About 1.2M Chinese enterprise users and 20m educational users are currently conducting their daily work on Office 365 0SHARES Share Tweet Email PHOTO: REUTERS SAN FRANCISCO: US multinational tech leader Microsoft said that it has agreed to extend its partnership with a Chinese Internet data centre service provider to offer world-class public cloud services to Chinese customers. Microsoft’s global technological leadership combined with the local operations expertise of 21Vianet, the Chinese leading carrier-neutral Internet data center services provider in China, as well as Microsoft Azure and Office 365 operated by 21Vianet, have achieved unprecedented, robust three-digit growth for nearly four consecutive years in the world’s second largest economy, Microsoft wrote in its official blog post Wednesday. The cooperation model pioneered by Microsoft and 21Vianet has been recognized as an effective and successful method for a legal and … [Read more...] about Microsoft extends partnership with Chinese firm on cloud service
Secure digital extended capacity
THREE members of the Avon and Somerset Police 'family' have received awards in the New Year Honours list. *THE man supporting Taunton Deane's Mayor is likely to be supported by her when he travels to Buckingham Palace to collect his MBE. Adrian Prior-Sankey - himself a former Mayor and Consort to his wife, Hazel, who currentl;y holds the post - is in the New Year's Honours LKist "for service to the community of Taunton". Mr Prior-Sankey is a police chaplain and for more than 20 years he has been a lead member of the Faith Communities’ Response to Major Emergencies, serving as a joint co-ordinator of the scheme with senior force chaplain Andy Paget. He has also been the co-ordinator for Taunton’s Street Pastor team for more than a decade and is the representative for the organisation across the Avon and Somerset police area. His links with Avon and Somerset Police stretch back to 1978, when he joined as a special constable at the age of 18, … [Read more...] about Former Mayor, police chief and ex chief inspector receive New Year Honours
Blockchain is a distributed, digital transaction technology that allows for securely storing data and executing smart contracts in peer-to-peer networks (Swan, 2015, p. IX). This is potentially disruptive, as trusted intermediaries could become obsolete. Banks and, more generally, the financial sector were the first ones to become aware of the technology via the cryptocurrency Bitcoin, which operates on the basis of Blockchain. But with the recently added possibility to conduct smart contracts via a platform called Ethereum, Blockchain has gained increasing attention outside the financial sector. Conferences on Blockchain-based cryptocurrency Bitcoin are flourishing, startup competitions are held to spot the Blockchain equivalent of Amazon and Uber, and venture capital so far has raised $1.1bn to scale business models of the future (Weusecoins.com, 2016). Meanwhile, another major disruption is occurring in the energy sector. Germany's energy transformation, or Energiewende, is seen as … [Read more...] about Blockchain and smart contracts: Pioneers of the energy frontier
A high-stakes debate is taking place about how to create a sustainable low-carbon future in which global warming stays well below 2°C. This year’s UN Climate Change Conference COP23 in Bonn accelerates the process ignited by 2015’s groundbreaking Paris Agreement. Climate change action — once the domain of scientists — is shaping up through politics. Developing local and national policies to address the earth’s new reality means looking to historic and short-term information and projecting future trends in everything from heat waves to air quality. In the age of big data, fact gathering and number crunching — along with sophisticated simulations — are key. In such a scientifically complex area, expertise and real-world context can guide decision-makers towards visionary solutions. Advanced Satellite Tech Amassing petabytes of information that paints an accurate picture of the planet is no small task, and requires major global cooperation. … [Read more...] about How can Earth’s big data shape our future?
BRITAIN'S new train signalling system could be taken over by hackers, an expert has claimed.Transport Secretary Chris Grayling last week unveiled plans to install digital signalling on the line between Manchester and York to try to increase capacity and reliability.But University of Coventry's Dr Alexeis Garcia-Perez said that digital systems are vulnerable to hackers and that passengers and staff could be at risk if the system is not properly secured.Dr Garcia-Perez, a cybersecurity expert at the university’s Centre for Business in Society, said: “Running digitally controlled trains is a significant milestone in the journey towards a digital railway in the UK.“It could bring substantial benefits to both passengers and the rail network."However, [we must ensure] challenges associated with the use of data for the management of signalling and traffic are fully considered for the safety of railway passengers, staff and communities in general."The … [Read more...] about Hackers ‘could hijack new digital train signalling system’ and cause MAYHEM, expert warns
I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors. I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition. Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath. The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace. Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms. At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents. So it has been. So it must be with this generation of Americans. That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood. Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred. Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and … [Read more...] about President Barack Obama’s Historic Inauguration Speech in Full
I'd like to comment on topics that I think should regularly be on the front pages but are not - and in many crucial cases are scarcely mentioned at all or are presented in ways that seem to me deceptive because they're framed almost reflexively in terms of doctrines of the powerful. In these comments I'll focus primarily on the United States for several reasons: One, it's the most important country in terms of its power and influence. Second, it's the most advanced - not in its inherent character, but in the sense that because of its power, other societies tend to move in that direction. The third reason is just that I know it better. But I think what I say generalizes much more widely - at least to my knowledge, obviously there are some variations. So I'll be concerned then with tendencies in American society and what they portend for the world, given American power. American power is diminishing, as it has been in fact since its peak in 1945, but it's still incomparable. And it's … [Read more...] about “Every innocent killed creates ten new enemies”
Iranians voted into the late evening on Friday in a presidential election that could significantly shape the future of the country. Iran's interior ministry told local media that more than 40 million votes had been cast, indicating a heavy turnout of around 70 percent. The high turnout meant that polling stations were forced to stay open for several hours beyond initial 6 pm (1330 UTC) deadline. Results have not yet been released, but Reuters news agency quoted one source as saying Rouhani had secured a sizeable lead in an early unofficial tally. Whatever the final outcome, it will have an impact far beyond Tehran. Iran's nuclear capabilities and strategic importance in the Middle East are just two of the issues on the ballot. Here's what you need to know: Who is running for president? Iranians will have their pick out of these four candidates: Hassan Rouhani: The 68-year-old religious scholar and lawyer is the incumbent president. He is seen as a moderate … [Read more...] about The Iranian presidential election: What you need to know
DW: The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) reported earlier this year that China had become the world's fifth largest exporter of major conventional arms, replacing the United Kingdom. Furthermore military expenditures in Asia in 2012 exceeded those of the European Union for the first time ever. Taking this into account, what are China's aircraft carrier ambitions? Alessio Patalano: Chinese generals often speak of the importance for China to have at least one. One general was recently quoted remarking: "A nation cannot become a great power without having an aircraft carrier." Admiral Liu Quaqing - the chief architect of the modern Chinese naval plan - reportedly lobbied incredibly hard for carrier programs. From his point of view, they were essential for operations within China's immediate vicinities, such as Taiwan scenarios. How has Japan reacted to growing Chinese naval development? In 2004 and 2010, two defense reviews led to an increase in the pace of the … [Read more...] about New maritime strategies make conflict ‘less likely’
Admittedly, digital security isn't usually a core focus of media development organizations but it should be an important cross-sectoral topic. Because threats within the digital space are too serious and the goods digital security should protect are too important to ignore: namely, the rights to freedom of information and expression and the integrity of the users, their privacy and their personal data. But faced with multiple layers of threats and issues, the question is where should media development organizations begin. Several experts recommend anchoring the issue of digital security at the political level (Internet governance level) because of its overarching importance – and then implementing digital security in a graduated process at all levels of action. 1. Start at the top and agitate for digital security at a political level "Multiple security issues are damaging user confidence and have emerged as an existential threat to the future of the Internet," recently … [Read more...] about Digital security – act now!