Jul 31, 2017

[video] @Cloudistics Public Cloud | @CloudExpo #CloudNative #AI #DataCenter

"As we've gone out into the public cloud we've seen that over time we may have lost a few things - we've lost control, we've given up cost to a certain extent, and then security, flexibility," explained Steve Conner, VP of Sales at Cloudistics,in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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[video] Full Potential of Cloud | @CloudExpo @Ocean9Inc #SAP #AI #DataCenter

"We are focused on SAP running in the clouds, to make this super easy because we believe in the tremendous value of those powerful worlds - SAP and the cloud," explained Frank Stienhans, CTO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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TSX closes 15 points higher as oil cracks $50 US per barrel

TSX closes 15 points higher as oil cracks $50 US per barrel
Times Colonist - 6 hours ago
The Canadian dollar remained above the 80-cent US mark, trading at an average price of 80.10 cents US, though that was down 0.24 of a cent.

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TSX closes 15 points higher as oil cracks $50 US per barrel

TSX closes 15 points higher as oil passes $50 mark

TSX closes 15 points higher as oil passes $50 mark
Times Colonist - 7 hours ago
The Canadian dollar remained above the 80-cent US mark, trading at an average price of 80.10 cents US, down 0.24 of a cent.
At the open: TSX rises with banks, energy - The Globe and Mail

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TSX closes 15 points higher as oil passes $50 mark

USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Lower As Producer Prices Fall

USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Lower As Producer Prices Fall
MarketPulse (blog) - 8 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar depreciated on Monday. The loonie started the week on the back foot as raw material and producer prices disappointed with a 3.7 percent and 1.0 percent contractions.

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USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Lower As Producer Prices Fall

Have You Critiqued Your Critique Process?

Whenever I hear someone complain about the process of a design critique, I’m always a bit surprised. Blame it on the fact that I’m a design school graduate, where critique is a mandatory part of the educational experience. I consider learning to give and receive feedback as one of the most relevant and useful pieces of my education.

But translating the rules and reasons for critique from a classroom to the workplace can take a bit of practice. I’ll outline some basic guidelines for starting a process of critique on your government design team, and suggest additional tips to make a critique session more useful to your final outcomes.

A close-up of three people viewing something on a laptop.

littlehenrabi/iStock/Thinkstock

Know Your Role

When you receive a meeting invite and it’s unclear why you are being asked to attend, the meeting often becomes a low-priority item. The worst meetings to attend are those where your role is ambiguous. So why would you invite someone to a critique but not tell them about their role—especially if they are new to the critique process?

Make sure you assign roles to everyone attending the critique and make it clear in your invitation how they’ll be involved. Here are the essential roles to include in a critique:

Presenter: The presenter is the person or team who will be showing their work and asking for feedback. Being a presenter requires the most preparation before the meeting. (We’ll get to what to prep momentarily.) The presenter is typically the person who initiates the critique session.

Note Taker: It’s difficult to deeply listen to feedback, ask clarifying questions and be responsible for recording notes and next steps. That’s why a note taker, who isn’t part of the presenting team, should be designated before the critique starts.

Attendees: Everyone else at the critique is there to listen and give feedback. Attendees can range from business owners to guests from other agencies to designers from another office or division.

Take Preparation Seriously

If you are going to present your work, it will require extra work in advance. Critique needs context.

As a presenter, you (and possibly your team) will need to answer some questions before receiving a critique:

  • What problem are you trying to solve? Why is it a problem?
  • What solution have you come up with so far? What have you tried that hasn’t worked?
  • What specifically do you want feedback on?

Summarize your answers to these questions and be able to share this information at the beginning of a critique. Bonus points if you’re able to capture the answers on a handout for the critique attendees to refer back to during the session. You need to direct the conversation before it even starts.

Talk About Process

It’s important to talk about process at critique. Is this an initial idea or something that’s been tested in a moderated environment multiple times? Giving context by talking about your process is critical to ensuring your attendees understand where you are in the design process. Explaining your previous attempts to solve the problem will also steer the conversation away from approaches you’ve already tried and aren’t relevant to the session.

Address the Power Dynamics in the Room

Government typically has many levels of decision makers; it’s how large organizations tend to function. Ensure that whoever is in the room knows the critique process is not about approvals or moving an idea up the hierarchy—it’s about solving a design problem and making the product better before going through a sign-off process.

The most senior person is welcome, but is also given the same amount of authority and respect as everyone else in the room. Being transparent about power can help teams avoid the swoop and poop – where a leader swoops in and poops on a design without any context.

Capture Takeaways

During the critique session, the note taker should be capturing the main ideas of the critique conversation. After the critique, the presenter should work with the note taker to summarize takeaways and update relevant people of any changes or decisions. Continue to communicate after the critique.

One you’re established a critique process, here are suggestions to infuse energy and new ideas into your process:

Create Rules

Are there unwritten rules your team is following during design critiques? Which norms are helpful and which need to be re-examined? Try creating new and explicit rules to help change the dynamic of your critique.

  • Only Ask Questions: Try changing the interactions in a critique by only allowing attendees to ask questions. For teams new to the question-only critique, put together a list of sample questions in advance.
  • Ban the Phrase “I like …”: Getting away from opinions can be really useful in critique, especially if you are introducing visual design elements. For a variation on only asking questions, ban the phrase I like or I love and see how the critique changes.

Educate Your Team

Remember that everyone attending a critique – from business owners to subject matter experts – might not have a vocabulary or fluency to talk about design challenges. Incorporate some education into your critique to get better feedback.

For example, if you’re going to present a logo redesign, where many elements can feel subjective, take some time at the beginning of the critique to walk through both successful and unsuccessful logo redesigns from other industries or agencies. Pick apart the elements that worked or didn’t work in your examples. When it’s time to present your own work, you’ll have demonstrated how to talk about a logo redesign in a strategic and insightful way.

Copy Other Teams

If your critique process feels stale or you want to generate new ideas around critique, copy the critique process of other teams and see what works for your situation. Use the UX Community of Practice listserv to solicit ideas on how different teams run their critique process. You might try inviting a guest attendee from another agency to change the dynamics of your session and get new insights.

