Category Archives: Technology

Why Veeva is well-poised for 2017?

Life sciences industry continues to use many legacy systems, as it has been slow to adopt cloud technology in its operations. However, this trend is changing, albeit slowly, as more pharma companies are looking to tap into the enormous benefits offered by cloud.

There have been many reasons for this shift, with innovation being the foremost of them all. Today, most of the innovations happen in the cloud, and this is also one area that attracts the maximum number of venture capitalists. Since more innovations are expected to happen in 2017, it’s best for pharma companies to move to it at the earliest, so they can take advantage of these developments as they happen.

Another important reason for pharma companies to think of moving their operations to the cloud is the shrinking global space. Today, almost every major company has its operations spread across the world. This means, they need the right tools to collaborate and work together. Cloud is the right technology to meet this need, as it makes easy for employees to communicate with each other, regardless of their physical location. Likewise, it also helps companies to distribute their products to a global marketplace, and maybe even work with partners located on the other side of the world.

Due to these benefits, cloud-based companies like Veeva are working on creating a full suite of applications that’ll help companies in the life sciences industry to use cloud. They have already built a platform called Vault, and are looking to build clinical data management and clinical operation applications on it. This company also plans to have many integration points for connecting other applications to their platform. Currently, there is no single platform that provides a wide range of cloud applications for the life sciences industry, and Veeva plans to change that. Since it has perfected its platform over the last four or five years, it plans to start building applications on it in the coming year. This is why Veeva is poised to take a big leap forward in 2017.

Currently, the company is doing well on the financial side too. In 2015, it had set a target of $1 billion in revenue by 2020. During the second quarter of 2016, the company had a revenue of $142.8 million, and this was a 34 percent jump when compared to the same period of the previous year. At this rate of growth, Veeva may even achieve its target ahead of schedule, especially given that it plans to make a big foray into providing public cloud services starting next year.

Finally, the changes that have taken place over the last year such as Trump’s victory in US Elections and the passage of 21st Century Cures Act, could end up being advantageous to the company. According to its CEO, Peter Gassner, the life sciences industry is advancing at a rapid rate, so it’s only natural to have more regulators in the picture. He opines that this move will end up being positive for the life sciences industry at large, and Veeva in particular.

Due to these reasons. Veeva is well-poised for 2017.

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A Look Back into 2016’s Cloud Trends

2016 has been an eventful year for some, while not so great for others. Many life-changing and society-changing trends happened in this year that include Britain’s Brexit vote, Russia’s support for Syria, and of course, Mr.Trump’s stunning victory in the US Presidential election. These are profound events that are likely to shape the economy and social fabric of the Western World in the years to come.

On the tech side, there were many eventful happenings including acquisitions and partnerships. As the year comes to a close, here’s a look into some of the top trends that changed the face of cloud industry.

Accelerated development

2016 saw rapid developments in cloud computing, artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), and virtual reality (VR). These developments put pressure on companies to embrace these developments, and to make cloud an integral part of their operations. These developments and the benefits that came from it led to a wider adoption of cloud. In fact, almost every major Fortune 500 company was touched by these cloud developments, while many small and medium enterprises (SMEs) gained greater awareness about cloud and its potential benefits. All this means, 2016 lay the foundation for an explosive growth of the cloud industry for years to come.

Growth in cyber attacks

Despite all the advancements we’ve made, 2016 still saw a huge number of cyber attacks that led to a loss in the tune of trillions of dollars. The biggest of them all is undoubtedly Russia’s involvement in Trump’s campaign, but other than that, there were also attacks on many major organizations. At this rate, loss from cyber attacks is expected to touch $6 billion by 2021, according to a report from Cybersecurity Ventures.

Due to these frequent attacks, many steps were taken by different service providers and corporate clients to prevent such attacks, and this included advancements in cloud security. In fact, many companies moved to the cloud from dedicated data centers, thereby reversing the trend of security fears in the public cloud.

Machine learning and artificial intelligence

It was a big year for the world of machine learning and artificial intelligence, as almost every major company announced product releases or developments in this sector. Google, for instance, announced the launch of Pixel and Pixel XL smartphones that comes with many AI-based features. Apple published a paper on AI, and has said in length about its new iOS 10 that will be powered by artificial intelligence. Microsoft and Facebook are not to be left behind, as the former has collaborated with Intel to develop new AI features for its customers, while the latter is working on a deep learning system called Caffe2Go. Since all of these development use cloud in one form or another, these developments brought much cheer to cloud providers.

