What a week! Five software announcements you may have missed
Delaney Turner 270003RQ8K Delaney.Turner@ca.ibm.com | | Tags:  ibmsoftware information-insights
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Wednesday’s launch of IBM PureSystems captured a lot of attention from the folks in the server room, but it was a busy week on the software front as well. Here are five big announcements you may have missed. Analytics fans, take note: the first three should be particularly interesting for you:
1. IBM to acquire Varicent
IBM added to its SmarterAnalytics strategy with the acquisition of Varicent, a provider of analytics software for compensation and sales performance management. Varicent is a privately held company based in Toronto. Financial terms were not disclosed.
The software allows clients such as banks, insurance companies, retailers, information technology and telecommunications providers to more accurately determine compensation, streamline territory assignments, manage quotas, and report and analyze sales activities. The software also strengthens audit and compliance readiness and provides transparency for all aspects of incentive compensation.
Varicent has also been recognized as a leading category vendor by Ventana Research and Gartner and was alos ranked as the fastest-growing software company on Deloitte’s 2010 Technology Fast 500.
Here’s Varicent president and CEO Dan Shimmerman:
Watch demos, read the press release and learn more about the acquisition here
2. IBM names seven new fellows
IBM has elevated seven employees to IBM Fellow -- its most prestigious technical honor -- to acknowledge their important contributions and industry-leading innovations in developing some of the world's most important technologies.
The seven employees who have earned the coveted distinction of IBM Fellow this year are Luba Cherbakov (IBM Enterprise Transformation), Paul Coteus (IBM Research), Donald Fagin (IBM Research), Vincent Hsu (IBM Systems and Technology Group), Balaram Sinharoy (Systems and Technology Group), Ruchir Puri (IBM Research) and Jeff Jonas, IBM Software Group. You can read all about them and their accomplishments here.
If you were at last year's Information On Demand conference you'll no doubt remember Jeff Jonas' dynamite keynote presentation on Day 1. If not, here's a video that touches on what he's all about.
3. Groundbreaking research collaboration to drive economic development in Canada
The Governments of Canada and Ontario, with IBM (NYSE: IBM) and a consortium of seven universities led by the University of Toronto and Western University (my alma mater) announced a collaboration to establish a new Ontario-based $210 million R&D initiative that will create 145 new highly skilled jobs in Ontario and a new economic cornerstone for the country. IBM will invest up to $175 million through December 2014 in the project, thus forming the “IBM Canada Research and Development Center” to serve as a foundation for the research initiative. The Government of Ontario is investing $15 million; The Government of Canada will contribute $20 million.
This collaborative model will help university and industry researchers use high performance and cloud computing infrastructure to better manage and analyze massive data sets to solve critical world challenges including rapid urbanization, rising healthcare costs, water conservation and management and energy efficiency. Dr. Bernard Myerson, vice-president of innovation at IBM, provides his perspective here:
4, IBM Joins OpenStack with Platinum Sponsorship
On the cloud computing front, IBM announced yesterday its Platinum Sponsorship of the newly formed OpenStack Foundation. In this sponsorship, IBM will assist OpenStack as it evolves into a new, independent foundation along with other companies also committed to the goal of promoting open standards for cloud computing.
OpenStack is a global collaboration of developers and cloud computing technologists that seeks to produce a ubiquitous Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) open source cloud computing platform for public and private clouds.OpenStack was founded by Rackspace Hosting and NASA jointly in July 2010. Over time, 150+ companies have joined the project to various degrees.
IBM will focus on several key areas to integrate and leverage OpenStack capabilities:
Combining IBM's current IaaS capability strengths with OpenStack will build a robust IaaS component as part of the Common Cloud stack which will be incorporated in our SmartCloud Foundation products.
5: IBM, Honda & PG&E partner for smarter charging
Finally, on the Smarter Planet front, IBM also announced that it has teamed with American Honda Motor Co., Inc. and Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) on a new pilot project that will allow communication between electric vehicles (EVs) and the power grid. This project will demonstrate and test an electric vehicle's ability to receive and respond to charge instructions based on the grid condition and the vehicle's battery state. With visibility into charging patterns, energy providers will have the ability to more effectively manage charging during peak hours and create consumer-friendly programs to encourage electric vehicle adoption.
Here's a great infographic that explains the issue: