5 future tech-trends to change your life

Technology is most powerful medium to change the trends and the way we do our daily work or business. Now your watch can also connect to internet to perform all computer tasks on your wrist. There are many other technologies reaching the market that can be revolutionary for the future.

Holographic 3D Projection Systems:
Holographic projection system is no more Iron Man or Pay Check movie VFX. Now you can play games, present business videos & presentations, 3D designing etc. with new age Holographic Projection systems. Images and video projects in air above the device at the height of up to 8’3 which operates in full color, offer holographs that have a “realistic optical presence and spatial quality.”

3d Holographic Projection
(Source: Trend Hunter)

Ink Free Photo Printers:

Portable printing device are out now for smartphones and Bluetooth devices to connect with apps and print anytime, anywhere you need. Being in an early age for Ink Free printers there is limitation of black and white print out only. These printers require thermal printing papers that doesn’t require ink refiling cartridges. These printers can print anything which is there on your smartphone screen. Ink Free printers can have backup of 120 hours to make it really portable perfect and makes you stay connected remotely all the time.

InkFree Printers
(Source: Trend Hunter)
Sign Language Translators:
Prof. Roozbeh Jafari at Texas A&M University invented a wearable device that translates American style of Sign Language into English (tough competition to Google Translator nowJ). With the help of smartphone application and Bluetooth connectivity, the device allows easier communication for deaf people. All the wrist and finger gestures are recorded and sends in the application that converts all these signs to English according to American Sign Language. Currently the device is in prototype stage and can recognize 40 words where as it is estimated that American Sign Language has 300 words.

Sign Language Translator Device
(Source: Trend Hunter)

Obscurely Shaped PCs:
While travelling there is always a dilemma to carry out a tablet or a notebook. But with the new generation obscure shaped PCs problem can have a solution as it offers one half tablet and one desktop machine. These devices are ready for pre-booking. They also features bunch of USB ports, HDMI ports and Ethernet (or LAN) ports that gives a good PC experience in compact design.
Obscurely Shaped PCs
(Source: Trend Hunter)

Wireless Folding Keyboards:
A device which is quite demanding for all the bloggers, writers and social media experts. This foldable keyboard can fit in your pocket very easily. Also it’s compatible with all the smartphone platforms so you can benefit your writing anywhere and anytime. So, don’t hesitate while writing on your iPhone or Android phone.
Wireless folding keyboard
(Source: Trend Hunter)

How programming can help non-tech/non-programming guys?

Bill Gates on learning to code

(Source: Code.Org)

Many people love to code because they love the challenge to solve problems by a programming language, plus they are excited for computers & want to build career creating websites, mobile and desktop applications. But what happens to those guys who don’t want to build career doing that but still learn ‘how to code’.

Large number of people don’t like to learn programming as it is time consuming and they have lack of interest. But today, we are always surrounded with computing devices & gadgets from our mobile to cars and wrist watches have become sort of computing devices to make our daily tasks more productive. If computers are at all parts of our life then learning to code is going to improve your life.

Even once Apple’s Co-Founder Steve Jobs saidI think everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer because it teaches you how to think.

The biggest benefit of learning to code is that it teaches you an iterative approach of solving problems and test our ideas in more dynamic way. Computer programming is not a rocket science whereas it’s a ‘life utility’ that can help you in automating your tasks, provide critical thinking for a process and teaches you how to actually start.

What should I create first? Should that be something big?

That’s the most basic problem with most of the people who start learning computer programming. Because many people think programming can only be utilized for big tasks and big business only.

For programming it doesn’t matter which kind of program you want to build. What matters is building something that is useful for your daily routine. It shouldn’t have to be something big. You can start with a “Hello World” program and later on you can think or invent something that can ease your work.

