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Lifting Your Legacy SCADA to the Cloud – an Azure Approach

When it comes to manufacturing and utilities, legacy applications have considerable sticking power. For example, a substantial number of manufacturers are still using legacy SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems. These legacy systems are unable to keep up with the speed demanded by information technology in the era of industry 4.0 – and they’re also dramatically vulnerable to cyberattacks. A recent survey by Kasperksy labs shows that almost 43% of industrial control systems (ICS, of which SCADA is a subset) were attacked or infected by malware last year.

What’s the Real Crisis in American Manufacturing?

Data and automation are driving innovation.


The conventional wisdom has it that American manufacturing is beginning to die. Plant closings, mass layoffs, and rusting industrial cities are now supposed to characterize that portion of our economy. When you look at the actual data, however, this grim picture shows anything but the truth.

Windows 7 Says the Hard Goodbye

If you work in information technology, you probably know that when a piece of software is declared “end of life,” its end is in reality far from over. If you’re still running a copy of Windows Server 2003 – like one in five companies as of 2016 – then you’ll get the idea. Same if there’s a computer in your organization that still runs Windows XP. Although less than 5% of companies still run Windows XP, a majority of ATMs still do.

 

In data we trust: intuition no longer needed

We are literally drowning in data. Every day, the combined efforts of humans, businesses, and automated processes generate 2.5 quintillion bytes of data.  We are still only approaching the upslope of an exponential curve, however. 

 “Big Data” is already really big, and as the Internet of things expands, we can expect an even greater deluge of data. Luckily researchers and scientists have come up with new and intriguing ways to make use of all that data.

Ensuring Data Security and Regulatory Compliance in the Cloud

Most business solutions are migrating to the cloud due to the flexibility, scalability, and cost-saving features. However, while moving to the cloud, data, systems, and services can be exposed to serious security and compliance challenges.

When moving data to the cloud, it is necessary to ensure that your information and data remain compliant with the laws and regulations of your industry.

Hybrid Cloud Approaches When Full Cloud Adoption Isn’t Possible

Technology and businesses are increasingly moving to the cloud. However, certain conditions (such as security concerns, regulatory issues, or abnormal workflows of data) prevent complete public cloud adoption for some businesses. For these businesses, the solution can be the hybrid cloud model, which provides the rapid provisioning of resources on a billing/usage basis (public cloud), while maintaining the speed, reliability, and agility of an on-premises solution (private cloud).

Microsoft Teams is coming!

Now that Microsoft Teams is at parity with Skype for Business Online,  Microsoft has begun the process of converting the Office 365 Skype for Business Online service and will continue the process throughout 2019. This process will disable all features of Skype and will display an announcement that your company has transitioned to Teams when users attempt to launch the Skype application and redirect them to the new Teams client application.

Whether to upgrade existing technology or buy new

There is so much pressure (and hype) surrounding the adoption of new technologies that organizations often don’t have effective options for evaluating their current tech versus the new alternatives. What is the real competitive or operational advantage of either?

Experimentation Is Not Just For Scientists

The following article on experimentation is part 4 of an 8-part series on the Agile Mindset Principles. These are principles that help you obtain (and maintain) an agile mindset. Having an agile mindset is what makes everything else related to agile methodologies work. You can read part 1 here

Sustainability & Energy | Agile Considerations

This article on sustainability is another installment of the Agile Principles Series. You can read the first piece here.

Sustainability is something that is generally understood at one level or another in various industries and business departments. If you quiz anybody in the c-suite they would tell you that sustainability is important to their business functioning well; it’s a key component of the famous 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (known as “sharpening the saw”). The thinking is that as you work to find balance, you achieve sustainability.

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