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Keeping Data Secure Is Tougher than Ever

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New ways of collecting and analyzing data are creating new opportunities for companies to gain an edge over their competitors and grow their profits. But while data has the potential to create profits, it also has the potential to take them away. If hackers get their hands on your company's data, they can wreak havoc on customer relationships and cause tremendous damage to your brand and reputation.

Security Threats are Proliferating Fast

One thing I've learned during my tenure as editor of eSecurity Planet is that security threats are proliferating so fast, it's tough for even the experts to keep up with them. The most disconcerting thing about high-profile breaches like those at Target and Neiman-Marcus is how long it can take to discover them and how difficult it can be to pinpoint specific methods used by attackers. Hackers themselves have trouble keeping up, as evidenced by a hapless group of attackers who boasted of breaching a British bank website only to discover they had actually attacked a phishing site.

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Small Business Technology Then and Now

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If you're a small business owner, manager or entrepreneur—or interested in becoming one—I encourage you to visit Small Business Computing, a leading technology and business-growth resource. The site's been online since 2002, and I've been fortunate to be the editor for the past 10 years. It's been exciting to see the remarkable progress in small business technology over the past decade.

Technology has changed so much and so quickly, making it easier than ever for small businesses to compete, to grow and to prosper. Think cloud computing, mobile and social media just for starters. But we still have a long way to go to reduce the complexity and to make sure that small business owners can easily find the help and advice they need to assess, to buy, and to use the right technology for their needs.

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Windows XP: Move Along, Nothing to See Here

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During the premiere launch of XP back in 2001, then Microsoft Chairman and Chief Software Architect Bill Gates announced the worldwide availability of the Windows XP operating system.

"Today is a great day for PC users and a great day for the PC industry," Gates said. "With the launch of Windows XP, we are entering an exciting new era of personal computing. This powerful new version of Windows offers so much to customers -- it unlocks the full power of the PC and enables them to enjoy the best of what the digital world has to offer."

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Learn From Microsoft CEO Sayta Nadella

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In his first interview as the new CEO of Microsoft, Satya Nadella recently spoke with The New York Times about the organizational and cultural challenges he faces as the third CEO in the 39-year history of the technology giant. The leadership issues that Nadella discussed are relevant to the day-to-day concerns of many CIOs and IT professionals in today's enterprise.

Here are three particularly salient takeaways from the Times interview, "Microsoft's New Chief Says It's Time to Create."

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It's a Mobile World

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If one current technology trend is touching every aspect of the business and both its IT and line-of-business workforces, it is mobile.  As the managing editor of IT Business Edge, no matter what the business topic or tech news of the day, I can always find a mobile angle. IT Business Edge is known for its analysis of tech trends. Some come and go, some change names and seem to never die, and then there is mobile, which will continue to reach into all aspects of the intersection of work and technology, on both the macro and micro levels. The creativity and impact surrounding mobile strategies and technology is astounding.

From the widest view, everything that we include under the heading of mobile has irrevocably changed IT's relationship with the rest of the business.

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Living in an 'Anything's Possible' World

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2014 is, without a doubt, an exhilarating time to be in the IT industry. We had gone through a period of evolutionary changes in technology, but, for the past few years, we've experienced a dazzling pace of innovation that seems likely to continue far into the future.

Technologies That Alter Business

Social media. Cloud computing. BYOD. Big data. Software-Defined Everything. The Internet of things. Smart cars. Wearable clothing. These technologies have the potential to radically alter business and government, as well as our professional and personal lives. And who knows what new innovations the next few years will bring?

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1984 Macintosh Debut Brought Great Divide Between Apple, IBM PC Partisans

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Apple on Jan. 24 celebrated the 30th anniversary of the 1984 introduction of its renowned Macintosh, the "computer for the rest of us."

The Mac's debut came little more than a month before the first issue of PC Week, the print predecessor of eWEEK, hit the streets on Feb. 28, 1984. While eWEEK wasn't able to report immediately on the arrival of the Macintosh, the publication regularly covered the evolution of Apple's PC and the effect it was having on home and business computing.

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IT in 2014: One Big Cloud

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As the managing editor of Datamation, I track the dizzying change-fest that is the current IT scene. It's a lot to keep up with. Over the last few years, the model of slowly overlapping tech eras – as mainframes gave way to client-server – has vanished. Instead of one monolithic technology, we now see a semi-chaotic patchwork of trends that push and pull each other in countless ways.

Call it the Great Tech Mash-Up. VMware, the virtualization leader, created its own social media platform. Search king Google promotes an operating system, Android, that runs mobile phones. Citrix, an enterprise software outfit, sells an app that allows IT pros to log in using a smartphone. Everything bridges with everything else; this is the age of the API, which allows software to speak to software without assistance from we dumb humans. These days the stand-alone is fading fast, and every last holdout realizes it. Microsoft, which once fought Linux as the Great Scourge, now boasts how fast its Azure platform can run Linux boxes.

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Will 2014 Be The Year of Software Defined Everything?

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When I accepted the post of editor at Enterprise Networking Planet earlier this year, I had no idea how good the timing was. I came on board just in time to observe and chart the rise of software defined networking (SDN). And software defined networking, born of Martin Casado's OpenFlow open source protocol, looks poised to completely transform the way enterprise data centers work.

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Welcome to the New Webopedia!

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First, I want to take a moment to welcome you to the new and improved Webopedia.com! There's been a few changes to the site – changes that we think will make it much easier for you to find the technology terms you want to know more about. Here's a quick list of what's new on Webopedia.com and how to use the features.

