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GigaSpaces: Why digital transformation is like building a house

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GigaSpaces: Why digital transformation is like building a house


Imagine digital transformation in the enterprise as like rebuilding your house. You can do it yourself, assuming you have the necessary time and skills, or you can get the experts in. But there is more to it than simply connecting the pipes and hoping for the best. The flow of water needs to be consistent through the house; a torrent from one tap and a dribble from another is no good. 

To apply this analogy back to digital transformation, once the platform, or ‘plumbing’ is connected to the system of record, and once the data is exposed, it brings issues like data consistency – such as the flow of water – and security to the fore.

One architectural design which aims to help organisations in this regard is the digital integration hub (DIH). The term was originally coined by Gartner and is defined as ‘an advanced application architecture that aggregates multiple backend system of record data sources into a low latency and scale-out, high performance data store.’ 

By decoupling the digital applications from the systems of record and implementing a decoupled API layer, not only can innovative organisations allow operational gains for the present in the form of data integration and analytics, it can also help futureproof initiatives by enabling scalable expansions and hybrid deployments.

One company at the forefront of DIH is GigaSpaces, and Shai Zmigrod, SVP sales EMEA, illustrates the potential. “When everybody’s talking about digital transformation, actually we are referring to agility and to the ability to introduce new services at a rapid pace,” Zmigrod explains. 

“Many organisations, especially large enterprises, have a lot of data spread over, they want to go and introduce services – they find it very challenging. Many large enterprises grew up out of mergers and acquisitions and the data is not the same across the board – they need to compete with the new companies that don’t have all these legacy issues they are facing right now.

“For example, if you are ordering an airline ticket, you expect the data you see to be 100% accurate and consistent across all digital channels,” Zmigrod adds. “If different data regarding prices, booking information, or frequent flyer points is displayed in two recurring sessions or on the airline website vs. its mobile app – you’re getting a poor customer experience.

“These kinds of things can be very difficult to achieve, unless you decouple the data from respective applications, unless you are using event-driven architecture.”

Where GigaSpaces comes in is through its out-of-the-box solution, SmartDIH. It is both tech- and industry-agnostic, serving a wide scope of verticals such as financial services, digital banks, insurance, retail and eCommerce and transportation. 

One good example of how the DIH works is in banking, as a blog post from GigaSpaces CEO Adi Paz explains. As each system of record had a different API, it was impossible to get a single view of the company’s data. With the DIH, the data replication enabled real-time asynchronous replication between four banks across three continents – and expansion from 200 to more than 400 applications was possible.

Zmigrod estimates that the company has spent ‘thousands of man-hours’ on developing both the concept and the solution, so not only does GigaSpaces infers it knows what it’s doing in a very complicated space, it also may, diplomatically, infer the customer might not. 

“It’s not easy, by the way, to develop this,” says Zmigrod, with an element of understatement. “When I talk to many prospects, I say ‘we’re not a magician, but you need to think differently.’ 

“Once they see the product, in 90% of the cases, they say ‘wow, I didn’t know such a thing exists.’ They might be familiar with the architecture concept, but this out-of-the-box solution is something that they are surprised by.”

The Covid-19 pandemic, and the rush to digitisation it prompted in many organisations, may have increased the complexity of their architectures. Companies may have bashed out a project that ought to have taken two to three years instead of three to six months, but they were papering over the cracks.

This realisation has helped accelerate discussions with prospects about how GigaSpaces can assist them in their digitisation journey. “So many built quick and dirty solutions that just fixed [the problem], made sure it can work, but this is not robust enough to scale it, to make sure that it will be working on the next thing,” says Zmigrod. “They understand now that what they have is not sufficient.”

For Zmigrod, digital transformation is a ‘state of mind’; organisations who know what they should be doing, but are somehow not doing so. An example of this is the catch-all idea of moving to the cloud. Gartner noted in February that almost two thirds of enterprise spending on application software will be directed towards cloud technologies in 2025. The cloud, therefore, is not a differentiator.

