IoT Is as Good as the Infrastructure That Supports It

first_imgThink of the Internet of Things (IoT) as a set of ‘things’ that should be stitched together to benefit from data collection to data mining. What is widely understood is that IoT is about data collection, dataflow and data analysis; but it is not common knowledge that the IoT substratum is an end-to-end secured infrastructure solution with sensors at one end and enterprise IT gear at the other end, with a variety of intelligent data aggregators in between.Software based workloads like machine learning and deep learning that analyze billowing amounts of data, are elementary to the IoT solutions stack, and the efficiency of these workload is built upon the technical capabilities of the enterprise IT infrastructure that shapes the datacenter. Never before in human history has computing power and data storage been so readily accessible – and economically viable.Dell Technologies as an IT infrastructure provider is poised to create the end-to-end IOT solution stack for customers in this digital economy. We work with system integrators, partners and domain experts like accelerator processors who bring the expertise to design and implement efficient IOT solutions. Dell EMC’s tour de force is the 14th generation of PowerEdge Servers, whose unique capabilities in NVDIMM memory subsystem, NVMe storage devices, remote management through iDRAC and GPU based computing, amplify the impact of the IoT solution.As you read on, you’ll understand the diagram which depicts the components in an IoT continuum. We have invested heavily in our engineering efforts to enhance NVDIMM capability of PowerEdge servers which boosts application performance, data security, system crash recovery time and to enhance SSD endurance and reliability. If a separate thread on a dedicated core can be assigned for reading and writing intermediate results from applications, the performance can be further improved- and our new server portfolio enables that.The new generation of Dell EMC servers are highly optimized for NVMe storage that can create overall cost parity by regularly flushing the contents from NVDIMM. IoT workloads also utilize typical database system and transaction logging that can be configured on the NVDIMM to boost performance. The compute architecture of PowerEdge is designed in such a way that the in-memory database systems can utilize these NVDIMM capabilities for performance gains.We understand that scalability, change management and serviceability are key parameters in IoT deployment and these requirements are efficiently satisfied by the remote management features in our new server portfolio. PowerEdge servers automate mainstream operations in iDRAC is what makes it an integral constituent while designing any IoT solution. The security aspects of the new server portfolio makes it the core ingredient in the assemblage of a secure and connected infrastructure for IoT. These servers are undoubtedly the bedrock of IT infrastructure for IoT solution.All things considered, Dell Technologies with its highly capable solutions at edge, core and cloud, along with global partners, is uniquely positioned to provide the right technology to design the most secured and most efficient IoT solutions. After all, IoT solutions have to result in operational efficiency, better customer experience, mitigate risks and identify newer business models – thereby unleashing the true potential of our customer’ business.last_img read more

