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Microsoft to integrate Truffle blockchain development platform with Azure

Microsoft is joining forces with blockchain startup Truffle to integrate Truffle’s developer tools with Azure. The aim is to provide quality developer experience and DevOps to enterprise blockchains.

Truffle delivers a development platform, testing framework and asset pipeline for the Ethereum blockchain. It comes with built-in smart contract compilation, linking, deployment and binary management, which can be easily accessed by the customers.

The platform has been downloaded over 3 million times and is a preferred choice of developers seeking tools to accelerate the smart contracts and front-end app development process.

Recently, Microsoft had added an extension to its Visual Studio Code that leverages the Azure services and Truffle Suite. This extension helps developers to create and compile smart contracts. They can also test the contracts locally using the Ganache testing environment, as well as inside the Azure DevOps pipelines.

“Early on it was very clear Ethereum developers needed professional, modern development tools. With enterprise’s growing adoption of blockchain technology, Truffle recognizes the importance of this opportunity to bring our blockchain-native experience to enterprise developers across the world through our partnership with Microsoft,” said Tim Coulter, Truffle CEO and Founder.

The integration of Truffle with Azure will enable developers to build advanced, secured blockchain-based applications, streamline workflow with GitHub integration and deploy on real-time basis.

“Our developers expect a world-class experience from Microsoft backed by the best of Azure and Open Source. The Truffle integration demonstrates our continued investment in working with the open source community. Integrating Truffle Suite with Visual Studio Code and Azure DevOps will deliver a world-class developer experience for customers targeting Azure Blockchain Service and public Ethereum,” said Marc Mercuri, Principal Program Manager, Azure Blockchain Engineering.

Developed on Azure, and being true to the mission of Truffle, the team of Truffle will remain free for open source users.

Truffle tool has also been integrated with Quorum, the open-source Ethereum blockchain used by JPMorgan, developed by Axoni, is being used by the Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) now.

ALSO READ: Microsoft announces new blockchain development kit, extending capabilities for developers

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Interviews

“FCEDA provides a wide array of services to guide businesses with their expansion to Fairfax County” –Juhi Naithani, Business Development Manager, FCEDA

While establishing its presence globally, every business needs to have a strategic plan for expansion, as well as to utilize all the resources available to them in the target market. The plan should include research, a budget, timeline, objectives, and monitoring process.

Fairfax County is considered one of the best business locations around the world. Businesses choose Fairfax County for several reasons—60% of the adult population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher, has a large technology presence and impeccable quality of life, having around 9,000 technology firms, to name a few.

We recently interviewed Juhi Naithani, International Business Development Manager, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA), to know why businesses choose to expand to Fairfax County, how FCEDA helps in doing so, crucial steps for global expansion and more.

1. Let’s begin with a brief introduction of Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA). What is the mission of the authority?

The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) promotes Fairfax County, Virginia, USA as one of the world’s best business locations. Business growth helps Fairfax County fund public services such as a top-ranked public-school system, infrastructure, parks, and recreational facilities, that improve the quality of life. A seven-member board of Fairfax County business leaders oversees the work of the authority, which is funded by the Fairfax County government.

The FCEDA has three marketing divisions—National, International, and Business Diversity – that work with companies interested in starting, expanding and relocating businesses to Fairfax County. The FCEDA also has market intelligence, real estate services and communications divisions.

In addition to its headquarters in Tysons, Fairfax County’s largest business district, the FCEDA has permanent offices in Bangalore/Mumbai, London, Los Angeles, Berlin, Seoul and Tel Aviv to assist with the marketing effort and handle the increasing number of international companies interested in establishing operations on the east coast of the U.S. Of course, we want them to land in Fairfax County!

2. From starting a career in the paper industry to handling the international business development at FCEDA, please share a quick overview of your roles throughout your career.

My first job was in business development and marketing for a family-owned paper technology firm in India, working with principals from all over the world while catering to clients in India. That sparked my interest in marketing as well as international business. I then moved to the United States and completed an MBA program at Quinnipiac University in Connecticut. Earning the MBA solidified my interest in marketing and, following graduation, I began teaching marketing and business classes at Quinnipiac.

At the same time, I developed an interest in intercultural training. While teaching at Quinnipiac, I established my own practice, providing intercultural training and international business consulting to business leaders and government entities.

From my professional experience in India, working with international companies, as well as my personal experience from immigrating to the United States, I realized how important it is for business leaders to understand a culture and a workforce that is much different than their own when expanding to a foreign market. I enjoyed this work because it allowed me to work with clients across sectors and industries.

