Month: February 2021

Industry Segments Part 3: Retail

first_imgThere’s one clear message that has come through in my series of industry-based blog posts: fundamental change and transformation is occurring everywhere, irrespective of industry. While there’s no absolute answer to the question of which industry is undergoing the most change, there are strong arguments for the case that retail is going through significant disruption. In this post, I will discuss the technological changes occurring in the retail industry, uncover some of the key drivers behind these changes, and examine how information and communication technology (ICT) are being leveraged by retail CIOs to achieve those basic business imperatives of growth, efficiency, cost reduction and productivity.What will be the game changer for the retail industry in the year ahead?It is impossible to talk about a modern retail environment without discussing the concept of the “omni-channel”. The term omni-channel is an evolution of multi-channel retailing, which in essence is the ability for a retailer to connect with their customers through various mechanisms, ranging from brick and mortar stores through to TV, radio, internet and mobile. Omni-channel is the embodiment of third platform computing, which mashes together the various online channels that retailers connect to their customers, in a seamless and cohesive manner, to provide the best possible retail experience.From a technology perspective, heavy investments in sophisticated warehouse systems, supply chains, customer relationship management (CRM) and business analytics will be needed to support omni-channel retailing. A number of large transformational projects have taken place as key established players within the sector move to create integrated omni-channel capabilities.While the omni-channel may be the phrase of the day, the fundamentals are still critically important to retailers. Cost-management technology deployments are still required – including supply chain management, inventory management and investments relating to employee productivity. IDC supports this prediction by stating that by 2016, 50% of national retailers will invest in distributed order management, enterprise inventory visibility and workforce management to enable same-day fulfillment.How can retail organisations keep pace with the challenge of running their data centres?One of the fundamental challenges for the retail IT executive is the balancing act that needs to be struck between the yawning gap between requirements of existing and new systems. To help bridge this gap, there is strong advocacy in the market for a two-speed IT that can support the requirements of legacy and existing applications, such as ERP, SCM and POS, while providing a stage to support third platform workloads, such as applications with embedded social capabilities, or small mobile apps developed and delivered rapidly via the cloud with vast analytical capability on the back end.A specific industry approach called “Lean Retail” uses compute, storage and management technology as well as network architectures to reduce costs and increase innovation. If implemented properly, Lean Retail can increase a retailer’s agility in responding to and shaping the consumer’s experience. A successful Lean Retail implementation starts in the data centre and has three pillars:Reduce unnecessary infrastructure from stores and centralise IT equipment to the data centre, then consolidateIT infrastructure remaining in stores should be consolidated and virtualizedAutomate and maximize the functionality of IT equipment in the storeMany retailers need to quickly accommodate new websites and mobile apps, incorporate new stacks of technologies entering their environments to perform tasks such as big data and analytics, while taking a homogenized view of infrastructure to reduce inter-technology friction.Consolidating applications on platforms that combine server, storage and network virtualization enables retailers to rapidly move compute loads to fewer machines, in order to meet the needs of the business during different times of day, week and month. In order to achieve this, ICT strategies should look to create an environment that facilitates future web services while simultaneously enhancing current and legacy environments.In this context, how can VCE add value to retailers?Within a retail environment, VCE adds tremendous value on a multitude of fronts. With retail CIOs under pressure to upgrade data centre in very short timeframes to meet new program launches, our industry-leading time to market solves this critical problem better than any other provider on the planet.It’s important to understand that to realize the benefits of omni-channel retailing, retail CIOs must increase their agility by installing infrastructure that can scale for enterprise-wide deployment of new services. This is, however, only one piece of the puzzle, with many retail environments needing not only scaling, but also velocity when deploying infrastructure as well as applications that support business services.VCE has industry-leading technology in the Vblock System to provide the best platform for a retail organization to implement a Lean Retail strategy. The high-end Vblock System 720 provides the scalability and performance required for a highly consolidated environment, supporting multiple workloads. The compact, but powerful Vblock System 100 brings the benefits of converged infrastructure to regional, branch and store locations. Vblock Systems provide the foundation for a Lean Retail solution that gives IT the centralized command and control to efficiently operate the retail platform of the future.last_img read more

#68: Dell EMC World Austin Live

first_imgDon’t miss “Dell EMC The Source” app in the App Store. Be sure to subscribe to Dell EMC The Source Podcast on iTunes, Stitcher Radio or Google Play and visit the official blog at thesourceblog.emc.comEMC: The Source Podcast is hosted By Sam Marraccini (@SamMarraccini) Digital Transformation is here, and Dell EMC is leading the way. Dell EMC World in Austin provided the perfect opportunity for the very first “Dell EMC World”.  A unique setting to highlight the power of Dell Technologies, Dell EMC and the entire family of companies.  Bigger and better than ever, Dell EMC World included a full array of technical and strategy breakout sessions along with a CxO event for both commercial and enterprise size businesses.With insights across cloud, mobility, big data, IoT security and storage, Dell EMC World offered something for everyone. From product announcements to workshops and labs, it was a great opportunity to learn from the best in the business.I spent some time with Adeel Omer (@GeeekInAustin), we talked about Dell EMC World, the differences from prior years and what we found most interesting about the show and Dell Technologies!Didn’t get a chance to visit Austin? You can check out all the keynotes and select breakouts sessions in the “Live” library here and don’t forget to mark your calendars for Dell EMC World Las Vegas, May 8th – 11tt, 2016 at The Las Vegas Venetian.The Source Podcast: Episode #68: Dell EMC World Austin LiveAudio Player Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.last_img read more

You Asked, We Listened – XPS 13 2-in-1 Now Adapted for Business

first_imgWhen it comes to product success, there’s an old business adage that says once is a fluke, twice is a trend and three times is a pattern. At Dell, we like to think that nothing we do is a fluke, but one can’t help but pause and consider the success of our XPS 13 laptops across the consumer spectrum. Featuring some of the finest aesthetics on the market, coupled with the latest in cutting edge technology, tech press and analysts have been declaring the XPS 13 one of the best laptops available for the past three years. So we’ve surpassed the bar for a trend, and we’re now looking at a pattern. For us, the consistent success of the XPS lineup has brought more attention from business customers seeking to integrate the popular devices into their commercial environment to complement our broad portfolio of Latitude, OptiPlex and Precision business PCs.A Bold New AdditionAt CES this year, we announced a new addition to our XPS laptop lineup, the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1. Born of years of award-winning design aesthetics, this thin, light, and feature-rich convertible features a fan-less design, all-day battery life and beautiful InfinityEdge touch screens with resolutions up to QHD+.We built a solid, beautiful 360-degree convertible laptop that incorporates all the feedback we’ve learned from our customers, analysts and review press. For example, many convertibles might feel awkward in tablet mode, but not the XPS 13 2-in-1. We’ve built a 2-in-1 that feels like a tablet when you fold it over. It is ultra-thin and the Continuum feature built into Windows 10 delivers a satisfying experience in every operational mode. Its fan-less design contributes to that feeling – who wants to hear a tablet with a fan start to whine up just because you opened up another browser tab, or started to watch a movie?Since its introduction at CES, the XPS 13 2-in-1 has received numerous awards and praise from those who are impressed by the balance of weight, performance, design, battery life and other features.These awards have not gone unnoticed, especially among business customers who would like to make a case for utilizing a product like the XPS 13 2-in-1 in their workplace. They know that slate tablets won’t cut it, but a convertible as thin and powerful as the XPS 13 2-in-1 fits the bill.“Today, we’re excited to announce the expansion of the XPS 13 2-in-1’s configuration options to include additional commercial security and manageability features.ShareThat means the availability of Intel vPro-enabled processors for hardware-level manageability and security, as well as Dell-enhanced security, support and manageability capabilities that will make integrating the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 into an existing commercial ecosystem a seamless experience. We don’t want the XPS 13 2-in-1 to be the rogue device in the company, but rather an integral part of an organization’s IT portfolio. That means IT departments can effortlessly integrate XPS for the first time, with one of our most exciting designs, the same way they do with other Dell commercial products.Customers will have access to Dell ProSupport Plus, which includes proactive automated support, predictive automated support, both industry-exclusives; standard features that are optional up-sells from the competition come standard with ProSupport Plus including accidental damage repair, the ability to retain your hard drive during the RMA process for data security, and a technical account manager with monthly reporting. These world-class service and support features, combined with the killer pedigree of the XPS mobile family of products and affirmed by the acclaimed Dell XPS 13 2-in-1, are giving more people the choice in how they go about their day, be it at work or at play.Would you like to explore the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 for yourself? Check it out here. It’s powerfully equipped at under a thousand dollars, and shipping today.last_img read more