The Benefits of Blockchain

first_imgA New Foundation for Cultivating Customer TrustImagine if you could rent a house, buy a car, be admitted to a hospital, get a driver’s license, apply to college or seek employment – all with just a few clicks of your smart phone.Just think if you could track the progress of a product you were interested in along every step of its life cycle, ensuring that the companies you transact with adhere to best practices within the workplace, promote environmentally friendly production and distribution methods, and use top quality materials in the goods they offer?What if digital data were readily accessible without the need of a third-party intermediary, but still remained secure, easily verifiable and unalterable? Welcome to the world of Blockchain.Blockchain BasicsThough still in its formative stages, Blockchain’s arrival on the scene is good news indeed for today’s consumers seeking greater control over their personal data and more focused insight into the companies with whom they do business. While many still think of Blockchain as primarily a cryptocurrency facilitator – basically, a new way to pay –  its potential for the customer extends far beyond its monetary conveniences.Blockchains are basically groups of transactions, each of which is stored within a “block”.  These blocks are locked using cryptographic algorithms, and create private keys granting access only to those with proper permissions. Every block is time-stamped, sealed, and linked to the preceding blocks, forming an interlocking chain. Simply put, a blockchain is just a ledger that records the interactions of two parties whose identities have been verified by one another, allowing each to track the transfer and ownership of assets and data. It’s amazing that such a simple concept as being able to securely lock a record and link it to other records can provide such a transformational benefit. This has tremendous potential for increasing the customer experience, as it:Simplifies transactions by directly linking customer and companyGrants oversight of personal data to the individualOffers transactional transparency that allows for greater trust between partiesOf great interest to today’s self-sufficient, hyper-connected customer is Blockchain’s ability to shift control of data from institutions to the blocks themselves. Since the data for each transaction is stored directly within the Blockchain, rather than managed by one of the involved parties or a third-party intermediary, an even and objective playing field is created, thereby promoting mutual trust.To achieve this, Blockchain uses distributed ledger technology, which removes the need for centralized, privately managed databases in favor of a shared ledger spread throughout a peer-to-peer network. Every full node has a copy of the blockchain, making the information within impossible to tamper with, quickly verifiable, and readily available. Neither party has the upper hand, and all transactions become transparent. In short, customers will no longer need to rely on the word of a company – the data will speak for itself, without additional spin or manipulation.The Dawn of the Digital Wallet  The introduction of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has highlighted the need for corporations to respect their customers’ right to privacy, and Blockchain could prove quite useful in this regard. If the distributed ledger technology at Blockchain’s core were to eventually replace today’s centralized structure for mediating online transactions, customers would benefit from greater control over their personal data through the introduction of digital wallets. Serving as a gateway to all of an individual’s Blockchain transactions, such wallets would contain a repository of each person’s data and allow users to manage and distribute their information as they see fit, rather than rely upon the judgement of outside vendors and corporate entities controlling their own database silos. This would allow individuals to only grant access to their private data and preferences to those parties with whom they are transacting, resulting in a more secure, personalized experience.What’s more, digital wallets would include non-financial data as well, letting users quickly share their information with organizations and institutions seeking proof of identity before providing services. This would greatly increase the ease and efficiency of applying for a passport, driver’s license, car loan or mortgage, as well as sharing such private information as hospital and education records and employment history. In time, digital wallets may even come to include management of – and access to – all the data a user creates on social media and records of online purchases.Transparency Leads to TrustWith access to information available at the fingertips of today’s social media savvy consumers, companies looking to build trustworthy brands need to show a willingness to share their business processes and intentions with today’s hyper-connected customer. As I’ve mentioned in earlier blogs, forward-thinking Corporate Social Responsibility programs are making good use of consumer curiosity by working hard to promote a standard of global honesty and accountability, and the real-time transparency enabled by its distributed ledger structure makes Blockchain the perfect tool for achieving such openness.By providing keys to their Blockchains in the form of easily scannable QR codes on their products, distributed ledger technology solutions have the capacity to share a product’s entire life-cycle with interested customers. As an example, French supermarket chain Carrefour has implemented such a process for its chicken sales. Interested consumers can use their smart phones to quickly access information from the breeder to the butcher to the supermarket shelves, assured of the validity of each step thanks to the unalterable data and time-stamping that result from Blockchain’s decentralized database. Shoppers can then base their selections upon such data as where the chickens originated, what they ate, and whether they were given antibiotics. In this way, consumers know what to expect from their purchases because there is a transparent, secure record throughout every transaction along the entire supply chain.Blockchain’s benefits to a corporation’s bottom line are obvious – its low-cost, peer-to-peer structure removes the added expense of time consuming database management, oversight and storage, without the need for additional investments in cloud infrastructure. But its real value lies in allowing companies to prove their worth to modern customers reluctant to place their faith in large organizations. By laying their cards on the table and promoting personal control of private data, smart companies can use Blockchain’s foundations to build a bridge of trust between themselves and today’s hyper-connected, well-informed, often skeptical customers. After all, mutual trust is the key to any long term relationship.last_img read more