1. Top 10 Terms to Know Now

Each month we'll feature a new set of top 10 terms based on new technology trends or important themes, such as cloud backup, open source, enterprise applications and more. If you are using a touch-enabled device, you can drag the top 10 technology terms list to the left to see more.

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What's Hot in IT: Mobile, Big Data, Software-Defined Everything

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Every few months, a few of us give a presentation to the sales folks here on what's hot in IT and where it might be headed. It's a useful exercise for me because it forces me to step back from the daily news grind to see the bigger picture: what's hot, where we need to do better, and where we might be headed in the future.

I thought it might be helpful to share a few observations with our readers, so I hope you find this as interesting an exercise as I do. And if you see something I'm missing, feel free to add it to the comment space at the bottom.

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How to Create a Secure Business VPN

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A Virtual Private network (VPN) uses a public network (usually the Internet) to connect securely to a private network (such as a company's network) to communicate confidentially over the public network. 

Using a VPN will let you share files and resources – including voice, video or data files -- as though you were physically connected on the same network. It's a good option for remote workers and organizations with global offices and partners to share data in a private manner.

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The Right Reason to Have a Facebook Community

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The movie "Field of Dreams," starring Kevin Costner, spawned one of the most well-known quotes of all time: "If you build it, he will come."  

Costner builds a baseball field -- in the middle of a cornfield of all places -- and after a time thousands do come.  The "build it and they will come" analogy has been used time and time again as the basis for starting a new business, developing new products and even in building online communities.

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Tech FAQ: What is the Difference Between RAM and ROM?

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One of the questions that Webopedia has been asked a few times on our Facebook Page is to explain the difference between RAM and ROM. RAM (Random Access Memory) and ROM (Read Only Memory) are types of computer memory that provide users with access to information stored on a computer. Here are the top five differences between the two types of memory:

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Children and Technology: The Disappearing Digital Divide

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A new study by Latitude Research reports that kids can predict the future of technology.  Today, children don’t neatly divide their virtual interactions from their "real world" experiences. For them, these two realms continue to converge as technologies become more interactive, portable, connected and integrated.

Some of the findings in the study got me thinking about the general topic of kids and technology.  Technology is becoming fully “integrated” into the daily lives of many children -- from constant social interaction through Facebook, online games and text messaging, it’s easy to see why the digital divide is disappearing.

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Tech FAQ: Top 5 What Is Technology Questions Answered

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Over the seven years that I've been writing for Webopedia, many things have changed.  Our site finally lost the "ancient" look last year (yay!) and we have a great design now. Webo's on-site search engine has been greatly improved, and even our parent company has changed.

What hasn't changed is the editorial focus and dedication to writing easy-to-understand tech definitions that anyone can reference to learn about the world of computers, technology and the Internet.

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Paul Allen's New Memoir: A Rare Glimpse into the Journey of One of the Worlds Most Successful Entrepreneurs

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I recently visited my friend, John, in Seattle, and considering that it was my first time to this wonderful city, he gave me a great city tour.  What I was shocked to learn was how many times Paul Allen’s name came up along the way. We took a walk through the Experience Music Project/Science Fiction Museum, founded by Allen, which is dedicated to the history and exploration of both popular music and science fiction. Apparently Allen, a huge music lover and Star Trek fan, thought creating a huge museum dedicated to his two passions would be a cool idea. The museum has everything from E.T. the alien in the (fake) flesh to a Jimi Hendrix exhibit, making it a very cool place to visit.

My friend also drove me through an area called South Lake Union which at one point was considered the city’s garage, a half-ignored area in Seattle with tired storefronts. However, Allen is now turning South Lake Union around with a plan that calls for 10 million square feet of laboratories, offices, apartments, condominiums, hotels, stores and restaurants. Allen’s developments could bring in 20,000 jobs and turn biotechnology research into an industry that redefines the Seattle economy. There were many other points in my visit where Allen’s name came up, and I’ve only listed two of his many accomplishments and projects since co-founding Microsoft.

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Guess What! The Zuck Isn't the Only Person Who Can Create a Social Network

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Facebook = genius, Linked in = makes sense…but what I’ve learned recently is that there is amazing technology that will allow you to create your own social network online within minutes for basically no money. I learned all of this from a presentation by Nick Floro at Macworld 2011.

Ning, Social GO and Buddy Press make it easy to build custom and powerful social websites. I am simply amazed at the features that these companies offer. You can simply plug this community into a tab of your existing website or make the community your site’s main feature. Some of the features offered include: Custom profile creation, 50+ design options, moderation and privacy features, rich invitation engines, status updates, dynamic activity feeds, rss feeds from blogs, chat features, group creation, blogs for every member, photo and video sharing… the list continues, but the main idea is that these sites give you every feature you would ever want in your very own social community.

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Conversation with Twitter Founders Helpful Twitter Metrics for Businesses

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I recently turned on NPR and started listening to a special interview of Twitter founders, Evan Williams and Biz Stone, hosted by the Common Wealth club. I highly recommend that you listen to the entire interview. The conversation got me thinking about Twitter and how such a simple platform has brought so much change in how people interact with each other and how news is spread far and wide.  I have summarized below some of the great points made by Ev and Biz in this interview…

Why is Twitter so great?

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QUICK REFERENCE
Flash Data Storage Vendor Trends

Although it is almost impossible to keep up with the pace of ongoing product releases, here are three recent highlights in the flash data storage... Read More »

15 Important Big Data Facts for IT Professionals

Keeping track of big data trends, research and statistics gives IT professionals  a solid foundation to plan big data projects. Here are 15... Read More »

Enterprise Storage Vendors

There's a number of vendors that sell enterprise storage hardware or offer cloud-based enterprise storage. View Webopedia's Enterprise storage... Read More »