Tag: IBM

Enterprises are thinking of artificial intelligence

Robby the Robot - Wikimedia CommonsThe market for artificial intelligence applications for large organisations will be worth $200 million this year but as much as $2 billion by 2020.

That’s the prediction of market research firm Trendforce, which said big vendors are snapping up smartups and personnel to bolster the development of such applications.

Giants like Apple, Google, IBM, Microsoft and Yahoo are in a race to be first to market with persuasive enterprise AI apps whereas in former days AI was a specialised research field.

Carlos Yu, a senior analyst at Trendforce, said that AI technologies have made great advances in the last few years. “Large enterprises have not only begun to acquire AI solutions, they also set set about improving their AI based services by combining them with cloud and big data technologies,” he said.

IBM appears to be the leader of the pack right now, but the other giants are using “deep learning” AI to improve their technologies.

Yu believes that AI will be adopted in major industries including manufacturing, automotive, internet, retailing and information engineering.

He said in the healthcare sector AI is being combined with wearable devices to both improve patient care and also help design new pharmaceuticals.

IBM gets into bed with ARM

ARM logoIBM has struck a deal with British semiconductor designer ARM in a bid to hold a central position in the burgeoning internet of things (IoT) marketplace.

IBM said that the initiative, called the IBM IoT Foundation will provide “out of the box” connectivity with ARM devices to analytic services.

Big Blue also said it has started the first in a series of IBM Cloud IoT services, called IoT for Electronics. The service is aimed at electronic manufacturers.

The IoT Foundation, IBM said, lets fully managed and cloud hosted offerings analyse large quantities of data and provides a level of security for embedded devices too.

The deal with ARM means that products that use ARM mbed enabled chips to auto register with IBM’s offerings and connect to IBM’s analytic tools.

IBM claims a number of electronics manufacturers have already adopted the tools it’s offering giving as an example a smart washing machine that when it breaks down triggers an alarm to call a service engineer.

IBM takes aim at exaflop computing

IBM client centre, Montpelier, FranceBig Blue said it is collaborating with French high performance agency GENCI to create computers that perform at least one exaflop.

An exaflop represents a billion billion calculations in a second.

IBM said that the fastest systems in the world now operate at between 10 and 33 petaflop and that’s only around one to three percent the speed of exascale computing.

The two will collaborate for 18 months and create complicated scientific applications at speeds of over 100 petaflops.

They will use technologies of over 140 members of the OpenPOWER foundation, all of which concentrate on using IBM’s POWER microprocessors.

Some examples of how this may pan out is connection Nvidia GPU accelerators to the POWER processors using Melanox 100Gb/s Inifiniband switches.

IBM will use its design centre in Mellanox to test and bring into existence much faster applications.

GENCI and IBM appear to be confident that they’ll move the supercomputing industry much closer to the exascale level.

Block Tor says Big Blue

IBM logoA report from the security suits at IBM has called for systems administrators to block Tor as a matter of course.

The Tor anonymisation network is increasingly used as the point of origin of attacks on public- and private-sector organisations, the report said.

The Threat Intelligence report noted increases in SQL injection and distributed denial-of-service attacks and of “ransomware” incidents that encrypt data belonging to an individual or an organisation, and then charge a fee to decrypt it.

The network is used for criminal purposes, such as operating contraband websites, and it is increasingly being used by attackers to hide their identities as they scan for vulnerabilities or carry out attacks, IBM said.

“The design of routing obfuscation in the Tor network provides illicit actors with additional protection for their anonymity. It can also obscure the physical location from which attacks originate, and it allows attackers to make the attack appear to originate from a specific geography.”

IBM said there had been a “steady increase” over the past few years in attacks originating from Tor exit nodes, with attackers increasingly using Tor to disguise botnet traffic.

“Spikes in Tor traffic can be directly tied to the activities of malicious botnets that either reside within the Tor network or use the Tor network as transport for their traffic,” IBM said in the report.

The US was the top geography of origin for Tor-based attacks, followed by the Netherlands and Romania, but this spread reflects the prevalence of Tor exit nodes rather than the actual location of attackers, according to the study.

Companies have “little choice” but to block Tor-based communications, IBM said.

IBM added that SQL injection attacks were increasing due to the growing use of simplified attack tools such as Havij, which was originally developed for security researchers.

The report also found a speedy development in ransomware, including the appearance of “ransomware as a service” and highly specialised attacks, such as those that target the local files of popular online games.

“We are observing the start of a prolonged battle with ransomware, as ransomware attacks diversify from simple scams to more elaborate ones that target high-value communities or businesses,” IBM stated.

A single ransomware tool, CryptoWall, has made attackers about $18 million (£11 million), according to FBI figures cited in the report.

Server market revenues grow

HP logoShipments of servers worldwide grew by eight percent in the second quarter of this year, while revenues rose by 7.2 percent.

Gartner said the year on year growth slowed however, largely due to currency exchange fluctuations in Western Europe and other geographies.

