|By Liz McMillan||
|June 3, 2014 06:00 AM EDT||
IBM on Monday announced that businesses of all sizes - from start-ups to large enterprises - are rapidly adopting IBM Bluemix to develop software in the cloud with greater speed, security and quality.
IBM also announced additional services on Bluemix, which will move from beta testing and into production later this month. Bluemix, IBM's open cloud platform, is based on an open standards foundation, Cloud Foundry, and provides developers access to IBM's software for integration, security, transactions and other key functions, as well as software from business partners. As a result, it can help developers connect two broad categories of systems in a cloud environment: systems of record, such as core banking and accounting systems, and systems of engagement, such as mobile, situational and social apps.
Bluemix, IBM's Platform-as-a-Service, offers cloud-based "DevOps" services which enable developers to rapidly develop and deliver projects faster and more efficiently. Using Bluemix services:
- Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) dramatically reduced the expected delivery time of its pilot mobile app from months to weeks.
- Financial Insurance Management Corp. (FIMC) rapidly created a mobile app to increase renewal rates by 30 percent;
- Start-ups MyMenu and aPersona are scaling core business apps with improved speed and innovation.
Additionally, DevOps services allow organizations such as GE Capital to build an award-winning banking website and other apps with commercial intensity and market speed.
"Since Bluemix was launched just three months ago, we've seen a rapid ramp-up of third-party and IBM services available to developers who want to use DevOps in the cloud to create composable, enterprise-class apps," said Steve Robinson, General Manager of IBM's Cloud Platform Services. "Much of this evolution stems from work we've done with clients and our collaboration with our growing, open standards-based ecosystem. We can expect this momentum to continue as a bigger share of nearly 18 million developers globally move the bulk of their app development to the cloud."
New Bluemix and IBM DevOps Services Clients
BART Pilots Cloud and DevOps to Bring Critical Data to Mobile Workforce
Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) is a public, rapid transit system serving the San Francisco Bay Area. Working with IBM Business Partner Synchrony Systems, BART will pilot Bluemix DevOps to reach into the troves of data in its expansive physical infrastructure of 44 stations,104 miles of track, sensors, maintenance systems, trains and more, and plans to use this intelligence to build and deploy a mobile app allowing BART supervisors to track real-time train data via mobile updates. By combining DevOps capabilities with Bluemix's secure connection to back-end data, BART's previous estimates as to the time it will take to complete its first mobile app have drastically changed.
"BART has a huge volume of incredibly valuable information living in its infrastructure: from trains to tracks to maintenance reports," said Slavik Zorin, CEO of Synchrony Systems. "We are looking to the Bluemix DevOps model to give us the tools we need to rapidly tap all of this important data into a new, interactive mobile platform for BART to roll out to its mobile workforce - improving maintenance response and providing better service."
GE Capital Accelerates Software Delivery with Cloud-Based DevOps
GE Capital, the financial services unit of General Electric, recently aimed to accelerate software delivery and optimize the resources of top IT talent, allowing them to create innovations such as the company's Fleet Optimizer, an analytics app which allows vehicle fleet managers to optimize performance. The company built a DevOps platform, deploying build, test and production cloud environments accessible to global teams - drastically increasing visibility through real-time dashboards and continuous feedback, and speeding deployment of predictive analytics apps, websites and other software.
"We built software and apps, such as our award-winning bank - GECapitalBank.com - from scratch in weeks to months - instead of months to years," said Snehal Antani, CIO of Enterprise Architecture at GE Capital Americas. "By bringing together a strong IT foundation based on DevOps, we can execute and deliver requirements faster - giving us the agility of a startup with the resources of a large enterprise."
FIMC Taps DevOps to Create Customer Mobile Experiences
Financial Insurance Management Corp. (FIMC), an insurance provider offering customized membership programs and services, recognized a need for a high-quality mobile experience to enhance client engagement and improve customer service. Using Bluemix DevOps, IBM business partner PointSource worked with FIMC to build a mobile interface which connects clients to on-premise business applications, giving them access to one-touch roadside assistance, targeted promotions, claim submissions and deductible management, as well as a channel to interact with FIMC via social media for faster and more direct communication.
"Before implementing our mobile platform, our members sometimes did not realize some of their most valued services - such as roadside assistance or discounts - had expired, and we wanted to streamline the renewal process to ensure more continuous service," said Scott Liberatore, CEO of FIMC. "Now we have an engagement model that reaches members directly, and we've increased our customer renewal rate by 30 percent."
