Working with WikiLeaks

first_imgIn releasing more than 250,000 classified diplomatic cables last month, the Web-based organization WikiLeaks proved yet again its power to expose. But to put the vast trove of government secrets, ranging from the mundane to the life-threatening, into proper context, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange still needed the traditional media.It was just another case of strange journalistic bedfellows, which has become more common in recent years, said Bill Keller, executive editor of The New York Times, during a discussion on Thursday (Dec. 16). He said it proved that now more than ever traditional journalists have an important role to play in publishing government data in an effective and responsible way.“WikiLeaks was a source. They were not a partner,” Keller told a crowd of reporters and editors from around the country at the Walter Lippmann House. As Times reporters and editors sifted through the cables, they shared valuable leads with the Guardian, the London-based newspaper that had direct access to the cables and first shared them with the Times. But, Keller said, “We had none of that give-and-take with WikiLeaks.”In discussing the latest round of documents released by the nonprofit and controversial WikiLeaks, Keller offered an inside look at how the nation’s “newspaper of record” has contended with a wild, unruly web community dedicated to the notion that all information wants to be free. His keynote address was part of a daylong conference, “From Watergate to WikiLeaks: Secrecy and Journalism in the New Media Age,” sponsored by the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard.Keller defended the Times’ decision to publish the diplomatic cables. Critics have argued that the information gleaned wasn’t newsworthy, that the leaks could have endangered informants, and that making use of WikiLeaks compromised the Times’ independence and impartiality, Keller said.“I believe we have behaved responsibly,” he said. He said the Times worked closely with the Obama administration and its departments to prevent publishing information that might truly damage national security. As for the criticism that the cables weren’t important, he countered, “News generally works by advancing our knowledge by inches. For those that follow foreign policy, these documents provide nuance, texture, and drama.”Keller hesitated to call WikiLeaks a legitimate journalistic outfit.“I don’t regard Julian Assange as a kindred spirit,” Keller said. “If he’s a journalist, he’s not the kind of journalist that I am.”But, he said, WikiLeaks has slowly adopted more traditional journalistic norms. The group has moved away from its “absolutist view” that prized transparency at any cost to one that values discretion, Keller said. For instance, WikiLeaks agreed to redact certain names in its most recent leak, after being criticized for putting individuals at risk when it leaked documents pertaining to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.Although Keller acknowledged that the Times “could be more judicious in our use of anonymous sources,” he wholeheartedly defended the paper’s publishing of WikiLeaks documents.“This coverage is not just something to defend as our constitutional right — it’s something to be celebrated as our obligation to the national good,” he said. The question of which government activities should be kept from the public “has blossomed into one of the most urgent political debates of our time, joining the question of how we protect ourselves to the question of what it is exactly that we are protecting.”The day’s events included panels on international reporting and foreign government accountability, on the challenges of reporting on American state secrets, and on entrepreneurial solutions for investigative reporting.The conference made a point of highlighting several new Web-based reporting tools, including Document Cloud, Basetrack, and the Sunlight Foundation. But most speakers agreed that while online tools can help journalists to access, process, and share data, they won’t take the place of traditional investigative reporting.“You’ve got to get out and do the reporting,” said panelist David Kaplan, director of the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists. “Nothing replaces the careful craft of developing great sources, building trust, and observing firsthand what’s happening in this big, bad world.”Kathleen Carroll, executive editor of the Associated Press (AP), said that the Web provides too loose of a network to determine real whistleblowers from conspiracy theorists and worthwhile secrets from “things we already know.”“The increasingly lonely task of ferreting out secrets continues to fall primarily to [traditional] journalists … and to a few hardy folks who are applying good journalistic principles to their own self-publishing,” she said in the conference’s other keynote address. (She added that the AP was approached by WikiLeaks about its latest series of document leaks but declined to meet Assange’s terms for publishing the information.)In reality, Carroll said, holding governments accountable requires reportorial manpower and financial resources. The AP alone filed 1,500 Freedom of Information Act requests last year and has spent many months and dollars in court trying to pry classified information from government hands, in an ongoing effort of the sort that dispersed, fly-by-night outfits like WikiLeaks would be hard-pressed to fight.“It turns out that reporting is hard,” Carroll said.Full videos and summaries of the conference’s panels and speeches can be found at the Nieman Center website.last_img read more