The Journey to PowerEdge MX

first_imgFigure 3 Orthogonal ConnectorNow we have true flexibility and independence on the front compute/storage and rear I/O. We can start with Ethernet IOMs, we can add Gen-Z in the future or whatever new I/O widget comes out. Let’s just say, if the future is silicon photonics, you had better not have a midplane.From these anticipations and design enhancements, we now have a new style of modular infrastructure optimized for today and tomorrow. If you want traditional virtualization and shared storage, load up the PowerEdge MX with the MX740c compute sled and the MX9116n Fabric Switching Engine with native 25Gb Ethernet, or the MXG610s 32Gb Fibre channel switch and connect to attached shared storage. If you want HCI style virtualization with vSAN, load up the PowerEdge MX with disk-heavy compute sleds. If you need to increase local storage, then add a MX5016s storage sled and assign drives to compute sleds. If you have high in-memory compute needs, add the MX840c, a no compromise 48 DIMM 4-socket server. Due to the design foresight, the PowerEdge MX is a no-compromise platform equivalent to rack servers with a full complement of DIMMs and CPU TDPs. Many of our competitors have limitations around configurations; number of DIMMs, limited local drives, limited CPU stack due to power.PowerEdge MX is as composable as can be done given the technology available today. As we go forward with the PowerEdge MX, we are already working to complete the journey towards a fully composable kinetic architecture using next-generation fabrics like Gen-Z. We already have POCs in-flight, working with silicon partners across the industry toward this kinetic future using industry standards. Come join the journey with the new PowerEdge MX from Dell EMC.Learn more about PowerEdge MX and the full lineup of PowerEdge modular solutions at DellEMC.com/Servers. I love new product launches that showcase the talent, drive and innovation from the Dell EMC server team. The new PowerEdge MX has been a particularly fascinating journey, and the story of how we arrived at the MX is quite interesting.Dell EMC has been shipping the PowerEdge M1000e for more than eight years. The PowerEdge M1000e, for those unaware, is a traditional blade-style modular infrastructure solution. The fact that it lived thru nine CPU upgrades is a testament to the foresight of the Dell EMC PowerEdge team.But, alas, the technologies that brought the M1000e to life and applications of the last decade brought us to a conclusion it was time for a new class of modular infrastructure. The world has shifted to software-defined, first and second-generation modular chassis were all optimized for SAN attached storage. CPU, storage and networking technologies have shifted in such a way that have required re-thinking. Infrastructure management and how it interacts with higher-level management and orchestration have become more critical than ever. Thus, the foundational ideas for MX were born—Flexible, Agile, and Responsive.We started down the journey with many ideas, after the launch of the PowerEdge FX2, which was a new take on rack servers by adding an element of flexibility in a 2U modular chassis. But as we learned, and branch predicted, a horizontal half-width style modular infrastructure would have serious limitations in the future.You see, to have lasting value, the PowerEdge MX, didn’t just need live for multiple generations of technology advances—it needed to thrive for generations. As we looked at the constraints on computer architecture, the growing number of cores, the need for memory bandwidth and capacity, along with a looming competitive situation due to lithography technology process differentiations that continued to shrink toward equality, we concluded a few things would happen:Socket size and pin count would explode toward 8+ memory channelsDuring times of competition the one knob all CPU vendors throw is powerNVMe would be mainstream soon to keep up with growing core countDifferent fabrics would emerge in the futureSDS would rise in popularity, as would the need for high density local storage per nodeWe concluded modular in a horizontal half-width displacement was short lived, and we had to go back to vertical. With that in mind, we departed from the PowerEdge FX2 horizontal 2U back toward a vertical orientation.But we also gained a huge advantage in being able to add enough local storage to pull off vSAN in a can. By getting to six drives per two socket node, plus internal boot drives, we could support any SDS erasure coding scheme from vSAN, ScaleIO, Spaces, CEPH, etc.  This was a huge plus.But we still had a problem. The expected rise in CPU TDP, due to the competitive landscape, plus sheer adder of power, due to anticipated memory channel gains and NVMe drives, presented a challenge. We had to dig deep and come up with a new approach to modular infrastructure. What happened? Dell EMC invented the first and only no-midplane modular system by creating a direct orthogonal connector. Now we had vertical compute sleds plugging directly into horizontal I/O modules in the rear. This alleviated any future worries about midplane bandwidth constraints. Figure 1 shows a typical modular infrastructure with a midplane. As you can see, a midplane style architecture leaves little room for airflow and you are locked into the capabilities of the midplane for life.Figure 1 Traditional Modular Chassis with MidplaneThe no-midplane design gave us a huge advantage in terms of airflow for these new high power CPUs/memories/NVMe. Plus, by removing the midplane, we didn’t have to worry about signal loss and future I/O speeds due to limitations of a midplane. It also removed a possible failure domain. With the new PowerEdge MX, you can actually put your arm all the way thru the chassis when empty (if you have really long arms). Try that on the competition. (Perhaps something we should consider for a Las Vegas magic show?) You can see a prototype below in Figure 2—do you see what’s missing?  Yep, no midplane. Figure 3 is a detailed view of our new direct orthogonal connector.Figure 2 Orthogonal Direct Connect Between Compute and Fabriclast_img read more