Born-on-the-Web MyMenu Uses Cloud, Mobile DevOps and Analytics to Bring Customer Feedback to Restaurants
Headquartered in Austin, Texas, MyMenu is a mobile food ordering company whose mobile app allows customers to search for restaurants, menu items and/or ingredients, order food and give feedback. As a Bluemix beta tester, the company accelerated the launch of its app by allowing developers to quickly iterate in a cloud-based environment, as well as create and manage new restaurant-specific data reporting tools with mobile testing, Big Data and analytics services.
"The users of our app span a large range of ages, job functions and more - yet each of their feedback is incredibly important to improving our app," said Mike Little, CEO of MyMenu. "Using Bluemix mobile and analytics tools, our users simply shake their phones when an issue is detected, and this info is automatically sent to the Bluemix cloud - making it easier for us to get to upgrades to the market quickly."
aPersona Moves Security App to Bluemix to Scale from Small Start-Ups to Enterprises
As web and mobile apps become more advanced, consequently so does the level of security needed to be built into them: today's apps require more than static IDs and passwords. aPersona is an app security start-up providing multi-factor authentication to websites, e-commerce, cloud portals, utility networks and more. Deploying their products onto Bluemix in just two days, aPersona's developers were able to quickly create multiple development and test environments, and built a tokenless, invisible authentication solution which scales and supports apps of all sizes.
"Hackers thrive in the gaps that can exist between convenience and commerce," said Kelly Sparks, CEO of Apersona. "By combining our adaptive multi-factor solution with Bluemix's open development environment and security services, and offering it via the platform, we're now able to offer an incredibly secure authentication solution available to anyone from a one-person startup building on Bluemix to the largest enterprise."
DevOps Solutions for Enterprise Environments
IBM is also announcing new DevOps solutions typically used behind organizations' firewalls, which will cater to various cloud models. By connecting data from systems of record to new applications and agile processes, users can increase visibility across the delivery and feedback cycle, balancing cost, security and quality concerns with rapid deployment speed. These include:
- Continuous Testing, Release and Deployment solutions, which include applying advanced analytics to gauge mobile app user sentiment and quality; capabilities to accelerate multi-platform application testing for IMS, CICS and SAP applications; as well as the ability to deploy apps on multiple platforms (i.e. native z/OS, iOS, Android) simultaneously.
- Continuous Business Planning and Collaborative Development solutions for open communication and analytics between teams to manage change faster; Collaborative Lifecycle Management capabilities that offer out-of-the-box and self-service reporting.
"Organizations today are finding they need to quickly build and shift to mobile, social and cloud-based apps to differentiate customer experience. However, the best apps often need to reach into the volumes of data held behind the firewalls of organizations' infrastructures," said Kristof Kloeckner, General Manager of IBM Rational Software. "IBM's DevOps approach helps teams connect that information to build better systems of interaction with both speed and high quality."
New Bluemix Services
Built on IBM's deep strengths in Big Data, analytics and open standards, new Bluemix services include:
- AppScan to build security by design via rapid testing in multiple environments and shared results;
- Embeddable Reporting services to build advanced analytics within an app from the moment it's provisioned - turning volumes of Big Data into actionable feedback;
- Workflow services to orchestrate cloud services, evolving workflows based on their behavior;
- Continuous Delivery Pipeline services to allow organizations to manage multiple application releases simultaneously, giving them the increasingly competitive advantage of rapid, accurate software delivery.
SoftLayer Helps Speed Scaling
Bluemix helps collapse the distance between idea and production through instant access to powerful SoftLayer cloud infrastructure, IBM software, runtimes and third party services. Combined with IBM DevOps services, developers and line-of-business operations are able to work together and develop faster than traditional methods via integrating all organizational systems, simplified testing and quality assurance, and faster access to feedback. This allows the continuous delivery of apps through more intelligent use of app analytics, better management of projects, increased ability for market tests, and a more rapid release schedule of new features.
IBM's advantage in Bluemix and DevOps services comes from its history of working across every global industry, building a portfolio reflecting a long tradition of responding to client needs and market shifts. This expertise culminates in Bluemix, with advanced services in security, Big Data, analytics, DevOps, mobile, IoT and more to create varying apps across a wide range of industries.