What other ideas do you have for starting a critique process or improving one that feels stale? Leave your ideas in the comments.


by Toni Bonitto via DigitalGov

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Stone Island brand owner recovers hundreds of domains

The company behind the Stone Island clothing brand, Sportswear Company, has recovered hundreds of domain names that were hosting websites ...
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80.5¢ may be about as good as it gets for born-again Canadian dollar

80.5¢ may be about as good as it gets for born-again Canadian dollar
The Globe and Mail - 7 hours ago
The Canadian dollar has staged an impressive rebound, up by more than 10 per cent in just two months, but that may be as good as it gets for the born-again loonie, observers say.
At 80 US cents, the loonie is up 10% since May: Who wins and who loses? - Globalnews.ca
Canadian Dollar Falls After Weak Economic Data - ForexTV.com

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80.5¢ may be about as good as it gets for born-again Canadian dollar

TSX up 26 points; Canadian dollar retreating

TSX up 26 points; Canadian dollar retreating
Times Colonist - 41 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar was still above the 80-cent US mark, trading at 80.03 cents US, though that was down from an average price of 80.34 cents US on Friday.

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TSX up 26 points; Canadian dollar retreating

TSX up 42 points in early trading; Canadian dollar slips

TSX up 42 points in early trading; Canadian dollar slips
Times Colonist - 1 hour ago
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 82.91 points to 21,913.22. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up 4.50 points to 2,476.60.

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TSX up 42 points in early trading; Canadian dollar slips

Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month

Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month
The Globe and Mail - 48 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar weakened on Monday against its U.S. counterpart as oil prices dipped and the greenback posted broader gains, but the loonie was on track to advance for the third straight month.

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Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month

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Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month

Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month
Reuters Canada - 14 minutes ago
TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar weakened on Monday against its U.S. counterpart as oil prices dipped and the greenback posted broader gains, but the loonie was on track to advance for the third straight month.

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Canadian dollar weakens but on track to advance for third straight month

[video] @DivvyCloud Automated Solutions | @CloudExpo #AI #DX #CloudNative #DevOps

"DivvyCloud as a company set out to help customers automate solutions to the most common cloud problems," noted Jeremy Snyder, VP of Business Development at DivvyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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Jul 30, 2017

[video] @Systena_America's End-to-End IoT Solutions | @CloudExpo #AI #IoT #SmartCities

"We provide IoT solutions. We provide the most compatible solutions for many applications. Our solutions are industry agnostic and also protocol agnostic," explained Richard Han, Head of Sales and Marketing and Engineering at Systena America, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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Iomart Group Plc (IOM) Stock Rating Reaffirmed by Peel Hunt

Peel Hunt reissued their buy rating on shares of Iomart Group Plc ... range of shared hosting and domain registration services to micro, and small and ...
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Canadian dollar's rapid gain spells trouble for exporters

Canadian dollar's rapid gain spells trouble for exporters
The Globe and Mail - 2 hours ago
Like any farmer, Jeff Nielsen keeps an eye on the weather, hoping for an end to the hot, dry spell that hit parts of the Canadian prairies this summer.

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Canadian dollar's rapid gain spells trouble for exporters

Canadian dollar's resurgence spells trouble for exporters

Canadian dollar's resurgence spells trouble for exporters
The Globe and Mail - 30 minutes ago
Like any farmer, Jeff Nielsen keeps an eye on the weather, hoping for an end to the hot, dry spell that hit parts of the Canadian prairies this summer.

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Canadian dollar's resurgence spells trouble for exporters

DXWorldEXPO Announces Agenda | @ExpoDX #AI #DX #DigitalTransformation

"DX encompasses the continuing technology revolution, and is addressing society's most important issues throughout the entire $78 trillion 21st-century global economy," said Roger Strukhoff, Conference Chair. "DX World Expo has organized these issues along 10 tracks with more than 150 of the world's top speakers coming to Istanbul to help change the world."

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Iomart Group Plc (IOM) Given “Buy” Rating at Peel Hunt

Iomart Group Plc (IOM) Given “Buy” Rating at Peel Hunt ... The Easyspace segment provides a range of shared hosting and domain registration ...
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Jul 29, 2017

[video] Value Stream Management | @DevOpsSummit @CollabNet #CloudNative #DevOps

"I think DevOps is now a rambunctious teenager – it’s starting to get a mind of its own, wanting to get its own things but it still needs some adult supervision," explained Thomas Hooker, VP of marketing at CollabNet, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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The Four Core Capabilities of DevOps | @DevOpsSummit #Agile #DevOps #Automation

DevOps is good for organizations. According to the soon to be released State of DevOps Report high-performing IT organizations are 2X more likely to exceed profitability, market share, and productivity goals. But how do they do it? How do they use DevOps to drive value and differentiate their companies? We recently sat down with Nicole Forsgren, CEO and Chief Scientist at DORA (DevOps Research and Assessment) and lead investigator for the State of DevOps Report, to discuss the role of measurement in DevOps Success. From years of research into DevOps operations and culture, Forsgren and her colleagues have found that success depends on improving two key outcomes—speed and stability. These, she says, are crucial for driving improvement in organizational performance and value.

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IoT Fitment in Government Reference Architecture | @ThingsExpo #DX #IoT #M2M

IoT in connected Government helps to deliver better citizen services and provides transparency. It helps in delivering contextual and personalized service to citizens, enhances the security, and improves the quality of life. The reference architecture provides guidance for the development of government systems, solutions and application architecture. A reference architecture provides a common framework and allows the design to follow the consistent definitions for the system of interest, its decompositions and design patterns.

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Does Your Company Require a B2B Integration Tool | @CloudExpo #BI #API #Cloud

Technology integration is complex and an evergreen business challenge for IT teams. Enterprises setup manual & point to point connections to exchange data from business partners. However, data disruptions emerge when the business IT systems expand and prevents organizations from sharing data with partners. Information exchange with this approach requires more resources and manpower is required. For such scenarios, information solution experts recommend to use the B2B data exchange tool to support the Electronic Data Interchange. However, enterprises are struck in a dilemma to go for an in house or a b2b solution. This blog will help you in deciding whether to develop an in-house solution or a dedicated information solution

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GoDaddy Experts Rescue WordPress Websites

GoDaddy, the domain registration and website hosting vendor that caters to the small business community, is no stranger to WordPress.
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[video] @OutscaleInc's Infrastructure Services | @CloudExpo #CloudNative #DevOps #DX

"Outscale was founded in 2010, is based in France, is a strategic partner to Dassault Systémes and has done quite a bit of work with divisions of Dassault," explained Jackie Funk, Digital Marketing exec at Outscale, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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How Sia Could Disrupt the Entire Cloud Market | @CloudExpo #Cloud #FinTech #Blockchain

Blockchain technology is taking over the world. It is an ingenious invention by a person or a group of people known by the pseudonym, Satoshi Nakamoto. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 8 years, you have heard of Bitcoin. The underlying technology behind Bitcoin is called blockchain. It is a public ledger of all the Bitcoin transactions ever happened on its network.