It was during this time that I moved from Connecticut to Northern Virginia (Fairfax County). After my move, I decided to begin exploring job opportunities within the area. I came across an opening at the FCEDA for an international business development manager for India and Canada, so I applied and have been with the FCEDA since then.

3. What inspired you to join FCEDA when you were owning your own international consulting firm?

I enjoyed working with individuals and businesses one-on-one all over the country, but because of Fairfax County’s heavy international focus and the FCEDA’s ongoing efforts to attract and retain international firms, I realized my skills could be of greater use in assisting those efforts right here where I live.

I find this job incredibly fulfilling because I am able to draw on my personal and professional experiences of what it is like to adapt to new culture, both professionally and personally.

4. Why do businesses choose to start, expand, or relocate to Fairfax County? How does FCEDA help businesses in this?

Fairfax County was the first U.S. county to establish a presence in India, and it has a long history of working with Indian businesses. We know the Indian market well, and know what Indian businesses are looking for when they decide to do business globally.

Businesses choose Fairfax County because of its highly educated workforce. It has one of the top-ranked school districts in America, and more than 60 percent of the adult population holds a bachelor’s degree or higher. As part of the Washington, D.C., metro area, it has a convenient location along the eastern seaboard only a short distance from major cities such as Boston and New York. And it has a large technology presence and impeccable quality of life. The county has close to 9,000 technology firms, directly accounting for more than 149,000 employees.

5. What according to you are the key steps for successful global business expansion?

It is important for businesses to have a strategic plan for expansion as well as to utilize all the resources available to them in the market in which the company wants to expand.

Regardless of your company’s size, you should always have a plan for expansion. This plan should include research, a budget, timeline, objectives, and monitoring processes. To make the expansion a success, make sure you explore and use every available resource. Do your homework—many state and local governments have organizations with dedicated resources to assist with international expansion. For example, the FCEDA provides a wide array of services such as one-on-one business counseling sessions and helping to identify possible real estate locations, to guide businesses with their expansion, every step of the way.

6. Many Indian companies are going global, including OYO and Ola. Are there any companies from India that have expanded to Fairfax County?

Yes, there are about 30 Indian companies with a presence in Fairfax County, and I have been fortunate to work with many of them during their expansion process into the area. Examples of such companies include the Hyderabad-based pharmaceutical company Granules India, which established its Fairfax County presence in 2014 and announced a $35 million investment in 2017, which includes expanding their manufacturing and research and development facility in Fairfax County.

Another company is Mumbai-based Tata Communications, which established its Fairfax County presence in 2004 and holds an annual anticipated growth of 15 percent.

7. Please throw some light on the need for intercultural training or cross-cultural training for corporates. How important is it for companies expanding globally?

Intercultural training is extremely important for business leaders to understand the norms and mores of the workforce they are employing. Difference between individuals can be a combination of cultural, ethnic, generational and national. There is an added layer of complexity from functional culture differences, for example marketing versus finance versus engineering departments of a company.

When expanding globally, the host culture can hold a completely different view on the importance and meaning of business-related issues than those held by the expanding business. For example: deadlines. The meaning, emphasis and implication of meeting or not meeting a deadline can vary across cultures. For a business to be successful in the host market, it must understand all these differences and how to navigate them.

8. In 2015, Site Selection magazine named FCEDA as one of the top 10 economic development groups in North America. Please brief us about this achievement.

The FCEDA prides itself on its many pioneering initiatives over the years: creating an international division to market overseas and creating offices in important technology markets overseas such as Bangalore and Mumbai, for example. Our global initiatives have increased the number of foreign-owned firms here to more than 430 and diversify our economic base. The FCEDA was honored in 2005 to be named one of the top 10 economic development groups by Site Selection magazine.

Site Selection, published by Conway Data, Inc., is a leading publication written for corporate executives who make decisions about business locations. Award winners were selected according to their overall performance in these categories: Total capital investment; jobs created; investment per capita; jobs per capita; overall economic vitality; depth and breadth of economic strength; diversity of industry; ability to generate breakthrough deals; and the overall quality of the group’s nomination package, including verifiable documentation.

9. You are also a member of the Board of Directors of The Indus Entrepreneur (TiE) DC chapter. Can you please tell us about TiE and your role there?

