Month: February 2021

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Davos & The Coming of the Second Machine Age

February 27, 2021 | aazfmwrl | No Comments

first_imgToday in Davos, EMC hosted a conversation with New York Times Columnist Tom Friedman and MIT’s Andrew McAfee and Erik Brynjolfsson, who have a new book out called, The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies. If the first machine age was about the automation of manual labor and horsepower, the second machine age is about the automation of knowledge work, thanks to the proliferation of real time, predictive data analytics, machine learning and the Internet of Things – an estimated 200 billion devices connected to the Internet by 2020, all of them generating unimaginable quantities of data.Read Bill’s full blog post from Davos on the Huffington Postlast_img

first_imgWith all due respect to the traditional Financial Services (FS) industry, if someone told me five or ten years ago that in 2017, financial services would be associated with words like “innovative” and “disruptive,” I probably would have laughed.Organizations like banks and investment management firms have traditionally never been considered particularly fast-moving, and when there are trillions of dollars at stake, the general consensus is that’s just fine.But the FS establishment today is undergoing a massive transformation that is truly unparalleled, even by Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial standards.When it comes to money, there is absolutely a mobile app for thatThe acceptance level by consumers of alternate banking and financial services providers (“fintech”) is at an all-time high. The level of trust is higher in those organizations that offer tools and services grounded in ease of use, convenience and innovation.Many people are willing, for example to do their taxes online for free. They’re willing to send and receive payments on a mobile app they’ve never used before. This level of disruption makes Uber’s take on the taxis look like child’s play. Ease of use is the primary driver and that’s very, very telling about both the changes that have taken place, as well as what we can expect in the future.Smartphones and mobile apps have replaced traditional credit or debit cards for many consumers. By comparison, if we look back at the retail system, it was just three years ago you couldn’t make a purchase without a physical credit or debit card. Now its business-as-usual to pay for everything from your morning Starbucks, to a bag of dog food on Amazon, all online or through your phone.And it’s not just major retailers that are benefiting from the rise of applications in the retail, finance and payment spaces. Smaller businesses and individuals that use point of sale technologies such as Square can accept and process payments through their smartphones with a card reader or a QR code.Next, look at the process of transferring money from your bank, whether to an individual or a business.The ability to transfer funds on an interstate level in the U.S. has been around for a while given that the funds (all in U.S. dollars) travel within the traditional banking system. Today apps like Venmo and PayPal enable people to transfer funds directly from their bank accounts or credit cards to people via their smartphone.Moving money on an inter-continental basis has been a greater challenge. For decades, consumers have had to go through Western Union to send money internationally, but as the world becomes increasingly more flat, moving money across continents – in different currencies – has the potential to be the next big disruptive push in the way that consumers manage and move their money.The trade off: Ease of use versus institutional loyaltyMillennials are leading the charge in adopting many of these new banking and payment technologies. Having grown up with the internet, many millennials are less concerned about sharing their data with a new financial organization, or experimenting with new applications. How millennials perceive value differs largely from the way that Generation X or the boomers do, for example. For millennials, it’s less about loyalty to an established institution and more about the quality of service and ease of use a company can offer.As a result, this is opening the massive FS market to a new generation of entrants. The barrier to entry in the financial space has never been lower. Many of the startups in banking and financial services focus on ease of use, speed of change, mass customization – in short, the tenets that originated in the internet world.Many of these new players have absolutely no experience in the financial space – and despite what you might assume, many consumers aren’t scared off by that. In fact, it’s often the exact opposite. People are used to doing business online. The reality today is that having a brick-and-mortar presence isn’t a barrier to entry, in many cases it can be considered a hindrance. Online bank CapitalOne is a good example of a financial organization that is thriving, while many traditional retail banks with their physical neighborhood branches are struggling.Certainly consumers need to be skeptical before transferring funds to an alternative financial institution or mobile app, but I think there is an awareness that many of these startups are investing heavily in cyber defense and encryption because they get it: their business is gone if they get breached.Consumers are used to the models that come with internet-based services and technologies. Services like the credit reporting company Credit Karma have perfected the “freemium” model for financial services that offers users services for free, but then monetizes those services in another manner. To access your account, you might need to sit through an ad, for example.  And consumers are used to this – it’s the same understanding that retailers use with affinity cards. Safeway, as one case, provides its club members with a discount on products, in exchange for information about their purchase histories.Will everyone move their checking and savings accounts into online banks? Perhaps not overnight, but with many banks charging fees for customers to speak with human tellers at their branches, the appeal of going online suddenly seems much more appealing. Even with insurance, there are startups that offer low-cost policies entirely online simply by having users enter in some numbers. It’s an entirely agent-free process, just a few clicks and you’re suddenly saving up to 30 percent on car insurance!Disruption comes from within: Recruiting the best minds from techTraditional banks are going to be going the way of the Dodo bird if they don’t innovate and embrace modernization. Banks and other financial institutions need to figure out that if they’re not easy to use, they’re probably in for it.If you look at the banks that are thriving, it is the ones that have adopted and adapted to the digital transformation, the ones that have hired people with data analytics skills and who are using data analytics skills in the space to offer services that are better suited to what their end customers actually want. CapitalOne, for example, has as many presenters at Hadoop conference as traditional tech companies!At the end of the day, it’s all about the Benjamins. People are incentivized by money – it doesn’t drive every decision, but it’s often the most primary thing. When you’re talking about money being managed by a computer, or depositing a check simply by photographing it, that’s not something I would have anticipated 10 years ago.Looking ahead, what I think we’ll see as consumers is an arms race to win our business, both by the emerging disrupters and the long-term established institutions. Five years ago the arms race within financial services was fueled by hiring quality talent out of Silicon Valley with a migration of well-known executives to both big financial houses & startups.What are the other benchmarks for disruption – will it be machine learning and artificial intelligence? Continuing to raise the bar on talent and innovation? Shifting and evolving the business models? A model that can beat a human trader on investing money – that’s one potential outcome. It will be interesting to see if more institutions pick it up. People are starting to take notice.last_img read more