In short, 2016 was an exciting year for the cloud industry, and in many ways, it has put the industry on an accelerated path. 2017 and the coming years, are likely to see greater adoption of cloud not just among large enterprises, but also among SMEs. In all, we can expect another exciting and fulfilling year in 2017.

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Why Cloud Computing is Expected to Soar in 2017?

Cloud has become an integral, and probably even a driving division, for many tech companies like Amazon and Microsoft, in 2016. As competition heats up with Google, IBM, and Oracle joining the bandwagon, 2017 is expected to be a great year for tech in general, and cloud computing in particular. Eventually, it is expected that these top players will control much of the $1 trillion cloud market by the end of this decade.

What factors are likely to contribute to this astounding growth? Here’s a few of them.

Internet of Things (IoT)

Internet of Things (IoT), as the name suggests, is a technology that allows different devices to communicate with each other. Much of these IoT components will use cloud computing to store, manage, and analyze the data.

Already, many companies are experimenting with different sensors to create a smooth flow of data, and most of them have cloud as the underlying infrastructure.  They choose cloud simply because these sensors tend to generate huge amounts of data, the storage and analysis of which happens best in the cloud.

Advanced connectivity

Cloud is fueled not just by software needs, but also by advancements made in the world of network connectivity. Recently, AWS executives talked in length about the 8,700 mile undersea cable that offers vast amounts of computing power to companies located in any part of the world.  Such leaps in networking hardware ensure speeds that are simply unmatched by servers and data centers. Another technology that we’re likely to see a lot more is white-fi. This is similar to Wi-Fi, except that it uses unused TV spectrum, especially in rural and remote areas, to provide high-speed connections to the Internet and its related components. Such advancements in connectivity are expected to give a big boost to the growth of cloud computing in 2017.

More ubiquitous

Gone are the days when companies spoke at length about the pitfalls of moving to the cloud, especially from a security point of time. Today, the consensus is that cloud will drive the future of businesses, and it is up to individual companies to embrace them.

Since business is all about competition and revenue, no one wants to be left behind, and so everyone wants to make the most of the benefits offered by cloud. Currently, almost all Fortune 500 companies use cloud in one or more ways, and this is expected to make further inroads in 2017. Besides the large enterprises, many small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are also using cloud to meet their needs. 2017 is going to see more cloud usage by businesses across different sectors and geographical regions, regardless of the size and nature of operations.

Machine learning

Another technology that is sure to power cloud computing is machine learning. Many researchers are currently working on creating intelligent machines that can provide greater insights into the tons of data that are being generated every minute. This technology, like IoT, will also use cloud for storage and analysis.

In all, cloud computing is expected to soar in 2017 due to a combination of improved hardware and emerging technologies.

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OpenAI Joins Hands with Microsoft

OpenAI, the non-profit artificial research company, has joined hands with Microsoft to tap into the computing power of the latter.

Founded by Elon Musk and Sam Altman in 2015, OpenAI aims to build safe artificial intelligence-based frameworks and products, and strives to ensure that the benefits of AI are spread as widely and evenly as possible. In the short term since this company was founded, it has made rapid strides in the world of AI.  Further, this company has hired many top researchers from companies like Facebook and Google to augment its research and to push AI to new heights. It is backed by some of the top tech investors in the world such as Sam Altman, Greg Brockman, Peter Thiel, Reid Hoffman, Jessica Livingstone, and others who share a passion for tech, specially AI. Each of these investors have pledged $1 billion a year for AI research.

To move ahead, OpenAI needs extensive computing power, and it believes this need can be fulfilled by Microsoft. This is why OpenAI and Microsoft have entered into an agreement, under which large-scale experiments of Open AI will be run on Microsoft’s Azure platform. OpenAI’s research is focused on deep learning research that requires enormous farms of GPU processors even for testing. Building such a complex network from scratch can be a waste of time and resources, especially when the same is being offered by another company. In fact, Microsoft’s computing powers are one of the best in the industry as they are powered by Nvidia Corp’s graphic chips. This architecture and composition make it ideal for deep learning, simulations, and for some of the most intense computing workloads.

