuts went from being an opposing General to a Field Marshall , possibly the only one to have fought for and against the British Army. Read the full post on LinkedIn's Pulse here .

Digital Photocopiers Loaded With Secrets

At a warehouse in New Jersey, 6,000 used copy machines sit ready to be sold. CBS News chief investigative correspondent Armen Keteyian reports here almost every one of them holds a secret. 

Space Race - the most amazing series in Space - BBC

The top 4 causes of network downtime

Business people often believe that in order to have a reliable system, you need reliable components. Using reliable components to build your network certainly helps, but it’s not essential. The task of an engineer is building a reliable whole out of less reliable parts; a well-engineered network built out of somewhat less reliable parts wins from a somewhat less well-engineered network built out of more reliable parts. Which is a good thing, because super-reliable devices and services are much, much more expensive than regular devices and services. Read the list of the top 4 causes of network downtime here .

What’s The Real Value Of Social Media Engagement?

Is social media engagement over-rated? Some marketers judge social media success by the number of blog comments, Facebook page comments, “likes” and retweets. Read the full article here .

A point of view: Security is about time

Let’s talk about the security part of this equation. I would submit that In security, it’s all about time. Time really matters quite a lot. Because the velocity, volume, and impact of threats continues to grow. Read the article here , A point of view: Security is about time by Rebecca Lawson (rebeccalawson) .   

Wernher von Braun: "Missile to Moon",

6 habits that will be sure to make a network go titsup

The following 6 habits will be sure to make your network go titsup. Whether it it an enterprise, broadband or mobile network, the behaviours listed here are not useful when you are responsible for a relatively large communications network.

Learning from great leaders, Eddy Merckx

Eddy Merckx, born 17 June 1945, is a Belgian considered to be the greatest pro-cyclist ever. He sells his own line of bicycles and I have owned one since 1997. He is one of my heroes and his never-equaled domination while cycling led to his nickname, when the daughter of one French racer said, "That Belgian guy, he doesn't even leave you the crumbs. He's a real cannibal." Read the full article on Pulse here .

Best of Web - Bike Edition

2015 Ultimate Hiring Toolbox For Small & Medium Businesses

Recruiting and hiring the right candidates takes time and energy, especially if you work in a small or medium sized business. To help you save time and effort, we've developed an easy-to-use hiring toolbox filled with checklists, templates, forms, and best practices for finding and hiring top talent. This free resource offers: Recruiting and onboarding checklists: A downloadable checklist of to-do's for you to use during pre and post hire. Forms and interview templates: Templates that assist with interviewing, assessments, team alignment, and more. Top technologies and features: A review of the most impactful products and features successful hiring professionals use. Creative tips: Tips and tricks for creating a positive on-site interview experience Download your free copy here to help speed up productivity and improve your hiring process.

RADIUSdesk (The professional way to manage your WiFi network using FreeRADIUS)

RADIUSdesk is ideal to manage users accessing WiFi networks. The web-based administration front-end to FreeRADIUS is professional, easy and fun to use yet very powerful. RADIUSdesk has advanced features but is also easy to get started with initially. A central place to manage Permanent Users Devices belonging to these permanent users (BYOD) NAS devices which will be clients to the FreeRADIUS server Have real-time feedback on debug traces from FreeRADIUS Control various profiles available to Permanent Users; Devices. Simplify the management of CoovaChilli login pages on large scale deployments Accounting records Network users RADIUSdesk is Open Source and free to be used by anyone. RADIUSdesk speaks many languages. It is now very easy to translate RADIUSdesk into your language; including RTL languages like Arabic, Hebrew and Persian.  RADIUSdesk Web Site

The Red Stuff


An integrated approach to working with problems

Problems are latently present in all work environments. I have previously written about dealing with major incidents here, which have typically resulted because of underlying problems. In this post I'll focus on outlining an integrated approach to working with problems. It entails a number of process and methodologies. The items detailed below are important considerations to have for an integrated approach to working with problems. This approach is a mature, analytical and measured method to have excellence achieved within an organization. You need to write the story of the problem! You don't have to be a Kipling but the purpose of documenting the problem provides structure to your thinking. Additionally, it often helps to explain it to someone else because in the explaining, the problem is clarified and sometimes even solved. And if no one is available you can always talk to a rubber duck as written about here . Dashboards and metrics

Rapid evaluation of vendor's performances

The following evaluation provides a means of assessing a vendor’s current performance. The purpose is to have a rapid evaluation and not a detailed time consuming process. Review the evaluation process on Pulse here .

The Pen that Saved Apollo 11 - It Happened in Space

Cheap Flights

Making A Checklist, And Checking It

How To Use the Aviation Operations Checklist

Perspective Advert - South Africa, Soweto

The threat of a technology tsunami

Recently Elon Musk and Bill Gates have mentioned the potential threats in the use of AI (read about it here ). However a more likely event is a technology tsunami which is a cascading failure of technology that starts in the virtual world but results in disaster in the normal world. There are often outages in communications that trigger problems in a cascading fashion. The rolling congestion debilitates data communications and its threat is more real than that of AI . Read the full article here on Pulse.

AT&T Archives: AT&T Jubilee - TV Spots for the 100th Anniversary of the phone

Top Ten Enterprise IT Predictions for 2015

An excellent post here at by Adam Fuoss . Number 10: Expensive branch office routers, servers, switches and storage will continue consolidation into the datacentre , reducing the need for expensive branch office infrastructure and thus reducing wiring messes. Number 9: Even more applications and services will be deployed in the cloud further obscuring where our data lives and what is the best route to get to it. Number 8: More businesses will use the Internet to connect their branches and reduce connectivity costs while increasing bandwidth and speeding deployment. Number 7: The Internet of Things will continue to grow and place even more load onto already saturated, complex networks by connecting everything from refrigerators to our shoes. Number 6: The IT team will continue to be asked to do more projects with the same or less resources requiring greater levels of automation from their network and software vendors. Number 5: 4G LTE will

Ethernet vs. MPLS-TP in the Access

A presentation given by RAD’s CTO, Dr. Yaakov Stein, at the 2012 MPLS and Ethernet World Congress. The presentation compares the two technologies in ten critical categories and grades them on suitability, coverage and maturity. Table of Contents: Is MPLS-TP ready to replace Ethernet as the packet technology that dominates access networks? Brief review of access networks Characteristics of Ethernet and MPLS-TP Technical comparison: Ethernet vs. MPLS-TP View the presentation Ethernet vs. MPLS-TP in the Access