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Smarter Planet
July 24th, 2014
12:30
 

Max Neiman, Senior Research Fellow, Professor, Political Science, University of California, Riverside (Emeritus)

Max Neiman, Senior Research Fellow, Professor, Political Science, University of California, Riverside (Emeritus)

Jeremy Goldberg, Deputy Chief of Staff - Civic Innovation, Office of San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed

Jeremy Goldberg

By Max Neiman and Jeremy M. Goldberg

California’s Department of Technology and IBM are launching CalCloud, a new public-private partnership model for fostering cutting edge technology and efficiency in government.

The CalCloud computing platform aims to speed access to information, enable more publically accessible and consumable data, and spur civic innovation across state and local governments on a subscription basis.

In a recent study we surveyed city administrators, managers and financial officers in 245 California cities (“Managing Budgets During Fiscal Stress”), representing 67 percent of California’s city population.  Our research included case studies of the state’s major cities Sacramento, San Francisco, San Jose, Oakland, Riverside, Pasadena and Los Angeles.  Our findings and recommendations considered how to manage structural deficits, examples of civic innovations and public-private partnerships to foster citizen engagement, and reducing conflict between the state and local government. Continue Reading »

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Eric Engquist, assistant VP, USAA

Eric Engquist, assistant VP, USAA

By Eric Engquist

When I left the US Army in 2005, it was an incredibly stressful experience. In fact, I tell people today that I’m the quintessential example of what not to do when you’re transitioning to civilian life.

From childhood, I had planned on serving in the military. It was a family tradition.  But after serving as an infantry officer for 8 years, including deployments to Kosovo and Iraq, I decided to leave the military, get married and start a family.

Problem was, I didn’t know what to expect after I exited the military. I didn’t have a career plan, or a financial plan or even a firm sense of where I would live. As a result, it took me nearly six months to land a job.

That’s why, as the assistant vice president in charge of military transitions at USAA, I am passionate about serving our military members and their families, and am determined to do everything I can to ease their journey. And, I’m happy to say that we’re getting help from IBM Watson—the cognitive computing system.

Continue Reading »

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Frances West, Chief Accessibility Officer, IBM

Frances West, Chief Accessibility Officer, IBM

By Frances West

Accessibility that is grounded in a company’s values can bridge individual differences, better connect with customers, enable a diverse pool of talent in the workplace, and improve the standard of living for all members of society.

It also creates context-driven systems that understand everyone’s information consumption patterns so people of all abilities have a personalized user experience on any device, as well as increased access to timely, logically relevant and useful information to make routines, interactions, and decisions easier and more intuitive.

This is why accessibility has become so critical for commercial and government organizations around the world. With more than 1 billion people with disabilities worldwide, including the rapidly growing aging population, demand for accessibility continues to increase, making it a mainstream requirement to optimize communications, differentiate service offerings and personalize interactions.

In fact, Gartner believes that by 2015, 50 percent of organizations will have technology projects underway that support the enablement of disabled people in the workplace to address compliance, and help develop more productive endpoint solutions. Continue Reading »

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Lisa Seacat DeLuca, IBM Master Inventor for Mobile, reads her newly published childrens’ book, A Robot Story, to her twin sons.

Lisa Seacat DeLuca, IBM Master Inventor for Mobile, reads her newly published childrens’ book, A Robot Story, to her twin sons.

By Lisa Seacat DeLuca

Planting the seeds of curiosity and imagination in kids takes some creativity.

I’m a software engineer but my parents aren’t. Growing up, my father loved gadgets and we had a computer in the house. I taught myself how to type on that computer and eventually how to write html code. I shared my father’s love for gadgets and that led me to applying to colleges for computer science. But when I got to school I felt like I was at a disadvantage. I didn’t know some of the basics that would have made learning the more complex topics a lot easier. Continue Reading »

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Ramesh Ramanathan, Chairman, Jana Group

Ramesh Ramanathan, Chairman, Jana Group

By Ramesh Ramanathan

Anyone who has spent time solving problems of financial inclusion will confess that it is hard work.