TiE is an organization with chapters worldwide, but it was originally conceived in Silicon Valley. The organization’s members are mostly Indian American businesspersons who want to help entrepreneurs recognize and realize their goals. While the membership largely consists of business executives of Indian origin in the Washington DC metro area, TiE DC is open to anyone with an interest in entrepreneurship.

I serve on the board for the D.C. chapter of TiE, where I help mentor startups and promote entrepreneurship by providing opportunities for members to learn from experts, connect with potential investors, and share ideas. Along with other board members, I also help organize events related to technology, generating awareness about TiE within the Washington area – including Fairfax County – and finding opportunities for startups to best use their skillset, scale up and go to market.

10. Give us a strategy that you always use to take your decisions in personal or professional life.

Ask questions. When in doubt, get advice from someone who knows more than you about the particular topic. Ideally, reach out to multiple people and their different perspectives combined can help you develop your own approach on how you can best handle your unique situation. No one expects you to have all the answers, so never hesitate to tap into your resources for support.

Suggested reading: “Submer is a trailblazer and our innovations will be the catalyst to re-define datacenter design and operations”— Jeff Brown, MD North America, Submer Immersion Cooling

11. What’s new in the roadmap for FCEDA in the financial year 2019?

The FCEDA will appoint a new president and CEO in 2019 after the retirement of Gerald L. Gordon, Ph.D., who led the organization for more than 30 years until he retired at the end of 2018.

In the meantime, the FCEDA continues to focus on attracting and retaining companies – from the U.S. and from overseas, Fortune 500 companies and startups – that are in the industries that are a good fit for the Fairfax County economy. These companies often are doing business in our traditional strengths in IT, software development, aerospace and defense, financial services and corporate headquarters operations. Now we also are seeing a lot of activity in emerging sectors such as cloud computing, data analytics, blockchain, artificial intelligence and personalized medicine.

These companies are spurring innovation and job creation and bringing even more energy to our business community and economy, and we look forward to promoting Fairfax County as a diverse, dynamic and forward-looking community this year.

Categories
Cloud Cloud News Newss

Microsoft and Intel collaborate with BDO and IntraEdge to launch GDPR Edge

BDO USA and IntraEdge launched a blockchain-based solution called GDPR Edge, to support the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). This solution is being supported by Intel and Microsoft.

GDPR data protection rules will apply to all the businesses operating in the EU, even if they do not have any physical presence within the EU. Any company that stores or processes personal information about European citizens within or outside EU states will need to comply with GDPR.

The GDPR will be effective from 25th May 2018, and the companies who miss compliance deadline will be fined up to €20 million or 4% of annual revenue. GDPR Edge is ready-to-deploy solution that can help companies to operationalize some elements of compliance.

It has been especially designed for organizations which have highly complex environments with enormous number of data sources, customer touch points, and multiple point-of-sale systems.

The new solution will integrate GDPR into the business processes, mitigate the risks and streamline the compliance efforts on an ongoing basis. Organizations will be able to view all the transactional data at a centralized location, while providing external consent mechanism to consumers.

GDPR Edge will allow the end-users to review their personal information collected by the organizations. They will be able to modify the information and even ask for removal.

“This centralized repository can be made available to data protection authorities, auditors and data governance professionals, as well as any other data collector or processor, meaning increased accountability, information transparency, accuracy, efficiency and auditability,” says Stephanie Giammarco, Partner and National Leader of BDO’s Technology and Business Transformation Services practice.

It will run on Intel Software Guard Extensions (SGX), and will be integrated with Azure cloud and Microsoft Business Intelligence offerings. The Intel SGX is an architecture extension which increases the security of application code and data.

Also read: WordPress 4.9.6 release helps site administrators respond to GDPR compliance

Furthermore, the GDPR Edge leverages distributed ledge technology of Hyperledger Sawtooth to enable trusted governing parties, and provide consumer access and transparency. BDO has contributed its data governance, privacy and auditing capabilities to the new solution.

Categories
Event

Blockchain INDO 2018, Jakarta’s crypto-conference in May: how it was

Blockchain INDO 2018 held on 11 & 12 May 2018 at Kempinski Grand Ballroom Jakarta successfully comprised experts, speakers, exhibitors and participants from blockchain, digital assets and fintech – nearly 1000 participants from around the world who attended the event.

The 2-day conference & exhibition enabled the Indonesian participants including some attendees from government agencies to get updates and relevant knowledge about the latest blockchain and financial technologies (fintech).