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[video] Digital #Monitoring with @Catchpoint | @DevOpsSummit #CloudNative #DevOps

"With Digital Experience Monitoring what used to be a simple visit to a web page has exploded into app on phones, data from social media feeds, competitive benchmarking - these are all components that are only available because of some type of digital asset," explained Leo Vasiliou, Director of Web Performance Engineering at Catchpoint Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at DevOps Summit at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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Jul 28, 2017

Headwinds and tailwinds: Six stocks that could feel the effects of a stronger ...

Headwinds and tailwinds: Six stocks that could feel the effects of a stronger ...
Financial Post - 9 hours ago
“When taken in the context of the recent Canadian dollar move since May, we believe economic forces are emerging that have the potential to materially alter purchase behaviour of customers, driving demand for new equipment sales, which is positively ...
Canadian Loonie Hits 80 Cents US - MyToba

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Headwinds and tailwinds: Six stocks that could feel the effects of a stronger ...

[slides] Alexa, Manage My Storage | @DevOpsSummit @Tintri #AI #ML #DevOps #DataCenter

Your homes and cars can be automated and self-serviced. Why can't your storage? From simply asking questions to analyze and troubleshoot your infrastructure, to provisioning storage with snapshots, recovery and replication, your wildest sci-fi dream has come true. In his session at @DevOpsSummit at 20th Cloud Expo, Dan Florea, Director of Product Management at Tintri, provided a ChatOps demo where you can talk to your storage and manage it from anywhere, through Slack and similar services with Tintri's web services architecture and APIs. Impress your DevOps team with smart and autonomous infrastructure.

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Toronto stock index declines while Canadian dollar climbs on oil prices

Toronto stock index declines while Canadian dollar climbs on oil prices
TheChronicleHerald.ca - 51 minutes ago
TORONTO - The loonie climbed Friday, rising above the 80-cent mark, as oil prices rose and the country's economic growth came in stronger than expected.

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Toronto stock index declines while Canadian dollar climbs on oil prices

How Threats Against Domain Names Are Used to Censor Content

And there a whole host of such laws that might apply to a domain that a registrant might innocently register, in full compliance with the laws of their ...
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The Combinatorial Nature of Digital Building Blocks | @ThingsExpo #IoT #M2M #DigitalTransformation

I came across the brilliant blog site of Futurist Frank Diana this week. In one of his most recent articles he discusses the concept of combinatorial nature. He states, "We are seeing exponential convergence across the areas of science, technology, economics, society, ethics, and politics. The combinatorial nature of an overwhelming number of building blocks drives an accelerating intersection across these areas." As an expert Lego player, I can appreciate the concept of building blocks, and the near infinite number of combinations these blocks can be used to form. The idea that we have now reached a critical mass of digital building blocks, and that we will now experience exponential growth through the combinatorial nature of them is compelling.

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[session] Serverless Machine Learning Operations | @CloudExpo @Hydrospheredata #AI #ML #Serverless

Any startup has to have a clear go –to-market strategy from the beginning. Similarly, any data science project has to have a go to production strategy from its first days, so it could go beyond proof-of-concept. Machine learning and artificial intelligence in production would result in hundreds of training pipelines and machine learning models that are continuously revised by teams of data scientists and seamlessly connected with web applications for tenants and users.

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Canadian dollar rises as economic growth spurs fall rate hike expectations

Canadian dollar rises as economic growth spurs fall rate hike expectations
The Globe and Mail - 6 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar strengthened on Friday against its U.S. counterpart, as stronger-than-expected growth in the domestic economy supported expectations for another interest rate hike from the Bank of Canada in the coming months.

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Canadian dollar rises as economic growth spurs fall rate hike expectations

[slides] Culture: Change or Die | @DevOpsSummit @Accenture #CD #Agile #DevOps

All organizations that did not originate this moment have a pre-existing culture as well as legacy technology and processes that can be more or less amenable to DevOps implementation. That organizational culture is influenced by the personalities and management styles of Executive Management, the wider culture in which the organization is situated, and the personalities of key team members at all levels of the organization. This culture and entrenched interests usually throw a wrench in the works because of misaligned incentives.

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What Is Java DevOps? | @DevOpsSummit #APM #Monitoring #Microservices

DevOps sees the coming together of practices, philosophies, and tools that allow you to create services and applications very quickly. This means that you can improve on your apps and evolve them at a much faster rate than those developers who are using traditional software development processes. We’ve talked about DevOps, in general, a great deal, but today, we’re going to dig a little deeper and take a look at Java DevOps specifically.

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Subscription Services | @CloudExpo #DaaS #XaaS #CloudNative #AI #ML #DX

From personal care products to groceries and movies on demand, cloud-based subscriptions are fulfilling the needs of consumers across an array of market sectors. Nowhere is this shift to subscription services more evident than in the technology sector. By adopting an Everything-as-a-Service (XaaS) delivery model, companies are able to tailor their computing environments to shape the experiences they want for customers as well as their workforce.

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Jul 27, 2017

Here is a big reason why the Canadian dollar is struggling today

Here is a big reason why the Canadian dollar is struggling today
ForexLive - 8 hours ago
A report is doing the rounds that cites anonymous sources "within Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's government" that are upset the Bank of Canada hiked rates. They are concerned the BOC "is moving too quickly to raise interest rates, fearing higher ...

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Here is a big reason why the Canadian dollar is struggling today

10 Signs Your Website Needs a New Web Hosting Provider

You should start learning how to change website host when this happens for ... files and changing the nameserver information for your domain name.
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Firstnet Is Developing an Applications Ecosystem with Public Safety

The First Responder Network Authority (FirstNet) was created to equip America’s first responders with state-of-the-art communications tools, enabled by the first nationwide interoperable, wireless broadband network. But FirstNet is doing much more than building a communications network: the organization is also working to drive continuous innovation over the Network – including the development of an open, integrated applications ecosystem tailored for public safety users.

Through FirstNet’s outreach to public safety, first responders have told them about the advantages of data communications in the field and their growing use of mobile broadband tools and technologies to help save lives. They have heard from responders at station visits, city and state meetings, training opportunities and ride-alongs about the promise of using applications over the FirstNet Network.

FirstNet is taking first responders’ feedback and using their ideas to cultivate an open, integrated applications ecosystem on the FirstNet Network.

“Having vetted, standardized, secured apps on a secure network is extremely important,” said Phoenix Fire Department Deputy Chief Amos Chalmers. Melissa Matey, a spokeswoman for the Louisiana State Police, said technology also “greatly enhances” officer safety. “We rely very heavily on those systems because when we’re on a traffic stop, we don’t know who we’re dealing with,” she said.