Some people use programming in their professional and personal life to automate their processes. Like one of my friend he is a video editor uses a python script in his work place to automatically create folders for the day and video course wise. That script asks for the location to create folder and number of folders to be created. Being a video editor using python script isn’t the part of his job but he still uses it to make his work life easier and save time by creating each folder manually for each location.

With the present culture of SMEs and MNCs it’s important that every professional should have at least basic understanding of programming. If you guys don’t know how to code but still learn some basics of it. There are many online channels available like: CodeCademy, Code.org, Udemy, edX, etc. to learn computer programming.

So learn how to code and make your life much easier than ever before

Top 10 ways to grow #Followers or #Connections on @LinkedIn

Networking is the key to achievement today for everyone on LinkedIn. Many MNCs and SMEs connect with their customers over the professional network. Even with the current situation of social media organizations are investing in as a necessity because it is the easiest way to engage with customer. This also grows the professional networking to get more business opportunity.

Does a huge no. of network matters?

Connecting with more 1st Degree, with 2nd Degree and 3rd Degree connections or followers make your profile visibility up in the LinkedIn search. Search engine reacts accordingly to degree of connections you have. If you miss out on any of the degree your company will not visible in that degree of connection search. So it simply means that huge number of connections or followers matters when you need your online visibility everywhere.

Tip 1: Make strategy to get 1st Degree connection:

Strategically build your connections with 1st degree profile as they are the industry leaders and many people follow the connections of these 1st degree profiles. Even though LinkedIn search engine algorithm will place your profile on top accordingly.

Tip 2: Personalize connection request

Don’t just send the “I’d like to add you to my professional network on LinkedIn.” as Invitation request. Make your connection feel engaging with you from the start. Personalize or edit the default invitation request according to the person you meet.

Personalized invitation message on LinkedIn

Tip 3: SEO (Search Engine Optimization)

Optimize you LinkedIn page according to search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo etc. Include all the relevant keywords in your description and posts to get more traffic and followers. Especially in long Posts if you are putting the relevant keyword tend to get you more traffic from search engines.

Tip 4: Promote LinkedIn through other social and marketing channels

Share your LinkedIn page on other social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, Quora etc. Use LinkedIn plug-in on your blog or company website with LinkedIn Share button for each blog post and always send a link of your LinkedIn page in marketing or any communication mailers.

Tip 5: Regularly share content

For more interaction post useful and interactive content regularly. Post at least once a day to keep the engagement going on. Multi-media content is best to share on LinkedIn. Without continuous content updating your profile is unlikely grow and gives you less or irrelevant followers.

Tip 6: LinkedIn groups

Create and connect with industry related groups on LinkedIn. Periodically share your blog posts, updates and engage with industry experts in the group to keep the discussion going on.

Tip 7: Ask for endorsement

LinkedIn endorsement is great way to show your professional skills to get notice and value your skills & knowledge. So request your work colleagues and managers to endorse you on LinkedIn. Also send a personal Thank You message to everyone who endorse you.

Tip 8: Use links for better engagement

Make sure to include links in your posts to provide source of your post and data. According to survey LinkedIn Posts with link generate 45% higher engagement than those without.

Tip 9: Ask your employees to add company page on their profiles

If your employees are on LinkedIn ask them to add company page as their workplace. By doing this an employee automatically becomes a follower of the company page.

Tip 10: Engage with connections update also

Keep an eye on your wall regularly to engage with connections and followers on their posts. You can start a relationship with people in your network by start commenting on their post or update. This leads to more visibility and people will know more about your online existence.  

What will happen: if Microsoft starts offering OneDrive as ‘unlimited cloud storage’ to every user for ‘free’?

The SkyDrive inventor Microsoft currently possesses the beauty of cloud with Windows Azure and OneDrive. Where Windows Azure deals with every part of cloud IaaS, PaaS & SaaS specializing for every class of companies and developers, in other words exclusively for business players and geeks. But OneDrive the new name of SkyDrive is exclusively for consumers or end users.

