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EMC debuts Native Hybrid Cloud

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At EMC World in Las Vegas this week, EMC announced Native Hybrid Cloud – a turnkey platform for cloud-native application development and deployment.

NHC enables enterprises to innovate and scale faster. It helps enterprise IT and operations teams to better collaborate with developers, allowing for rapid application development and delivery, while providing the needed protection, controls and insight to IT.

In today’s dynamically changing digital economy, rapid application development and shortened release cycles are the new normal. DevOps, leveraging continuous integration and continuous delivery (CI/CD) and a more integrated operating model and culture between developers and IT, can provide a competitive edge, but shifting to DevOps is difficult without the right development platform and tools. Cloud-native platforms address this need. Cloud-native refers to a new software architecture that enables agile application development that follows cloud-native principles, a shift toward microservices versus monolithic app stacks, and embraces container infrastructure abstraction models.

Many enterprise customers have spent months – and in some cases years – trying to “build” their own cloud-native stacks, and now realize that deploying these stacks is difficult, and maintaining them after “day two” operations (update/maintain/report/support) is nearly impossible. Many have also suffered seeing multiple waves of cloud-native employees come and go, leaving unfinished pilots that were unsuitable for full production, and were not adequately designed to be supported and sustained for future evolution and growth .

Native Hybrid Cloud helps enterprises realize the promise of cloud-native applications and DevOps with an “It Just Works” experience. The platform has the following components, all validated to work together:

·         Continuous Innovation Cloud-Native Platform – Native Hybrid Cloud leverages Pivotal Cloud Foundry, the industry-leading cloud-native platform. Pivotal Cloud Foundry delivers platform capabilities that enhance developer productivity, enable operational excellence, and provide enterprise grade security, scalability, high availability, and operational control, so customers can accelerate their time to market for software solutions. Developers can more quickly design, build, deploy, and scale cloud-native applications because of the tight integration of NHC IaaS with Pivotal Cloud Foundry. Applications built using Pivotal Cloud Foundry are truly portable and can elastically run on any cloud – private or public.

·         Developer and IT Ops Services – Native Hybrid Cloud brings developers a rich set of services for deploying, scaling, and managing the application life cycle while providing IT the visibility, control, and financial insights by including logging, monitoring, and reporting, showback, application performance, big data analytics, and management and automation through open APIs. For enterprises seeking real-time business insights, NHC offers an add-on option that produces a comprehensive toolkit for data scientists to perform big data analytics, delivering more differentiated value.

·         Turnkey – but flexible choices for On-Premises and Off-Premises IaaS Options –Native Hybrid Cloud is built on the VCE® VxRack™ System 1000, a hyper-converged rack-scale infrastructure providing a turnkey IaaS experience for application development, deployment, and operations. The VxRack System allows customers to choose the cloud software stack based on their preference: VMware vSphere with FLEX Nodes for customers looking to leverage what they know, a turnkey OpenStack® option for those wanting to leverage the OpenStack ecosystem with Neutrino Nodes. In the near future, VMware Photon Platform, a cloud-native infrastructure solution optimized for containers and modern applications, will be supported on Neutrino Nodes, along with data fabric options including, but not limited to the Apache Hadoop ecosystem. VxRack System with Neutrino Nodes provides a simple rack-scale management and orchestration capability for cloud-native IaaS stacks, dramatically simplifying “day two” operations and scaling infrastructure elastically to match the needs of the developers – making what used to be complex now simple and predictable.

·         For customer deployments that require an off-premise IaaS option, EMC Native Hybrid Cloud offers day one support for leading public clouds: Virtustream Enterprise Cloud, VMware vCloud Air, Amazon Web Services (AWS), or Microsoft Azure.

For customers initially looking for a cloud-native IaaS system, VxRack System with Neutrino Nodes and FLEX Nodes for cloud-native IaaS is a great option because it speeds the provisioning of resources based on open source technologies to less than one hour.

For many enterprise businesses, Native Hybrid Cloud aligns closer to the agile development strategy as it delivers a turnkey developer platform for cloud-native applications.

Fully supported end-to-end by EMC, sustained as one product and deployable in days, Native Hybrid Cloud enables enterprises to significantly reduce the cost, time, complexity and uncertainty associated with building, deploying and maintaining a cloud-native solution and navigating the cultural shift to DevOps.

DELIVERING CLOUD-NATIVE APPS AT THE SPEED OF BUSINESS

Native Hybrid Cloud increases business agility and fosters innovation through an engineered platform that brings together infrastructure elasticity, self-healing, automated application runtime, and extended developer and IT Ops services. Key benefits include:

·         Deploy a cloud-native developer platform and infrastructure services in as few as two days, composed of Pivotal Cloud Foundry integrated with the EMC and VMware powered IaaS, making it ready for tailoring to a customer environment, if desired. Native Hybrid Cloud delivers 93 percent faster time-to-code compared to a practice where customers build a complete cloud-native platform from the ground up.

·         3x faster time to market. Develop and deploy cloud-native applications in days or weeks rather than months or years. Rapid application development from idea to production as a result of the extensive developer and IT Ops services and tools.

·         Improved DevOps collaboration. New DevOps partnerships made possible by self-service capabilities for developers while allowing IT to retain control and insights.

·         2x Boost to developer productivity. Developers can self-provision infrastructure for cloud-native application development and enjoy an “it just works” user experience. A streamlined workflow and the ecosystem of toolsets simplify how cloud-native applications are built, deployed, and managed.

·         Single-call support. EMC provides single-call support for the full solution.