But Who Will Do the Work Then?

February 27, 2021 | isuyyvzl | No Comments

first_imgArtificial intelligence is transforming knowledge work“Machines that can change society, and have been much dreamed of, are now here in the shape of networked computers and robots, fed by data whose figures far exceed the human imagination, and increasingly autonomous artificial intelligence.” — Richard David Precht, in ‘Jäger, Hirten, Kritiker: Eine Utopie für die digitale Gesellschaft’ [Hunter, Shepherd, Critic: A Utopia for the Digital Society]Artificial intelligence (AI) has little to do with human intelligence, even if it may seem that way. You could sum it up by saying that it merely resembles human intelligence. After all, even the most complex processes can be reproduced on machines using AI – not just in production halls, but increasingly in offices too.This is what differentiates AI from conventional automation and rationalization. It isn’t just limited to rule-based workflows and basic tasks anymore, but now comprises of increasingly complex activities. Anyone who has been following the news from the world of AI for the last two to three years will have learned about some amazing new technologies. In the meantime, AI is now able to take on tasks, partially or even wholly, that we were fairly certain could only be done by people until now.A change in activities of this magnitude also spells a change to entire professions, especially those in the field of knowledge work. Here are a few examples of professions that might be affected in the future:Doctors: Automated medical technology is already capable of replacing doctors in some subtasks. For example, there are AI-supported diagnostic methods that utilize medical imaging and analysis to detect tumor cells. The AI used can detect tumors far better than doctors.Lawyers: AI-supported analytic tools are able to analyze contracts and independently redraft new ones. These kinds of ‘machine lawyers’ are trained using legal documents, case studies and proposals, and are, of course, able to make evaluations faster than any human lawyer ever could. I recently read about a piece of software that can analyze a large quantity of documents in the space of a few seconds. The same task would take legal professionals 360,000 hours.[1]Journalists: Content providers have been experimenting with automatically generated texts for quite a while now. Of course, an AI system won’t win a Pulitzer Prize any time soon, but that’s not really the objective here. The idea is to create simple bulk texts, such as stock exchange summaries or sports news, and maybe even basic technical descriptions.The list of professions that AI has on its radar is indefinite. For example, we could talk for hours about employees at insurance companies and banks whose tasks have already been taken over by intelligent systems in part, or drivers whose jobs could be taken by autonomous cars, or call centers that might be replaced by bots, or robots who cook and offer nursing care, etc. The list goes on and on. Maybe one day, preachers, artists, and politicians will be the only professionals who remain unaffected by AI – but I wouldn’t even be sure about that.Of course, doctors, lawyers, and journalists won’t be made redundant by AI. Knowledge workers will always be needed. A doctor’s work doesn’t just revolve around analyzing images, a lawyer doesn’t merely draft contracts all day, and not all journalists write about the world of finance. We will always need doctors, but whether we’ll need as many lab physicians by 2030 remains to be seen. Doctors, lawyers, and journalists in 2030 will carry out their tasks in a different way to those in 2018.For other tasks and professions, however, this may mean that qualifications become ‘devalued.’ Expertise and experience that has been considered gospel up to now will no longer be fit for purpose in these new partially or fully AI-supported processes and job profiles. But a devaluation of qualifications doesn’t mean that people won’t be needed anymore. They will just have to do different things to what they do now, and that in turn means they will need new or different qualifications. The fact that we will need a new approach to education and training is indisputable. But that’s not all – We have to be aware that these newly qualified employees will not necessarily be the same people as those who have carried out this work until now.This kind of revolution will not be possible without friction on the labor market or within society as a whole. And apart from dealing with new technology, we will have to find intelligent answers to this question. This is where we’ll have to rely on our natural resources; I’m afraid that AI won’t be able to help us here.[1], 20 December 2017; [in German]last_img read more