FirstNet is taking first responders’ feedback and using their ideas to cultivate an open, integrated applications ecosystem on the FirstNet Network, so that public safety personnel will have access to more targeted applications and more timely data than ever before possible.

FirstNet’s applications strategy, which is discussed in this video presentation, is built around the following three key tenets:

  1. Developing a rich set of applications for use by public safety;
  2. Ensuring public safety drives new applications requirements for the Network;
  3. Providing the capabilities for the full lifecycle of applications.

As an important component of this strategy, FirstNet is incorporating public safety’s first-hand knowledge and creativity to develop an applications ecosystem. FirstNet is hoping to open the doors to more developers from public safety by providing them with the tools and support commonly afforded open development environments.

“What excites me is that there are firefighters, EMTs, or patrol officers out there with ideas,” said Captain Chris Lombard, a Seattle firefighter who also serves on the FirstNet Public Safety Advisory Committee (PSAC). “They’re looking for the perfect mechanism to get that idea in motion – that’s the potential and opportunity of what FirstNet will enable for us.”

More from FirstNet in the video below:

This post was originally published on the FirstNet blog.


by Toni Bonitto via DigitalGov

TSX up 30 points in early trading; Canadian dollar above 80 cents US

TSX up 30 points in early trading; Canadian dollar above 80 cents US
Times Colonist - 3 hours ago
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 55.67 points to 21,766.68. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up 2.78 points to 2,480.61.

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TSX up 30 points in early trading; Canadian dollar above 80 cents US

TSX rises 42 points; Canadian dollar slips

TSX rises 42 points; Canadian dollar slips
Times Colonist - 1 hour ago
The Canadian dollar was trading at 79.95 cents US, down slightly from an average price of 79.97 cents US on Wednesday. The September crude contract was ahead 16 cents to US$48.91 per barrel and the September natural gas contract was up seven cents ...

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TSX rises 42 points; Canadian dollar slips

Thwarting Ransomware Attacks | @CloudExpo #Cloud #Cybersecurity

As we have seen over and over again, a new wave of ransomware attacks has been plaguing large parts of Europe over the last couple of weeks. While the affected individuals and organizations are struggling with the very tangible business impact of the loss of revenue and operations, it’s critical to step back and review what else one could do to mitigate and minimize the damage from such attacks in the future.

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[slides] IoT and the Security Implications | @ThingsExpo @NTTi3 #IIoT #AI #ML #DL #M2M

In the enterprise today, connected IoT devices are everywhere – both inside and outside corporate environments. The need to identify, manage, control and secure a quickly growing web of connections and outside devices is making the already challenging task of security even more important, and onerous. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Rich Boyer, CISO and Chief Architect for Security at NTT i3, discussed new ways of thinking and the approaches needed to address the emerging challenges of security in the enterprise. With a focus on the challenges and specific technical solutions possible using distributed trust, mutability, autonomy, and disposability, he showed how a single cohesive security management infrastructure can be created for the enterprise while still allowing the distributed value of IoT to exist anywhere.

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[slides] Trends in WebRTC Development | @ThingsExpo @WebRTCVentures #UCaaS #RTC #WebRTC

What sort of WebRTC based applications can we expect to see over the next year and beyond? One way to predict development trends is to see what sorts of applications startups are building. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Arin Sime, founder of WebRTC.ventures, discussed the current and likely future trends in WebRTC application development based on real requests for custom applications from real customers, as well as other public sources of information.

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Canadian dollar eases from two-year highs as US dollar firms on data

Canadian dollar eases from two-year highs as US dollar firms on data
The Globe and Mail - 15 minutes ago
Analysts are skeptical the Canadian dollar will be able to strengthen much further, with expectations the Bank of Canada will raise interest rates one more time this year already fully priced into the market.

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Canadian dollar eases from two-year highs as US dollar firms on data

Digital Transformation and Competitive Decision Making | @ThingsExpo #DX #IoT #M2M #API

The winning trinity in competitive decision-making includes people, ideas and things according to the renowned military strategist John Boyd. Although competitive decision-making is not yet an Olympic sport, it affects us all. Leaders (people) must become trained experts at using digital technologies to make fast decisions. Leaders must use the right strategies and methodologies (ideas) to make wise decisions fast, and they must collect the needed data and analyze it fast enough using the best solutions (things). If any component of this trinity is weak, it will be hard to compete.

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[slides] Million Dollar SaaS with Kubernetes | @CloudExpo @Supergiantio #SaaS #Cloud #DevOps

In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Mike Johnston, an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io, discussed how to use Kubernetes to set up a SaaS infrastructure for your business. Mike Johnston is an infrastructure engineer at Supergiant.io with over 12 years of experience designing, deploying, and maintaining server and workstation infrastructure at all scales. He has experience with brick and mortar data centers as well as cloud providers like Digital Ocean, Amazon Web Services, and Rackspace. His expertise is in automating deployment, management, and problem resolution in these environments, allowing his teams to run large transactional applications with high availability and the speed the consumer demands.

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What Business Leaders Need to Know About Machine Learning | @ThingsExpo #AI #ML #IoT #M2M

Sometimes I write a blog just to formulate and organize a point of view, and I think it’s time that I pull together the bounty of excellent information about Machine Learning. This is a topic with which business leaders must become comfortable, especially tomorrow’s business leaders (tip for my next semester University of San Francisco business students!). Machine learning is a key capability that will help organizations drive optimization and monetization opportunities, and there have been some recent developments that will place basic machine learning capabilities into the hands of the lines of business.

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[slides] Enabling FinTechs for Success | @CloudExpo @CloudRaxak #Cloud #FinTech #Security

FinTechs use the cloud to operate at the speed and scale of digital financial activity, but are often hindered by the complexity of managing security and compliance in the cloud. In his session at 20th Cloud Expo, Sesh Murthy, co-founder and CTO of Cloud Raxak, showed how proactive and automated cloud security enables FinTechs to leverage the cloud to achieve their business goals. Through business-driven cloud security, FinTechs can speed time-to-market, diminish risk and costs, maintain continuous compliance, and set themselves up for success.

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USAGov and State Department Partner to Streamline Passport Process

The mission of USAGov is to make vital information and services accessible to the American people, and we’re always seeking innovative new ways to further that goal. Last year, we initiated an effort to explore methods of getting feedback from the public about their experiences accessing key government services.

U.S. passports on a map of the world.