Magic Technology Lands EMC in Gartner Magic Quadrant

first_imgLast week, Gartner released their first ever Magic Quadrant for Solid State Arrays (SSAs), also known as All-Flash Arrays (AFAs).  We’re proud to have EMC recognized in the ‘Leaders’ quadrant (Figure 1), a testament to EMC’s flash strategy and the execution of bringing XtremIO to market near the end of last year.  Flash arrays have been around for quite a while, anywhere from years to decades depending on the vendor.  So why is Gartner only now beginning to track a Magic Quadrant specific to them?I believe the answer is straightforward.  Until recently, flash arrays were very expensive, very limited devices that were targeted only at boosting performance where price was no object.  The market for them was small as were the use cases.  They weren’t enterprise-ready, serving only a niche performance market.  EMC never entered this niche.  At our scale you need to be bolder to move the needle and that’s why in 2012 we acquired XtremIO, bringing it to market in November 2013.Since then, in well under a year, EMC has surpassed all others in the SSA/AFA market and XtremIO has assumed the leadership position.  Why is this?  I believe this answer is also straightforward.  XtremIO is magic technology.“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” – Arthur C. ClarkeShareIt’s easy to think about XtremIO as just another flash array that’s great for boosting performance on some critical application.  But if that’s the only way you think about it, you’re missing the huge value it brings across your data center.  It’s common for XtremIO customers to begin with a targeted workload in mind, but quickly find out they can expand the use cases for the array with additional applications and workloads, and to revise their flash strategy to use XtremIO across the board.  Consider what a couple of XtremIO customers recently said:“When you’re doing a 100,000 IOPS why wouldn’t I put everything on this? We get a boatload of business value for OLTP.  I’m having a hard time saying ‘why not?’” – Steve Vogler, USI Holdings“After our great experience with VDI, we had a SQL server that was on physical infrastructure that took 6-7 hours to process and load.  I reached out to the application owners, and said ‘Let’s try to put this in a virtual infrastructure’.  I gave them a virtual machine with less CPU and memory but on the XtremIO flash storage array.  It outperformed the physical server by 2-3x.” – Craig Englund, Boston ScientificShareTo these customers, XtremIO is magic.  It transforms their datacenters.  It transforms their businesses.  It transforms they way they spend their time because they no longer worry about provisioning or tuning complexity.  If you haven’t taken a hard look at XtremIO, you’re missing out on one of the most important technological shifts to come along in a decade.Don’t wait any more! Sign up for an XtremIO demo today and begin to redefine your business.  If you are interested in viewing Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for SSAs, please follow this link.Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, expressed or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.last_img read more

Stretching your credit union: Five steps to stronger prototyping

first_imgMy first job out of college was with a credit union that served Macy’s employees. One of the benefits with that role was that employees of the credit union received an employee discount at Macy’s. That coupled with the fact that some of our team members were former Macy’s employees, meant that I was not only able to buy nice clothes at a discount, but I had colleagues that gave me solid fashion advice and would recommend pieces that I might not have ever even considered. This stretched me.In recent years, without the influence of my fashion forward colleagues, my wardrobe has gotten a bit dull. I tend to pick very similar styles and I don’t stretch myself to try new things. Enter Stitch Fix. Stitch Fix merges fashion, needs identification and technology to provide a regular “fix” for users. Via the Stitch Fix website, I shared my sizes, my interests, my career and the kinds of events I attend. Using a simple rating system, I gave insights into the kinds of clothes I typically like. At whatever interval I choose, I then receive a “fix” which is a package containing interesting and new clothing. I select the pieces I like to keep and mail back those that don’t work.What I like best beyond the convenience and customization of the experience is that it stretches me to try new things. Every time I receive items that I would never pick myself, but that I really like. It has expanded my horizons. It’s also a low risk way to try new options. If I don’t like any of the clothes in my “fix,” I can send it back in an easy to use postage-paid envelope and the only cost is a $20 styling fee.As Filene works with credit unions to build their innovation competency through both i3 and our innovation programming, one of the most important elements of our Filene method is prototyping. Prototyping brings new ideas to life through a quick and inexpensive physical manifestation. It helps to really see what works about a new idea and where the challenges lie.Done iteratively, prototyping helps ensure that great new ideas are more successful and that new ideas that may not have a future are halted before large investments are made. Just like Stitch Fix, prototyping can help credit unions to try new things more often, stretching the organization to improve and grow while also reducing the risk heavily in a new idea before knowing if and how it might work.Here are five ways to help your credit union build prototyping into your innovation process:Invite your biggest critics to review the prototype. When you are ideating and creating new ideas, you want to avoid skepticism and criticism. When you choose an idea to move forward and begin prototyping, you want to invite in your most critical team members, colleagues and constituents. Tough feedback is important and will help shape the idea further.Focus on function over beauty. Your prototype should be inexpensive and does not need to be beautiful. It should be rough around the edges. Let those reviewing it know that you’ll focus on the polish of the idea once the prototyping is complete.Ask at least two questions. As you share your prototype, you’ll get the most meaningful feedback if you have specific questions to ask of those that are reviewing it. Questions should help you to gather insights around the biggest concerns that you have and should be open-ended in nature. Think about what you are most worried about and be sure you ask questions to address those issues.Don’t let your first prototype be your last. Prototypes are intended to be iterative. Once you have built one prototype, shared it, asked good questions and received feedback, use what you’ve learned to build another and follow the same process again. Every idea might have several prototypes before you decide to move forward.Invite your members and potential members to participate. Consumers love to be a part of building new ideas. Invite them to give you feedback on your prototype. Ensure that you invite participation from those that will be benefit most from the idea.It has been fun to stretch myself again and bring variety and depth to my wardrobe. Prototyping can stretch your credit union as well by bringing new ideas to life and making those ideas even more successful while reducing risk. Get your prototyping fix today.Filene’s innovation programming details can be found here. 79SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Tansley Stearns Tansley is a dynamic force of nature, fiercely crusading on behalf of all credit unions while tirelessly driving forward the brand image and family spirit of Canvas. She joined us … Web: Detailslast_img read more