According to Fortunein November 2014 “Dropbox claims 300 million users as of May. Google Drive has 240 million users as of September. Microsoft says OneDrive has ‘more than’ 250 million users.”

Currently Microsoft offers 15GB of cloud storage with every Hotmail / Windows Live / Outlook accounts but any user can buy more storage up to 1 TB at $6.99 per month including Office 365.

Imagine if Microsoft start offering actually unlimited space on OneDrive for free of cost with each Outlook / Hotmail / Windows Live account. Then world will surely start migrating only to OneDrive whether it is business or personal use. There are so many features and services such as file syncing, mobility, creating and editing documents, playing music and videos etc. that matter a lot to the user with file storage. With this Microsoft is already dealing very positively as they are providing interoperable apps across devices and Office Web Apps are really awesome to create and share documents, presentations and spreadsheets on-the-go. So, people will start backing-up their music, videos and entertainment files on OneDrive only. Even though Microsoft can implement OneDrive as an OS for future PCs and mobile / tablet devices, in which there will be no HDD or SSD you just log in and start working straight away in the cloud mode. Then imagine future will have no piracy, increased security, no bothering of data loss in case of device theft or stealing or damage.
For business also there will be a massive return on investment as they won’t be buying heavy licenses for media apps, office productivity suite and sharing among the team will be much easier then every before. Accounting will be just a matter of few clicks. That can totally convert the face of every business unit with a great transformation. So, I can’t wait to see this future where working and entertainment will be merged together for everyone.

But does this mean massive Gmail, Amazon Cloud Drive & DropBox users will migrate to Outlook and OneDrive? There is no straight answer in regard to it. But surely that can give a big diversion among all the cloud providers. Cloud Vendors will also go for OneDrive only to provide corporates the 0% downtime cloud storage.
Well, Microsoft already claims 400 Million active users / accounts, but does this actually means that there are currently 400 Million active OneDrive users too? Well, that can be an assumption. But for sure Microsoft is one of the leading consumer based cloud storage provider and this kind of offering can change the whole cloud game. Competition will be then depends only on the basis features, services and fast performance.

Amazon Cloud Drive mobile apps are out now

Amazon is scattering themselves to challenge Microsoft, Google, DropBox and other cloud providers. Recently, Amazon launched Cloud Drive mobile apps for iOS and Android(not announcement for Windows Phone as of now). Microsoft OneDrive, GoogleDrive and DropBox are already competing in Mobile Application arena. But, with this new competitor the show will be more interesting now.

File Preview – Android
File Browser – iOS

In this new application users can view and share files & folders, read & preview documents or PDFs and photos, play music and videos. Even though Amazon has merged their music& photospecific apps in this one to give users an absolute solution in a single pane.

Amazon Cloud Drive is quite a new player but the offerings form Amazon can bag-in the customers from other giants. Amazon Cloud Drive offers $60 (USD) per year for unlimited cloud storage, which is the cheapest unlimited storage deal. Amazon also offers $12 (USD) per year plan for unlimited photo storage and 5 GB for the rest of the files.

Now the competition to grab users will increase gradually with mobile application. But features and services wise Amazon is still not competitive. For instance, still today there is no proper file syncing client/app for Cloud Drive. As users upload their files manually via a web based drag-n-drop interface, which is a non-starter feature. Usually users want to create, upload and share anytime, anywhere.

These new mobile apps are also limited as there is no editing, no new upload and no way to move files. Users can still upload and sync photos from their Amazon photo-specific app, but edit, create and sync document is the most widely used feature for other competitors which is still no possible with mobile or tablets now for Amazon.
So with new updates for the Amazon Cloud Drive app there are possibility to introduce editing, syncing and creating of documents, spreadsheets and other productivity files. But Cloud Drive app can be a long lasting solider for Amazon as mobility gives flexibility to take on thing just under your thumb.