“Moving to the cloud is just moving the problem from one place to another,” explains Zmigrod. “It does not touch the fundamental of the problem. When people are thinking in a traditional way, they are limiting themselves to what they know.”

Zmigrod is speaking at Digital Transformation Week Europe, in Amsterdam on September 20, and he hopes his presentation will ‘provoke thinking’ among executives and help them get away from what he describes as the ‘faster horses’ mentality, famously attributed to Henry Ford

Zmigrod will also be delivering a panel discussion on cloud migration strategy alongside technology chiefs from ABN AMRO Bank and boutique hotel chain citizenM.



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Radware launches a spinoff of its cloud security business

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Duncan is an award-winning editor with more than 20 years experience in journalism. Having launched his tech journalism career as editor of Arabian Computer News in Dubai, he has since edited an array of tech and digital marketing publications, including Computer Business Review, TechWeekEurope, Figaro Digital, Digit and Marketing Gazette.


Radware, a provider of cyber security and application delivery solutions, has revealed the spinoff of its Cloud Native Protector (CNP) business to form a new company called SkyHawk Security.

To accelerate Skyhawk Security’s development and growth opportunities, an affiliate of Tiger Global Management will make a $35 million strategic external investment, resulting in a valuation of $180 million. Tiger Global Management is a leading global technology investment firm focused on private and public companies in the internet, software, and financial technology sectors.

Skyhawk Security is a leader in cloud threat detection and protects dozens of the world’s leading organizations using its artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies. Its Cloud Native Protector provides comprehensive protection for workloads and applications hosted in public cloud environments. It uses a multi-layered approach that covers the overall security posture of the cloud and threats to individual workloads. Easy-to-deploy, the agentless solution identifies and prevents compliance violations, cloud security misconfigurations, excessive permissions, and malicious activity in the cloud.

“We recognize the growing opportunities in the public cloud security market and are planning to capitalize on them,” said Roy Zisapel, Radware’s president and CEO. “We look forward to partnering with Tiger Global Management to scale the business, unlock even more security value for customers, and position Skyhawk Security for long-term success.”

The spinoff, which adds to Radware’s recently announced strategic cloud services initiative, further demonstrates the company’s ongoing commitment to innovation. Skyhawk Security will have the ability to operate with even greater sales, marketing, and product focus as well as speed and flexibility. Current and new CNP customers will benefit from future product development efforts, while CNP services for existing customers will continue without interruption.

Radware does not expect the deal to materially affect operating results for the second quarter or full year of 2022.

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How Sports Organizations Are Using AR, VR and AI to Bring Fans to The Game

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How Sports Organizations Are Using AR, VR and AI to Bring Fans to The Game

AR, VR, and AI in sports are changing how fans experience and engage with their favorite games.

That’s why various organizations in the sports industry are leveraging these technologies to provide more personalized and immersive digital experiences.

How do you get a sports fan’s attention when there are so many other entertainment options? By using emerging technologies to create unforgettable experiences for them! Innovative organizations in the sports industry are integrating AR, VR and AI in sports marketing and fan engagement strategies. Read on to discover how these innovative technologies are being leveraged to enhance the game-day experience for sports fans.  

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AUGMENTED REALITY IN SPORTS

AR is computer-generated imagery (CGI) that superimposes digitally created visuals onto real-world environments. Common examples of AR include heads-up displays in cars, navigation apps and weather forecasts. AR has been around for decades, but only recently has it become widely available to consumers through mobile devices. One of the best ways sports organizations can use AR is to bring historical moments to life. This can help fans connect to the past in new ways, increase brand affinity and encourage them to visit stadiums to see these experiences in person. INDE has done just that, creating an augmented reality experience that lets fans meet their favorite players at the NFL Draft.

VIRTUAL REALITY IN SPORTS

VR is a computer-generated simulation of an artificial environment that lets you interact with that environment. You experience VR by wearing a headset that transports you to a computer-generated environment and lets you see, hear, smell, taste, and touch it as if you were actually there. VR can be especially impactful for sports because it lets fans experience something they would normally not be able to do. Fans can feel what it’s like to be a quarterback on the field, a skier in a race, a trapeze artist, or any other scenario they’d like. The VR experience is fully immersive, and the user is able to interact with the content using hand-held controllers. This enables users to move around and explore their virtual environment as if they were actually present in it.