The English Premier League has claimed victory in

first_imgThe English Premier League has claimed victory in the latest court case over its fight to prevent the use of foreign satellite TV equipment to view football matches in the UK.The High Court has ruled that the football organisation can in theory take action against suppliers of equipment over breaches of its copyright, but the exact wording of the ruling has yet to be determined.The move follows the decision by the European Court of Justice last year, in a separate case involving pub landlady Karen Murphy, that TV viewers should be able to watch matches via decoders supplied from anywhere in the EU, but with the proviso that the transmission in pubs and clubs of copyrighted material, including the Premier League’s logo and graphics, required the permission of the copyright holder.The High Court ruling allows importers of decoders to carry on their business in a way that avoids copyright infringement, but also gives the Premier League, in theory, the right to take action against those who infringe its copyright.“Lord Justice Kitchin’s judgment is consistent with the ECJ ruling. It is clear that the law gives us the right to prevent the unauthorised use of our copyrights in pubs and clubs when they are communicated to the public without our authority,” said the Premier League in a statement. “”We will now resume actions against publicans who are using European Economic Area foreign satellite systems to show Premier League football on their premises unlawfully and without our authority. There are other elements of the ECJ ruling which we believe are applicable under UK law and we will continue to explore these to protect our rights via the courts and other legal means.”last_img read more

The BBC plans to expand HD on iPlayer The BBC has

first_imgThe BBC plans to expand HD on iPlayerThe BBC has plans to expand its HD output on the iPlayer following the closure of the BBC HD TV channel last week, though questions still remain over the future of its 3D experiments.Responding to a string of criticism about replacing the BBC’s all-purpose BBC HD channel – which previously aired selected content from across all the BBC’s channels – with a simulcast HD feed of BBC2, director of BBC distribution Alix Pryde admitted the BBC aims to step up its online efforts.“By the end of this year we hope that all programmes produced in HD will be available in HD on iPlayer, regardless of whether they have been broadcast on an HD channel,” Pride said on an official BBC blog, responding to negative comments about the transition from BBC HD to BBC2 HD.“In the meantime, HD content on iPlayer has to have been broadcast on an HD channel, or else have been selected to be put through a separate process. There’s a limit to the number of hours of programming per week that can go through that process, but over the coming months we will be selecting those programmes carefully to try to minimise disappointment,” she added.The response followed viewer complaints that BBC3 and BBC4 shows that were previously available in HD on the BBC HD channel would now not be available on linear TV.The BBC HD channel was also home to the BBC’s 3D broadcast trials to date, leaving questions about how the corporation intends to broadcast 3D content in the future, or whether it intends to wind down this trial completely.Last year the BBC heralded a “summer of 3D” that included footage from the Last Night of the Proms, Wimbledon, the Olympics and the one-off Planet Dinosaur 3D all aired on the BBC HD channel as part of a two-year 3D trial that started in 2011.So far, the only previously-announced 3D programming still pending is a 50th anniversary special of Doctor Who that will go out later this year, and natural history series Hidden Kingdom, which is yet to get an air date, with no details about whether the 3D trial will be extended beyond 2013.It is understood that BBC1 HD and BBC2 HD will not be used to air this yet-to-air 3D content, though a spokeswoman for the BBC said: “We are continuing to evaluate options for broadcasting 3D programmes using HD capacity, subject to regulatory and financial approval.”Referring to the planned 3D broadcast of the Doctor Who special, the spokeswoman added: “It is our intention to broadcast it using the BBC’s HD capacity, there will be more news on this later this year,”No further details were disclosed at this time. However, speaking at a conference last week, Andy Quested, the BBC’s chief technologist for HD and 3D reportedly said that viewing spikes for 3D broadcasts had reduced over time despite the growth of the potential audience. “We start to see that the figures are falling and that is a real worry as a public service broadcaster.  We have to justify the money. Is it a something we should leave to private broadcasters?” Quested was quoted as saying. He added: “I don’t think we will see a 3D channel launch at all on the BBC.”Referring to the BBC’s HD iPlayer plans, a spokesman stressed that while it was looking to add more HD content to the platform, no firm internal targets had been set. “The BBC is looking at a number of different options including using iPlayer to enable audiences to continue watching BBC HD programmes from BBC3, BBC4, CBBC and CBeebies in the future. No decision has been made at present.”last_img read more