Maudib/iStock/Thinkstock

We researched options and identified a third-party stakeholder research software tool to test. The tool transforms hundreds of public comments into a short list of usable recommendations. In December 2016 we launched a pilot study with the tool, in partnership with the U.S. Department of State (State).

State estimates that more than 20 million Americans will apply for or renew a passport this year, which would make 2017 the busiest year for The Passport Office in history. Passport Services staff were eager to make the processes as easy as possible and committed to doing so.  Therefore, they were interested in getting feedback about the popular service. State’s passport processes were thus an ideal match for the software. By the end of the pilot study, the partnership would lead to a set of key recommendations that helped motivate changes to the passport process.

How We Got Started

The software tool we used works by providing users with a customizable website, which we used to post questions and receive public comments. The site also allowed for two-way communication, similar to social media, so we were able to update the people who made suggestions as we completed each step of the pilot.

We narrowed our focus to request public feedback on a single area of the passport process and asked:

“The U.S. Department of State wants to improve your experience of applying for or renewing a passport. How can we improve the application process to make it simpler and easier?”

USAGov then posted a link to the site requesting feedback on multiple platforms including our own websites. We also shared the link with our Twitter followers, Facebook fans, and email subscribers. The U.S. Postal Service and the White House also pitched in by inviting participation through their websites.

How It Worked

Over two weeks in December nearly 1,000 people responded to our request. Each time a participant responded, the tool also asked them to highlight the portions of their comments they considered to be the most important. Then they were asked to refine those highlighted comments by placing them into a list of categories, based on the growing body of participant feedback.

System administrators later fine-tuned those categories into a list of recommendations for State that was, for all intents and purposes, authored by the public.

Screencapture of USAgov research software tool for State Passport Services.

How It Went

The recommendations were welcomed by Passport Services, which was fully invested in improving its processes. While some of the concepts had already been suggested or were in the early stages of implementation, new ideas included sending renewal reminders to customers and expanding services to allow the public to get passport questions answered on evenings and weekends.

In response to the recommendations from the public, State decided to make several significant changes, including:

  • Beginning research on expanding customer support to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
  • Coordinating with other federal agencies to streamline passport paperwork
  • Beginning research on a future passport renewal notification system

State analyzed the recommendations, assessed its current action plan, considered how to incorporate changes, and determined how to act on the information. In any large organization, gaining buy-in to implement decisions can be challenging. However, having the distilled opinions of a large sample of the population helped overcome that obstacle, and made the buy-in process easier at State.

Read the public’s recommendations and the Department of State’s decision.

This post was originally published on the USAgov blog.


by Toni Bonitto via DigitalGov

What Is Continuous Integration? (And What It Isn't) | @DevOpsSummit #CI #CD #Agile #DevOps

With continuous delivery (CD) almost always in the spotlight, continuous integration (CI) is often left out in the cold. Indeed, it's been in use for so long and so widely, we often take the model for granted. So what is CI and how can you make the most of it? This blog is intended to answer those questions. Before we step into examining CI, we need to look back. Software developers often work in small teams and modularity, and need to integrate their changes with the rest of the project code base. Waiting to integrate code creates merge conflicts, bugs that can be tricky to resolve, diverging code strategies, and duplicated effort. Before CI, developers also had a problem of wasted time: they compiled and built their changes multiple times a day on their own machine and had to sit idle waiting for these processes to complete. Integrating the changes from all teams happened only at night on big dedicated "build" servers and any issues during this build could create further idle time the next morning as developers isolate and resolve last night's issues. Before we step into examining CI, we need to look back. Software developers often work in small teams and modularity, and need to integrate their changes with the rest of the project code base. Waiting to integrate code creates merge conflicts, bugs that can be tricky to resolve, diverging code strategies, and duplicated effort. Before CI, developers also had a problem of wasted time: they compiled and built their changes multiple times a day on their own machine and had to sit idle waiting for these processes to complete. Integrating the changes from all teams happened only at night on big dedicated "build" servers and any issues during this build could create further idle time the next morning as developers isolate and resolve last night's issues.

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Brain Change and Digital Strategies | @ThingsExpo #IoT #M2M #DigitalTransformation

The renowned military strategist John Boyd taught that people and institutions collect favorite philosophies, strategies, theories and ideologies over a period of time, and then try to align the future to fit them. The problem with this is the future is rarely like the past, and trying to fit new data into old paradigms often forces us to perform irrational mental gymnastics, which leaves us farther from the truth.

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[video] @Ocean9Inc's Public Cloud | @CloudExpo #SAP #CloudNative #AI #DX

"We focus on SAP workloads because they are among the most powerful but somewhat challenging workloads out there to take into public cloud," explained Swen Conrad, CEO of Ocean9, Inc., in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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Jul 26, 2017

Canadian Dollar and Business Outlook

Canadian Dollar and Business Outlook
Grainews - 9 hours ago
With the Canadian dollar rallying, some analysts are starting to wonder if the country's manufacturing companies will be hit by reduced exports to the U.S.
BNN's Daily Chase: Petronas pulls plug on BC LNG project; US dollar rises ... - BNN
Varcoe: Another setback shakes Canada's multibillion-dollar LNG dreams - Calgary Herald

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Canadian Dollar and Business Outlook

Canadian dollar closes over 80 cents

Canadian dollar closes over 80 cents
680 News - 2 hours ago
A Canadian dollar or loonie is pictured in North Vancouver, on March 5, 2014. The Canadian dollar is soaring to levels not seen in nearly a year after the Bank of Canada announced it was hiking its key lending rate for the first time since 2010.

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Canadian dollar closes over 80 cents

[video] #Monitoring with @AISolutions_Inc | @CloudExpo #CloudNative DevOps #AI #ML #DX

"We are an IT services solution provider and we sell software to support those solutions. Our focus and key areas are around security, enterprise monitoring, and continuous delivery optimization," noted John Balsavage, President of A&I Solutions, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 20th Cloud Expo, held June 6-8, 2017, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.

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USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Higher After Fed Inaction and Oil Inventory Drawdown

USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Higher After Fed Inaction and Oil Inventory Drawdown
MarketPulse (blog) - 9 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar rose on Wednesday after the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) statement kept interest rates unchanged as expected.

by via News for Canadian Dollar - Google Finance
USD/CAD Canadian Dollar Higher After Fed Inaction and Oil Inventory Drawdown

Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision
Reuters Canada - 7 hours ago
TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar softened against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday despite higher oil prices, as a firmer greenback drove direction ahead of the U.S.

