Prediction season is nearly upon us. It’s that time of year where companies start looking ahead and reflecting on lessons of the past. Let’s start by looking back at my 2015 predictions.Wearable-SchmearableWearables continued to generate a lot of hype, but in my view, there’s still a long way to go before they have a meaningful impact on anybody’s life – including my own.While it turns out the Apple Watch was the must-have tech gadget for Apple fanatics, it “is still probably not for you,” as the New York Times puts it. Why? Well, I’ve come to discover that the killer app for the Apple Watch is in fact… the clock! I use my Apple Watch when I’m coaching the kids’ soccer to figure out when time is up… but that’s about it. And the downside? Now when a call comes in, my MacBook, iPad, iPhone… and now my watch all light up with that familiar samba tune.Does this mean the Apple Watch is a failure? Of course not, otherwise I wouldn’t have bought one. On the other hand (or wrist), niche wearables like Fitbits did shake up industries for the better. IDC noted that not only did Fitbit “experience triple-digit year-over-year growth,” it also built an ecosystem by partnering with corporate wellness groups, fashion and food companies.Consumers “Caught In The ‘Act’Okay, I’ll admit that not every retailer started to track your movements through their stores. But a few have. Target began testing a beacon system in 50 stores that will be able to tell where customers are in the store and use that information to send targeted deals to their smartphones. I’ll add that a key sign momentum is building is when the FTC takes interest – which they did in 2015, telling retailers that they have to let you know when they’re watching.It’s About The SoftwareDid software continue to redefine industries? You bet. Tesla upped the ante for the car industry once again by introducing “Autopilot” and eliminating the need for an active human driver – well almost. The best bit? No Tesla owner had the Autopilot feature when they bought their car! Turns out that automatic software updates are not just for phones. Even more shocking… it didn’t cost us Model S owners a penny. Your move, Google.Sling TV made it easy to cut the cord (while being able to get all your TV on phone and tablet), while the Drizly app went mainstream in bringing one-hour alcohol delivery to several US states – without actually supplying any of the alcohol purchased and delivered through their service.Agile Software Development + Millennials = New ITUnless you’ve been living under a rock, it was impossible not to hear the word “DevOps” at least a few times a day in 2015. Key to the DevOps model is moving to a development methodology that is both iterative and capable of continuously integrating new capabilities.As every industry is transformed by software, this will be THE model that almost every company moves to. Our very own Pivotal Cloud Foundry has seen explosive growth in 2015 with adoption by the Who’s Who of the Fortune 500. Together with Pivotal Labs, Cloud Foundry has been reinventing software development in companies large and small.Lecture ThisTechnology made a significant impact on education this last year, with curricula offered online from anywhere. Specific to last year’s prediction, it has indeed given the masses access to the same materials Ivy League schools teach. EdX and Coursera actually competed throughout 2015 to sign up the most Ivy League schools.Of course I’d be remiss not to mention that we at EMC made our own contribution: we introduced our Data Lakes For Big Data MOOC earlier this year, which delivers a foundational understanding of data lakes and big data to anyone who wants to learn, free of charge. We think this is important because we see data lakes as a critical underlying technology that will transform every industry and we believe it’s critical to educate as many people as possible on why and how. We plan to do quite a bit more in this space, so keep on the lookout.Looking back at 2015, I think I did pretty well. But what do you think? How will technology continue transforming our world in 2016?