The event was co-organized by Cryptoevent from Russia and ACGL Malaysia with local partnership of Global Citra Media and Asosiasi Digital Enterprise Indonesia. The main sponsor was financial.org along with other global companies of various tech-platform such as Bayanat Fintech, MOS, Summico, Mfun, Fiipay, OSA, Next Level Consulting and Ultroneum.

According to Abas A Jalil, CEO of Amanah Capital Group Limited (ACGL), the co-organizer of the conference, “we received quality group of participants from SE Asia mainly Indonesia whereby there were active interactions with the speakers and exhibitors. That indicates huge interests from the Indonesian markets towards blockchain and this country has great opportunities for digital assets

Blockchain INDO was a great event for us to exhibit our latest project and we received a lot of interests and good feedback from the participants visiting our booth. I found that many Indonesians are well-versed about blockchain, either to invest or to start learning the latest technologies” said Dr Aziz Rahman from Ultroneum, an ICO based in Estonia.

One of the Indonesian participants Mr Priskhianto attended with his son commented: “The conference provides new perspective and gives more detail info about crypto-currencies. Although there was no transaction allowed by the organizer, but the participants were able to know about the available blockchain & ICO projects being offered globally. I brought my son so that young man gets the opportunity to learn about blockchain, especially from the global experts“.

One of the topics of discussion among the speakers and participants was the regulation of cryptocurrencies in different countries.The attitude towards cryptocurrencies in Asia on the part of the authorities can not be called liberal. In most cases, the state is still skeptical: for example, in January of this year, the Central Bank of Indonesia officially warned about the risks associated with the circulation of cryptocurrencies and confirmed their status of illegal means of payment. Although now Indonesia’s largest platform for trading cryptocurrencies may soon bypass the number of participants in the stock exchange of the country, working since 1912.

All experts and businessmen in the field of blockchain are waiting for clear rules of the game to appear on the market. «In Switzerland (where I come from) there have been some recent guidelines in regards to the types of Tokens that are out there, payment,utility and asset tokens this helps reduce uncertainty, – said Gebhard Scherrer, Co-founder COO DATUM. – I think besides just goverments regulation private entities could help in providing a code of conduct».

A special moment is the state regulation of ICO-projects. With any success story there are the opportunists always ready to take advantage of the quick fund-raising system within a non-regulated space, ICO’s, which can cause great damage to the masses, and in turn give the governments a big headache, think Robert Ryu, Co-founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Tristar Ventures. «Therefore, in the near term, governments in Asia are either outright banning ICO’s (China, South Korea, Vietnam) or turning a blind eye and ignoring them in hopes that no one will get hurt, – said Robert Ryu. – However, in the long run the benefits will outweigh the negative; tech industry growth, employment opportunities, tax revenue and should they still decide to turn their backs on ICO’s and crypto , they face the risk of losing entire industries, established companies, tax revenue and brain-power to other more open-minded nations».

Blockchain INDO was designed as education, knowledge-sharing and idea-exchange platform on global basis, hoping to influence the industry players and regulators to prepare more concrete national frameworks and guidelines about fintech and digital assets especially in Indonesia. With more than 260 million population spread in thousands of islands, Indonesia is one of the biggest markets in the world for blockchain technology.

«The global financial system built on fractional reserve banking and usurious loans has ensnared many developing and emerging market countries with massive debts. These debts – which are literally created from thin air – cost the world’s sixty poorest countries more in interest payments alone than they spend on education or healthcare, – said Matthew Joseph Martin, CEO of Blossom Finance. – Blockchain offers an opportunity to depart from this predatory debt based monetary system».

We are happy to hear good feedbacks from the participants, speakers and exhibitors. With this success, we are considering with our partner ACGL and GCM to do Blockchain INDO 2019 during the first quarter of next year” – said Nikolay Volosyankov, CEO of Cryptoevent in his telegram statement from Moscow.

We hope to see more Indonesian projecrt participating next year. This year we have some Indonesian companies exhibiting their projects i.e Foin, Bali Coin, Paytren, and Halal Chain. These companies were able to promote their projects to many overseas participants, therefore more Indonesian companies should take such opportunity next year” – Denis Gutnik from Cryptoevent said during the closing of the event.

Blockchain INDO 2018 successfully closed at 5.00pm on Saturday 12 May 2018.

Categories
Event News

Calling all blockchain experts in the largest blockchain conference of South East Asia – Blockchain Indo

The volume of Indonesia’s digital economy has been predicted to reach about $130 billion by the year 2020, making it one of the leaders in digital development among the South-East Asian countries, as stated by the country’s authorities.