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE IN SPORTS

Artificial intelligence is machine intelligence implemented in software or hardware and designed to complete tasks that humans usually do. AI tools can manage large amounts of data, identify patterns and make predictions based on that data. AI is already influencing all aspects of sports, from fan experience to talent management. Organizations are using AI to power better digital experiences for fans. They’re also using it to collect and analyze data about fan behavior and preferences, which helps organizers better understand what their customers want. AI is also changing the game on the field, with organizations using it to make better decisions in real time, improve training and manage player health. Much of this AI is powered by machine learning, which is a type of AI that uses data to train computer systems to learn without being programmed. Machine learning is the reason why AI is able to evolve and get better over time — it allows AI systems to adjust and improve based on new data.

MERGING THE REAL AND VIRTUAL

VR and AR are both incredible technologies that offer unique benefits. VR, for example, is an immersive experience that allows you to fully imagine and explore another virtual space. AR, on the other hand, is a technology that allows you to see and interact with the real world while also being able to see digital content superimposed on top of it. VR and AR are both rapidly evolving and can have a significant impact on sports marketing. By using both technologies, brands and sporting organizations can create experiences that bridge the real and virtual. This can help sports marketers create more engaging experiences that truly immerse their customers in the game.

Technologies like AR, VR and AI in sports are making it possible for fans to enjoy their favorite games in entirely new ways. AR, for example, can help sports lovers experience historical moments, VR lets them immerse themselves in the game, and AI brings them more personalized and immersive digital experiences. The best part is that sports fans can also use these technologies to interact with one another and feel even more connected. 

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The Dark Side of Wearable Technology

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The Dark Side of Wearable Technology

Wearable technology, such as smartwatches, fitness trackers, and other devices, has become increasingly popular in recent years.

These devices can provide a wealth of information about our health and activity levels, and can even help us stay connected with our loved ones. However, there is also a dark side to wearable technology, including issues related to privacy, security, and addiction. In this article, we will explore some of the darker aspects of wearable technology and the potential risks associated with these devices.

1. Privacy Concerns

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Source: Deloitte

Wearable technology can collect and transmit a significant amount of personal data, including location, health information, and more. This data is often shared with third parties, such as app developers and advertisers, and can be used to track and target users with personalized advertising. Additionally, many wearable devices lack robust security measures, making them vulnerable to hacking and data breaches. This can put users’ personal information at risk and expose them to identity theft and other cybercrimes.

2. Security Risks

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Source: MDPI

Wearable technology can also pose security risks, both to the individual user and to organizations. For example, hackers can use wearable devices to gain access to sensitive information, such as financial data or personal contacts, and use this information for malicious purposes. Additionally, wearable technology can be used to gain unauthorized access to secure areas, such as buildings or computer systems, which can be a major concern for organizations and governments.

3. Addiction Issues

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Source: Very Well Mind

The constant connectivity and access to information provided by wearable technology can also lead to addiction. The constant notifications and the ability to check social media, emails and other apps can create a constant need to check the device, leading to addiction-like symptoms such as anxiety, insomnia and depression.

4. Health Risks

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Source: RSSB 

Wearable technology can also pose health risks, such as skin irritation and allergic reactions caused by the materials used in the device. Additionally, the constant use of wearable technology can lead to poor posture and repetitive stress injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome. It is important for users to be aware of these risks and to take steps to protect their health, such as taking regular breaks from using the device and practicing good ergonomics.

Conclusion

Wearable technology has the potential to be a powerful tool for improving our health, fitness, and overall well-being. However, it is important to be aware of the darker aspects of wearable technology and the potential risks associated with these devices. By understanding the privacy, security, addiction, and health risks associated with wearable technology, users can take steps to protect themselves and their personal information. Additionally, by being aware of these risks, organizations can take steps to protect their employees and customers from the potential negative effects of wearable technology.

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