Yesterday in London our market leading flash storage portfolio took a Quantum Leap forward! First, we announced a major update to our flagship high-end storage array – the VMAX All Flash – setting a new high bar for capacity and efficiency with advanced data services. Not content with this, we went on to change the flash storage game altogether with the introduction of DSSD D5. We believe DSSD is a new category of storage ideally suited to the new world of analytics and in-memory databases. These new additions to our already powerful flash portfolio, promise to make 2016 “The Year Of All Flash For Primary Storage”.Why is this important? Data volumes are continuing to increase and businesses are under pressure to process that data in a timely fashion. Processing power has steadily increased according to Moore’s Law – doubling every couple of years. But storage has not kept up … until the advent of flash (or Solid State Drive’s) several years ago. Today, flash has reached the point where it is more cost effective to deploy than high performance hard drives. We knew this day would come and have worked tirelessly over the past year to optimize the VMAX for all-flash deployments while still providing the world class data services our customers know and love. This enables organizations to modernize their data center infrastructure and seamlessly run their mission critical applications at a speed and a price point unimaginable several years ago.But the story doesn’t end there. The biggest challenge facing most of our customers today is one of digital transformation. The world’s leading companies are moving quickly to modernize their business by taking their services online or creating smart devices to participate in burgeoning “Internet Of Things”. We believe companies will collect 1000x more data than ever before and will be under pressure to analyze that data in real time to seek competitive advantage. These new requirements break traditional infrastructure and pave the way for a new approach. This is why we created DSSD D5. D5 is fast. How fast? Fast enough to analyze an entire day’s worth of stock market data. Fast enough to help banks stop fraudulent credit card transactions dead in their tracks. Fast enough to help analyze aircraft engine data during maintenance windows to help them fly more efficiently. Fast enough for businesses not to miss an opportunity to enrich the consumer experience because their infrastructure couldn’t keep up with their businessWhy Go “All Flash For Primary Storage” Now? It’s very simple. Offering all flash arrays for the majority of data center use cases simply makes economic sense. We’ve reached the point where it can cost less to store data entirely on flash rather than performance hard drives. We have a market leading all-flash portfolio – at the high end we have had a record year in 2015 selling well in excess of $1BN in only its’ second year in the market. To complement XtremIO we now have the VMAX All-Flash providing huge scale in terms of capacity, ports and devices, world class data services and support for file, mainframe and i-Series environments. In the mid-range we continue to offer VNX in all-flash configurations for general purpose mixed block and file workloads. “With all of these additions to our flash storage portfolio, there should be virtually no data center use case we cannot handle!Can I Get It In Converged?There’s no better way to modernize a data center than through converged infrastructure and we will be offering VMAX All Flash in the VCE Vblock 740, and DSSD D5 will be incorporated into the VCE converged infrastructure portfolio in the future..To learn more take a look at the VMAX All Flash and DSSD D5 spaces on emc.com.This release contains “forward-looking statements” as defined under the Federal Securities Laws. Actual results could differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements as a result of certain risk factors, including but not limited to: (i) risks associated with the proposed acquisition of EMC by Denali Holdings, Inc., the parent company of Dell, Inc., including, among others, assumptions related to the ability to close the acquisition, the expected closing date and its anticipated costs and benefits; (ii) adverse changes in general economic or market conditions; (iii) delays or reductions in information technology spending; (iv) the relative and varying rates of product price and component cost declines and the volume and mixture of product and services revenues; (v) competitive factors, including but not limited to pricing pressures and new product introductions; (vi) component and product quality and availability; (vii) fluctuations in VMware, Inc.’s operating results and risks associated with trading of VMware stock; (viii) the transition to new products, the uncertainty of customer acceptance of new product offerings and rapid technological and market change; (ix) risks associated with managing the growth of our business, including risks associated with acquisitions and investments and the challenges and costs of integration, restructuring and achieving anticipated synergies; (x) the ability to attract and retain highly qualified employees; (xi) insufficient, excess or obsolete inventory; (xii) fluctuating currency exchange rates; (xiii) threats and other disruptions to our secure data centers or networks; (xiv) our ability to protect our proprietary technology; (xv) war or acts of terrorism; and (xvi) other one-time events and other important factors disclosed previously and from time to time in EMC’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. EMC disclaims any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements after the date of this release