The 3rd International Internet of @ThingsExpo, co-located with the 16th International Cloud Expo - to be held June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY - announces that its Call for Papers is now open. The Internet of Things (IoT) is the biggest idea since the creation of the Worldwide Web more than 20 years ago.
Nov. 28, 2014 11:00 AM EST Reads: 1,059
Cultural, regulatory, environmental, political and economic (CREPE) conditions over the past decade are creating cross-industry solution spaces that require processes and technologies from both the Internet of Things (IoT), and Data Management and Analytics (DMA). These solution spaces are evolving into Sensor Analytics Ecosystems (SAE) that represent significant new opportunities for organizations of all types. Public Utilities throughout the world, providing electricity, natural gas and water, are pursuing SmartGrid initiatives that represent one of the more mature examples of SAE. We have s...
Nov. 27, 2014 04:00 PM EST Reads: 1,292
The security devil is always in the details of the attack: the ones you've endured, the ones you prepare yourself to fend off, and the ones that, you fear, will catch you completely unaware and defenseless. The Internet of Things (IoT) is nothing if not an endless proliferation of details. It's the vision of a world in which continuous Internet connectivity and addressability is embedded into a growing range of human artifacts, into the natural world, and even into our smartphones, appliances, and physical persons. In the IoT vision, every new "thing" - sensor, actuator, data source, data con...
Nov. 27, 2014 04:00 PM EST Reads: 1,632
The Internet of Things is tied together with a thin strand that is known as time. Coincidentally, at the core of nearly all data analytics is a timestamp. When working with time series data there are a few core principles that everyone should consider, especially across datasets where time is the common boundary. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Scott, Director of Enterprise Strategy & Architecture at MapR Technologies, discussed single-value, geo-spatial, and log time series data. By focusing on enterprise applications and the data center, he will use OpenTSDB as an example t...
Nov. 27, 2014 03:00 PM EST Reads: 1,469
How do APIs and IoT relate? The answer is not as simple as merely adding an API on top of a dumb device, but rather about understanding the architectural patterns for implementing an IoT fabric. There are typically two or three trends: Exposing the device to a management framework Exposing that management framework to a business centric logic Exposing that business layer and data to end users. This last trend is the IoT stack, which involves a new shift in the separation of what stuff happens, where data lives and where the interface lies. For instance, it's a mix of architectural styles ...
Nov. 27, 2014 03:00 PM EST Reads: 1,302
An entirely new security model is needed for the Internet of Things, or is it? Can we save some old and tested controls for this new and different environment? In his session at @ThingsExpo, New York's at the Javits Center, Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, reviewed hands-on lessons with IoT devices and reveal a new risk balance you might not expect. Davi Ottenheimer, EMC Senior Director of Trust, has more than nineteen years' experience managing global security operations and assessments, including a decade of leading incident response and digital forensics. He is co-author of t...
Nov. 27, 2014 01:00 PM EST Reads: 1,665
The Internet of Things will greatly expand the opportunities for data collection and new business models driven off of that data. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Esmeralda Swartz, CMO of MetraTech, discussed how for this to be effective you not only need to have infrastructure and operational models capable of utilizing this new phenomenon, but increasingly service providers will need to convince a skeptical public to participate. Get ready to show them the money!
Nov. 27, 2014 11:00 AM EST Reads: 1,281
The Internet of Things will put IT to its ultimate test by creating infinite new opportunities to digitize products and services, generate and analyze new data to improve customer satisfaction, and discover new ways to gain a competitive advantage across nearly every industry. In order to help corporate business units to capitalize on the rapidly evolving IoT opportunities, IT must stand up to a new set of challenges. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jeff Kaplan, Managing Director of THINKstrategies, will examine why IT must finally fulfill its role in support of its SBUs or face a new round of...
Nov. 27, 2014 10:00 AM EST Reads: 1,227
One of the biggest challenges when developing connected devices is identifying user value and delivering it through successful user experiences. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Mike Kuniavsky, Principal Scientist, Innovation Services at PARC, described an IoT-specific approach to user experience design that combines approaches from interaction design, industrial design and service design to create experiences that go beyond simple connected gadgets to create lasting, multi-device experiences grounded in people's real needs and desires.