Besides offering computing power, Microsoft will also collaborate with OpenAI to advance research in artificial intelligence, and also to create new tools and technologies that will boost deep learning, machine algorithms, and other related areas. Further, this partnership can significantly alter the dynamics of a competitive cloud market, where giants like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google offer massive amounts of computing power. In fact, this deal could give Microsoft an edge when it comes to combining computing power and AI.

In many ways, this move by OpenAI brings out the important role played by computing power for the future of AI. Already, companies like Google and Facebook have the resources to build massive computing power needed for modern AI research, with Google even releasing its own AI processor. Going forward, more companies involved in AI research are expected to focus on building their own computing power or they are likely to partner with companies that already offer them. It won’t be long before we seen more innovations in the field of AI.

As of now though, Open AI will release open-source software and tools to the public, to help them run large-scale AI applications in the cloud. Also, it will work closely with Microsoft to ensure that Azure’s capabilities keep pace with the changes and advancements made in the world of AI.

The future sure looks exciting, as we can expect AI projects to start taking shape soon.

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Top 5 Reasons to Move to the Cloud

Cloud has become a ubiquitous term today, and I’m sure you would’ve heard it many times over. Have you ever wondered why so many companies move to the cloud, and if your company should also be looking at this transition, if you’re not there already?

Well, the simple answer to this question is – cloud is the future. The many benefits that come from cloud far outweigh the costs associated with it, and this is why just about everyone is moving their operations to the cloud.

Benefits of Cloud

Here are some of the advantages your company gets by moving to the cloud.

Business continuity

The biggest advantage with cloud is business continuity. Regardless of your location or the natural calamity that strikes your part of the world, business will continue as usual, and no part of your service will be disrupted.

A case in point is that of the National Kidney Registry (NKR), a nonprofit organization, that aims to match kidney donors with needy patients. When this NGO started off, it maintained its own servers at its Long Island office, but staying on top of security, medical regulations, and demand proved to be difficult. So, the company decided in 2012, to move its operations to a cloud company called Rackspace. This proved to be a great move, as operations of the organization were unaffected when Superstorm Sandy struck a few months later. Though the offices of NKR were closed for a week after the storm, needy patients were still able to get in touch with potential donors, and this business continuity was possible due to cloud.


Cloud is ideal for companies that are looking to expand its operations and customer base, as it’s easy to scale up capacity without worrying about infrastructure requirements. Such agility can give businesses an edge over competitors, and this is why most CIOs and IT Directors rank this as the a top reason for cloud adoption.

Hassle-free maintenance

When you have your own servers, you’ll need a dedicated team to take care of its maintenance. Your team has to stay on top of security, software updates, and other tasks that can prove to be a hassle in terms of both time and money. With a cloud provider, you don’t have to worry about any of these maintenance tasks, thereby giving you more time and resources to focus on your business.


Cloud makes it possible for your employees to share and collaborate work, regardless of physical location. In other words, your employee in China can easily share his work with an employee in the US, so there is no time-lag or delay in implementation. In addition, it also gives you the flexibility to hire workers from any part of the world.

More choices

When you move to the cloud, you have the option to work on different enterprise-class applications and technology, without having to spend on the underlying infrastructure. A pay-as-you-go model and a robust set of business applications mean you’re better off trying innovation in the cloud.

Now that you know the benefits, are you ready to move to the cloud?

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Environment Data Cloud – An Innovative Cloud Application

Cloud can be used for many innovative applications that extend beyond the business world. Though it is used extensively for businesses now, its use across other sectors, especially social and environmental sectors, are also being explored actively. One such innovative application is the Environment Data Cloud.

As the name suggests, Environment Data Cloud helps to understand the environment and hopefully, make more accurate predictions. It consists of four services platforms and an integration platform, all of which come together to provide better insights into environmental data. The aim of this application is to integrate all data related to the environment across different government units, to make it easier to share data between the many government departments and agencies. In addition, this data will be made available to private companies to help them make meaningful analysis and inferences.

An integral part of Environment Data Cloud is its database called ERDB, that stores tons of historical information about the environment. Such information can be a boon to researchers to identify patterns, and make the right connections to improve weather prediction.