How Customer Feedback Spawned a Global Business

February 27, 2021 | mrhtxubs | No Comments

first_imgA lot of companies claim to listen and act on customer feedback but how many can actually back that up? Fact check! Did you know that a division of our company – now over a $4 billion business in its own right – was set up 21 years ago in direct response to customer demand? Seriously – it’s true.OEM started with Industrial AutomationBack then, when we visited Emerson Automation Solutions, located close to our global headquarters in Texas, they told us that they wanted to keep their existing hardware platform for an extended period. They also asked if we could help them add customization features so that they could provide a standard yet tailored system solution for their industrial customers in vertical industries.A complementary but separate business divisionWhat we doWhat does this boil down to? In a nutshell, we take care of all aspects of bringing a product to market from solution design through to inventory management, customized manufacturing and field support. We offer expertise in IoT design and deployment plus in-depth knowledge of more than 40 vertical industries, for example, industrial automation, healthcare, telco, security and defence.Specifically, we help customers select the right compute power for their solution, modify the appropriate Dell EMC system to optimally run their IP, certify it to industry standards or regulatory requirements and build it. We work closely with key partners like Intel and can deliver pretty much anything the customer wants, including adding specially designed brackets and switches, labelling, integrating third-party cards, creating custom bios as well as managing branding and validation.Beyond system customisation and certification, we also offer ruggedised systems for punishing environments, long lifecycle products with managed product transitions plus specialist expertise through a range of partners – channel, application and IoT. Customers enjoy access to a team of dedicated engineers and project managers, a global supply chain, shipping and logistics expertise, award-winning support and importantly, tier 1 tried and tested architecture.Fast forward to today and we are now proud to serve over 3,500 customers worldwide. Our solutions can be found in factories, mines, oil-rigs, laboratories, sports stadiums, hospitals and supermarkets around the globe. You name it – we are there! In fact, thanks to our customers and partners – we achieved the hard-won status of #1 OEM Provider worldwide.[i]Industrial Automation is personalFor me, the moral of the story is that it always pays to listen to feedback and act on good ideas. We certainly owe that first customer a debt of gratitude for planting the seed of a multi-billion dollar business. As you can guess, for me, the industrial automation market is special – after all, it was the trigger for the business that I now head up in Europe. It’s where it all began.Alive, well and kickingToday, industrial automation continues to be one of our biggest revenue drivers globally. While the industry certainly has had to contend with ups and downs over the last few decades, the good news is that contrary to many reports, it’s alive, well and kicking.Spirit of innovationIn my view, that’s largely down to the great spirit of innovation and continuous improvement in the industrial automation industry. Instead of resisting technology, those guys have always embraced new ways of doing things faster, smarter and better. Today’s factories now have the IT tools to collect, analyse and act on data in real time to optimise operations, lower costs, increase throughput and gain a competitive edge.From the Edge to the Core to the CloudFor the last twenty years, our customised PowerEdge servers and Precision workstations have been integrated into central automation and control rooms (now called the “Core”) to collect data .In contrast, the factory floor (now known as the “Edge”) was traditionally characterised by proprietary hardware and software solutions.Standardisation, cyber security and IoT servicesThat’s all changing now. With the Industrial IoT, data needs to be collected, analysed and integrated with different “data consumers”, close to the action on the factory floor, either on the premises or in the Cloud. As a result, we are seeing a big move towards standard hardware devices at the Edge (Embedded PCs and Gateways) and software interoperability in the field.One-stop shopThe good news is that we can provide everything from the Edge to Core to Cloud, depending on the amount of data being processed and your analytics requirements. And of course, in terms of cybersecurity and services, we offer a one-stop-shop with customers also enjoying access to the broad Dell Technologies portfolio, including RSA and VMware Pulse IoT Center.Powering control roomsA picture paints a thousand words so let me give you a few examples of how we help our industrial automation customers solve problems. Our customised solutions power the control rooms at some of the biggest energy plants around the world. Their focus is on reducing downtime and improving profitability by remotely monitoring critical equipment (think of a power station, mine, refinery or an off-shore oil rig) with sensors, edge gateways and sophisticated cloud-hosted analytics tools.Detecting quality in car manufacturingIn other industries, such as automobile manufacturing, factories are using our technology to conduct real-time testing and quality control during the assembly process in order to make adjustments and prevent potential problems before they occur.For example, one customer uses our products to power 3D metrology industrial machines that use robots with rotating cameras to precisely measure production parts down to micron level. In fact, we even have experience in connecting Dell EMC systems to non-IT equipment, such as trucks, trains and planes and are actively involved in delivering a customer solution for car testing and certification.Predictive maintenanceBy using the Internet of Things and our Gateways, other customers are tracking the condition of manufacturing equipment, second by second and accurately predicting when customer maintenance should take place to increase uptime and save money.Looking aheadThe industrial automation market continues to play a huge role in the global economy and leads the way in the adoption of new technologies. In fact, I believe that it’s driving huge innovation worldwide. Where industrial automation leads, others eventually follow. Emerging trends include augmented reality, 3D printing, robotics, artificial intelligence, cloud-based supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems and programmable automation controllers (PACs).Transformation not happening fast enoughThe key question is, what is the current state of play? We recently commissioned Vanson Bourne to survey 3,800 business leaders from around the world to gauge their predictions and preparedness for the future. The research shows businesses are split by divergent views of the future.82 percent of business leaders expect their workforce and machines will work as integrated teams within five years.Leaders are divided on what this future means for them, with 50 percent saying automated systems will free-up their time, while the other half disagrees.Organisations are united in the need to transform and how; but they are not moving fast enough.It’s the futureI know a lot of people are afraid of automation and worry about impacts to employment. I understand that fear but believe that we need to keep using technology to reinvent processes and strengthen the industry’s ability to hire workers with the right, high-tech, high-touch skills needed in this digital age.Just as there was a move from farm work to factory work back in the early 20thcentury, almost every sector will need new kinds of workers. The truth is that the industry will continue to need talented people who can manage new operations, programme the robotics and adapt and maintain new equipment.Dell EMC OEM is proud to contribute to the transformation of this important industry. And customers, don’t stop telling us what you need – we’re listening! Please join the conversation. I’d love to hear your comments and questions.Join us on November 1st for a global webinar on Industry4.0 : find out how industrial customers can drive business value today. This link will turn into an On Demand offering after the 11/1 live date, so please check it out: more about our work in industrial automation here: in touch. Follow us on Twitter @dellemcoem and @dermotatdell.Join our LinkedIn OEM & IoT Solutions Showcase page here .[i] [i] OEM Global Share based on 2016 Dollar Volume Shipments, VDC Researchlast_img read more