With virtualization, software licensing is really complicated

Many a times licensing of software are overlooked in virtualization infrastructure. Virtualization actually complicate the licensing, accordingly CIOs and System Administrators should have some strategy or exercise to make sure that the organization has redeem the correct software licensing.

There are varieties of issues that can make licensing difficult in virtualized environment. One of the most common licensing issues is buying or purchasing several different license types in order to remain compliant. Few of the required license types are:
  • Hypervisor licenses, 
  • Management Server licenses, 
  • Managed server licenses, 
  • Guest OS Server licenses, 
  • Guest OS Client licenses, 
  • Application licenses, 
  • Application client licenses, etc.

A complicated licensing issue occurs when a Guest OS VM created on a host and immediately migrated to another host. In the same ways, new VMs can be created on a whim by anyone who has permissions. So, how CIOs and System Admins can keep up with the licensing requirements?

All the software vendors have their own unique way of licensing requirements. So it is CIO’s duty to make sure that you adhere to requirements of the software rather than following the set of guidelines. There are a few general strategies too that usually work.

Always pay attention socket-specific license requirements. It is common now that maximum of the hypervisor vendors base their licensing requirements as per-physical socket for hypervisor and management server.

If an Operating System vendor requires licensing for every user who accesses the server, that requirement doesn’t usually go away just because the server is running on virtual hardware. Whereas, vendors provide choices to purchase the client access licensing on either a per-user or per-device basis. Previously, companies use to purchase licensing on per-device basis, as that was a little less expensive. But today, with every user using multiple devices having user based licensing is a cost effective option.

If VMs are running free open source OS, otherwise the Guest OS on your VM must be licensed. Guest OS licensing policies vary widely so it is important to check with the vendor to examine the specific requirements.

Windows Server 2012 R2 licensing applies only to the host not on the VM. This host-level license applies to the VMs running on the host. For example: if an organization is running Windows Server 2012 R2 on VMware. Company obviously licenses the VMware Hypervisor, but company also has to purchase Windows Server License. This license will apply to the Windows VMs running on the VMware server. If a VM is migrated to a different VMware server, then the destination Windows Server licensed will apply to the VM. In other words, Windows Server VMs do not take their licensing with them while migrating from one host to another.

Virtualization management servers typically require licenses for each server that is being managed. For example if a company plan to use Microsoft System Center VMM (Virtual Machine Manager), then company will need a licenses for each host server they are planning to manage.

Mostly licensing is complicated in virtualized environments. CIOs should review the licensing periodically and make sure to check the requirements for library servers to ensure if there are any licenses required for software installed within an image that is used to create new VMs.

How to identify capacity bottlenecks in Virtualization environment

Virtualization capacity management is an activity for IT Admins that helps right-size, optimize & plan future resources in your virtual environment. Shortage of any resource can affect the VM performance & creates bottlenecks too.

Admins always recieve the demand for creating & adding new VMs for variety of applications & different users. So, admins have to fight with capacity or resource limitations of the IT infrastructure. Capacity planning plays a big role to over come this situation because admins always want to know:

  • How many more VMs they can add to the physical host? 
  • How much more VM workload can this current host support? 
  • How much memory is free in virtual environment? 
  • How much time taken by CPU to process a request?
In other words, they want to predict when will they run out resources like CPU, memory, disk i/o etc. which leads to capacity bottlenecks. Reasons for these bottlenecks are:
  • VM Sprawl, 
  • Enabling high-availability without accounting for failover, 
  • Changes in workload, 
  • Utilization growth in current resources, 
  • Removing hosts from cluster, 
  • VM reservation increases

Considering between virtualization and cloud, which is best?

