Above all else, the mentat must be a generalist, not a specialist. It is wise to have decisions of great moment monitored by generalists. Experts and specialists lead you quickly into chaos. They are a source of useless nit-picking, the ferocious quibble over a comma. The mentat-generalist, on the other hand, should bring to decision-making a healthy common sense. He must not cut himself off from the broad sweep of what is happening in his universe. He must remain capable of saying: “There’s no real mystery about this at the moment. This is what we want now. It may prove wrong later, but we’ll correct that when we come to it.” The mentat-generalist must understand that anything which we can identify as our universe is merely a part of larger phenomena. But the expert looks backward; he looks into the narrow standards of his own specialty. The generalist looks outward; he looks for living principles, knowing full well that such principles change, that they develop. It is to the characteristics of change itself that the mentat-generalist must look. There can be no permanent catalogue of such change, no handbook or manual. You must look at it with as few preconceptions as possible, asking yourself: “Now what is this thing doing?”— Frank Herbert, “The Mentat Handbook,” Children of DuneI saw this at this site:
The Epicurean Dealmaker
The Blog of Jim Sanders
Jim Sanders 2000002X89 firstname.lastname@example.org 437 Visits
Quite kind words about IBM BigInsights here.
The site where you can find BigInsights is here:
This is the Smart Cloud enterprise site (Canadian version). Once you have signed up you can add an instance of BigInsights.
Let me know how it works out. (I need at least one comment...)
Nouriel Roubini predicts the path Italy will take as part of the Euro.... 6 years ago:
Roubini at Davos
If you do not know who Nouriel Roubini is:
(I guess he gets to add one more item to his "famous for.." list).
The guy who yelled at him (Giulio Tremonti)?
Still Finance Minister. Maybe not on Monday.
Why would someone choose to look at a cloud solution?
How is it different than typical outsourcing arrangements?
What would stop someone from using a cloud solution?
I have been reading some of the work Oliver Williamson has done on contracts and while I am in no way an economist and much of it is only fuzzily understandable (to me) there are some really interesting points he makes that help me understand what cloud might bring to the table. I thought I would mention a few of them in this post and see if anyone has any thoughts.
The first item I came across was his comment that "all complex contracts are unavoidably incomplete", and by extension, as outsourcing is complex, the contractual arrangements are also complex and also incomplete. As a related point, although a contract dispute might eventually end up in court, the aim of the contract is more to act as a guide to how to resolve disputes and to set up the terms of the engagement than to ever actually use the costly (and unreliable) dispute resolution offered by the courts. That is, the contract is a framework, not an accurate indication of real working relations.
The second was his discussion on how and why companies might make the decision to vertically integrate (do everything in house) vs. the choice to use outside agencies. The lower the transaction cost, the more likely the firm will buy, as opposed to build the solution. And what determines the transaction cost?
Asset specificity - the more unique a solution, the more sense it makes to do it in house (I am rephrasing based on my understanding to make this more relevant to cloud computing). So, general purpose technologies will make more sense to have as a cloud computing resource ( and when you look at where cloud computing started you can see this quite clearly). Unique solutions (Asset specificity) would include more contract complexity and the problem in identifying a market price. You might argue that test and development is much more similar across companies than production environments, which would have wider variations in service level agreements. If the risks and safeguards add too much cost then companies will tend to bring this in-house. (that was a condensation of multiple pages of text, so it might be confusing - or just plain wrong. You can read the article referenced below).
This leads to the following guideline - try cloud, then try a hybrid solution, and have recourse to internal resources as a last resort. You might specify this a bit further by expanding the cloud to try SaaS, then try PaaS , then try IaaS.
What does this all mean? Well, I think it means that as contract complexity for cloud offerings goes up as asset specificity goes up, so the more commodity like components of a company are more obvious cloud candidates (e-mail, servers, payroll - you can think up your own list) and the next step might be to take apart complex components into separate pieces so the more standard parts can be commoditized and able to use the cloud more easily. This starts to sound like service oriented architecture (SOA) - the buzz word from LAST decade.
Here is the article I was reading:
IBM InfoSphere BigInsights on the IBM SmartCloud Enterprise makes big data analytics accessible for any user inside an organization. Like the on-premise version, BigInsights on the cloud analyzes traditional structured data found in databases along with unstructured data -- such as text, video, audio, images, social media, click streams, log files, weather data. Bringing big data analytics to the cloud means clients can capture and analyze any data without the need for Hadoop skills, or having to install, run, or maintain hardware and software.
BigInsights on the cloud is available in both basic and enterprise editions with the options of public, private and hybrid cloud deployments. The basic edition is an entry-level offering available at no-charge that helps organizations learn how to do big data analytics including "what-if" scenarios with its BigSheets component. Clients can move to the enterprise edition when ready and set up Hadoop clusters in under 30 minutes to start analyzing data with low usage rates starting at $0.60 (US) per cluster, per hour. Both versions include a developer sandbox where clients can develop business analytics applications complete with tools and a test and development environment.