Dell EMC Partner Program Awarded 5-Star Partner Program by CRN

first_imgPartners, in the Dell EMC Partner Program, your perception is our reality. We work night and day to deliver the best products, solutions and services to help your customers on their Digital Transformation journeys, and the best programs for you to make money and grow your business. We shape our priorities based on your feedback, and together we’ve delivered an extraordinary Partner Program.I am excited to share that this week CRN® has recognized the Dell EMC Partner Program with a 5-Star rating in its 2018 Partner Program Guide. CRN’s annual guide is highly anticipated by technology vendors that provide products and services through the IT channel. The 5-Star rating recognizes an elite subset of companies that offer solution providers the best partnering elements in their channel programs.Thanks to each and every Dell EMC partner for making this distinction possible. We simply could not achieve this without your commitment, input and stellar feedback.While this is great recognition for the company and our teams, we’re not done yet. We have a saying in Dell, “Pleased, but not satisfied.”  I’m a big believer in continuous improvement. Every single day we strive to raise the bar and get better, delivering a program that is Simple. Predictable. Profitable.TM We are constantly listening to and learning from you. We’re taking your feedback and turning it into action, driving operational excellence and simplifying your engagement process with Dell EMC.We have a number of partner announcements planned for Global Partner Summit at Dell Technologies World that further build on our promise of Simple. Predictable. Profitable.™  I can’t wait to share them with you. If you haven’t registered for Global Partner Summit yet, now’s the time. The event is less than one month away and you won’t want to miss out.Thank you, again, for your incredible partnership. It’s your input that helps us win awards, turn heads, and drive massive opportunities together. Together, we are unstoppable.last_img read more

Self-Driving Storage, Part 1: AI’s Role in Intelligent Storage

first_imgArtificial Intelligence (AI) is here! With a rapidly growing number of success stories proving the possibilities and some bloopers too, there is no question that AI and machine learning technology have moved from science fiction to reality.Why now? In essence, I see it as a confluence of two trends: multi-layered recursive learning technologies inspired by a deeper understanding of how the human brain learns, and exponentially cheaper and more powerful computing. Some of the latest advances made by leveraging these trends are truly amazing: machines that take advantage of their own “bodies” to learn, machines that autonomously learn to assist other machines, and deep learning algorithms that are fundamentally rooted in the simplest of ideas: curiosity. Another reason for the success of AI is that it is being applied to focused problems such as natural language processing, facial recognition, document analysis, medical diagnosis, etc.; a “truly intelligent” digital assistant still seems a long way away.The kinds of problems that are ripe for AI are those where intelligence is a set of heuristics (fact-based or “intuitive”) that evolve over time as the environment changes. For example:Diagnosing a medical condition based on observed symptoms combined with an understanding of human anatomy, physiology, chemistry, etc.Predicting a downstream problem in a manufacturing pipeline based on a confluence of events happening right nowThe broader the scope of the environment, the more challenging it is for AI to succeed reliably. There’s no doubt AI will be solving increasingly complex problems, but like most things in life, the key is to start with a narrower focus and then expand.Intelligent StorageAt Dell EMC, we recognized the need/opportunity for applying learning algorithms in the data center and have been developing and perfecting them for years. Over the last five years or so, we have been making our storage systems intelligent, applying machine learning algorithms that give the systems the ability to automatically change their behavior in response to changing workloads to best serve our customers’ mission-critical applications, without human support. Side note: beware of vendors that seem to have developed AI capabilities overnight – they’re clearly jumping on the hype bandwagon. We also recognized that we needed to keep it focused initially and then expand. As mentioned earlier, the problems that are best suited for an AI algorithm are those where the intelligence is a set of heuristics that need to evolve over time as the environment changes. If you’ve built enterprise storage systems, you know they are full of such things – for example:Is this a sequential read pattern? If so, how many blocks should I pre-fetch?Is that I/O surge a real application or a workload gone rogue?Do I have enough cache left to absorb this incoming stream or will I drown if I do that?In the past, engineers would instinctively codify their heuristics as a set of knobs and dials that they expect “someone” to magically set and tune. So, we started looking at how we can put this experience and knowledge into algorithms inside the system, so the system itself can do the “tweaking” and avoid human intervention.One of the most complex sub-systems in an enterprise storage system is the allocation of critical shared system resources across workloads. No matter the size, it is a known fact that storage systems service more workloads than its dedicated resources – in other words, the system has to share its critical resources (such as memory, CPU, expensive non-volatile RAM, back-end I/O bandwidth, etc.) optimally across a set of workloads that are continuously changing. The system has a ton of information about the workloads but it is non-trivial to decipher what is going on at a macro system level. In the example below, clearly something changed on Day 3, but is it a permanent change? And should the system change its knobs and dials settings as a result?Over the last few years, we have been developing a machine learning capability embedded inside the storage array that allows the system to make these kinds of decisions autonomously (shown in the picture below). Each application has a pre-defined performance requirement specified as a service level. The critical system resources (e.g. CPU, memory, non-volatile media, backend bandwidth) are dynamically reallocated across applications to achieve the service levels. We accomplish that by modeling this as a reinforcement learning problem. The system is taught to take action to maximize a notion of cumulative reward (or minimize regret) to achieve the target application performance.And here’s an example of this machinery in action in the all-new PowerMax Dell EMC just launched:Let’s unpack this a bit. The graphs make it look easy – it’s easy to conclude looking at the chart after the fact that the answer is to just keep throttling the Test workload until the Production workload meets its service level objective. That’s the sledge-hammer approach and it’s ineffective in any but the most simplistic and/or contrived situations; instead the PowerMax targets the response time objective of each workload and manipulates the system (not the workload) at a fundamental and granular level to achieve the least disruptive and most optimal outcome for all workloads in the system. And it does that in real time while serving millions of IOs per second to mission-critical applications, ensuring it does not induce catastrophic behaviors in the process.Not easy.  However, building on our experience with thousands of systems in the field and customer feedback and insights, we’ve trained the models and applied the technology to more complex problems inside the PowerMax, making it a truly Intelligent Storage system. In part 2 of this blog, I’ll explore how we can take this intelligence to the next level and develop the storage equivalent of a self-driving car – self-driving storage!last_img read more