A Game That Shaped a GenerationWho remembers the game The Oregon Trail? Initially released in 1971, the game went through ten iterations and has sold over 65 million copies. I vividly remember playing the Apple II version, released in 1985, in elementary school. Most prominent are the Latitude 11 Convertible with Dell Productivity Active Pen and Chromebook 11 Convertible. These two devices are the newest additions to our education portfolio, and they bring new ways to collaborate and learn utilizing the PC. Each has a 360 degree hinge, which allows the devices to operate as standard laptops, tablets, or can be put in tent-mode for content consumption. The Windows-based Latitude 11 Convertible is further enhanced by an active stylus with 2048 levels of sensitivity. Studies show that diagramming thinking before solving a science problem leads to higher scores, and that using a pen improves conceptual application. The Dell Productivity Active Pen coupled with the Dell Latitude Convertible allows students to diagram and illustrate their problem solving process, and seamlessly move from application to application while working towards the problem’s conclusion. In addition, there’s a “world-facing” camera when in tablet mode, allowing students to create movies on the go, opening up creative possibilities. You can learn more about these devices here, including specs and configuration options.Traditional Doesn’t Mean BoringNext, we launched two traditional-style educational laptops, each with 10+ hours of battery life. The Latitude 11 and Chromebook 11 each feature a 180 degree lay-flat design for collaborative work, and the Latitude 13 and Chromebook 13 feature even more powerful processing options including Intel Core i-Series processors. Both of these product lines not only have improved battery life over previous products, but they have improved on weight and size, as well. The Latitude 13 features optional E-Rate mobile broadband, allowing education institutions to support connected learning at a discounted rate wherever WiFi isn’t available. In addition, an optional high-quality touch-screen with Corning Gorilla Glass gives these laptops touch-collaborative capabilities.Born of RuggedDell is the only manufacturer of fully rugged compute devices that also designs products for the education market. That experience and engineering capabilities have helped us design systems that can withstand the rigors of the learning environment, be it inside or out. When you have a laptop being handled by kids all day long, with their lids opening and closing constantly, being plugged in for charging and unplugged, and the possibility of spills an ever-present worry, is there any wonder that a school’s IT staff owns stock in Starbuck’s? Well, we build mobile devices for the military, first responders, law enforcement, field services, and other extreme computing environments, and we think we know a thing or two about how to make these laptops stand up to the abuse that kids may dish out. Want to see what kind of testing our fully rugged devices for adults go through? Watch this video: </p><p>Designed to strict MIL-STD 810G specifications, each of our new mobile education laptops and convertibles can withstand bumps, drops, and even spills on the keyboard. The sealed keys and trackpad won’t allow liquid through, which could short out the system. Furthermore, we’ve reinforced the hinges – and we do a lot of testing on those, as well! Next, we’ve added a metal bracket to reinforce the power port – ever had a power jack on your laptop feel a little wiggly after a few years? That could happen very quickly with a system being used by dozens of kids a day, and we’ve reinforced that port to take the abuse. And for those younger kids that are a little more curious about what’s inside their computer, we’ve reinforced the keys, making them 50% more tamper-resistant, so little Johnny will have a harder time prying them off. Next, select models either come standard with Corning Gorilla Glass, or offer it as an option, particular for touch-enabled devices. That’s the same type of material used to keep your cell phone protected from scratches, and it’s very effective.Here’s To Blazing a TrailWe’ve come a long way from the days when computers in the classroom were a novelty. Today, they’re a necessity. Today, the learning environment is student-led and personalized. Students produce, not just consume during the learning process, and that learning is not constrained by time and place. Learning happens inside and out of the classroom, and can happen any time. Educators around the world are finding new ways every day to utilize modern technology. They leverage the latest advanced curriculum, and collaborate in new ways or foster student-led learning. However, budgets aren’t ballooning at the same rate, so Dell understands that purpose-built devices must be affordable without sacrificing functionality. Those devices must also be supported as to not interrupt the learning process. We know that flexibility, choice, and multiple options are going to allow for educators and students make the most of their time together, and we at Dell are proud to be a part of it. (Little known fact: Willamette was the codename for the very first Intel Pentium 4 Processor)Back then, computers just started to find their way into schools, with the Apple II becoming the first to reach widespread adoption. I remember learning how to touch type, and used basic learning applications