Cloud or virtualization, which is right for my business? These questions always parts of consideration while adopting a solution form them. Even though many IT Managers or CIO are a little skeptical about the difference between both, because Cloud is more like Virtualization’s extended version. But if you have 100% virtualized infrastructure it doesn’t mean that you are having a Private Cloud infrastructure. Both technologies are almost similar and not interchangeable. But, the significant difference between both can affect your business decision.
Virtualization vs Cloud:
What is Virtualization?
Virtualization is a layer to create different and dedicated resources on the same physical infrastructure. Through virtualization you can run multiple software applications and operating systems at the same time on same hardware. You require a hypervisor above the physical infrastructure to create, run and manage different Virtual Machines. You can configure each VM as per your requirement of application, OS, environment, physical resources etc. There are many big players that provide hypervisor like VMware, Microsoft, Oracle, HP etc.
Virtualization makes servers, storage, workstations and other systems independent from physical infrastructure. Virtualization is the core fundamental that powers the cloud computing.
What is Cloud Computing?
Cloud the buzzword which gives more flexibility of computing in other words you can call Cloud Computing as “a type of Internet-based computing”. But also require hardware, software, hypervisor etc. while building.
So, how’s virtualization different from cloud?
Virtualization is the base of cloud computing and helps to deliver the value for cloud computing. Biggest confusion occurs when virtualization and cloud work together to provide different services, mostly the case in Private Cloud infrastructure.

Through virtualization you can enable the Cloud Computing if you are offering 100% virtualization infrastructure with:

  • On demand services
  • Broad network access
  • Resource pooling
  • Rapid elasticity
  • Pay-per-use model

With all these 5 elements and 100% virtualization your organisation achieve the Private Cloud infrastructure. Some of the expert companies also mentions that cloud computing can also achieve without virtualization with the help of certain hardware, operating system and even application cluster can offer cloud services but those are quite complicated and costly. Even though require a lot of time consuming work just for limited set of features.

How do you know if your business needs Virtualization Model or Cloud Model?
With virtualization companies can maintain and secure their infrastructure because of following benefits:
  • Maximize resources:
    Virtualization saves a lot of hardware resources and you can get more value from a single server. Maximum time with traditional way of computing most of the servers are under-utilised but with virtualization allows to use the 100% power of them.

  • Multiple systems:
    Virtualization enables you to create different VMs to run multiple types of applications and multiple operating systems for those applications on the same physical hardware.

  • IT budget integration:
    With virtualization administration and maintenance of resources is easy for your infrastructure and saves a lot for IT operations.

So companies that need greater control for integration and security & financially work more in capital expenditure model should adopt Virtualization model.

Whereas, those companies should adopt cloud, which work on operational expenditure model and have less IT staff and very few security concerns should. Cloud basically leverage you with:

  • Outsourced IT:
    The daily IT administration tasks, care or maintenance, and support system move away from the company to service provider. This will free up your internal IT resources and advances your business quickly.

  • Quick Setup:
    A startup that adopts cloud from start their work become easy as cloud services is quick and easy. Servers, appliances and application licenses go away when you such kind of service. Even though no need to take care of updates to do the compatibility. Every issue is now on the head of service provider.

  • Pay-per-use:
    All the SaaS (Software as a Service) based application available today with this model of paying of what you actually use. You can customize the services and pay the service provider of what and how much quantity you are using, no extra cost.

  • Scalability:
    By using cloud you have the facility to use it from anywhere and it off loads a whole big amount of IT capacity to the service provider. This increases the scalability of your working environment.

Why Microsoft Edge?

Microsoft already announced that Windows 10 is the last Windows version with this Microsoft Internet Explorer will also dilute very soon. Internet Explorer 11 is the last version, now Microsoft Edge will take over. Edge is offering a lot of features, which were not present in IE before and other browsers too (like Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox and Opera etc.).
Microsoft Edge is promised to be a light weighted web browser integrated with EdgeHTML Engine built with web standards for the modern web. Edge will remove support for ActiveX and introducing other services like web-note and Cortana Assistance. Edge will also offer annotation tools and reading mode both.
With SunSpider benchmark Edge already performed faster than other browsers so it has improved JavaScript performance than any version of Internet Explorer. So, developers can have more performance parameters to compare with other browsers.
The current scenario of web browser market actually is with Google Chrome with 49.84%, Internet Explorer with 18.28%, Mozilla Firefox with 16.77%, Apple Safari with 9.88%, Opera with 1.65% and other browsers with 3.58% of total market.