Blockchain, an advanced technology will play a major role in developing Indonesian digital economy. The Blockchain INDO conference to be held between 11th-12th May in Jakarta, Indonesia will be discussing about blockchain opportunity present in the country and will stand as the first international level blockchain event in Indonesia.

Jakarta is amongst the top ten crypto-capitals of the world in the year 2017, per International Decentralized Association of Cryptocurrency and Blockchain (IDACB). Despite Indonesian government’s skeptical views on digital money, the business communities have been showing great interest in the new opportunities lying in the digital economy.

The Blockchain Indo conference will bring together the entire cryptocurrency community including blockchain experts, blockchain, ICOs (Initial Coin Offering), investors and bitcoin miners, witnessing more than 1000 participants from 20 countries.

Over 40 + blockchain experts – CEOs of leading companies, blockchain platform innovators and owners, ICO project owners, lawyers and blockchain analysts, will discuss the future of blockchain, cryptocurrencies, transformation of current economic structure, ICO marketing and information security. The list of prominent speakers include but is not limited to the following:

  • Gebhard Scherrer – Co-founder, DATUM
  • Martin (Director General blossom of Finance)
  • Ville Oehman (Investment funds registered with the monetary authority of Singapore)
  • Robert Ryu (the Korean company crypto-Fund)
  • Dr Zaharuddin A. R (Malaysia Shariah ICO)
  • Matthew Joseph Martin (CEO of Blossom Finance)

The market of financial technology in Indonesia is very prospective. Indonesia is the third country in the world, after China and India, that has the biggest rate of the technology growth. Moreover, Indonesian e-commerce market is growing rapidly,” – said Nikolay Volosyankov, CEO of CryptoEvent – the organizer of various blockchain events in Europe and Asia and the initiator of Blockchain Indo conference.

He also added, “Therefore, bitcoin as one of the financial instruments of technology will be quickly accepted by the people of Indonesia and according to our predictions there will be approximately 100 thousand bitcoin users in Indonesia in the next 6 months.”

The participants can have real-life insights into the various ICO-projects to be presented in the conference. There will be over 30 booths hosting exhibition of cryptocurrency companies.

DHN as the official media partner of Blockchain Indo is offering 30% discount on registration. Use promo code: PROMO-INFOPARTNER-30 while registering.

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Event News

World Satoshi Summit and NASSCOM Blockchain SIG team up to promote blockchain adoption across enterprises

South Asia’s leading blockchain conference – World Satoshi Summit, recently announced partnering with NASSCOM blockchain SIG to promote adoption of blockchain across various sectors and industries.

With exactly one month remaining for World Satoshi Summit, it is time to gear up for getting some latest updates on the revolutionary blockchain technology. The conference recently announced a strategic partnership with the apex body of the USD 154B IT-BPM industry – NASSCOM, through its NASSCOM Blockchain SIG.

The partnership aims to accelerate the move towards a much connected and transparent India, where every industry and sector will be able to leverage blockchain technology for their betterment. With this, blockchain ecosystem in India will get a tactical direction through proper architectural support, which will serve as a base for the Indian corporates and startups who can benefit from the blockchain technology.

Blockchain innovations like bitcoin and distributed ledger have the potential to renovate the entire economy.

World Satoshi Summit is a series of events that will be taking place across the world. Its first event is going to be held in India in the capital city of New Delhi between 12th – 13th May, 2018 at the JW Marriott Hotel Aerocity.

The conference will bring together over 3500 blockchain believers under one roof.

With World Satoshi Summit we are providing stakeholders of the Blockchain community a universal platform to ideate and innovate around the revolutionary technology. We firmly believe that India, world’s largest democracy, will serve as the proving ground for the emergent technological revolution. Tying up with NASSCOM is indeed an exhilarating opportunity for our team as the partnership will enable us to give the required support to the Blockchain community of this Region.” – Harmeet Singh Monga, Founder, World Satoshi Summit.

Also read: Calling all the blockchain enthusiasts in the largest blockchain conference: World Satoshi Summit 2018

The event will have some expert speakers who will deliver keynotes on the impact of the distributed ledger technology on the world economy. The list of speakers includes:

Sally Eaves – CTO, Emergent Technology, Forbes Technology Council. Top 100 Blockchain Influencer.

Devie Mohan – Founder of Turya, Co-Founder and CEO at Cashaa. Among top 100 blockchain influencer.

Ajeet Khurana – CEO at Zebpay.

Kumar Gaurav – Founder & CEO at Cashaa, Blockchain expert/speaker. Top 100 blockchain influencer.

