Skip to Content

Data Sheet—Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A quick thank you for notes of wonderful welcome for yesterday’s Data Sheet launch! Expect these to arrive earlier in your inbox as we work out the kinks. (Keep the feedback and coverage suggestions coming to datasheet@heatherclancy.com or Tweet at me: @greentechlady.) Top of the news this morning? Why yes, it’s another website security breach.

TRENDING

Big. Hack. Attack. A band of Russian cyber-thieves now controls 1.2 billion user names and passwords pilfered from 420,000-plus Web sites: the biggest single collection ever. They’ve only been used for annoying spam campaigns. So far. The worst part: many of the compromised sites are still unprotected. What’s with you people?

If you love something, set it free. Shareholders are clamoring for storage giant EMC to spin out virtualization darling VMware, in which it owns an 80% stake in. The rationale: too much internal competition holding back both companies.

Microsoft’s mobile savior? Qualcomm exec Peggy Johnson—Nadella’s first big hire, an outsider AND a woman—will spearhead “strategic business deals and partnerships.”

China syndrome. Are U.S. tech companies a threat to Chinese national security? The Chinese government sure is acting that way. Microsoft and Accenture got surprise visitors from antitrust regulators. Apple has disappeared from the government’s official procurement list. Ditto antivirus experts Symantec and Kaspersky Labs, although they’re downplaying things.

Comeback kid. An internal memo circulated by BlackBerry’s CEO says the layoffs are done for the enterprise mobile company and hints at strategic acquisitions. But he warns, “there’s no margin for error.” Can Chen win back your confidence?

CLOUD CHATTER

Take that, Amazon. Google has flipped on two new “zones”—one in Asia, the other in the United States—to appease developers that want to run apps in its cloud. But it still runs a distant fifth to the cloud infrastructure leader.

That was fast. Cloud backup and file sharing company Druva snagged another $25 million in Series D funding—just 10 months after its last $25 million infusion, and bringing its total so far to $92 million.

No surprises here. More enterprise contracts helped Zendesk meet the street for its first quarter as a public company. The customer-service software developer still expects to lose money this year.

STATS & SPECS

Fine print. Only 12% of big enterprises actually own 3D printers, but new stats from Tech Pro Research suggest one-third will be using them “actively” within 12 months. The question: where will they buy them? Hewlett-Packard is still M.I.A. although CEO Meg Whitman promised news in June.

Reversal of fortune? IDC believes worldwide IT spending is on pace to grow 4.5% this year, buoyed by smartphone shipments and a faster-than-expected surge in personal computer refreshes.

STARTUPS

Look out, Larry. With big businesses like MetLife choosing its NoSQL database platform, MongoDB has hired a new CEO with enterprise chops: BladeLogic founder Dev Ittycheria, who sold his company to BMC for $900 million.

Stealth no more. Founded by former big data engineers from Facebook and Google, Metanautix’s beta client list includes Hewlett-Packard. Its mission: speed up the analysis of distributed data.

Faster mockups. What do Walmart.com Zappos.com and eBay have in common? They all use mobile app and Web prototyping software from InVision Design, which just got another $21 million in Series B funding.

FAQ

Millions of dollars in venture capital have been pledged to content marketing software—technology that matches advertisements, brochures, white papers and even customized Tweets to specific audiences. SimpleReach picked up $9 million in late July, and another player, Kontera, just sold for $150 million.

I asked a repeat investor, Sequoia partner Michael Dixon, to explain the interest. For him, it comes down to better control over who sees the message, along with when and where.

“Many businesses have already purchased some kind of technology to assist with marketing,” Dixon says. “However we’ve found that business purchasing behaviors have actually lagged behind the rapid innovations seen on marketing channels themselves. As a result, many marketers are still using technologies that were built for an earlier era—for example software that was built to answer customer service inquiries instead of brand marketing challenges. For content marketing specifically, we’re in the very early innings of adoption, and it’s being lead by those enterprises that are very forward-thinking with their marketing, such as GE and Unilever.”

What’s your spin on marketing software? Pitch it to datasheet@heatherclancy.com.

ONE MORE THING …

Keep your hands on the wheel. General Motors is taking Google Glass for a spin on its assembly line and in its training operation. A dozen early adopters are using the technology to snap photos of parts or document snags in the production process, which can be reviewed with engineers more quickly than otherwise possible. So far, the prognosis on productivity is neutral.

EVENTS

Def Con: Hack to your heart’s content. (Aug. 7 – 10, Las Vegas)

Gartner Catalyst: Architect a digital business. (Aug. 11 – 14, San Diego)

VMworld: Learn about latest virtualization innovation. (Aug. 24-28, San Francisco)

Atlassian Summit: Build software, collaboratively. (Sept. 9 – 11, San Jose, Calif.)

Open Data Center Alliance Forecast 2014: Catch up on enterprise cloud computing trends. (Sept. 22 – 24, San Francisco)

Oracle OpenWorld: Get a roadmap reality check. (Sept. 27 – Oct. 2, San Francisco)

Gartner Symposium ITxpo 2014: Compare notes with peers. (Oct. 5 – 9, Orlando, Fla.)

Splunk .conf2014. Harness operational intelligence from machine data. (Oct. 6 – 9, Las Vegas)

Dreamforce: Pick from 1,400 sessions about the world’s largest cloud ecosystem. (Oct. 13-16, San Francisco)

Strata/Hadoop World: Analyze big data tools and techniques. (Oct. 15 – 17, New York)

AWS re:Invent: Hear the latest about Amazon Web Services. (Nov. 11 – 14, Las Vegas)

Gartner Data Center Conference: Get new ideas for operations and management. (Dec. 2 – 5, Las Vegas)