Anevia is exhibiting at IBC on stand 4B66

first_imgAnevia is exhibiting at IBC on stand 4.B66 Video delivery software specialist Anevia has teamed up with Amazon Web Services to offer a cloud-based video delivery service that allows cloud storage and cloud streaming of OTT content.The new system is based on the integration of Anevia’s core ViaMotion products with Amazon Web Services and is designed to let operators and broadcasters expand their multiscreen services quickly and efficiently by extending their storage and processing resources in the cloud.Anevia’s ViaMotion service is a multiscreen, OTT video software suite for telecom service providers, broadcasters and content owners. It is used for deploying multiscreen solutions for headends and content delivery networks including live nPVR, catchup and timeshifting.“With the rapid adoption of multiscreen services, operators need to virtualize and scale their delivery capacities in order to sustain consumer demand for video content on the internet,” said Damien Lucas, Anevia’s co-founder and CTO.last_img read more

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer Yahoo has announced plans

first_imgYahoo CEO Marissa MayerYahoo has announced plans to cut 15% of its workforce and has begun to explore “divesting non-strategic assets of value” – including its online games and smart TV products.Speaking on the company’s fourth quarter earnings call, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer said that the board and management are looking to “strategic alternatives” in a bid to deliver value to shareholders.Chief financial officer, Kenneth Goldman, said that through exits, efficiency programmes and investments, Yahoo plans to reduce its headcount to approximately 9,000 people by the end of 2016 – roughly 15% below today’s level, meaning the loss of some 1,590 jobs.Discussing the direction of the company since she joined as boss in 2012, Mayer admitted that some investments have been “essential to Yahoo’s transformation, others have not”.“To that end, in Q4 we closed Yahoo Screen and shifted away from original scripted content. In 2016, some of our digital magazines will have their content consolidated under one of our four core verticals, while others will be shut down,” said Mayer.“We’ll also exit legacy products including Yahoo Games and Smart TV, while we’ll continue to support a handful of higher-margin, higher-engagement legacy products like Flickr [and] Answers.”Yahoo Smart TV is software that came pre-installed on selected models of TV to offer an ‘enhanced experience’ with access to interactive on-screen information and exclusive content.Yahoo lists Samsung and Vzio as Yahoo Smart TV partners, though the former only supported the platform between 2009 and 2012. Previous Sony and Toshiba models also worked with the Yahoo software.On the earnings call Mayer also announced a US$230 million impairment charge on Tumblr, the blogging platform it bought for US$1.1 billion in 2013, after Yahoo experienced a “slower ramp in monetisation than we initially expected” in 2015.Overall the company reported a full year net loss of US$4.4billion. However, GAAP revenue of US$4.97 billion was up from US$4.62 billion for full year 2014.In 2015 Yahoo said that for video it delivered US$375 million of GAAP revenue, up 64% year-on-year, with its live online stream of an NFL American Football match one of “many exciting highlights” in this area.Mayer said the NFL stream showed “how strong our streaming technology can be and where streaming ultimately can go.”last_img read more