Leanne Kemp – Founder & CEO at Everledger. Mapped 1M + diamonds on Blockchain.

Roger Ver – CEO, Bitcoin.com

Richard Kastelein – Co-Founder at Crypto-assets Design Group. Top 100 Blockchain Influencer.

Ross Smith – Director of Engineering at Microsoft.

Ted Lin – Head of International Markets, Binance.

Lawrence Lerner – CEO at Rchain.

Janina Lowisz – VP Marketing, Cashaa. Amongst top 100 Blockchain Influencer.

Vinod Tiwari – GM, Business Development and Sales, Powerledger.

Summit’s key highlights

Blockchain for Enterprises

The conference will have dedicated sessions for multiple industries like Travel, Insurance, Healthcare, FinTech etc. The sessions will help enterprises understand the benefits that can be leveraged through successful deployment of the ledger based technology in organizations’ core processes.

Smart Contracts

The onset of distributed ledger and other blockchain innovations is redefining transactions. Smart contract is one such example that has eliminated dependence on intermediaries and minimized costs that existed in the traditional contracts. They are much more secure and time saving than their previous counterparts. At WSS, developers stand a chance to attend special workshops and learn the specifics of a smart contract and know how to build one.

Blockathon

At Blockathon, developers will be seen solving real life blockchain problems and queries. This will be a golden opportunity for the organizations to identify the right talent for their enterprise.

Nova-Stride for Startups

The event has a special focus on the startups who can showcase their blockchain skills and talents and get the opportunity to get on the spot funding by attracting the panel of investors IBs, VCs, HNIs and Angels through their blockchain skills.

Women empowerment at World Satoshi Summit

WSS aims to focus on the development of underprivileged in order to make them a part of the technological revolution. As a part of this, they have initiated Women Economic Empowerment program, under which they will train 250+ underprivileged women from across the globe in technical and non-technical blockchain skills by the year 2020. This will help them to be future ready for the huge opportunities that will be created in the decentralized industry.

DHN readers get a premium offer

Being the official media partner for the event, DHN provides its readers 18% discount during registration, which they can avail by using the code WSSDRV18. So, grab your slot now!

Stay tuned to get latest updates straight from the event.

Note: The event stands cancelled/postponed due to unavoidable circumstances. We regret the inconvenience caused.

Categories
Articles Technology

What is blockchain technology and how it works?

Blockchain is the technology that is likely to have a significant impact on the world in next few decades. The term ‘blockchain’ is most of the time heard with bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. It is because of the fact that blockchain is the underlying technology of all bitcoin transactions. However, blockchain is more than just crypto-technology.

According to Marc Andreessen, co-founder of a Silicon Valley’s venture, blockchain is the most important invention since the internet. Quintessence magazine wrote that blockchain should be considered an invention as significant as the steam engine, that can transform the world of finance and beyond.

It has the potential to transform the way we approach big data today, with industry-leading security and data quality. Blockchain has been working flawlessly for last few years, and is used in both financial and non-financial applications.

What is blockchain technology?

A blockchain is simply a ‘chain’ of ‘blocks’, where digital information is divided into ‘blocks’ and ‘chained’ together.

At a deeper level, it is a secure, digitized and distributed public ledger of the executed transactions or digital information which is shared by participants in a system. The blockchain ensures immutable transactions and establishes trust between the parties who exchange the information or money.

The database in a blockchain is stored in a distributed manner, which means there is no centralized version of any information and no hacker can corrupt or steal it.

The information executed and shared in a blockchain can’t be deleted. It keeps verified record of all the transactions, with the consensus of all the participants in the system.

For example, it is easier to steal a diamond which is kept at an isolated place, than stealing the diamond from a jewelry showroom, being observed by hundreds of people.

Who invented blockchain?

The concept of blockchain was given by Satoshi Nakamoto, the same person/group who invented bitcoin in 2008. Satoshi Nakamoto didn’t reveal his identity and faded from the community in 2011.

The blockchain came into implementation in 2009 as a core component for bitcoin cryptocurrency, to serve as a public ledger for all the transactions on network.

Strengthened with blockchain, bitcoin became the first digital currency to solve the double spending problem without requiring a trusted authority and has been providing inspiration for developing many solution applications.

How blockchain solves Double Spend problem?

When a Word document, PowerPoint, text message or an email is sent to anyone, a copy is sent, rather than the original. The sender still has the original copy of the file. This technology is democratized and is useful. But when it comes to financial transactions, it doesn’t work.

