2200 posts • joined Monday 31st May 2010 16:59 GMT
You want the truth?
Downvote away! Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeeee.
Re: Who's pushing this exactly?
@Sirius Lee proof or GTFO. I've spent the past year talking to people about this. I have customers where BYOD is a thing, not because it was pushed on them by manufacturers, CxOs or sysadmins, but where it has come from users. I have has long conversations with people on planes using their iPads etc for business purposes. In short, I've done my homework.
BYOD is coming from users. It is a demand seen by (typically) 2% of users, sometimes up to 5%. It is most often from the most mobile knowledge workers. Alternately, there is a push - usually for Apple in the enterprise – from creatives.
Joe the delivery truck guy doesn't want to bring his own truck because he's a delivery guy. However, if you asked him to deliver pallets in a Pinto he'd start considering it.
Handing 6-year-old Acer Specials off to Sales/Marketing/IT/Photoshop Nerds/etc has the same effect. They start wanting to bring their own equipment. They have jobs that pay them enough money that they are entirely willing to pay $1500 to avoid frustration for 8-12 hours per day. The same goes from ramming Blackberries down their throats.
There's also a BYOD push from people who want to use software that isn't supported in the enterprise. Dragon naturally speaking, for example; or Final Cut Pro by video nerds.
So, unless you have proof that BYOD is a proactive item "pushed" on organisations by whichever boogyman you are afraid of, learn to accept when your prejudices are wrong, sir.
For that matter, you fail to explain how your pet boogyman is supposed to make money from BYOD. BYOD generally extends the consumerisation of IT; placing lower margin devices in the hands of workers instead of the nice, high-margin lineups that enterprises typically buy. Where is the logic behind that?
Why would Apple want to sell an iPad to a working when they could be selling a Macbook pro? Why would Asus want to sell a Transformer when they could be selling an Ultrabook? Where is the business case for your claims? You dispute every scrape of evidence that I have obtained over the past year – admittedly through a concerted effort of talking to sysadmins, executives and BYOD-wielding end users one at a bloody time – with no logical business case.
What possible reason could any of these OEM boogymen have for pushing BYOD on the world? How does it make sense for anyone except the end user, who gets the widget they want? Please, do explain.
Your delusions are rank madness. Nobody tells me what to write about. I do not recieve instructions from the BYOD hivemind through the implant in my teeth telling me to push the message to the rubes. There is no coordinated effort to convince people that BYOD is a thing.
Reporters report on what we see. Fucking shocking, I know. What next? Americans really did land on the moon?
Re: Who's pushing this exactly?
Have to say "not the PC manufacturers." The consumerisation of IT has driven their margins into the floor. Network vendors? How? BYOD is almost all WiFi; that means less sexy switches and routers with expensive ports, not more. (WiFi is cheap compared to wired!) Management tool vendors? They have been reactive in this game, not proactive.
As much as I am usually the first to cry "follow the money," I honestly don't believe the BYOD movement has anything at all to do with money. It is about the feeling of control that a certain segment of users desire of their computing experience. Money is just not the driving factor here.
BYOD isn't a manufactured thing, pulled from nowhere in order to shift kit. BYOD is something that has always been lurking in the background, but started to get noticed when smartphones and netbooks became light enough and powerful enough to smuggle into the workplace and be used to get real work done. BYOD is a way to bypass what end users view as "restrictive" IT, to get the cool device they want or just to use the widget/software they feel makes them more productive.
It is blown out of proportion – no question there – because the people who make a big deal out of it tend to be really damned noisy until they get their way. Maybe - maybe - 5% of staff at a given company give any fucks about BYOD. Maybe. But those 5% of people are squeaky wheels that can cause all sorts of hell. They also have this nasty tendency to be high-value knowledge workers, not Joe Schmoe in shipping and receiving.
In my experience, BYOD is a thing. It's driven by end users, not widget makers. It is driven specifically by picky elitists; IT are big time culprits here, but oddly enough so are sales and marketing. It can almost always be solved by just shovelling them a corporate-owned system that isn't made of slow and fail.
Oh, and by getting rid of Blackberries. That's another story entirely, however…
Re: @Trevor Pott "Learn to live with it, or leave." Is that kind of posting the way you normally..
@Arctic Fox: That wasn't a hostile post telling you off, sirrah. Explanation of the policy itself was not intended as an attack; I apologise if it was interpreted as such. It was merely a blunt explanation of Microsoft's policy.
"Learn to live with it, or leave." I chose "leave." Others are choosing "live with it."
I personally do believe you are being naive if you think for a second that "customer reaction" is going to mean a bent damn to Microsoft, but I'm not really going to hold that against you.
Some IT departments might deploy things like classic shell. Most won't, for the reasons I listed. The larger the org, the greater the likelihood they won't deploy it. Some will sit on Windows 7. The smaller the org, the more likely this is…up to a given point. There's a weird inflection point below which companies don't have IT guys. At this point, they will eat whatever is put in front of them; they have no choice, Windows 8 is what Best Buy sells.