(Image source: StatCounter)

When Internet Explorer is already doing well with second position in the market, why Microsoft is vanishing it?
The new model:
Microsoft will be offering all the new features and tools just like Apple use to do for OS-X, itunes and safari with providing updates for free. That gives users freedom to update regularly and turn down the piracy. This gives Microsoft a new name with the new model.
New features and competition:
With new features Microsoft may give users carve to switch from their current browser to Edge. There can be some features and tools revolutionary but need to wait for future.
With the earlier version of Internet Explorer were a lot of performance issues and web developer’s use to face a lot incompatibility. Even though Internet Explorer was heavy browser. Now Microsoft Edge is already a lightweight and designed with new engine so performance and development issues can get rid-off.
Some of the earlier versions of Internet Explorer didn’t offer mobility. With the evolution of Windows Phone, IE got an eye as mobile web browser but still IE doesn’t consider as a mobile web browser. Edge is serving for all the platforms from PC to Mobile and Tablet also offers syncing among all the devices this can make user’s work easy and on-the-go too.
In the first beta/preview launch Microsoft Edge already caught eye for many web developers. There are still so many parameters which Edge has deliver and expected to get them covered up in the future updates. However, Internet Explorer 11 will available for the time being to overcome compatibility issues. Microsoft Edge will be featured as default browser in all the windows devices.

The Public Cloud Trust Deficit – What can CIO do to bridge it?

Public Cloud the power of accessing files from anywhere and on any device brings more scalability & effectiveness among employees or peers at very low cost. Public Cloud services include services like file sharing, e-mail, server hosting, and online office applications. Public Cloud services are basically for those who don’t really require a high level of infrastructure. But this doesn’t stop SMEs and big enterprises to use Public Cloud for their professional or official use. In fact some of the organizations are using public cloud services to make their daily operations more efficient.

Maximum CIOs says that security and controlling of public cloud is a big concern for them. Security factor is actually different for each company. For example a Government organization who handles individual’s documentation may have different sets of security protocols from Petroleum Company. So the decision of outsourcing the IT services to cloud provider is very crucial for a CIO. Because what works for an organization may not necessarily work the same for another. While considering the public cloud services the potential benefits are important but it is almost important to keep security objectives in mind.

But Public Cloud may provide some of the secure and scalable benefits, such as:

  • Department wise:
    CIO can easily avail public cloud services as per the department’s need. As public cloud / hybrid cloud services are offered as the way you use them and how much you use them. So easy to get ownership department wise.

  • Platform:
    Cloud computing is much more different from the traditional way of computing. Cloud as a platform enables a lot of automation and ease in your work. CIOs need to worry about managing the configuration control, security patches, system maintenance & fault management etc.

  • Resources Availability:
    With ultimate recovery and backups procedures cloud will never let your application down. Due to no geographical restriction, it becomes more robust. So, it’s more reliable where you want 0% downtime.

  • Mobility:
    Public cloud structure is actually designed in a way that you can use it from anywhere and on any device. You can log in from a smartphone and from your office PC too

These benefits also requires more monitoring and controlling for your data. As CIO is unaware from where he is accessing his file or where the image or backup of a VM is lying. There are a few recommended activates which you can perform with your public / hybrid:

  • CIOs should refer or check SLAs first before adopting public cloud. Even though Public Cloud SLAs have many term which are non-negotiable, leads to very less visibility and increase more security constraints.

  • To enhance the security, control and backup there are few third party tools available. Which CIOs can deploy in their hybrid/public cloud to get everything in single pane solution.