For example, if you’re sending $100 to someone, you can’t send a copy of it. To solve this problem, everyone relies on certain trusted authorities like governments, banks, payment companies, etc. Considering non-financial cases, it is an email service provider who processes all the emails; it is a social media platform that tells us that a post or message has been shared with the intended user, etc.

This process makes all the transactions centralized, which are at a point of attack, even when the authorities try their best to secure everything.

Blockchain technology has the potential to eliminate this issue, by enabling a distributed consensus on all online transactions. There are no risks of data breach or compromising the privacy.

How does blockchain work?

In a blockchain, all the transactions in a network gets chained in the form of blocks. Every block contains reference to the previous block, and a hash of the data used in the block.

Bitcoin is the most known application of blockchain technology, therefore we are using its reference to learn how the blockchain works. (To know what is bitcoin, and should you invest in it, visit our article about bitcoin)

Blockchain is used to keep track of all the bitcoin transactions in the form of a ledger file. This ledger file is not centralized, rather distributed across the network of private computers. All the computers in the network will have a copy of the ledger file, and will know about all the transactions in the network.

For example, there are five users in a blockchain network named A, B, C, D, and E, having some number of bitcoins in their wallet.

If user D wants to send 15 bitcoins to user A, then the transaction is represented online as a block. This block is broadcasted to every user in the network. If a majority of users in the network approves that the history and signature of the block is valid, then the new transaction is accepted into the ledger and a new block is added to the blockchain. The bitcoins will then be sent from user D to A.

The blockchain technology is getting enormous interest from numerous companies and startups. The leading financial organizations like Visa, Mastercard, NASDAQ, and several banks are significantly investing in blockchain to explore its applications in their current business models.

Categories
Datacenter News

Nvidia prohibits datacenter deployment of GeForce GPUs 

Nvidia recently made a big change to the licensing agreement of its GeForce software which doesn’t allow users to deploy GeForce GPUs and Titan GPUs in data centers. Certainly, the users aren’t happy about it. 

Graphical User Interfaces (GPUs), being a common choice for artificial intelligence researchers, has helped Nvidia to surge 85% in its stock price in 2017.  

The customers aren’t happy about the changes to End-User Licensing Agreement (EULA) because it doesn’t allow them to deploy the GeForce and Titan based graphic cards in the data centers provided by other service providers including Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.  

Here is the statement from the EULA- “No Datacenter Deployment. The SOFTWARE is not licensed for datacenter deployment, except that blockchain processing in a datacenter is permitted.” 

The changes are forcing users to go for expensive Tesla GPUs inside data centers, instead of lower-cost processors. The new Tesla V100 costs around $8000 while the Titan V starts at only $3000. 

To defend itself, Nvidia said that it made changes to EULA to prevent the potential misuse of its GeForce and Titan GPUs which were not built for demanding, and large-scale enterprise environments.  

“NVIDIA addresses the unique mechanical, physical, management, functional, reliability, and availability needs of servers with our Tesla products, which include a three-year warranty covering data center workloads, NVIDIA enterprise support, guaranteed continuity of supply and extended SKU life expectancy for data center components. This has been communicated to the market since the Tesla products were first released,” said Nvidia in statement to CNBC. 

Also read: Nvidia is ending driver support for 32-bit operating systems 

With this change in EULA, many leading companies using GeForce were affected, but Nvidia looks unmoved, and doesn’t seem to change its policy any sooner.  

 

Categories
Cloud News Event News Technology

Top 8 AI technology trends in 2018, and state of cloud, IoT, blockchain by 2020 revealed: NexGen 2017 Technology Expo

The NexGen 2017 Conference and Technology Expo, hosted by The Channel Company, successfully took place between December 11-13 in Los Angeles, CA.

The NexGen 2017 Conference was specifically designed for cloud solution providers, managed service providers and other IT solution providers who bring new business models built around next-generation technologies. They act as the innovators who leverage the cloud and cloud-based technologies to drive new revenue and future profits.

The event kickstarted with a keynote session by Tom DelVecchio, Founder, Enterprise Technology Research, who talked about the things that are driving the containers and the microservices market. Microservices lower capex and reduce time between release cycles that help in improving productivity and scalability.

Dorothy Copeland, Vice President, Global Business Partners, North America, IBM, talked about innovation related to data, IoT and blockchain. She identified 5 eras of innovation – Centralized Computing, Decentralized Computing, Data, IT and Intelligent Services (AI, IoT blockchain). She also talked about countless opportunities that exist in each era particularly in – cloud and artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, and blockchain.