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Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

Loonie gain packs less punch for Canada's continental companies

Loonie gain packs less punch for Canada's continental companies
The Globe and Mail - 4 hours ago
The Canadian dollar didn't boost manufacturers as much as hoped on its way down. That probably means it won't hurt them as much as feared on the way up.
Experts weigh in on the pros and cons of a rising loonie - CTV News
Why the loonie shot higher. And what it means for you - MoneySense

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Loonie gain packs less punch for Canada's continental companies

The Data Briefing: Ten Years of Digital Transformation—Lessons Learned

Since 2007, a major consulting firm has conducted an annual survey on organizations’ “Digital IQ.” In the ten years of organizations grappling with digital transformation, what has been learned? From the report:

Focus on the human experience [emphasis in the original]: Rethink how you define and deliver digital initiatives, consider employee and customer interactions at every step of the way, invest in creating a culture of tech innovation and adoption, and much more. (p. 3)

What focusing on the human experience means is that organizations need to balance training the workforce, improving the customer experience, and incorporating the new technologies into the organization. Not addressing this balance “slows the assimilation of emerging technologies, and hinders the development of organizations that can adapt continuously and anticipate exponential change” (p. 15). Does this sound familiar when considering the digital transformation of the federal government?

According to the report results, there is a growing skills gap that “puts transformation efforts at risk” (p. 18). Skill levels continue to decline in areas such as cyber security, privacy, using new technologies, user experience, and human-centered design. From my personal experience in government training and development, I often receive requests for basic spreadsheet and database skills along with elementary data analytics skills. Government employees realize the need to upskill. However, the opportunities to upskill are not always available and distributed unevenly throughout government training. Although it is innovative to talk about adopting chatbots and blockchain technologies, these adoption efforts need to consider the federal employees’ skill gaps realities.

Silhouettes of business people having discussions

Rawpixel Ltd/iStock/Thinkstock

The gap in employee digital skills creates significant barriers to digital transformation efforts. Consider these top five barriers (p. 19):

  1. Lack of properly skilled teams – An existing barrier: 24 percent of respondents agree. An emerging barrier: 39 percent of respondents.
  2. Lack of integration of new and existing technologies and data – Existing Barrier: 22 percent. Emerging Barrier: 37 percent.
  3. Inflexible or slow processes – Existing Barrier: 21 percent. Emerging Barrier: 21 percent.
  4. Outdated technologies – Existing Barrier: 19 percent. Emerging Barrier: 42 percent.
  5. Lack of collaboration between IT and business – Existing Barrier: 12 percent. Emerging Barrier: 23 percent.

As a result of these barriers, the report’s authors suggest the following three steps for closing the digital skills gaps. First, “create an environment conducive to learning and collaboration” (p. 21). That means creating a common working language so that everyone in the organization understands the reasons and impacts of the digital technologies. Second, “commit to executive education” (p. 21) so that senior leaders understand and engage with digital technology. Employees look to senior leadership for signals, so it is vital that senior leaders model acceptance and use of digital transformation. Third, employees need to be trained and cross-trained so that they can perform their work using digital technologies while understanding how other workers use digital technologies.

So, what are the digital technologies that organizations are investing in? Of the 2,216 survey respondents, these are the technologies are investing in:

  1. Internet of Things – 73 percent currently investing while 63 percent will invest in during the next three years.
  2. Artificial Intelligence – 54 percent current investment and 63 percent in the next three years.
  3. Robotics – 15 percent current investment and 31 percent in the next three years.
  4. 3-D Printing – 12 percent current investment and 17 percent in the next three years.
  5. Augmented Reality – 10 percent current investment and 24 percent in the next three years.
  6. Virtual Reality – 7 percent current investment and 15 percent in the next three years.
  7. Drones – 5 percent current investment and 14 percent in the next three years.
  8. Blockchain – 3 percent current investment and 11 percent in the next three years. (p. 25)

This report has many lessons for the adoption and use of emerging technologies in the federal government. To me, the most significant lesson comes from the end of the report:

[A] lack of attention to the human experience is holding companies back. In particular, the survey reveals a shortage of relevant skills, which are insufficient to keep up with investment trends and are quite scarce for many emerging technologies. And so is a holistic focus on how emerging technology changes the customer or employee experience. (p. 24).

Digital technologies have great potential to fundamentally transform how agencies function and deliver government services to the American public. It just requires a balance of training the federal workforce and improving the customer experience, while thoughtfully and strategically adopting the emerging digital technologies.

Each week, The Data Briefing showcases the latest federal data news and trends. Visit this blog every week to learn how data is transforming government and improving government services for the American people. If you have ideas for a topic or have questions about government data, please contact me via email.

Dr. William Brantley is the Training Administrator for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s Global Intellectual Property Academy. All opinions are his own and do not reflect the opinions of the USPTO or GSA.


by Bill Brantley via DigitalGov

TSX gains 10 points; Canadian dollar retreats

TSX gains 10 points; Canadian dollar retreats
Times Colonist - 39 minutes ago
The Toronto Stock Exchange's S&P/TSX composite index was up 10.09 points to 15,212.46, after 90 minutes of trading. The Canadian dollar was trading at 79.79 cents US, down from Tuesday's average price of 79.96 cents US. On Wall Street, the Dow Jones ...

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TSX gains 10 points; Canadian dollar retreats

Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength

Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength
CTV News - Jul 24, 2017
TORONTO -- The loonie hit 80 cents US on Monday, a level it hasn't closed at in more than two years, against a weakening in U.S.

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Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength

TSX up 17 points in early trading; Canadian dollar retreats

TSX up 17 points in early trading; Canadian dollar retreats
Times Colonist - 43 minutes ago
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 117.06 points to 21,730.49. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up 3.79 points to 2,480.92.

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TSX up 17 points in early trading; Canadian dollar retreats

Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision
The Globe and Mail - 32 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar softened against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday despite higher oil prices, as a firmer greenback drove direction ahead of the U.S.
USD/CAD - Fed Announcement Due This Aft - Baystreet.ca
Dollar steadies ahead of FOMC - MarketPulse (blog)

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Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

[session] European Data Regulations with Global Reach | @CloudExpo @CalligoCloud #IoT #M2M #Cloud #BigData

With tough new regulations coming to Europe on data privacy in May 2018, Calligo will explain why in reality the effect is global and transforms how you consider critical data. EU GDPR fundamentally rewrites the rules for cloud, Big Data and IoT. In his session at 21st Cloud Expo, Adam Ryan, Vice President and General Manager EMEA at Calligo, will examine the regulations and provide insight on how it affects technology, challenges the established rules and will usher in new levels of diligence around personal data.