Geneva talks on new Syrian constitution end without progress

first_imgGENEVA (AP) — The U.N. special envoy for Syria has expressed disappointment after five days of meetings in Geneva between delegations from the Syrian government, opposition and civil society groups aimed at revising the constitution of the war-torn country ended without progress. Geir Pedersen hinted that the Syrian government delegation was to blame for the lack of headway because it rejected a proposal he presented. Syria’s nearly 10-year conflict has killed more than half a million people and displaced half the country’s pre-war population of 23 million, including more than 5 million refugees who now live mostly in neighboring countries.last_img

Captain Tom hospitalized for virus he raised money to fight

first_imgLONDON (AP) — Captain Tom Moore, the 100-year-old World War II veteran who captivated the British public in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic with his fundraising efforts, has been hospitalized with COVID-19. His daughter Hannah Ingram-Moore said in a statement posted on Twitter on Sunday that her father has been admitted to Bedford Hospital because he needed “additional help” with his breathing. She said that over the past few weeks her father had been treated for pneumonia and that he had tested positive for the coronavirus last week. She said he is being treated in a ward, not in an intensive care unit.last_img

The Latest: Lockdown in Perth, Australia reaches 5 days

first_imgPERTH, AustraIia — The city of Perth has been locked down for five days after Western Australia state’s first case of local COVID-19 infection in almost 10 months.,The city of 2 million people and coastal towns to the south were locked down from Sunday night until Friday night.,This followed a security guard who worked at a Perth quarantine hotel contracting a highly contagious British variant of the virus. Overseas travelers who arrive in Perth must isolate in hotel quarantine for 14 days.,The last previous known case of someone being infected with COVID-19 within Western Australia was on April 11.,Western Australia, Australia’s largest state by area, has remained virus-free for months by enforcing the nation’s toughest border restrictions in an elimination strategy. Those within the state have enjoyed some of Australia’s least restrictive pandemic measures because of the low risk.,All Perth residents must stay at home unless shopping for essentials, attending to,medical needs, exercising within their neighborhood or working if,unable to do so remotely.,Schools which were due to resume on Monday will remain closed for another week.,___,THE VIRUS OUTBREAK:,— Thousands flout virus restrictions at Israel funerals,— Anxiety grows as long-term facilities await COVID-19 vaccines,— Fans who’ve been to every Super Bowl making plans again this year,— Even if schools reopen by late April, millions of students, many of them minorities in urban areas, may be left out.,— A World Health Organization team looking into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic is visiting a market in the Chinese city of Wuhan,— The U.S. is backing off for now on a plan to offer COVID-19 vaccinations to the 40 prisoners held at the detention center at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.,___,Follow all of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic, https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak,___,HERE’S WHAT ELSE IS HAPPENING:,JERUSALEM — The Israeli Cabinet has voted to extend a nationwide lockdown for at least five more days as it struggles to bring a raging coronavirus outbreak under control.,Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced early Monday that the restrictions, which have forced nonessential businesses and most schools to remain closed for the past month, will remain in effect until at least Friday. A ban on nearly all incoming and outgoing flights will remain in effect for another week.,The Cabinet is to meet on Wednesday to decide whether to extend the restrictions even longer.,Israel has launched one of the world’s most aggressive vaccination campaigns, inoculating more than one-third of its population in just one month.,But the vaccine has had little effect so far in controlling the outbreak, which has spread quickly with the arrival of foreign variants of the coronavirus and continued violations of lockdown restrictions. Thousands of ultra-Orthodox Israelis thronged a pair of funerals Sunday, defying a ban on large public gatherings.,Israel, a country of 9.3 million people, has been reporting an average of some 6,000 new cases of the coronavirus each day, one of the highest infection rates in the developed world. The Health Ministry says nearly 4,800 people have died since the beginning of the pandemic.,___,LOS ANGELES — California on Sunday reported another 481 coronavirus deaths, a day after the statewide death toll topped 40,000 even as the rates of new infections and hospitalizations