that were really just supplemental to traditional analog classroom learning.Ironically, The Oregon Trail was probably the most educational piece of software that I remember, and it was a game that was used as a reward for good behavior during “Computer Class.” It taught resource and risk management, and conveyed a basic lesson on life in the mid-nineteenth century during the western expansion of the United States. There were dangers from wild animals, sickness, starvation, and even crossing rivers in a careless manner. For me, it was the first time that technology aided in my education.Back To the FutureFast forward over thirty years, and PC devices have eclipsed Apple in the classroom and the IT ecosystem that supports them. They have incredible abilities to drive the educational process, and are used for virtually every subject. More and more schools are issuing laptops directly to students to use throughout the day. Loaded with Microsoft Windows or Google Chrome operating systems, these devices will likely be used by students later in their professional lives. Furthermore, PC-based educational devices have exponentially increased in power, performance, and reliability, all the while becoming more affordable. School districts across the nation are finding new and innovative ways of integrating technology into their curriculums, and Dell is at the forefront of helping them drive that innovation and serve the needs of educators and students across the nation and around the world.Recently, we launched three new mobile devices that are designed to embrace new initiatives such as student-led learning. We’ve created these systems to provide the widest range of choice with maximum flexibility to meet the needs of K-12 educational institutions. Each of these devices feature the power of 6th and 7th Generation Intel processors, and deliver 10+ hours of battery life.A Robust 2-in-1 for the Classroom
Technology has traditionally been seen as an asset for aiding human development and augmenting our capabilities. At the dawn of the fourth industrial revolution, many people are asking themselves if technology will displace large numbers of people in the workplace. Several media articles have been published recently on the topic, with some proposing very negative views to this effect.Personally speaking, I have a more positive outlook on what the evolution of AI means for employment opportunities of the future. It is also important to note that many big name analysts and consulting firms such as Accenture agree that AI will bolster the need for human-related jobs, forecasting a 10% increase in job creation for those companies with the vision to boost AI investments. Indeed, emerging technologies such as AI have been around for a while now, and thus far we have seen that any job losses were more than offset by the new jobs they have in turn created. Current levels of unemployment in both the UK and the USA are at record low levels.In today’s increasingly digital world, we will see a massive increase in automation driven by robotics and machine learning, and this will certainly have a negative impact on low skilled manual labour. In parallel, though, this will be accompanied by an increase in demand for highly skilled workers to maximise the benefits of the digital age as its capability grows. After all, it is humans, not technology, who will continue to provide innovative new ways of working, strategic thinking and brainstorming. This will clearly lead to increased demand for highly skilled people, and we may run the risk of skills shortages unless we can more quickly upskill or reskill the workforce. The fast and ever-increasing pace of the digital world means that lifelong learning and continuous change will be the defining features of employment going forward.So where will the new jobs come from?It is safe to say that by 2030 there will be new types of roles which are as yet unknown. In their Realizing 2030 survey about the future of technologies and human-machine partnerships, Dell Technologies and Institute for the Future estimate that 85% of jobs in 2030 haven’t been invented yet.Job growth will be seen in such areas as:Software and application development to leverage the digital ageRoles involving Control, Quality and Auditing of new digital assetsFunctions like data scientists and big data analysts needed to generate insights from the vast amounts of data producedWhat’s more, the digital age will lead to a more service-oriented economy, and many service jobs will be created via these new digitally enabled services.The digital era will allow for more home and remote working, thereby driving more demand for the tourism industry and creating more jobs in this sector as more and more people will work from ‘second homes’, occasionally or frequently.Hence I remain confident that we can create the necessary jobs for tomorrow’s tumultuous times, provided we have the foresight to equip people with the skills necessary to prosper in the digital age.
WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is set to meet Monday afternoon with a group of 10 Republican senators who have proposed spending about one-third of what he is seeking in coronavirus aid. White House press secretary Jen Psaki says that Biden has spoken with the leader of the the group, Sen. Susan Collins. The invitation to the White House came hours after the lawmakers had sent Biden a letter urging him to negotiate rather than try to ram through his $1.9 trillion package solely on Democratic votes. Congressional Democrats are poised to move ahead without Republican support.