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Announcing @CalligoCloud Named “Bronze Sponsor” of @CloudExpo Silicon Valley | #Cloud #Security

SYS-CON Events announced today that Calligo has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Calligo is an innovative cloud service provider offering mid-sized companies the highest levels of data privacy. Calligo offers unparalleled application performance guarantees, commercial flexibility and a personalized support service from its globally located cloud platforms. Through its four pillars of focus, Calligo delivers a platform that businesses can trust to deliver the high level of service and protection they expect and is lacking in many cloud offerings.

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Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision
Reuters Canada - 17 minutes ago
TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar softened against its U.S. counterpart on Wednesday despite higher oil prices, as a firmer greenback drove direction ahead of the U.S.

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Canadian dollar eases against greenback ahead of Fed policy decision

[session] Demystifying #Kubernetes | @DevOpsSummit #CloudNative #Serverless #DevOps

Kubernetes is an open source system for automating deployment, scaling, and management of containerized applications. Kubernetes was originally built by Google, leveraging years of experience with managing container workloads, and is now a Cloud Native Compute Foundation (CNCF) project. Kubernetes has been widely adopted by the community, supported on all major public and private cloud providers, and is gaining rapid adoption in enterprises. However, Kubernetes may seem intimidating and complex to learn. This is because Kubernetes is more of a toolset than a ready solution. Hence it’s essential to know when and how to apply the appropriate Kubernetes constructs.

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Jul 25, 2017

Is an Email Marketing Price War on the Way?

The pricing scheme for many email marketing service providers—which ... notice if Google or Amazon creates a friendly way to send emails in bulk.
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Iomart Group Plc's (LON:IOM) Buy Rating Reaffirmed at Peel Hunt

Peel Hunt reaffirmed their buy rating on shares of Iomart Group Plc ... The Easyspace segment provides a range of shared hosting and domain ...
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You Can Now Pay for Your University Degree with Cryptocurrency

Many web developers now use Bitcoin as a standard payment method for their web development resources such as domain registration, web hosting, ...
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CN Rail boosts profit but sees threat in rising Canadian dollar

CN Rail boosts profit but sees threat in rising Canadian dollar
The Globe and Mail - 1 hour ago
Company executives cited uncertainty over the effect of dry, hot weather on the size of the grain crop, the direction of the Canadian dollar and crude volumes. John Brooks, CP's chief marketing officer said the railway will be less affected by a ...
CN Rail beats profit forecasts on higher revenuess - CBC.ca

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CN Rail boosts profit but sees threat in rising Canadian dollar

IoT and Health Check | @ThingsExpo @SolardWinds #IoT #M2M #API #AI #Security

Without a doubt, we’re at a tipping point when it comes to security and the Internet of Things (IoT). Recently, security flaws have been exposed in consumer products, including children’s toys, baby monitors, cars, and pacemakers. In late October 2016, Dyn®, an internet infrastructure vendor, suffered a malicious DDoS attack that was achieved by leveraging malware on IoT devices such as webcams and printers that were connected to the Dyn network. No, IoT security concerns are not new. In fact, any device that’s connected to a network represents an opportunity for malicious activity. But what is new is the exponential rate at which consumer-grade IoT devices are now being connected to corporate networks, and doing so (for the most part) without IT’s knowledge. This trend is both astounding and alarming: if your end-user is now empowered to bring in and deploy devices at their convenience, your IT department is left with an unprecedented security blind spot. How can you defend against something you don’t know is a vulnerability?

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Explore Brand New Updates to the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) API

One of the most popular websites at NASA is the Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD). In fact, this website is one of the most popular websites across all federal agencies! Each day, a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

Messier 63: The Sunflower Galaxy: APOD for July 12, 2017.

NASA

Given the popularity of APOD, many developers want to integrate its images and descriptions into their websites or mobile applications. In order to aid these efforts, the APOD API was developed. It provides an HTTP interface where developers specify a date, and then receive information for that date’s APOD as a JSON object.

Want to see it in action? Visit: https://api.nasa.gov/planetary/apod?api_key=DEMO_KEY&date=2017-07-12

It may not look so impressive compared to the actual APOD website, but that format is much easier for computer programs to use.

Two new updates to the API will allow for greater flexibility in the types of requests that developers can make. The API limits the number of requests that each developer can make–in order to prevent spam–which created a problem for developers who wanted to access more than one APOD, since the requests needed to be done individually.

To allow developers to retrieve multiple images in a single call, three new optional parameters have been created: start_date, end_date, and count. The start_date and end_date parameters are used in conjunction to make a request for a given date range that then returns all images between the start date and end date. If an end_date is not specified, then the API defaults to the date on which the request is made.

The count parameter must be a positive integer that is less than or equal to 100, and specifying it will return an array of count randomly selected images between the first day an APOD picture was posted–June 16, 1995–and today.

Check out these brand new calls that return multiple APODs at once!

The APOD API source code has been made available under the Apache License, Version 2.0 and is located at the official NASA APOD GitHub Repository. You can report any issues there, and pull requests are always welcome!

The very first APOD, from June 16, 1995:

Very first Astronomy Picture of the Day (APOD) from June 16, 1995.

This post was originally published on the open NASA blog.


by Toni Bonitto via DigitalGov

Announcing @Massive1Network to Exhibit at @CloudExpo Silicon Valley | #Cloud #DataCenter

SYS-CON Events announced today that Massive Networks will exhibit at SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Massive Networks mission is simple. To help your business operate seamlessly with fast, reliable, and secure internet and network solutions. Improve your customer's experience with outstanding connections to your cloud.

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Register for Annual VA Innovation Demo Day and Open House Showcase

The VA Center for Innovation (VACI), which operates the Innovators Network, the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Innovation Program, and the Diffusion of Excellence Initiative, arms our employees with the tools and resources to solve some of the most pressing challenges facing our veterans. We believe that customer-obsessed innovation drives world-class service, and our employees on the ground embody this spirit, going above and beyond in pioneering efforts that put the needs and interests of veterans, their families, caregivers, and survivors first.

As the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) continues its journey to modernization, leadership has invested time, energy, and resources to create an environment where VA harnesses the power of our best and brightest. Our employees—who represent the driving force behind VA’s unique innovation and best practice programs—have worked tirelessly over the past several months through this “Innovation Ecosystem” and will showcase dozens of presentations during the agency’s next “VA Innovation Demo Day” in August.

VA Innovation Demo Day

VA Innovation Demo Day gives frontline staff the opportunity to share highlights, progress, and lessons learned about the innovative projects they have designed, piloted, tested, and implemented to improve the veteran experience.