continue to fall.,The state said that the number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 slipped below 14,850 — a drop of more than 25% in two weeks.,The 18,974 new confirmed cases are about one-third the mid-December peak of 54,000.,With hospitalizations and confirmed cases falling, health officials are optimistic that the worst of the latest surge is over.,Deaths remain staggeringly high, however, with more than 3,800 in the last week.,It took six months for California to record its first 10,000 deaths, then four months to double to 20,000. In just five more weeks the state reached 30,000. It then took only 20 days to get to 40,000. On Sunday deaths rose to 40,697, while total cases topped 3.2 million.,___,NEW YORK — New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is acknowledging that Black and Latino New Yorkers are receiving COVID-19 vaccines at far lower rates than white or Asian residents.,Data released by the city’s health department shows that 48% of the city residents who have gotten at least one vaccine dose are white. That’s far higher than the roughly one-third the city’s population that is non-Hispanic white.,Just 11% of vaccine doses administered to New York City residents went to Black people and 15% to Latinos. The vaccine numbers are incomplete because about 40% of people who have been vaccinated in the city haven’t provided demographic information.,Still, the figures mirror vaccination data from other cities and states.,“Clearly, we do see a profound disparity that needs to be addressed aggressively and creatively,” de Blasio said in a conference call with reporters. “We’ve got a profound problem of distrust and hesitancy, particularly in communities of color.”,___,BOSTON — Businesses like gyms, movie theaters, museums and sight-seeing harbor cruises can resume Monday in Boston under its coronavirus pandemic reopening plan.,The businesses can reopen, following a 25% capacity limit, given the improvement in the number of COVID-19 cases and in the city’s positivity rate.,Other sites include aquariums, indoor recreational venues with the potential for low contact, such as batting cages and bowling alleys, and gaming arcades.,“While there has been some improvement in recent weeks, it’s still vital that everyone remains vigilant,” Mayor Marty Walsh said in a statement last week.,___,LIMA, Peru — Peru began what was supposed to be a severe lockdown Sunday to combat surging COVID-19, but the order was widely ignored in the nation’s capital.,President Francisco Sagasti went on television urging Peruvians “to make an extra effort to contain the growing wave of infections and deaths.” His government told people in the capital and nine other regions to limit trips outside the home to 60 minutes and it closed churches, gymnasiums, museums, libraries and other institutions.,But marketplaces were crowded. Even some bus drivers ignored mandatory face mask rules. Seventy percent of Peruvians have no income if they stay home. The government says it will give $165 each to 4 million families — but only after the two-week quarantine.,Hundreds of people crowded bus stations in Lima to head for less-restricted rural regions before terminals close later this week. Flights from Brazil and Europe have been cancelled.,Lima Police Chief Jorge Angulo said his agency would try to enforce restrictions, and he noted that 540 of his officers already have died of the virus.,The country of 33 million people has recorded more than 1 million infections and more than 40,000 deaths from COVID-19.,THE HAGUE, Netherlands — Dutch elementary schools and childcare centers will reopen from a weeks-long coronavirus lockdown on Feb. 8.,The government announced the move Sunday following guidance from a team of experts that advises on policies to tackle the pandemic that has killed just over 14,000 in the Netherlands.,Education Minister Arie Slob says, “it’s a relief that the schools can open again. For parents and teachers but, of course, especially for the students.”,The Netherlands, which has been in a tough lockdown since mid-December and under a 9 p.m. to 4:30 a.m. curfew for just over a week, has seen rates of infections fall slowly in recent weeks, but the government remains concerned that new, more transmissible variants are gaining ground and will lead to a new rise in infections.,The education ministry says that when classrooms open again, any child with symptoms of COVID-19 will have to stay home, and if a student tests positive the whole class will have to go into isolation.,No date has been set for a reopening of high schools.,___,ATHENS, Greece — Greek authorities have confirmed the first detection of the South African variant of the new coronavirus in the country, prompting top health officials to fly to the area where it was found for meetings on Sunday.,The minister leading the government response to the pandemic and the head of the country’s public health body met with doctors and the local bishop in the northern