·         Reduced complexity. The Native Hybrid Cloud platform is engineered, maintained and sustained as one platform. This means that as the software ecosystem continues to innovate, the Native Hybrid Cloud stack continues to get updated and supported as a singular platform for the customer.

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Load-shedding leads
local searches

South Africans are searching in the dark, according to the latest Google Search trends.

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With more 1 million search queries generated in the space of 76 hours, load-shedding was by far the top trending search on Google South Africa this week.

Valentine’s Day came a distant second.

After news emerged last Sunday of the impending stage 3 load shedding, South Africans had generated more than 1-million load-shedding search queries by the time Tuesday came around:

  • “Loadshedding schedule” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding schedule” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Eskom load shedding” – generated more than 100k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding Cape Town” – generated more than 50k searches on Sunday
  • “Load shedding schedule” – generated more than 400k on Monday
  • “Load shedding Johannesburg” – generated more than 20k searches on Monday
  • Load shedding schedule” generated more than 200k search queries on Tuesday

Leading up to Valentine’s Day, South Africans generated close to 300k search queries related to the romantic festival, including searches for quotes and gift ideas:

  • “Valentines Day” generated more than 100k search queries on Thursday
  • “Happy Valentines Day Images” and “Valentines Day Images” generated more than 10k search queries each on Thursday, with “Happy Valentines Day 2019” generating more than 20k search queries on Wednesday
  • “Valentines Day Specials 2019” generated more than 5k search queries on Thursday
  • “Love quotes” generated more than 5k search queries on Thursday
  • “Valentines Day quotes” generated more than 100k search queries and “Valentine messages” generated more than 50 000 search queries on Wednesday

Search trends information is gleaned from data collated by Google based on what South Africans have been searching for and asking Google. Google processes more than 40 000 search queries every second. This translates to more than a billion searches per day and 1.2 trillion searches per year worldwide. Live Google search trends data is available at https://www.google.co.za/trends/hottrends#pn=p40

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Showmax invites
student films

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Thanks to the growing popularity of video-on-demand services, there’s a new opportunity to help kickstart the careers of local filmmakers.

Numerous Hollywood blockbusters (District 9Tomb Raider 2018, and The Avengers: Age of Ultron to name a few) have featured substantial shoots in Johannesburg and Cape Town. While providing great opportunities for SA’s production talent, aspiring writers and directors don’t get the same benefit.

So where can local creatives showcase their work? Broadcast TV isn’t a natural home for unknown short films, and while self-publishing platforms are readily available hosting options, it’s tough to get noticed and get traffic when competing with videos from across the planet.

But with the emergence of video-on-demand services into the mainstream, there’s now a solution. The African film school AFDA has teamed up with the streaming service Showmax to give local talent a much larger platform than ever before. From 18 February, eighteen of the best recent short films made by AFDA students from their Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban and Port Elizabeth campuses will be live on Showmax. Drama, documentary, fantasy, and animation are all represented, in pieces running from under eight minutes to almost half-an-hour long. The full list of movies is included below.

Teresa Passchier, CEO of AFDA, said: “AFDA, Africa’s number-one school for the Creative Economy, is proud to kickstart this exciting and meaningful journey with Showmax and AFDA students, ensuring emerging young African filmmakers’ voices are heard and given a platform. It’s ground-breaking to share young, local, culturally relevant content on the same platform as Hollywood blockbusters. I am certain that this unique initiative will serve to boost and develop the African film industry and the careers of many young South African and African students alike.”

Included in the short films coming to Showmax are the award winners Junior and O-PunchaJunior, directed by Bert Dijkstra, picked up the Audience Award in the Made in South Africa Competition at the shnit Worldwide Shortfilmfestival Awards 2017. O-Puncha, directed by Adam Hansen, won two awards at the 5th annual Eldorado Film Festival: Best Student Made Short, and Best Editing – Alexander La Cock.

Another celebrated film is Sicela Amanzi directed by Mlu Godola, which talks to the subject of water shortage. The film’s heroine Zoleka is a mild-mannered young woman forced to go to extreme lengths when a small community’s only source of water unexpectedly collapses. The power of films like this is they shine a light on critical topical issues in new ways.

Speaking about working with the film school, Candice Fangueiro, Head of Content for Showmax, said: “There’s immense depth of filmmaking talent in Africa and it’s a privilege to be able to give that talent a home and a platform. Showmax is becoming part of the fabric of film and TV production in Africa, and importantly we’re doing this as a partner rather than just as a consumer. This is a key competitive advantage of being local and something we aim to continue to work on.”

AFDA is an Academy Award-winning institution, founded in 1994, and the first and only African film school to win an Oscar – for the Best Foreign Student film in 2006, the postgraduate film Elalini, directed by Tristan Holmes.

The full list of AFDA short films coming to Showmax is as follows:

Film titleDirectorGenre
Lullaby from the CryptKeenan Lott & Raven DavidsAnimation
Ko Ga CherenyaneSibonokuhle MyatazaDocumentary
IzilwaneKyllian RouxDrama
MallemeuleJaco Van BoschDrama
Canal StreetBrodie MuirheadDrama
On the FenceWarrick BewsDrama
The Righteous FewLindo LangaDrama
Hlogoma PeakLuke AhrensDrama
Frozen FlameCameron HeathmanAnimation
WolfBrett van DortFantasy
The Walk HomeSisanda DyantyiDrama
BearWesley RoodtDrama
JuniorBert DijkstraDrama
O-PunchaAdam HansenDrama
UmngenoSiphosethu NdungeDrama
DoreenLuvuyo Equiano NyawoseDrama
ForeverLindo LangaMusical
Sicela AmanziMlu GodolaDrama

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