Some of us are giving up on the MS ecosystem altogether. Joining the neckbeards on Linux, or the hipsters on Apple. For the overwhelming majority of end users, IT departments and so forth, however, Microsoft is all that exists, all that will exist and you will eat what is put in front of you and like it.
You have the same two choices I do, or anyone else does: "learn to live with it, or leave." I gather you don't like the binary option as presented. Gods know I don't, either. That said, in the real world, I do not honestly believe there is another alternative. Nothing you or I or even every single reader of The Register combined could do would make a big enough impact to even cause a Redmondian product developer to yawn.
They can lose every single one of us – and the companies we support – and not care. The only thing that matters to Redmont are CxOs. People who make the purchasing descisions for companies with thousands of seats and/or governments. They don't want to be supplying you Windows for your desktop, or your crappy little SME. You are a net drain on their bottom line, not a profit center.
The only people that matter at all to Redmond are the folks willing to stump up subscriptions – SA, preferably, but O365 and InTune will do – in huge volume. This is what Microsoft has bet the farm on, and it is the driving force of every single decision they have made for years.
That's why we're expendable. The kind of consumers who like Metrololo are the kinds of people who will buy Windows Xbox Live Gold Edition Subscriptions if Microsoft tosses a few episodes of The Guild in each month and allows them to stream the latest Halo over the interbutts.
Businesses with more money than sense will sign SA agreements because they are so deeply embedded in the Microsoft ecosystem that – like user of IBM mainframes – they aren't going anywhere for the foreseeable future.
So…the rest of us? Enthusiasts and power users and SMEs with capable techies and the ability to be discerning? We're the 80% of customers that bring in 20% of Microsoft's revenue. We're the long tail that Microsoft will gladly cut off if it can only increase the revenue from the other 20% by a few points. The costs of supporting us are astronomical, and we are never happy.
So Microsoft have stopped giving fucks. There are simply no fucks given whatsoever. Not by them, not by Apple, not by Canonical, nobody. Nobody gives any fucks about us at all. We have the technical competence to do use any vendor to accomplish our aims, and are just fickle enough to keep trying to play the various vendors against eachother. One by one they have all said the exact same thing:
Learn to live with it, or leave.
I can't – and won't – give you advice about which to choose. I will, however, tell you straight up that there are no other choices on the table. That you, or I, or any of the rest of us have a forum to have our voices heard is a fallacy. One that – quite frankly – most vendors don't even give lip service to any more.
It sucks, but what are you going to do about it? I know what I am going to do: I am going to ruthlessly abuse the contacts I've made as a writer for The Register to introduce the CEOs of various startups to one another. I am going to try to organise a conference of startup CEOs and build a fifth column within the tech industry. Instead of a handful of behemoths surrounded by a collection of intercompeting (and thus irrelevant) ankle biters, I am going to try my damnedest to organise the ankle biters into a serious threat.
I am going to expend every single iota of political capital I have ever obtained to get a few dozen startup CEOs in the same room and see if they can't hammer out the framework for something larger. I will most likely fail. Probably spectacularly and in a fashion that ensures I will never work in this industry again.
But I'm still going to try, because I can't learn to live with Microsoft's vision of the future, and Apple abandoned folk like me long ago. Google hasn't gotten its shit together and the open source world is a mess. I have no choice but to choose "leave," but in order to leave I first have to make a place to go.
If you've a better idea than that – or some concrete rationale you can use to demonstrate why you think regular joes have a snowball's chance in a neutron star of having our collective voices heard by the Microsofts or Apples of this world – I am all ears.
Because choosing "leave" is a truly exhausting amount of work.
Re: BYoD inheritence
Can I offer a couple of suggestions? Don't try to "reverse the policy." That's foolish. Try instead to "mitigate the risks." Get approval for corporate policy that requires endpoint management software. (I'd recommend Microsoft System Center 2012 SP1, if possible.) PUsh through another corporate policy: that devices used by staff *must* be wiped by IT before they leave. Let them know you'll work with them to back up their data, but that you will only reinstall applications for which they have licences.
This can be presented with explanations that cover security, data loss, legal liability, etc. Don't sell it as an effort to exert IT control over your users...sell it as an "insurance policy" against some pretty massive legal costs should the worst occur. Ultimately, the cost of implementing endpoint management and wiping systems for exiting staff isn't much, financially, or politically. You aren't taking away toys, just ensuring they are used properly.
Frame your arguments right and there is a good chance you'll be able to gain some measure of security.
Re: It's all about the cost
What's changed? We've had a few decades to work out the delivery technologies. We can essentially "stream" applications to an endpoint. App-V, ThinApp, RDP, you name it. We can containerise web applications with Browsium or even deliver them as executables. (The webapp wrapped in it's exactly versioned browser.)
We have SaaS delivery using actual standards now, and automated testing tools that simply didn't exist 20 years ago. In short, the struggle between BYOD and Fortress IT never stopped. Fortress IT was the dominant solution largely because it was the only rational solution for a long time. Today, however, we have the technology to accommodate BYOD should organisations choose. We simply didn't have that before.