The gap between the financial services that those of us reading this have access to, and those which are available to the poor around the world, is both disturbingly large and tantalizingly solvable. But the really hard part is moving from the realm of possibilities to the reality of scalable practical ideas – ideally, with the inherent lift-off velocity of market forces.

At Janalakshmi, we have always believed that what truly constrains us is not government regulation – of course, regulations are major sources of unnecessary friction – but rather our own inability to innovate to find powerful solutions that add value to our clients.  Continue Reading »

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Lance Crosby, CEO and President, SoftLayer, an IBM Company

Lance Crosby, CEO and President, SoftLayer, an IBM Company

By Lance Crosby

Let’s be honest, diving into a public cloud computing environment makes many companies more than a little nervous. After all, who is really comfortable with putting it all out there? Who feels secure enough to trust that mission-critical applications are truly safe in the public domain?

Despite knowing that public clouds provide companies with undeniable access to data for customers and employees – data that can be shared, analyzed and put to work – organizations have a hard time relinquishing control of applications and data that run on their own infrastructure. And they don’t know where to start.

I often hear from clients that they are uncertain about the public cloud because they want to maintain control. And they’re not sure how to align the cloud to their business goals. In addition, they are concerned that if the cloud vendor’s network goes down, that they could lose millions a day in lost sales with no real recourse other than to sit on their hands and wait. They really can’t afford even the slightest chance that their mission-critical applications are susceptible to any outage. So the safest bet it to keep them on premises where they can keep an eye on them. Continue Reading »

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Supratik Guha, IBM Research Director of Physical Science

Supratik Guha, IBM Research Director of Physical Science

Cloud and big data applications are putting new challenges on systems, at the same time that underlying silicon chip technology is reaching its limits. Bandwidth to memory, high speed communication and device power consumption are becoming increasingly challenging to improve upon. So, IBM Research is putting $3 billion into solving this “chip grand challenge” and expects not only to push silicon tech beyond seven nanometers and improve upon today’s systems, but to eventually build  systems based upon non-traditional architectures that are much more efficient than today’s machines.

The Smarter Planet blog caught up with Supratik Guha, IBM Research’s director of Physical Science, to find out what it means – and what’s required – to go beyond silicon. Continue Reading »

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Lynda Chin, Scientific Dir., MD Anderson Institute for Applied Cancer Science

Lynda Chin,  Chair of Genomic Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

By Lynda Chin

New technologies have their upsides and downsides.

High speed computing has allowed for rapid gene sequencing and a tremendous acceleration in scientific discovery.  The parallel developments of handheld computers and high-speed wireless networks have led to an amazing point in human history; one where several libraries worth of information can immediately be accessed from devices we carry in our pockets. Continue Reading »

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July 9th, 2014
9:00
 

Christopher Hansen, President, American Cancer Society, Cancer Action Network

Christopher Hansen, President, American Cancer Society, Cancer Action Network

By Christopher W. Hansen

Technology is changing every aspect of our lives, and in the field of medicine that is especially true in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of cancer.

Technology allowed scientists to unravel the human genome and led to the creation of the entirely new science of genomics and personalized medicine. Now we’re able to fight some cancers by using technology to identify genetic mutations and create therapies to cause specific molecular alterations in tumors. We also use apps on smartphones and other personal technological devices connected to broadband networks to monitor our health. Technology enables patient-centered care.

As cancer care continues to evolve, so does medical technology and its use in every aspect of the care continuum. Continue Reading »

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Xiaowei Shen, Dir., IBM Research China

Xiaowei Shen, Dir., IBM Research China

By Xiaowei Shen

China’s economic development story is truly incredible. With an average GDP growth of 10% over the past 30 years, China has emerged as the world’s second-largest economy and largest manufacturer.

But as a nation we realize that for China to sustain rapid growth some things have to change. One of the most central and widely discussed issues is ensuring growth while protecting the environment and the health of our citizens. We understand that our success should not come at the cost of future generations. Continue Reading »

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