Servers using X86 processors rose by 8.3 percent in the quarter and revenues grew by nne percent. RISC/Itanium Unix servers fell by 18.7 percent for the period. Other CPUs, by which Gartner means mainframe CPUs, grew by 7.8 percent compared to the same quarter in 2014.

North America showed significant growth with a 14.8 percent increase in the quarter – its revenue growth grew by a similar amunt.

HP continues to be number one worldwide and has a 25.2 percent market share but Lenovo grew by 526.5 percent and that’s because it until it acquired IBM’s X86 server business it didn’t sell servers.

This change in the market hasn’t affected Dell’s position as number two in the market.

IBM intros more cloud services

cloudsIBM continues to pile on the pressure on services it’s offering for the cloud.

The company said today it has introduced a series of services for its Platform as a Service (PaaS) offering Bluemix. The idea is to let developers integrate Java into their applications.

The services include improvements to its Liberty Buildpack runtime to use Java EE7 Liberty features letting developers test and run apps in Bluemix with Java 8.

It has also introduced a new version of Eclipse Tools for Bluemix that allows for JavaScript debugging, support for Node.js applications and a better self signed certification capability.

IBM has also released XPages on Bluemix letting developers integrate Domino XPages to the cloud.

Big Blue now says that is Bluemix catalogue contains over 100 tools and services of the more important open source technologies. It claims it is now the fastest growing company in the PaaS market.

IBM intros Linux only mainframes

IBM LinuxONEIBM said that it has introduced two Linux mainframe servers which it claims are the most powerful and secure enterprise servers.

Dubbed LinuxONE, the mainframes use the SuSE Linux distribution while IBM also said it will create an Ubuntu distribution both for LinuxONE and z Systems, striking a deal with Canonical.

IBM said that over a third of IBM mainframe clients are running Linux but these two machines are something different.

The LinuxONE Emperor, used the IBM z13, is it’s claimed the worlds most advanced Linux system with the fastest processor in the world. It can scale up to 8,000 virtual machines. The smaller system, the LinuxONE Rockhopper, is designed for customers who want a smaller package.

The LinuxONE systems can be implemented as a virtual machine using the open source based KVM hypervisor.

Canonical, SuSE and Red Hat will all support KVM for the mainframe.

IBM will also provide the LinuxONE developer cloud for open access to programmers.

Datacentre market set to grow

Datacentre, Wikimedia CommonsThe internet of things (IoT) is set to give a further boost to the worldwide datacentre market between now and 2019, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.73 percent.

That’s the prediction of market research company Technavio, which said the market is segmented into racks, blades, towers and micro servers.

But there’s a fair amount of competition in the market, with the leading vendors Cisco, Dell, Fujitsu, HP, IBM, Lenovo and Oracle. IBM span off its X86 business to Lenovo last year but is still prominent in the market because of its POWER architecture. IBM appears to be number one, according to Technavio.

Aside from the big seven, there’s also competition from Bull, Hitachi, Huawei, Inspur, NEC, SGI and Super Micro.

Both Western Europe and Singapore are set to benefit from the growth with more adoption of cloud services and big data analytics.

There’s a trend towards so called “green datacentres” in the USA, and that market is likely to see a CAGR of 26.35 percent during the period.

IBM intros more Bluemix tools

IBM logoBig Blue said it has added a number of new services to Bluemix, it’s platform as a service (PaaS) making it easier to plug additional analytics tools into cloud applications.

The services include IBM Streaming Analytics, which brings analysis of data from thousands of sources on the cloud. IBM said that it dynamically builds out infrastructure.

IBM dashDB is a cloud data warehouse service that provides information management, analytics and business intelligence, and now supports Oracle and Netezza.

Elements of dashDB now include massively parallel processing capabilities, compatibility enhancements, and integration functions with Watson Analytics, R, Cognos, and toolsets including Looker, Aginity Workbench and Tableau. The dashDB suite now integrates with Twitter and Open Data.

The Bluemix catalogue, said IBM, now includes over 100 tools and services related to ppen source technologies and third party services.

IBM teams up with Hootsuite

HootsuiteHootsuite and IBM will integrate some of their respective cloud and social technologies.  Hootsuite is a firm that specialises in social networking for business.

Hootsuite is to migrate its App Directory to IBM’s SoftLayer, its Cloud infrastructure as a service (IaaS).

Hootsuite said that it needs reliability and speed for its global customer base and by running App Directory on the cloud, the company will be able to provide a dedicated infrastructure with a toolkit for management.

The two companies will also join forces in the academic sphere, with people enrolled in the IBM Academic Initiative getting access to Hootsuite’s Higher Education Programme. The latter gives students and professors three months access to social media education resources and courseware.

Hootsuite and IBM have had a relationship for two years, but so far there is no talk of a marriage. IBM has made several acquisitions over the last two years, particularly in relation to cloud technology and analytics.

Sandy Carter, an IBM general manager looking after cloud, said the companies will “continue to work together to drive the integration of social and cloud”. The App Directory will be moved to IBM Cloud in the fourth quarter of this year.