When people think of mainframes, they typically envision ancient, obsolete
technology running arcane spaghetti code – systems that IT management would
love to retire if only they could free themselves from the clutches of
While there is an element of truth in this perspective, mainframes remain to
this day the workhorse of core transaction processing within many industries.
In many cases the technology in these systems is modern or even surprisingly
cutting edge. Furthermore, retiring mainframes may not even appear on the
However, while mainframes aren’t going anywhere any time soon, mainframe
experts are. As this critical workforce retires, many enterprises are
experiencing a skills crunch, requiring creative human resource and
technology solutions. Once again, human challenges trump technology issues in
enterprise IT – but enterprises ... (more)
The Big Data Marketing Creepiness Factor
We've all been there: on our lunch hour we surreptitiously visit our favorite
My Little Pony fan site. Then hours later we bring our laptop to a meeting
and project our client's corporate web site for all to see - and right there
at the top is a banner ad for My Little Pony: The Movie. How did that site
know about our secret fetish? How embarrassing! How creepy!
When a marketer identifies a user's web behavior or search terms in order to
subsequently serve relevant ads on other sites is an example of retargeting.
The goal is to catch consu... (more)
What Is a Digital Professional?
I’ve started using the phrase digital professional, in particular in my
recent article dinging Amazon’s cloud division Amazon Web Services (AWS)
for not having a clear digital strategy. However, I haven’t been very clear
on what I mean, so it’s time to put a finer point on this terminology.
The role of digital professional begins back in the 1990s with the rise of
the web professional: people who worked on web sites in some capacity. Some
in the day.
Other designated as ... (more)
Hortonworks Big Data IPO: Where are the Margins?
Enterprises run on data, so it’s no surprise that big data – and in
particular, big data platform Hadoop – are today’s enterprise software
battleground. This week’s news that Hadoop vendor Hortonworks filed their
S1 with the SEC, indicating their intent to go public, ratchets this battle
into high gear.
Yet, while Hortonworks and its primary competitors Cloudera and MapR are at
the center of the skirmish, this battle is over more than which platform is
better. Hadoop is open source, which means it’s free to use, and
furthermore, ... (more)
SnapLogic: From ETL to VVV
Squeezing value out of data in the enterprise has always pushed the limits of
the available technology. Furthermore, when business needs exceed available
capabilities, vendors push to innovate within the processor, storage, and
network constraints of the day.
This inherent stress between enterprise demands and vendor innovation gave
rise to the Extract, Transform, and Load (ETL) marketplace over twenty years
ago. Business realized that building complex, ad hoc SQL queries on
increasingly large databases would grind them to a halt, thus requiring an