first_imgYou need two to Tango. Apparently, so does a secure IT infrastructure.A thriving enterprise needs a modern datacenter to successfully meet its business objectives. A key pre-requisite for a modern datacenter is a robust infrastructure security. And, for a robust security to be effective, it needs to be intelligently automated.The infrastructure security dilemmaAt its core, every enterprise is a data business. And data is vulnerable to malicious actors. An average data breach is costing organizations between $3M – $5M1. The impact of these breaches is not just financial but also a loss of trust. Both internally and externally.Enterprises have not had a lack of security tools. Multiple surveys have consistently shown enterprises have an average of 75 security tools. However, these tools struggle to work with each other or across the datacenter. This situation only gets worse. There is a looming shortage of security professionals with an estimated shortage of 3.5M skilled professionals by 20213.Enterprises are at a dire crossroads. Critical IT infrastructure faces security risk. The current tools are inadequate. And there are not enough security professionals in the industry.How are enterprises to conduct business in a safe, frictionless manner while protecting its business and customers?Two to TangoSuccessful enterprises have adopted two guiding principles to address this dilemma –Integrate security deep into the infrastructure To effectively integrate security into the infrastructure, one should start with the infrastructure components. One of the key  building blocks is  the server. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has recommends system designers to adopt the Cyber Security Framework4. This way security can be built into each and every subsystem. This enables systems to identify, protect, detect, respond and recover from malicious activities when they occur.Automate as much of this robust security as possibleIntelligent automation increases the efficiency and consistency of actions. Combining intelligent automation to the Cyber Security Framework makes for a robust IT infrastructure.Dell EMC has adopted these two guiding principles for all their PowerEdge server designs. Based on the Cyber Security Framework, Dell EMC has developed a Cyber Resilient Architecture to protect servers against cybersecurity attacks. Every PowerEdge server is made safer with a Cyber Resilient Architecture and supported by impressive security and automation features. Let’s examine a few of these innovative features.Securely protect from malicious activityEvery server undergoes routine BIOS and firmware updates. However, these routine maintenance activities present a vulnerability that malicious actors could take advantage of. To mitigate this, every PowerEdge server comes designed with an immutable silicon-based Root-of-Trust mechanism. This mechanism cryptographically verifies the authenticity of every firmware and BIOS update. A verification failure results in a rejection of the request and user notification.A similar automatic verification is conducted when the server is booted up as well. Key routine tasks are quietly but effectively verified. There are several automated security features including Chassis Intrusion Alert, Signed Firmware Updates, and Supply Chain Assurance that are deliberately designed to protect the server infrastructure.Diligently detect malicious activityIt is critical to determine if and when your servers are compromised. This requires visibility into the configuration, the health status of the server sub-systems. Any changes to BIOS, firmware and Option ROMs within the boot process should be detected immediately. To help automate this, PowerEdge servers employs iDRAC.The iDRAC is a dedicated systems hardware, to comprehensively monitor the server and take remedial action depending on the event. For example, one of the interesting and automated security checks the iDRAC provides is Drift Detection. System Administrators can define their server configuration baseline based on their security and performance needs. iDRAC has the ability to detect deviance from the baseline. It also helps repair the drift with simple workflows to stage the changes.System Administrators can proactively take action to keep their server infrastructure secure with multiple alerts and logs from iDRAC.Rapidly recover from malicious activityIn the event of a security breach, it is critical for enterprises to limit the damage and rapidly get back to normalcy. PowerEdge servers have a few features to support swift restoration to a known good state. The BIOS and OS recovery feature uses a special, protected area that stores the pristine images. This helps servers rapidly recover from corrupted OS or BIOS images. Additionally, the iDRAC stores a backup BIOS image that ensures “automated” and on-demand Cyber Resilient BIOS recovery. System administrators can easily restore the servers back to its original state immediately following an adverse event.If the server system needs to be retired or replaced, PowerEdge servers use System Erase to safely, securely and ecologically-friendly manner to erase sensitive data and settings. A brief overview of PowerEdge Security and AutomationAs the above examples highlight, robust security needs to be intelligently automated. And intelligent automation needs to have integrated security.IT takes two to Tango.PowerEdge servers come with a wide variety of such robust security and automated features including HW + interfaces (like TPM, SED drives) that the OS then uses to build an OS-level security infrastructure. IT Leaders have been referring to this popular guide to server security to calibrate their systems to best practices of keeping their critical infrastructure safe and secure. Does your critical infrastructure meet these considerations?Why not reach out to your Dell EMC rep for more information on how we can help you with your IT Infrastructure security.Sources:Report from Cyber Security Insiders – from IDG Communications – from Cybersecurity Ventures – Cyber Security Framework – read more