This application is already functional as it has integrated more than 6,000 data sets from different government units. It has also released around 960 data sets as open data to private companies including the weather app of ASUS, and based on this information, more than 40 value-added cases have been reported.

One of the most important result of this app is the platform it has offered for social interaction. Known as i-Environment web portal, this platform helps citizens to get the information they want easily, and has also encouraged more citizens to become aware of their environment. With such information, it won’t be long before local communities get together to preserve their immediate environment. This participation and awareness is critical, as we’re already reeling under the effects of climate change and its many consequences.

This project, in many ways, brings out the power of cloud applications and its ability to have far-reaching consequences that extend beyond the business world. The social applications of cloud are enormous, and this is just the beginning of it all. More companies around the world are working on similar applications that’ll help people to truly enjoy the benefits of technological advancements.

Due to the positive impact and potential of Environment Data Cloud,  the Cloud Computing Association in Taiwan has given away an award called “Cloud Computing and IoT Innovation Award 2016.” This award recognizes companies and government agencies that are coming up with innovative applications of the cloud. In general, this award is divided into two categories – one for innovation from private companies and the other for innovation from government agencies. Environment Data Cloud won the award in the government category.

Such awards are sure to encourage more companies to come up with social and environmental applications of the cloud, so that it benefits every section of the society, and augurs well for the future of humankind. Going forward, it’s hoped that more such applications will be developed for the larger good of the society.

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GE Cloud to Power India’s IIoT

Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) is seen as the next big wave of cloud applications, as more industries around the world are looking to tap into the benefits of IIoT. This trend is seen not just in developed countries, but also in emerging markets like India. To service this sector, GE Cloud, in partnership with EY, is all set to make a foray into the Indian market.

This partnership between EY and GE Cloud was launched globally in May, to collect data from industrial machines with an aim to provide the right analytics for asset performance management (APM) and optimization of business operations. This software, called Predix, is offered as a cloud-based Platform as a Service (PaaS) for industrial applications.

Built on an open source platform called Cloud Foundry, Predix works towards creating a detailed model that encompasses the operations of the entire organization. Based on this information, it provides the right analytics that’ll help to improve the overall efficiency of operations.

GE’s foray into the Indian market augurs well for both the company as well as its Indian consumers. The capital good market in India is estimated to be worth around $42 billion. However, the last few years has seen a lag in this sector, as the total production increased only by 1.1%. This slow growth is not only due to lowered demand from the domestic market, but also because of inefficiencies plaguing the industries. To improve efficiency and reduce the cost of operations, technology is the way forward, and IIoT can play a crucial role to bridge this gap. In this sense, the entry of GE’s Predix maybe the silver lining that the Indian market needs to spruce up its efficiency and improve its production.

For GE too, the Indian market is important simply because it’s too large to be missed. Firstly, manufacturing is still a staple part of the Indian economy, unlike US and other markets that have moved towards a service economy. Secondly, India is known for a young and educated population, and a booming economy – the perfect recipe for an explosive increase in the demand for goods and services. As industries are poised to meet this demand, they need advanced analytics, and this is where GE’s Predix fits in. As the demand for industrial product grows, so will the need for predictive software, and all this means GE is possibly on the verge of stepping into a gold mine.

Despite this optimism and the benefits for both the parties, there are still some roadblocks. First off, much of the Indian market is fragmented, and many industries are dominated by a bunch of small players. Reaching out to these smaller companies maybe a difficult task for GE, as the funds available for technological innovations may be limited for smaller companies. Secondly, technological adaptation and the mindset to break away from traditional manufacturing practices may take some time, and GE should be ready for this waiting period. Thirdly, there is still a substantial amount of rigid bureaucracy and corruption in India, and this can complicate implementation.

Despite these roadblocks, the entry of Predix can augur well for everyone involved, though it may take some time for the benefits to materialize.

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How does Cloud Impact the Job Market?

Gone are the days when people used to work in an office from 9 AM to 5 PM before heading back home. Today, it’s a connected world where you can work at anytime and from any place of your choice. Much of this job convenience can be attributed to rapid advancements in the world of connectivity, and the emergence of cloud as a platform to bring workers together.