It may still not make sense for a lot of organisations to engage in BYOD…but it is possible to do it today, and do it in a secure fashion. That's the difference.
So, are you going to tell your managers and so forth they can't BYOD? That's up to you. But you can't use the support costs or technological difficulty as excuses any more. The only barrier to proper BYOD is stumping up the licences for the commercially available, off-the-shelf technologies required to make the problem manageable.
That's a hell of a lot different than Windows 3.11.
This is how you will interact with Metro on large screens.
Re: @Trevor Pott
You mean things like "where Trevor writes How Tos about such problems?" Like here: http://www.petri.co.il/add-a-windows-8-start-menu.htm
Of course I know how to defeat the goddamned thing. I'm a sysadmin. I've known how to beat Windows 8 into submission for bloody ages. That doesn't mean a future patch/service pack won't break it, or that the ability to do this sort of stuff will even be in Windows 9. Unless the solution comes directly from Microsoft, then betting the farm on it is terrible strategy.
These are stop-gap measures at best to help you decide what to do. Shit or get off the pot; embrace Metro - and Microsoft's vision of the future - or exit the ecosystem. Eventually, Microsoft will leave you no choice. Classic Desktop Mode is a transition mechanism. It is not something any of us should be betting the future of our companies on. We should not be investing millions in new Classic Desktop applications. We should not be coding applications for the Classic Desktop. It is dead. Legacy. Already deprecated and will be removed.
Learn to live with it, or leave.
Re: You fail to show the ADVERTISEMENTS!
You are 100% correct. You cannot recover the screen real estate because the dimensions of the viewable area are fixed. It is a pain in the ass. Paying for a sponsored version sans-advertisements doesn't solve the issue, nor does [deleted] which gets rid of the adverts.
The lack of ability to customise the interface to make optimal use of browser space – especially on cramped screens – is a problem. I promise you that it is on my list to enquire about. It's one of those "minor niggle" problems that absolutely needs to get fixed.
I have heard VMware, Microsoft, and about 30 startups use "single pane of glass" to describe "bringing all the tools required to manage your network into a single application."
An absolutely vital consideration, given our collective lack of choice regarding the inevitable future. Single pane of glass, yes please! I don't want to be "swiping in" various management apps on my 47" LCD. I'd rather that my management application present for me a way to manage all my network devices, software, applications, cloud services, etc in a single interface. Preferably one with the ability to switch between the devices I am managing. Maybe even the ability to see the monitors/statistics for multiple devices side-by-side with another device I am managing. Something like that excellent interface used on by Synology on their NAS boxes.
Oh, but these are silly dreams; mere flights of fancy! Back to the coal mines of Metrololo…
These stnadards already exist - more or less - in the form of things like Openflow and 802.1Qbg. Important to note that the extand SDN standards are IEEE, of course, not ITU. Strikes me as sour grapes from those whose patents didn't make it into the "standards" for SDN.
ROTM icon because I feel it is underused, and we don't have a whaaaaambulance.
religion irrational extremists who use gut instinct and "what they know" rather than hard numbers and verifiable science to make decisions which they then force upon others. (Regardless of if those extremists be religious, political, economic or so forth.) Up the arse. With a slowly rotating pineapple.
Evidence-based legislation of GTFO.
Re: Only one vendor mentioned - makes me suspicious...
While I respect cynicism, in this case I sincerely hope that your cynicism is unfounded. A few things should probably be addressed and I'm happy to do so.
First: yes, I am a part owner of eGeek Consulting Ltd. Yes, it does have a marketing arm, something I openly discuss here on The Register. For the record, Zenoss is not one of eGeek's clients, though it would be awesome if they were. I happen to like the folks I've interacted with at Zenoss so far; I think they would make for excellent clients. More to the point, I think the marketing geeks would happy to represent a client with a good product that they can get excited about.
The second item concerns the idea of bias and this is a far more murky topic. Again, it is also something I have discussed here on The Register. It's an important topic, and one I feel very strongly about. Given that I feel so strongly about this, I think it's not unreasonable at all to discuss my current approaches to recognising any possible biases on my part and coping with them.
So how do I try to eliminate (or at least minimise) bias in my writing?
First up: I don't do marketing on behalf of clients for eGeek consulting. eGeek's marketing director is Josh Folland. While I am willing to work collaboratively with Josh on projects pertaining to marketing clients, I provide support for his endeavours that is fundamentally no different than the support I provide any vendor (or user!) seeking my advice as a sysadmin or tech blogger.
Yes, some vendors come to eGeek for digital marketing, but the overwhelming majority of what we do is actually "market research." Vendors send us things; we test them, write up whitepapers or reviews and send them off to the vendor for them to do whatever it is they do with them. In some cases we are hired on to serve as a part of a "focus group;" providing some aspect of quality assurance but mostly saying things like "this will probably catch on well with your target market, but if you do A, B, or C the internet piranhas are going to eat your family."