IBM recently acquired Hadoop specialists Platform Computing.
Get the free software download for the iPad at Apple's iTunes Store: http://bit.ly/r68A04 (This is a download of Cognos Mobile)
Follow IBM and Analytics on twitter #baforum
You can also get the free Hadoop download to install on your own system here:
HOW to do Hadoop is here:
(you will see a free course on Hadoop mentioned which is not bad - but then I've only just started it)
I am not sure about how IBM names things sometimes - we can be too literal. Does the word "Digital" really add more information to this suite of products?
The customer profile part (LIVEProfile) captures all of the interactions of customers and prospects as they interact with a business online, across multiple ad networks or via email, video, affiliate sites and social media. It then integrates this data with offline information, providing a view of each visitor’s behavior over time and across channels. This historical data is available across the entire suite of products. As the profile of each visitor grows, the insights become stronger, enabling you to continually optimize your marketing efforts.
The web analytic capabilities of the provide marketers with insights for increasing ROI. Analytics provides insight into how individuals are interacting with a brand’s digital presence.
The latest Forrester report has IBM rated as the best Analytics product out there:
The marketing execution component integrates the data and insights garnered from customer profiles and web analytics into applications designed to easily execute display advertising, search campaigns, email and personalized recommendations through online, social and mobile channels.
Jim Sanders 2000002X89 email@example.com Tags:  saas sterling cpq cloud ecommerce 1,486 Visits
This is the third in a series on IBM SaaS offerings.
A Cloud-based Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) offering that simplifies the "quote-to-cash" process.
Sterling Configure, Price, Quote automates one of the most challenging selling processes—the configuration of complex products, services, and bundles. CPQ manages service configuration and pricing rules, and guides your prospects, customers, partners, sales, and call center representatives in selecting and validating products and services based on specific needs.
Here is more on CPQ and why it is important:http://www.sterlingcommerce.com/products/multi-channel-selling/configure-price-quote/
and the CLOUD part of this is here:http://www.sterlingcommerce.com/products/As-a-Service+Offerings.htm
You can buy CPQ in the following ways:1.On Premise (this is the "traditional" model)
- support is based on standard software maintenance model
2. Perpetual license and host in IBM
- support is based on standard software maintenance model
3.Single Tenant - CPQ service - term license which includes license + hosting (includes all costs except implementation costs) at a yearly cost (minimum 3 years)
- support from IBM services as a bundled subscription along with extra options.
- customer generally has L1 help desk
Here is the SaaS part!
4. Multi tenant solution - This is less customizable, with a finite set of configurations, a subset of APIs, and is also a term license (includes all costs except implementation costs) like option 3 above.- support from IBM services as a bundled subscription along with extra options. Less flexibility than option 3 above as it is a much more uniform model than (3).
- anyone can call for support (this is a big change, IMO, and it should be interesting to see how it works out).
Multi tenant (MT) US Pricing:
Based on number of users. 100 users is the minimum.
Based on quote lines (minimum 1M quote lines) roughly equivalent to above 100 users cost.
- there is a (lower) access fee for configuration users before they go live into production at which point quote line costs are added.
Jim Sanders 2000002X89 firstname.lastname@example.org Tags:  sterling ftp cloud file transfer saas 1,111 Visits
Offering Name:Sterling Managed File Transfer
I know that FTP does not sound so exciting, but just ask yourself how much uncontrolled or unmanaged FTP is happening in your organization. How do you answer the questions about whether a file arrived or not? How often are files resent or restarted? Who manages that overnight file transfer from multiple locations?
I am working on trying to get a list of all these offerings, a brief overview of what they do, and some idea on how they are priced.
Offering Name: LotusLive
Overview: LotusLive is a series of online office tools from IBM in a security rich environment. Tools include e-mail, networking and collaboration tools and online meetings.
Web Site: https://www.lotuslive.com/en/about
Pricing Model: Sign up for all or parts of the suite. Per user per month.
Important comments: LotusLive is not available in all geographies. For us in Canada it is available but the data center (sorry - "centre") where it is located is in the US, which for some organizations (organisations?) is a big issue. However, even in this situation, there are parts of LotusLive where I think the location of the data centre is just not that much of an issue for any organization. Web Conferencing is one example.
I'll add some more in the next little while. Let me know if this is useful.
I get asked this all the time:
Here is the site that contains information about Smart Cloud Enterprise contracts:
Here is a helpful document that answers the question around the PVUs for Bring your own licences software (BYOL)
Within it you will find a table that shows the PVU ratio against the images which can be selected.
SCE instance size (a) PVUs per Instance (b)
32 bit - Copper 50
32 bit - Bronze 50
32 bit - Silver 100
32 bit - Gold 200
64 bit - Copper 100
64 bit - Bronze 100
64 bit - Silver 200
64 bit - Gold 400
64 bit - Platinum 800