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Archive for March, 2012
March 29th, 2012

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By Brenda Dietrich
IBM Business Analytics Chief Technology Officer

Back in the 1960s, U.S. Federal government funding of computing and networking technologies laid the foundation for the Internet and many of the other advances in computing and communications that we now enjoy—everything from Facebook to smartphones. Today’s announcement by the White House of a “Big Data Research and Development Initiative” could help achieve similar advances for the economy and society. As a longtime researcher in data analytics, I’m thrilled to see this happening and I can’t wait to be part of it.

The government said today that six federal departments and agencies will invest a total of $200 million in research by universities, non-profit institutes and corporations, with the goal of greatly improving the tools and techniques needed to access, organize, and glean discoveries from huge volumes of digital data.

At IBM, we’ve been zeroing in on big data for several years. We believe the combination of data from the Web, communications networks, governments and businesses, and tens of millions of sensors means humanity has the potential to understand how the world works better than ever before so we can make better decisions and enjoy better outcomes. That’s the basis of our Smarter Planet agenda.

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by Jill Puleri, IBM GBS Retail Leader

We grew up hearing the story of Hansel and Gretel, but it’s not until recently that the moral became applicable to the business world. According to the story, Hansel leaves a trail of breadcrumbs so the duo can find their way home, but they get lost after the birds make the bread their dinner. As the IBM GBS Retail Leader, I’ve taken a lesson or two from Hansel’s mishap — it’s that if you don’t watch the breadcrumbs carefully, you’ll never find your way to the prize. Continue Reading »

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March 29th, 2012

by Mark Cleverley, Global Director of Public Safety Solutions for IBM

There is no proverbial silver bullet to creating a safer city, but analytics technology is assisting law enforcement agencies all over the world to sort through information – part of the 2.5 quintillion bytes of data we create and consume every day – to get ahead of crime. Having access to all that information is an invaluable resource for law enforcement agencies, but it can also be pretty paralyzing. After all, only a fraction of the bits and bytes can actually be relevant, right? But how do you know and, more importantly, how do you find and act on it? Continue Reading »

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by Michael Useem, Professor of Management and Director of the Leadership Center, Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania

A checklist is only as good as its underlying foundation, and the foundation is only as solid as the materials and engineering that go into it.  That also applies to effective leadership, which I believe can be distilled into a set of core principles that help leaders navigate complex challenges around the world.

To build a Leader’s Checklist, I have tapped not only my own experience but also that of an array of investigators, researchers, thinkers, and managers.  I have concluded that management experience points to a core of just 15 mission-critical leadership principles that vary surprisingly little among companies or countries: Continue Reading »

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Manish Parashar
Professor of electrical and computer engineering
Rutgers University

For years, universities have worked with businesses to produce joint research and educational programs. But these days there’s a new imperative: we must create collaborations aimed at producing economic development and jobs. At Rutgers, we see these sorts of public-private partnerships not only as a tremendous opportunity for our students and faculty, but as critical resource for New Jersey. Continue Reading »

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Are you interested in chatting about building a Smarter Planet? Join us and discuss how businesses, governments and entire industries are adopting technologies to become efficient and effective.


You will need a Twitter ID to be part of this chat. To participate in the chat, follow @SmarterPlanet or the hash tag #P4SPChat on Twitter. You can also use applications like tweetchat for your convenience.


The #P4SPChat kicks-off on March 29, 2012 at 12 p.m. Eastern Time with a discussion on healthcare. We’ll conduct chats the second and fourth Thursday of every month at 12PM Eastern Time.
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By Dr. Larry Norton
Medical Director, Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center
Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

To me, the recently-announced collaboration between my institution, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and IBM is of profound importance for reasons both obvious and more subtle. The obvious reasons concern what we may call knowledge. The subtle ones would be apparent only to those of us who care for patients on a daily basis and concern what we may call wisdom. Let me explain what I mean by the distinction.

First: What is the project? Our two organizations plan on applying IBM’s Watson technology, which impressed all of us by beating two grand-champions on the Jeopardy! TV quiz show, to MSKCC’s vast store of cancer case histories, utilizing the skills of expert computer scientists and highly experienced cancer doctors. The goal is to develop a tool to help physicians all over the world better care for their patients with cancer.

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By David Kerr
Director, Corporate Strategy, IBM

Cancer is the second most common cause of death in the United States, and, according to the American Cancer Society, more than 1.6 million new cases are expected to be diagnosed this year. Discoveries in molecular biology and genetics in recent years have produced new insights into cancer biology, but these advances have also ratcheted up the complexity of diagnosing and treating each case.

The disease is one of the most important fields of medicine, yet it’s devilishly complex and there’s too much information for any single practitioner to keep up with.

A collaboration announced today between Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City and IBM could revolutionize how physicians  in the United States and worldwide get access to world-class information about cancer.

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by Tom Cross, Manager, IBM X-Force Threat Intelligence and Security

The nature of IT security in 2011 shows evolution at work. While some positive trends and improvements have emerged in thwarting security vulnerabilities, attacker’s methods continued to adapt.

Issued today, the 2011 IBM X-Force Report shows surprising improvements in several areas of security such as a reduction in application security vulnerabilities, exploit code and spam. As a result, the report suggests attackers today are being forced to rethink their tactics to targeting more niche IT loopholes and emerging technologies such as social networks and mobile devices. Continue Reading »

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 Charles Fishman, author of The Big Thirst, weighs in for World Water Day…and for every day.

Laurie Arthur is a farmer in the heart of Australia’s bread basket, the basin of the Murray River, who was kind enough, when I was trying to understand water, to explain how water works for farmers.

Arthur lives out in the wide open country east of Adelaide and north of Melbourne — flat, irrigated farmland where his nearest neighbor is 12 miles down the road, and where his white farm truck is often flanked by squads of kangaroos, who have no trouble keeping pace as he drives from field to field at 40 or 50 mph.

Arthur lives comfortably in a world most of us never visit, and even have a hard time grasping. He farms 10,000 acres. That amount of land is impossible to visualize, but its scale is easy to bring down to Earth.

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