That leads to the second potential bias in my life: completely outside of any involvement with eGeek and its clients, a technology journalist has relationships with vendors. Some vendors are great. Some vendors are assholes. I talk freely about my opinions with friends, colleagues, analysts, other tech journalists on twitter and forum denizens from The Register, Spiceworks, Ars Technica's Openforums and so forth in a constant attempt to keep my personal biases in this regard in check.
The last potential source of bias is that I get stuff for review from vendors. Sometimes it is even stuff I get to keep. I try very hard – again, by asking for advice from others, getting others to test the hardware/software in my lab and by working to continually refine my review methodology – to maintain as objective a stance as possible here.
As a freelance writer – I am not a Reg staffer – my test lab is entirely self-funded. In some cases I can afford to buy something off the shelf, in many cases I cannot. So I am faced with a particularly common dilemma in the tech blogging world: do I stick to reporting on the smart phone I just got and the free trials or open source software I can download, or do I work to establish relationships with vendors that let me test really cool shit and tell readers how this stuff works in the real world?
I chose the latter. Whether this makes me compromised is an exercise for the reader. It is however leading to a series of reviews that should be hitting The Register in the next few months that will be reviewing Serious Hardware and Serious Software that I think the readers will care about.
What price, objectivity?
So the question becomes how objective am I? How do you measure objectivity objectively? If you have a means, I'd surely love to know it. I have invested a huge percentage of my personal self worth in cultivating and maintaining objectivity. I feel that it is important to who I am.
I am very, very clear with potential clients: engaging eGeek will not in any way increase your chances of this occurring; I make decisions about what gets written about entirely independently of our client base. If you want marketing service, e-mail Josh.F [at] eGeek [dot] ca. He'll be glad to discuss your needs.
If you want me to review something send me a demo. If I find your product interesting, there is a good chance a reasonable percentage of my readers will as well. All you have to do is click the "email the author" link on any of my articles, and I will be happy to talk to you about the product you make, why it matter to systems administrators and see if it is worth my time or the time of my readers.
So why did you talk about Zenoss for this article?
Why I talked about Zenoss is simple: their PR people e-mailed me. They made a convincing pitch that intrigued the systems administrator in me and I agreed to do some interviews with some of the bossbots that run the joint.
The Zenoss folks convinced me that their product was worth the time and effort to install on my test lab and give a go. I rather liked it. I then installed it on some production networks and it has saved quite a bit of time. As it turns out, I had all sorts of questions, so I ruthlessly abused his PR nature to ask all sorts of not-very-PR-friendly questions of the folks who run Zenoss.
Those questions led to this article. It is the evolution, really, of discussions I have been having with the folks in charge of Puppet, Spiceworks and a half dozen others. Zenoss stands out for me as a "Difficult Challenge" for a startup specifically because monitoring software is Hard and breaking into the datacenter as a monitoring startup is harder still.
You talk to PR people! Blasphemy!
Yes. I talk to PR people. I've been writing for The Register for about two years now. I'm still a great big nobody in the tech journalism world. I am not Mary Jo Foley with deep-rooted contacts inside Microsoft, nor am I Jon Broadkin with a network of contacts spanning the globe. I'm not Chris Mellor with a decade some-odd's truly laser-focused experience in storage – and the contacts that brings – nor am I Matt Assay with real world experience as an executive in a truly industry-changing company.
I am a systems administrator that specialises in SMB and SME companies. I am a technology writer that writes mostly for systems administrators of SMB and SME companies. I have a deep, practical knowledge of the craft of systems administration that is rare amongst technology journalists, but am still at the point in my career where I am "building contacts."
As a systems administrator I run a test lab and turn the knobs to 11 before I write about something. I refuse to reprint a press release or say nice things because you sent me a demo…but I'll at least take your call which is more than most will do. The result of this is that I get to play with toys sometimes. I am building a reputation amongst vendors as someone who - while not pliable and "on message" – will work with the vendors and be fair about the items I review.
Some vendors won't talk to me because of this attitude and approach. Others are so confident in their offerings that they gleefully take advantage of it. It is the niche I have built for myself. It is niche I am proud I'm able to work on. It is work I enjoy.
It also means that I will write nice things about companies when I think they make nice stuff. I might even write nice things about companies that compete with eachother because they both make nice stuff.
I may also publicly eviscerate you, so maybe not being corporate dicks to your customers is a good plan.
You make the call.
So…am I corrupt? Should I only ever write negative things? Or should I only write positive things about companies that commenters like? Which commenters?
Each person must decide for themselves. No matter what I write or about whom, someone is going to be mad. If I write a nice thing about Zenoss, its competitors – and disgruntled former users – will be mad. If I trash Zenoss, its community will be mad. If I write something reasonably objective, both sides will be pissed because I didn't say what they wanted me to say. So I choose not to worry about that. I write about what I see when I use the thing. I try for that "objectivity" stuff.
I emphatically reject the idea that a vendor being an eGeek customer – or not – would have an effect on my willingness to write about their product. I have spent too long building up barriers to exactly that. Being a client of eGeek gives you a direct pipeline to Josh Folland; he works with me, and that could theoretically mean that you get my attention.
That seems a hell of a lot of effort to go to when my phone number is available on http://www.egeek.ca, and my email is available by clicking "email the author."