The goal of Demo Day is to share these innovations with the public to accelerate their ability to serve veterans across the country. Employees will showcase their solutions and exciting initiatives via nearly 100 presentations across eight different tracks:

  • Improving Care with Data and Informatics
  • Health Tech
  • eHealth & mHealth Innovations in Health Care
  • Improving Veteran and Employee Experience
  • Timely Processes to Improve Care in our Nation’s Heroes
  • Improving Disease-Specific Outcomes
  • Mental, Emotional, and Cognitive Health
  • Promoting Healthier Lifestyles through Holistic Initiatives

VA Innovation Demo Day logo; text and light bulb.

This year, we are holding VA Innovation Demo Day on Tuesday, August 8, 2017 at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., from 9:00 am to 4:30 pm, ET. It will be followed by a reception and Open House Innovation Showcase, from 4:30 to 6:00 pm. We would be honored if you would join us for this day—you can sign up for free here to attend; those unable to make it to D.C. can use the same link to register as a Virtual Attendee for the live-streamed video.

Participating VA Programs

VA Innovators Network

Developed by the VACI in early 2015, the VA Innovators Network seeks to build and empower a community of VA employees who are actively engaged in moving the agency forward using innovation practices to develop new approaches to better serve veterans and their families. The program develops a cadre of highly-trained Innovation Specialists, and provides them the tools and resources necessary to understand on-the-ground challenges and develop creative solutions. With dedicated staff at 22 sites, the program offers an interactive environment for VA employees to test new ideas and collaborate with stakeholders across the veteran community to improve the way VA serves veterans. You can sign up here to learn more about the VA Innovators Network.

VHA Innovation Program

The Veterans Health Administration (VHA) Innovation Program finds, develops and creates solutions to help VA provide the best care. VA employees, external academics, and private sector entities share health care ideas with the Innovation Program for review and development. Innovation Program staff manage products from requirements, through development, to implementation and deployment throughout the enterprise.

Diffusion of Excellence Initiative

During his tenure as Undersecretary of Health (USH), Secretary David Shulkin created the Diffusion of Excellence Initiative to identify and disseminate promising practices and standardize those that promote positive outcomes for veterans system-wide. As a key part of the Diffusion of Excellence Initiative, the USH “Shark Tank” Competition invites all VHA employees to submit promising practices that address the USH’s priorities of improving access, care coordination, employee engagement, quality and safety, and the veteran experience. Once practices receive a Gold Status designation, a six-month facilitated implementation process begins.

A VA Center for Innovation infographic with text about the VA Innovators Network, the VHA Innovators Program, and the Diffusion of Excellence Initiative.

If you have questions about VA Innovation Demo Day, feel free to email Andrea Ippolito. Learn more about initiatives and the innovative work the VA is doing by visiting the VA Center for Innovation (VACI) blog and the VA’s VAntage Point blog.


by Toni Bonitto via DigitalGov

Is the Canadian dollar rally sustainable?

Is the Canadian dollar rally sustainable?
Financial Post - 17 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar's surge to 80 U.S cents has come quickly, as the currency is up nearly 10 per cent since early May.

by via News for Canadian Dollar - Google Finance
Is the Canadian dollar rally sustainable?

Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms

Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms
The Globe and Mail - 20 minutes ago
The Canadian dollar firmed against the greenback on Tuesday, as the U.S. dollar slid against a basket of currencies and oil prices climbed on promises by major producers to help control oversupply.

by via News for Canadian Dollar - Google Finance
Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms

Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms

Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms
Reuters Canada - 10 minutes ago
TORONTO (Reuters) - The Canadian dollar firmed against the greenback on Tuesday, as the U.S. dollar slid against a basket of currencies and oil prices climbed on promises by major producers to help control oversupply.

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Canadian dollar holds near 14-month highs as greenback softens, oil firms

Building and Securing the Workplace of the Future | @ThingsExpo #DX #IoT #M2M

For any business to be successful, it must enable talent to focus on the innovation that will drive new value. As digital literacy and dexterity grows, people are increasingly agnostic about devices – they want to be able to access their personalized workspace and services anywhere, at any time, on any device that happens to be at hand. The concept of digital transformation is gathering pace. When Gartner surveyed 388 CEOs recently, 56% said their digital improvements had already increased profits. But there’s also significant pressure, with 47% reporting challenges from the board of directors to make more progress in digital business. Fujitsu’s research surveying over 1,600 CXOs and business decision makers identified that 75% of the respondents felt that their business sector would fundamentally change within five years.

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DXWorldExpo to Sponsor @CloudExpo | #AI #DX #IoT #FinTech #SmartCities #DigitalTransformation

SYS-CON Events announced today that DXWorldExpo has been named “Global Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo, which will take place on Oct 31 – Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Digital Transformation is the key issue driving the global enterprise IT business. Digital Transformation is most prominent among Global 2000 enterprises and government institutions.

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Datera to "Exhibit" at @CloudExpo | @DateraInc #CloudNative #DevOps #IoT #AI #DX #Serverless

SYS-CON Events announced today that Datera, that offers a radically new data management architecture, has been named "Exhibitor" of SYS-CON's 21st International Cloud Expo ®, which will take place on Oct 31 - Nov 2, 2017, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Datera is transforming the traditional datacenter model through modern cloud simplicity. The technology industry is at another major inflection point. The rise of mobile, the Internet of Things, data storage and Big Data are challenging the existing design patterns of the Data Center. The increase in complexity of managing legacy systems alongside new systems is beyond the ability of most IT departments. This leads to multiple tiers of storage and high economic costs, during a time in which IT is expected to do more with less.

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Jul 24, 2017

Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength

Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength
Humboldt Journal - 7 hours ago
TORONTO - The loonie hit 80 cents US on Monday, a level it hasn't closed at in more than two years, against a weakening in U.S.

by via News for Canadian Dollar - Google Finance
Canadian dollar hits 80-cent US mark amid further signs of economic strength

Yankee businesses celebrate recovering Canuck buck

Yankee businesses celebrate recovering Canuck buck
Vancouver Sun - 32 minutes ago
When the Canadian dollar passes through a number like 80 cents it produces headlines and serves to wake up Canadian shoppers to the option of crossing the border, said Guy Occhiogrosso, CEO of the Bellingham Whatcom Chamber of Commerce.

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Yankee businesses celebrate recovering Canuck buck

Gambling problem: Growth slows for Playtech

Playtech is considered a proxy for the global betting industry, with its business booming alongside the growth of online gambling around th...