In general, if you need a computer to do your work, then you can do it from anywhere. Obviously, more people are taking to this idea of remote working because it gives them the choice to balance different aspects of their life. It also reduces the need for people to take breaks from work. For example, a young mom can continue working from home while caring for her infant, and this means, she can continue to focus on her career without having to give up her priorities at home. Such conveniences go a long way in bringing more people into the economic world, thereby generating greater wealth for individuals, companies, and economies at large. In addition, they are also not restricted to any specific geographical area to find their dream job. Rather, the entire world is their option.

For companies too, this is a convenient option, as they can cut back on overheads. They no longer need huge plush offices with air-conditioning all through the day and night. This is sure to bring down their operating expenses substantially. Further, they are also not restricted when it comes to hiring talented people. They can choose to hire anyone located in any part of the world, so in this sense, they can always have the best of talent.

Due to such conveniences for both employers and employees, more people are looking at this option. In fact, it is estimated that more than three million Americans already work on cloud-based platforms like Upwork, CrowdFlower, and Amazon Mechanical Turk. It’s not going to be long before more people take this route. A report by London Business School shows that more than one-third of the workforce would be working remotely by 2020!

Much of this idea of remote working has been possible because of the cloud. Since this technology allows users to store and access their files on virtual servers, rather than on a particular computer’s hard drive, they can access it on any device and from any location of their choice. Further, many of the applications they use are located in cloud servers, and this also gives them flexibility to access these apps from anywhere. Many cloud tools like SugarSync allow real-time collaboration, and this means, workers from different parts of the world can work on a document at the same time.

As cloud becomes more sophisticated, more jobs are likely to be remotely doable. If you’re already working in the fields of data entry, programming, content creation, design, and customer service, you’re likely to be working remote. Soon, teachers, lawyers, psychologists, counselors, researchers, nurses, paralegals and others too will join the bandwagon.

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Nutanix, a Cloud-Based Company, Breaks Records at the Stock Exchange

Nutanix, a cloud-based business, had the strongest first-day gain for a new technology company this year. On its first day of trading on 30th September, its share price more than doubled, creating a record of sorts in a choppy market environment. In fact, its 131% bounce on the opening day is the biggest for any US listing this year.

This California-based maker of hyper converged infrastructure sold 14.87 million shares, more than its anticipated 14 million. It also priced the shares at $16, above the expected price range of $13 to $15, and through this offering, raised about $238 million. Its shares closed at a value of $37, thereby giving the company a market value of $5.08 billion.

This response from the market shows investor’s appetite for tech companies that have a high growth potential, even if its unprofitable now.  During the last fiscal year that ended in July, revenue jumped by 84% to $449.9 million, and the company says it has more than 3,700 customers. Despite this growth rate, this seven-year old company has been raking losses, mainly due to its aggressive marketing efforts. It’s net loss during the last fiscal year was $168.5 million.

This IPO sure gives hope for other tech companies that are looking to tap into the public market for capital. It can also be seen as a bright light in an otherwise dismal IPO market. According to Dealogic, only 80 companies have listed in the stock exchange in the first nine months, and this is way less than 143 during the same period in 2015. This fall can be attributed to market volatility, appealing lending rates, and a strong private market – factors that can deter a company from going public.

That said, the next few months are crucial for Nutanix, as many companies that started off well, have seen a downslide after the initial euphoria ends. Of the 32 tech companies that went public since 2012, 53 percent are trading below their market price. Shares of popular tech companies like Square, Box, and HortonWorks are trading almost $5 to $8 lower than their private market valuation. Will Nutanix fall in this list? Depends on the performance of the company, as well as a host of external factors like investor confidence and market volatility.

Nutanix Company Profile

Nutanix is a maker of Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI), a technology that combines many computing devices such as storage and backup into a single device using advanced software on an inexpensive hardware. Founded by Dheeraj Pandey, Mohit Aron, and Ajeet Singh in 2009, this company is headquartered at San Jose, California, and sells its products to more than 70 countries worldwide.

It became a “unicorn company”- a term used to describe tech companies that have a valuation of more than $1 billion, in 2013. It is backed by some heavyweight venture capitalists such as Khosla Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Fidelity Investments.

This company sells software on its own box, and this accounts for most of its revenue. The remaining revenue comes from companies that use Nutanix’s software to offer better features for their respective products. Server makers like Dell and Lenovo Group, and car-maker Toyota Motors, are some of the companies take advantage of Nutanix’s software.

Its stock symbol is “NTNX.”


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