Cynicism is good; I have a lot of it myself. I do, however, like to think that the difference between myself and a truly bought-and-paid-for shill is transparency. That and, you know, actually retaining some shred of objectivity. I discuss these issues openly. I mention clearly in my articles when I have been sent on a junket or given a demo unit.
I hope that clears things up.
Qnap I can see; but Synology make some bretty damned bitchin' SME stuff that goes quite a ways past "SMB." I'd say they are firmly into the SME market with their higher end gear. Buffalo and Iomega don't come close.
So that's why I find the positioning interesting...if they compete with Netapp in the SME space, how are they losing?. If they were competing with Synology, well...
"Deserves to be a full article in itself as a proper follow-up."
I've written several. Nobody cares. (Isn't that the point?) I'll probably report it on http://www.trevorpott.com after I'm done writing this Server 2012 thingy....
Re: Damned Good Stuff, Trevor.
And then I typoed the typo comment. SONOFA...
Re: Damned Good Stuff, Trevor.
All I can see is a fist full of typos resulting from rolling my face around on the keybaord in rage at stupid o'clock in the morning. Proof reading. I should do it some time...
I had absolutely no idea Overland made SME filers. Do they compete with NetApp or Synology? SME is a big spectrum...
"Do you honestly think I come to work and say to myself “how can I kill [D] and offer him a death by a thousand cuts”?"
No, Steven, I think that you designed an operating system with nobody but the consumer in mind. Professionals of various stripes were seen as "the edges of the bell curve." By not being "the majority," providing the tools they need to do work efficiently and without impediment is not a priority: building an operating system geared towards easy consumption of content is.
There is validity to the argument that "you can buy third-party tools to modify Windows." XYPlorer for explorer, Classic Shell for the Start Menu, Firefox or Chrome to get a real browser. I think, however, that this misses the point. By not having proper tools - which you used to have, just by the by - embedded into the base operating system, professionals are denied the ability to use workstations belonging to others.
In a sane and rational world, given the technology available to us here in 2012, this wouldn't be a problem. We would use solutions similar to VDI to solve this issue; we could have a cloud-based user experience migration tool, or even full blown-drag-the-screen-across-RDP VDI. Unfortunately, Microsoft's glorious please-kill-them-with-fire licensing department demands a difficult-to-find number of virgins to be sacrificed at equinoxes into even more rare volcanoes before you are allowed to do anything.
Any you'll pay a yearly subscription with a 6-year TCO nearly five times the buy-to-own fee to do it.
Microsoft wants to be on every machine, and take a significant rake from that presence. They want a fee if you use their stuff remotely, and a different one if you use it under different circumstances. They want a fee if you don't use their stuff and a different fee if there is a combination of stuff in play. They really – really – don't want you under any circumstances to use VDI. Have you tried touch? There's this nice Surface…
The issue with this, of course, is that your now fondle-friendly consumptive* operating system if absolute fucking pants at anything approaching user experience migration excepting under some very specific and carefully massaged circumstances. If you're part of a domain, there's a good pipe, storage with adequate IOPS, all your apps are certified (and even then, chicken entrails are required,) you have your GPOs, third-party wrappers and so forth set up…you might be able to take your desktop, apps, configuration, look-and-feel, third-party explorer apps, Classic Shell and so forth with you from physical endpoint to physical endpoint.
Congratulations, Microsoft, you have successfully failed to live up to the standards of mounting /home/%username% on a remote system, or using bloody rsync properly.
15 years after you started trying.
But lo! You are the monopoly, you don't have to worry about these bell curve edges. They are but rounding errors, grouchy internet commenters and so forth, no? Analysts will flock to your cause and cheer you on because you have targeted "the majority" with an operating system that removes the barriers of "thinking" and replaces them with an excellent tool to consume both of the pieces of content you have managed to secure for distribution on Xbox live. Hookers and blow for everyone!
Well that's great, Steve. I know you didn't walk into work every day trying to ruin D – or my, or anyone else's – day. We just didn't matter to you. We don't matter to your replacement, your former boss or the overwhelming majority of people who work there.
We're nerds. Professionals. We have these weird needs and angsty desires to get shit done. It's amazing how much of a pain in the ass that is, because when someone doesn't provide us the tools to do something, we build the fucking things ourselves.**
We don't matter on the balance sheet. Yet.
Very soon here, however, you're going to be reminded of what happens when you let engineers design a tool to increase productivity and save end users money. Once the world is reminded why it was we made these damned computers in the first place, the Microsoft, Apple and the rest of you geniuses that let "user interface experts" take control…you folks are fucked.*
* Consume what, exactly? You can't get licences for the digital enjoyment of fucking anything. Especially if you live in Canada, where the few pitiful things that are on offer to Americans – streaming only at some ungodly price, natch – "aren't available in your region."