Nov. 27, 2014 08:00 AM EST Reads: 1,237
Enthusiasm for the Internet of Things has reached an all-time high. In 2013 alone, venture capitalists spent more than $1 billion dollars investing in the IoT space. With "smart" appliances and devices, IoT covers wearable smart devices, cloud services to hardware companies. Nest, a Google company, detects temperatures inside homes and automatically adjusts it by tracking its user's habit. These technologies are quickly developing and with it come challenges such as bridging infrastructure gaps, abiding by privacy concerns and making the concept a reality. These challenges can't be addressed w...
Nov. 27, 2014 07:45 AM EST Reads: 1,520
The Domain Name Service (DNS) is one of the most important components in networking infrastructure, enabling users and services to access applications by translating URLs (names) into IP addresses (numbers). Because every icon and URL and all embedded content on a website requires a DNS lookup loading complex sites necessitates hundreds of DNS queries. In addition, as more internet-enabled ‘Things' get connected, people will rely on DNS to name and find their fridges, toasters and toilets. According to a recent IDG Research Services Survey this rate of traffic will only grow. What's driving t...
Nov. 27, 2014 07:00 AM EST Reads: 1,493
Connected devices and the Internet of Things are getting significant momentum in 2014. In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, examined three key elements that together will drive mass adoption of the IoT before the end of 2015. The first element is the recent advent of robust open source protocols (like AllJoyn and WebRTC) that facilitate M2M communication. The second is broad availability of flexible, cost-effective storage designed to handle the massive surge in back-end data in a world where timely analytics is e...
Nov. 27, 2014 06:45 AM EST Reads: 1,326
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using the URL as a basic building block, we open this up and get the same resilience that the web enjoys.
Nov. 27, 2014 06:45 AM EST Reads: 1,391
We are reaching the end of the beginning with WebRTC, and real systems using this technology have begun to appear. One challenge that faces every WebRTC deployment (in some form or another) is identity management. For example, if you have an existing service – possibly built on a variety of different PaaS/SaaS offerings – and you want to add real-time communications you are faced with a challenge relating to user management, authentication, authorization, and validation. Service providers will want to use their existing identities, but these will have credentials already that are (hopefully) i...
Nov. 27, 2014 04:00 AM EST Reads: 1,233
"Matrix is an ambitious open standard and implementation that's set up to break down the fragmentation problems that exist in IP messaging and VoIP communication," explained John Woolf, Technical Evangelist at Matrix, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
Nov. 27, 2014 04:00 AM EST Reads: 1,183
P2P RTC will impact the landscape of communications, shifting from traditional telephony style communications models to OTT (Over-The-Top) cloud assisted & PaaS (Platform as a Service) communication services. The P2P shift will impact many areas of our lives, from mobile communication, human interactive web services, RTC and telephony infrastructure, user federation, security and privacy implications, business costs, and scalability. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Robin Raymond, Chief Architect at Hookflash, will walk through the shifting landscape of traditional telephone and voice services ...
Nov. 26, 2014 02:00 PM EST Reads: 1,620
Explosive growth in connected devices. Enormous amounts of data for collection and analysis. Critical use of data for split-second decision making and actionable information. All three are factors in making the Internet of Things a reality. Yet, any one factor would have an IT organization pondering its infrastructure strategy. How should your organization enhance its IT framework to enable an Internet of Things implementation? In his session at Internet of @ThingsExpo, James Kirkland, Chief Architect for the Internet of Things and Intelligent Systems at Red Hat, described how to revolutioniz...
Nov. 24, 2014 07:00 PM EST Reads: 1,718
Bit6 today issued a challenge to the technology community implementing Web Real Time Communication (WebRTC). To leap beyond WebRTC’s significant limitations and fully leverage its underlying value to accelerate innovation, application developers need to consider the entire communications ecosystem.
Nov. 24, 2014 12:00 PM EST Reads: 1,623
The definition of IoT is not new, in fact it’s been around for over a decade. What has changed is the public's awareness that the technology we use on a daily basis has caught up on the vision of an always on, always connected world. If you look into the details of what comprises the IoT, you’ll see that it includes everything from cloud computing, Big Data analytics, “Things,” Web communication, applications, network, storage, etc. It is essentially including everything connected online from hardware to software, or as we like to say, it’s an Internet of many different things. The difference ...
Nov. 24, 2014 11:00 AM EST Reads: 1,748
Cloud Expo 2014 TV commercials will feature @ThingsExpo, which was launched in June, 2014 at New York City's Javits Center as the largest 'Internet of Things' event in the world.
Nov. 24, 2014 09:00 AM EST Reads: 1,783