Automated Tragedy

A couple years back, an HP engineer at CommBank in Australia managed to format some 9,000 workstations using Microsoft’s System Center Configuration Manager. The problem is…they weren’t trying to. Turns out that an operating system deployment task sequence was inadvertently advertised to nearly every computer in the environment, meaning those machines, whether they needed...

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Financial Services Salesforce.com Solutions: Pricing Desk in the Cloud

In a previous blog, “Customizing Salesforce.com for Better Business Results,” I described a customized Salesforce solution configured for a financial services organization to help realize the greatest possible return from its Salesforce.com investment. After seeing the initial value the platform delivered for its business, the institution wanted to expand its use of Salesforce.com to solve...

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Heartbleed bug exposes millions of online services to security risks

Heartbleed bug exposes millions of online services to security risks

Credit: heartbleed.com This week, researchers from Codenomicon and Google Security publicly disclosed a critical bug in the OpenSSL cryptographic software package used by millions of internet connected services.  This weakness, referred to as the Heartbleed bug, allows anyone on the Internet to steal information from vulnerable systems by exploiting a protocol designed to ensure the security...

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Healthcare costs are on the rise, so why are provider wallets getting thinner? (Part 1 of 3)

Nearly 70% of healthcare executives currently face challenges due to increasing billing complexity, delayed managed care payments, decreasing reimbursement, or increasing debt. Chances are your organization is faced with at least two of these. It’s imperative to take a decisive approach to solving these types of cash flow impediments to maintain solvency.…

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Hits Keep on Coming: High Availability & Disaster Recovery at Healthcare.gov

When it comes to the IT challenges of the new Healthcare.gov Healthcare Exchange, the hits keep on coming.  Over the weekend, the healthcare.gov hosting vendor, Terremark (a subsidiary of Verizon), “experienced a failure in a networking component” and the attempted fix crashed the system.  The failure is in the “Data Services Hub,” which connects the exchange to other...

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Distributed Generation – Can we keep up with demand?

With the growing concerns of carbon emissions, rising cost of energy, and the decreasing costs of renewable energy, we are starting to see more and more distributed generation installtions emerge across the country.  Under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, one of the three primary focuses is “Deploying Clean Energy” – particularly “Promoting American Leadership in Renewable Energy.”...

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Network Virtualization and Microsoft Azure

A colleague of mine, Kyle Tobin, and I attended TechEd 2013 down in New Orleans earlier this month. We are writing a series of blogs about what most impressed us about Microsoft’s message around their newly released or updated software TechEd 2013 brought with it a number of new feature releases for many of the traditional Microsoft products, but what Microsoft delivered (in my mind...

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IT Bridges To Nowhere

In 2005, Congress approved funding for a bridge to Gravina Island (later known as “nowhere”), Alaska. At that time, the island had a population of 50 people and was served by a regular ferry service. There is little doubt that this bridge could have been successfully completed. Similar bridges had been constructed before, and there was never any concern about the difficulty of engineering the...

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Insurance: Trends in Differentiation and Potential Impacts

With insurance carriers, TPA’s and benefits advisory firms racing to differentiate themselves from the fierce competition for business and talent, there are many trends that shaping up in the industry. Being digital by default: Many firms are offering their employees, customers, clients web and mobile applications to provide both transactional and analytical information to assess risk...

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Control is an illusion: Why a data center in the cloud is better than yours

I often talk with IT leaders about using public cloud technologies such as infrastructure as a service, platform as a service, or hosted multi-tenant applications.  Generally, I hear one of two different reactions: If my business users’ requirements can be supported by public cloud based technologies, I am happy to get out of the data center business (i.e., if I can push those headaches...

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Chicago, IL 60606
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