** When a vendor gives you lemons, don’t make lemonade. Make the vendor take the lemons back! Get mad! I don’t want your damn lemons, what the hell am I supposed to do with these? Demand to see life’s manager! Make life rue the day it thought it could give a sysadmin lemons! Do you know who I am? I’m the man who’s gonna burn your business model down! With the lemons! I’m gonna get my engineers to invent a product that does what yours does in a third the time with a tenth the effort for half the price.
***Lots of people are going to moan "it's impossible to challenge Microsoft" or some other such tosh. Bull. If enough of the right people are irritate enough, you'd be surprised exactly how fast a decent competitor can spring up. Even for an operating system. Ask Research In Motion, Novell or Yahoo about the permanence of market dominance and the lack of incentive for innovation some day, hmmm?
Matt, buddy, I have nothing but piles of respect for you...but there is something about your statements I feel I must question.
Put simply: if I can do it on my notebook, it bloody merry hell isn't Big Data. I'd go so far as to say that if I can do it on my corporate budget then it isn't Big Data.
Big Data != Analytics. Big Data = "massively complex analytics done against enormous datasets beyond the range of traditional tools such as Excel and SQL." This makes "what constitutes Big Data" a moving target as technology evolves, but puts it firmly into the realm of "shit Office will never do without offloading 99.9999999999999% of the work to Azure/Amazon."
If I can crunch the numbers on a single machine, this isn't Big Data. It is – at best – analytics. At worst, it's indexing. Please, please don't champion the descent into utter irrelevance of the term "Big Data."
We saw it with cloud computing already; "a cloud" was originally synonymous with "self-healing architecture that had massive redundancies, the ability to spin up systems on demand, user portals for doing so" and more besides. In the past two years it has devolved to be completely synonymous with "virtualisation that isn't ESXi Free."
If we degrade the term "Big Data" as in "solving Big problems that are massively compute intensive against enormous data sets" to be cognate with either "analytics," "indexing," or "automated semantic tagging" then we deprive ourselves of a term to describe the actual Big Data problems that real organisations are increasingly facing.
Can I instead offer a solution that meets halfway? How about "Baby Data?" This term could be wielded to mean "applying COTS Big Data techniques to miniscule data sets." It maintains what I believe to be an important distinction between "things requiring a hadoop cluster and a minimum of $500,000 worth of gear" and "shit you can do on an Intel Atom." It also provides a distinction between the more traditional analytics, indexing and semantic tagging that don't quite cover the techniques used in Big Data.
So…Baby Data? Can we live with this?
Thanks much for your time, sir,
Re: Whoa, "2.5Mb/s upstream"???
Technically it's VDSL 2. *shrug* It is marketed as ADSL, as were all the iterations before it. ADSL or Cable. These are your choices.
Re: On 1 TB/month...
@beachrider any decent "cloud backup" solution backups from your local stuff to a "buffer" appliance, dedupes the ever-living-crap out of it, then fires the blocks up to the cloud. S3-aware setups can just keep spinning up new instances of storage in 500GB increments and filling them with blocks as needed. Amazon's "backup" offering is called Glacier, and is offline tape managed by their robot.
The extant one doesn't have the same cultural "baggage" as the Picard facepalm. "Facepalms" on the net have become a stratified thing. There are :layers: to their use. Which one gets used depends on the level of fail involved. We already have a "fail" icon. I posit that this is roughly the same "rank" as our extant facepalm icon. Thus they are completely redundant. "Fail" + Picard facepalm is two different layers of fail. The Picard facepalm has traditionally been used in between "regular facepalm" and the "Picard + Riker double facepalm" which is itself one layer lower than the "meta-Picard facepalm" made up of hundreds of smaller facepalms.
@allyourcomputers: I ran these numbers only with my photographer clients. The 3d render chaps and the video chaps produce so much it wasn't even worth doing the analysis. I knew the answer before I started.
Let's not even start with the medical imaging folks, the mass spec labs, the geologists...
Photographers. Arial, school/sport and other high-volume photograpgers produce that no problem. That's one set of clients. The other one is the business that prints/mounts/etc those photos for most of western Canada.
There are many pictures, and they get larger and larger every year.
Corporate Stable Code. Outside of Redhat - and maybe IBM - we're going to get that kind of commitment where?
Re: Puppet Enterprise ..
Puppet would be great for deployment and patching automation...but how do you do the inventory collection, automated vulnerability detection and patch level awareness? While I believe Puppet Enterprise may in fact be the best tool available for deployment and configuration management, additional tools would be required to meet all requirements.
That said, I disagree with the assessment hat a single, unified tool exists which could properly accomplish the aims of vulnerability assement, patch level awareness, patch deployment and configuration management. Several try – Altiris, System Center, Kace, etc – but they all fall short in some way.
At current, for an organisation such as the IRS, I would be forced to recommend using a collection of "best for purpose tools" combined with a political approach of "leaning on the vendors" to ensure better integration. You'll find organisations like PuppetLabs or Zenoss (who you might want for root cause analysis monitoring for outages) to be extremely open to working with enterprises to add functionality.
Where I see issues are with ISVs. Gods only know what the IRS is actually running for software. What applications out there are aware of those myriad software bundles? What applications can sense patch level, scan for vulnerabilities and so forth across such a wide array of tech estate?