first_imgLENOIR, N.C. (AP) — A temporary field hospital in North Carolina is easing the burden on medical facilities overwhelmed by coronavirus patients. The tents were erected earlier this month in the parking lot of Caldwell Memorial Hospital in the city of Lenoir. The 30-bed field hospital comprises four medical wards and a pharmacy for patients who have been discharged from the hospital’s intensive care unit and do not need ventilators. Four other hospitals besides Caldwell are sending patients here so they can use their regular beds for more serious cases. The tents and medical care givers have been provided by the international Christian charity Samaritan’s Purse, which is based in North Carolina.last_img

first_imgWUHAN, China (AP) — World Health Organization investigators have visited a research center in the central Chinese city of Wuhan that has been the subject of speculation about the origins of the coronavirus. The Wuhan Institute of Virology has extensive virus samples, leading to unproven allegations that it may have caused the original outbreak by leaking the virus into the surrounding community. China has strongly denied that possibility and has promoted unproven theories that the virus may have originated elsewhere. Over six days, the WHO team that includes experts from 10 nations has visited hospitals, research institutes and a traditional market tied to the original outbreak.last_img

first_imgWASHINGTON (AP) — House Republicans will be forced to go on the record defending or rebuking congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene.,The Georgia Republican has drawn bipartisan condemnation over her embrace of far-right conspiracy theories, as well as her past endorsement of calls for violence against Democrats.,A vote Thursday will determine whether Greene is stripped of her committee assignments.,Democrats issued an ultimatum earlier in the week, telling House Republicans to strip Greene of her committee assignments — or they would.,But House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy ruled out taking action and instead accused Democrats of a “partisan power grab.”last_img