Top Women Leaders Find Inspiration and Opportunity at Power Trip 2019

first_img Video Player is loading.Play VideoPauseMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 17.20%0:00Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.This is a modal window.RestartShare 1 Dell Latitude 5400 and 5300 2-in-1 when equipped with Intel® Core i7 8665U processor, Integrated UHD 620 graphics, 32GB of DDR4 2400MHz memory capacity and 256 GB PCIe NVMe SSD storage. Based on Dell internal analysis of competitive Chromebook Enterprise devices, June 2019.2 Up  to 14 hours and 20 minutes of battery life with Intel 4305U, 4G memory, 128G SSD,  FHD, Chrome OS, and 60 Whrbattery After another high-powered, inspirational summit, Power Trip 2019 has come to a close. Alongside Intel, we powered Marie Claire’s annual all-female conference as part of our global commitment to celebrate female leadership. 36 hours of networking, opportunity, and exciting surprises connected leaders from coast to coast.Dedicated to gathering powerful women in every industry to grow, learn, and share what they know, we were there powering them every step along the way.That’s why we, alongside Intel, turned their flight to San Francisco into a fun-filled ride with surprise give-aways. Attendees were gifted the latest Latitude Chromebook Enterprise 5300 2-in-1, the most powerful Chrome Enterprise device1 designed with mobile entrepreneurs in mind. We know that choice is top of mind for today’s connected workforce, so we partnered with Google to create an intuitive, high-speed solution. The Latitude 5300 with Chrome OS quickly and seamlessly connects users to the cloud. And with longest battery life in its class, it has the power to keep going and charges up lightning fast for anyone on-the-move.In the “Power of Community” panel featuring Intel Vice President Stephanie Hallford, Dell Product Marketing Director Kelli Hodges, and Head of Facebook App Fidji Simo, speakers discussed the significance behind designing tech as flexible as those who use it.Hallford notes, “Together, Dell, Intel, and Google, we came to the realization that enterprise customers wanted the cloud but they also wanted security and manageability.”Panelist Hodges also commented, “Technology gives you an access point for where you want to go with your business.”And as business becomes more globalized, modern workers need to do their job interruption-free, from anywhere around the world.Other panels this year focused on harnessing the power of community and juggling multiple responsibilities while still being a mom. As TV personality and panelist Ayesha Curry put it, “Women wear so many different hats”. Leveraging the right technology makes that work-life balance possible for today’s busy, digitally-connected workforce.As a leader in technology and business, we’re proud to invest in experiences like Power Trip to help women amplify their network and become fearless leaders in their industries. And we believe powerful technology helps us get there.Overall, the 36-hour Power Trip was a galvanizing experience, uniting luminaries from different walks of life and encouraging a more equitable business world for women. Actress and Power Trip speaker, Awkafina, summed it up: “When we’re in charge of our own stories, amazing things happen.”last_img read more

Activists complain of weakened voting security standard

first_imgBOSTON (AP) — Election integrity activists and computer security experts are complaining that leaders of federal agency that oversees voting technology have quietly weakened a key element of standards due for a vote next week designed to improve security. The Election Assistance Commission’s leadership says the change _ removing a ban on wireless hardware _ doesn’t mean future voting systems will be less secure because they will be prohibited from running wireless software. It says the change lets voting equipment vendors continue to purchase cheaper off-the-shelf components, boosting competition in an industry dominated by a handful of privately held companies.last_img read more