Regardless of your vendor – tier 1 or startup – the breadth of deployed software is going to be an issue with regards to monitoring, vulnerability scanning and patch level awareness. I wish we had good solutions to this as an industry. As yet, I haven't found any that don't end up with the end user writing some module or plug-in to support $esoteric_app.
IT at that level is not easy, and there are no pat solutions.
Re: Canadians are free to travel to the US for business meetings
You are making a common mistake in submitting your personal experiences as a rule that defines reality. I have witnessed individuals barred from entering based upon this rule, thus completely disproving your assertion that this is "a stupid rule that noone enforces" with only the personal experiences of one individual. If you have been lucky thus far in not knowing anyone who has actually been subjected to the enforcement of the law, then good for you.
The truth of the matter is that this is the law, it is enforced and your assertions based upon your own personal experiences do not change reality. Furthermore, the subtext of your comments indicate that you are advocating that individuals – and by extension the corporations they represent – should in fact choose not to obey the law, ostensibly "because it is stupid." While you'll get no argument from me regarding the idiocy of the law in question, it is the law and I cannot in good conscience advocate that any individual or business owner should violate the law excepting under truly exceptional circumstances.
Unlike many other laws I can name, this law does not exist due to corruption, it is not an example of oppression, megacorporate regulatory capture not even a fundamental injustice as per the UDHR. It is a niggle of international trade protectionism, subject numerous interpretations and rationale. While there is good reason for individuals both foreign and domestic to agitate for an alteration of the regulations in question, there are no good reasons to violate the law as it stands.
No moral or ethical victories are gained, no advancements for personal or group justice would be obtained. Instead, violation of the law as it stands would only incur risk of reduction of long term profits – via entry permaban – in the hopes of chasing short term gains. It's not only illegal and foolhardy, it's simply bad business.
Furthermore, attempting to "win" an argument in which you have been proven to be incorrect by advocating that individuals and corporations violate international laws is – to use a colloquial expression – "more than a little fucked up."
Re: I'll give them credit.
Cinnamon is perfectly usable. On mint, or FC17. Anyone bitching abotu the "default desktop" is using the wrong distro. Simply walk away from those distros that choose to ship with terrible default desktops. Simples!
Re: @AC 15:09 re: "Bottom line: criminals should be punished. end. of."
Revenge never helped anything. It doesn't help the victims in any way. Part of proper rehabilitation, however, often involves restitution to victims. Especially in the case of non-violent crimes.
Your absolute bullshit about "rehabilitation simply will not correct that desire for takling shortcuts in 99% of cases" shows only your complete misunderstanding of not only psychology, but all the various factors that cause offences in the first place.
Quite frankly Mr. Bryant, you're a goddamend asshole with a bigoted, prejudiced view of the world and people who live in it. You don't allow science to guide your decisions and that makes you flat out dangerous when it comes to matters beyond the technical realm.
I, for one, am not only glad you are not someone in a position of power in my country, I am proud that only the most backwards areas of my nation elect individuals espousing such utter twaddle. The optimal future for humanity lies in treating every one of like human beings, regardless of race, religion, nationality, sexuality, height, weight, gender or even the mistakes they've made in their past.
This doesn't mean we must't learn from our mistakes – we must – but not only must the restitution we enact fit the offence we commit, it should be geared towards education and rehabilitation, not revenge.
In all of human history, revenge has begat nothing excepting more revenge. I'm glad to live amongst those that have begun to understand that.
@AC 15:09 re: "Bottom line: criminals should be punished. end. of."
I am glad you do not hold a position of power in my country.
Individuals who violate the law should be evaluated objectively, justly and compassionately by qualified professionals in an attempt to find the best possible way to educate them about the incorrectness of their actions with an eye towards rehabilitation and reentering society as a fully-fledged and trusted citizen with all the rights, privileges, duties and responsibilities held by any citizen.
Individuals who violate the law in a fashion which causes severe harm should be evaluated by both qualified professionals and a jury of their peers in an attempt to classify the severity of their transgression and whether or not it is possible for the individual to be rehabilitated at all.
If it is not possible to rehabilitate the individual – and there are indeed some who cannot be helped – then we should be removing these individuals from society completely. (Lifelong imprisonment.) Here they should be asked to perform some level of productive service for their care, if possible, but overall society should be prepared to bear the burden of maintaining these individuals as the moral and ethical alternative to execution.
At no point should punishment or revenge enter into the deliberations of the treatment of any individual, regardless of the transgression. A civilised society rehabilitates its offenders, it does not punish them.
If you feel the burning need to live in a society focused on punishment, move to the United States of America. At the beginning of 2011, fully 0.73% of the US population was incarcerated, having peaked at 0.754% in 2009. Their prison system is operating at 136% of capacity, housing 23% of the world's prisoners whilst having only 5% of the world's population.
Prisoners released from America's penal system – which does indeed focus on "punishment" versus revenge – have one of the highest reoffence rates in the world. (67% within three years.) This has largely been attributed to the appalling conditions within the prison system that dehumanise prisoners with a focus on punishment rather than rehabilitation.