Later, Noah Johnson, Account Executive, Lenovo, discussed Lenovo’s journey to SDDC. He also talked about the significance of SDI (Software-Defined Infrastructure) technology for simplifying organizations’ cloud adoption process.

Asokan Ashok, CEO of UnfoldLabs discussed about the world of artificial intelligence and major trends to look forward to in 2018.

He discussed top 8 trends in the world of AI:
Trend 1: Large companies like Amazon, Google, Facebook, and IBM are set to lead the way in AI.

      Trend 2: The market will see the consolidation of Algorithms & Technology.

      Trend 3: AI companies will go after crowdsourcing large volumes of data.

      Trend 4: There would be increased M&As (Mergers and Acquisitions).

      Trend 5: Companies will open source their AI tools and algorithms to gain larger market share.

      Trend 6: There would be more interactions between humans and machines.

      Trend 7: AI will start having an impact on all major industry verticals.

      Trend 8: The rise of AI will also bring various privacy, security, ethics and moral issues in AI.

There were also sessions on cyber and endpoint security by Shannon Lucas, Senior Systems Engineer, FireEye. Laurie Potratz, VP, Global Channel and Alliances, LookingGlass Cyber Solutions, Sarah Morgan, Channel Account Manager, Webroot and many others. Managed services and security were identified as the key services to be on top list of organizational must-haves in 2018.

IoT was also a major point of discussion at the event with Stephen DiFranco, Founder at IoT Advisory Group talking about a partner’s IoT journey in his executive session. He discussed the upcoming IoT trends and how the coming years will see a huge rise in the usage of IoT devices by both, individuals and organizations.

IoT services revenue will double by 2021 with retail and healthcare representing services rich industries for a partner ecosystem, per the IoT Advisory Group.

The session headed by Bradley Brodkin, President & CEO of HighVail Systems, Inc. highlighted the role of containers in digital transformation. He said that containers have opened a world of opportunities for DevOps and have brought a multitude of business opportunities. This include empowering DevOps with modern application tools, transforming data center, enabling free movement of applications between public and hybrid cloud and automation of processes.

Solution Providers are looking for new skills and processes to deliver multi-cloud environments. For this, solution providers must introduce changes within their own organizations to support the multi-cloud environments.

The event is hosted annually by The Channel Company, and this year it was attended by vendors, solution providers and distributors. The attendees got the chance to interact and learn strategies from trusted partners to build the next generation business model based on advanced technologies.

The NexGen 2018 Conference & Technology Expo will be held on November 27-29 in 2018.

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Ledger partners with Intel to enhance Blockchain apps security 

Ledger, the leading cryptocurrency hardware wallet manufacturing company, recently announced a partnership with the giant technology firm Intel, with an aim to bring greater security to blockchain applications. 

Ledger will integrate its BOLOS (Blockchain Open Ledger Operating System) into Intel SGX (Software Guard Extensions), and this solution will initially be deployed within cryptocurrency software wallets Electrum and MyEtherWallet.  

“We have seen an increasing demand from the market for secure solutions to manage crypto assets over the past couple of years. Following the launch of a line of hardware wallets based on our operating system integrated in a secure chip, working with a leading player like Intel is a unique opportunity to keep providing our growing client base with innovative solutions for cryptocurrency and blockchain applications,” said Eric Larchevêque, CEO, Ledger. 

Intel SGX is a security extension built into Intel processors that secures the applications code and data by storing them in a secure area on the device called Intel SGX enclave. With integration into Ledger’s BOLOS, Intel SGX will now secure private keys and protect the digital assets from software attacks by securing all the sensitive information within the Intel SGX enclave instead of on the application.  

“Intel applauds Ledger’s focus on protecting user privacy and security. In deploying Intel SGX, Ledger security for blockchain solutions gain instant scalability across Intel 8th Generation Core™ Platforms,” commented Rick Echevarria, Vice President, Software and Services Group, Intel.  

The private keys will be generated automatically and all the cryptocurrency transactions will be signed within Intel SGX enclave. For third party developers, Ledger has a Software Development Kit (SDK) to allow them to utilize Intel SGX enclave for their blockchain use cases.  

Also read: Bitcoin records high with rising demand from Japan 

Ledger is maintaining its focus on secure storage and it partnered with well-known security firm Gemalto earlier this month. The company also recently raised $7 million in series A round with an intention to build a new factory in China.  

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