city of Thessaloniki. The variant is believed to be more contagious than the original type and it was detected in a 36-year-old deacon in a suburb of the city.,“We will be doing screenings to isolate the persons who have been in contact with the patient,” said Panayiotis Arkoumaneas, head of the National Public Health Organization.,There have also been 173 cases of people affected with a variant first detected in the U.K., authorities said Sunday.,Authorities announced 484 new cases of coronavirus on Saturday, as well as 17 deaths. The total number of confirmed cases since the start of the pandemic is 156,957, with 5,796 fatalities.,Experts warn there could be a resurgence in February and March and say the situation will remain volatile until a large number of vulnerable people are vaccinated.,“The virus is playing the drums and we are dancing to its beat,” said Nikos Sipsas, member of the state advisory committee on the pandemic.,___,ROME — For the first time in weeks, the number of daily new admissions of COVID-19 patients to intensive care wards in Italy has dipped below 100, according to the Health Ministry’s figures on Sunday.,The total number of COVID-19 ill in ICU beds nationwide stood at 2,215. While that number is far lower than the nearly 4,000 patients receiving intensive care in any day in late November, Italy has been struggling with a surge of coronavirus infections since autumn.,With 88,516 known dead, Italy has Europe’s second-highest known toll, after Britain’s. Italy, a nation of 60 million, has registered more than 2.5 million confirmed infections in the pandemic.,___,BRUSSELS — Belgian protesters denouncing coronavirus restrictions staged a demonstration on Sunday in central Brussels and local media say police arrested about 300 people who tired to join the unauthorized action.,Brussels police on Twitter repeatedly called on people not to gather and later dispersed the demonstration, which ended peacefully.,Authorities had warned that riots in the Netherlands over coronavirus restrictions could spark similar protests in neighboring Belgium.,Belgium’s tough lockdown includes a 9 p.m. curfew and a ban on nonessential travel in and out of the country, which has had one of Europe’s worst outbreaks.,Authorities have reported over 21,000 confirmed virus deaths in a nation of 11 million.,___,HARTFORD, Conn. — A top Connecticut official says that COVID-19 vaccines have been administered to enough nursing home residents in the state to potentially stop the transmission of the virus among those residents.,Josh Geballe, chief operating officer for the state, said Saturday that Connecticut nursing homes are reporting that 90% to 100% of residents have received at least the first of two vaccine shots.,He said the number of weekly COVID-19 cases in nursing homes has declined by 66% in the last three weeks. Geballe said some vaccine doses that had been earmarked for nursing homes are being reallocated to hospitals and retail sites.,___,LISBON, Portugal — Portugal on Sunday reported 9,498 new cases and 303 more deaths as the country battles a raging surge in new coronavirus infections.,The figures came as Portugal and Spain began applying border restrictions for a period of two weeks. Portugal is in lockdown and has banned all nonessential travel abroad for its citizens.,The country has had the world’s worst rate of new daily cases and deaths per 100,000 population for more than a week, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University.,Portuguese health authorities say total fatalities are now at 12,482 and the total number of cases has surpassed 720,500.,Virus patients in hospitals, many of which are close to full, are at 6,694.,Experts say the peak of the latest surge in Portugal may not come until mid-February, as a fast-spreading variant first identified in Britain takes hold.,___,BEIJING — China recorded more than 2,000 new domestic cases of COVID-19 in January, the highest monthly total since the tail end of the initial outbreak in Wuhan in March of last year.,The National Health Commission said Sunday that 2,016 cases were reported from Jan. 1-30. That does not include another 435 infected people who arrived from abroad. The tally for Jan. 31 is due to be released Monday.,Two people have died in January, the first reported COVID deaths in China in several months.,Most of the new cases have been in three northern provinces. Hardest-hit Hebei province, which borders Beijing, has reported more than 900 cases. Beijing, the Chinese capital, has itself had 45 cases this month.,The numbers, while low compared to many other countries, have prompted officials to tighten restrictions and strongly discourage people from traveling during the Lunar New Year, a major holiday when people typically return home for family reunions.,Train trips were down nearly 75 percent in the first three days of the holiday travel season, the official Xinhua News Agency said Sunday, citing the state railway company.last_img read more