Even if you have no care for people, or enjoy seeing others "pay" for mistakes, try to grasp the sheer terrible economics of a "punishment"-based system. Human beings are the most capable labour device available, especially for non-repetitive or creative tasks. It is simply bad business to pay for ongoing storage and maintenance of human capital which could otherwise be made profitable with a relatively minor upfront investment.
Re: Canadians are free to travel to the US for business meetings
Read your own link.
Individuals may apply for a B1 or B1/B2 visa to perform H-1B work in the United States as long as they fulfill the following criteria:
Hold the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor's degree
Now, read my article. Then I want you to go talk to a customs and immigration officer who will tell you in no uncertain terms that if you are a Canadian citizen doing H1-B class work - or any professional services - you will in fact be able to do work in the united states on a Trade NAFTA (TN) VISA. What are the requirements for a TN visa?
A bachelor's degree.
Well holy crap, that's exactly what I talked about in my article.
Now, you talk about the Visa Waiver Program, where I think you will find that Canada is not eligible for the Visa Waiver Program. Instead we have CANPASS and NEXUS. Under both programs, if you intend to do work in the United States that would constitute professional services, you need...a bachelor's degree. If you are caught doing TN-class work in the United States without meeting the requirements of a TN visa, they will take your NEXUS card away from you, and you will be in Big Shit.
No matter how you slice it, if you want to do IT consulting in the United States – from Canada or any number of other countries – you must meet the criteria for doing that level of work: a Bachelor's degree in a relevant field.
You can get across the border without one, either by lying through omission or by having a customs and immigration official who doesn't fully understand the rules he is to apply. That said, you are at risk of being permanently denied entry to the United States if you are caught.
If you are considering attempting to do work on US soil, I seriously recommend you talk to an immigration lawyer who specialises in this before making assumptions.
Re: Canadians are free to travel to the US for business meetings
Unless your "business meetings" consist of consulting. At that point. you are considered to be doing "professional work" and require a TN visa. If your business meetings involve you telling someone how to run their business in any way, it is consulting. and will be treated as such.
The business meetings section of the B1 is designed to allow people to meet with colleagues from the same organisation that has multiple branches in both countries, or to allow you to meet with clients, etc where you do not do any meaningful work. Especially in the case of high-paying jobs like computer consulting, you are not to be doing any work that could be performed by an American worker. If you do, you are expected to get a visa; and one that is more than a B1.
You may be able to get by without adhering to the letter of the law by simply not telling the customs and immigration officers the full truth. That does not make what you do right or legal.
I'm not a fan of many of my old articles. At least in terms of writing style, legnth, etc. I've learned a lot in the past 2.5 years...I am embarassed by how bad my early stuff was. I can do nothing about that except make the next articles better.
Re: They call themselves eGeeks but make their clients travel to them, One word...
There are over 200,000 Canadian readers here from a country of only 34 Million. Actual brick-and-mortar offices in London, San Francisco and Australia.
The Register is no more "a UK site" than McDonalds is American at this point. The HQ may be in London, but both the talent and the readership span the globe. Comment times alone should tell that tale...
Re: It might have been better if ..
In 1994 you bought a Fujistu and it sucked. You then bore a grudge for nearly twenty years refusing to buy anything from them again.
I'll take my truly excellent Fujitsu P1510D and just exit over there. If your idea of unbiased is "never say something good about something I have ever experienced problems with," then I am personally quite pleased to not be in your good books. I don't cater the variegated grudged of anonymous text on the internet. To do so would be to never give any brand a second chance and consequently miss out on good, solid products after a company has a chance to get their crap together.
More to the point, since you cannot find a single brand anywhere that someone doesn't have a hate on for, my "job" would be to hate all brands. Unless, of course, I happen to "dis" a brand that a given commenter likes. Then I'm a biased shill in the pay of the enemy, right?
Please ensure the airlock comes to a complete close before pushing the blinking red button. Don't worry, that hissing sound you hear is nothing but your own credibility as an object assessor of technologies hissing away like a two decade-long grudge.
Re: Too much too soon.
Sounds swank! Our rates are currently $60/hr if it can be done from the office during regular business hours, $125 for onsite or out-of-hours work.
I've ran Astlor Computer Systems as a sole-proprietor-style "printed some business cards and did some stuff" since I was 12 years old. The truth of the matter is that once I started writing for The Register, explaining the extra revenue to the CRA became so cumbersome I had to get the business set up properly.
Astlor was retired as a business name, though I retain is for my personal e-mail domain. We choose to use eGeek – another domain I owned – and went about setting things up properly. So yeah, I've gone through what you described, but this was the story of "from the moment we got the first official business licence."
In Canada, there are provisions for making "a little money on the side" without needing a full-bore business licence. A few grand a year doesn't get the CRA's hackles up so long as you declare the income. Do it too often – or start nosing up past $15K a year – and the CRA starts frowning at you.
Of course, once you get the business licence and get your GST number, this whole "paperwork" thing cascades and down the rabbit hole you go…
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