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Bitcoins are a digital cryptocurrency and have been around since 2009. As a substitute for legal tender, they are becoming a rage for investors and others but because there is no government agency auditing or performing regulatory oversights, you wonder if it is the perfect breeding ground for electronic nanocrime? Since the introduction of the Bitcoin, some competitors have emerged and the whole segment of cryptocurrencies are defined as Altcoins. Altcoins include: Dogecoin, Ethereum, Feathercoin, Litecoin, Monero, Novacoin, Peercoin, and Zetacoin. Some of these cryptocurrencies are considered improvements on the original Bitcoin algorithm structure, and they are gaining some traction as well. Some financial experts and analysts, including Warren Buffett and Ben Stein, are leery of the overall cryptocurrency market. Is it because it doesn't fit into their more tr... (more)

How Blockchain Is Changing the Retail Industry | @CloudExpo #DX #FinTech #Blockchain

Blockchain offers impeccable security with its cryptography-based decentralized system as well as the plethora of possible uses retailers could exploit in the near future. In a world of increasing cyberattacks, internet fraud and online hacking, blockchain comes as a breath of fresh air. With its encrypted data and decentralized network system, it's a thorn in every hacker's side. Generally being associated with the finance sector, blockchain is now taking retail by storm. It's on a course that will change the retail industry as we know it. But how exactly is it going to achieve such a feat? First of all, what is blockchain? Well, blockchain is a digital ledger which stores its data in the form of interlinked blocks. Each block contains a timestamp of its transaction along with the transaction data. The links between the blocks are secured by using encryption, which... (more)

Privacy and Security on Blockchains | @CloudExpo #FinTech #Blockchain

Privacy and Security on Blockchains: What Protection Measures the Networks Are Adopting to Secure Their Users Decentralization of everything, the great new idea of which the web can’t stop babbling, might still seem a bit utopian if you inspect it closely. Yes, blockchains are likely to reshape our economy, or a huge part of it, and benefit considerably those who are currently unbanked. They might also facilitate the creation of rating/reputation systems that are not controlled by any single entity and thus allow people (say Uber drivers who’d like to work for Lyft) to switch employers without having to establish their credibility anew. They might give users complete control over their assets; protect them, to a degree, from being robbed and provide tools to sustain privacy even when a state-level actor – a bank or a government – is after their identity. But before t... (more)

Cloud Services Brokerage Enablement | @CloudExpo #DX #Cloud #FinTech

Cloud Services Brokerage Enablement The cloud market is growing at a rate of 30% annually and is expected to reach $130 billion. Analysts  predict that service providers are well positioned to be the leading point of distribution for cloud  services in light of the scale of their operations and their capacity to offer end-to-end lifecycle  management for IaaS, SaaS and PaaS over secure managed networks. Delivering cloud services has emerged as one of the most important opportunities of the decade for  service providers. To retain existing customers, grow market share and maintain existing profit margins  on core services; service providers need an edge on their competition and to increase agility in  addressing emerging market opportunities.  In what is often considered their “core” business, service providers are facing new competition from companies that are offe... (more)

The End of Net Neutrality Could Be Good for Marketers — And Bad for Almost Everyone Else | @CloudExpo #API #Cloud

The End of Net Neutrality Could Be Good for Marketers - And Bad for Almost Everyone Else The Federal Communications Commission announced that it will vote on December 14 to enact the exceptionally misleadingly titled “Restoring Internet Freedom” order. If passed, it will do the opposite of restoring anything resembling freedom — it will repeal the current net neutrality rules which were enacted to ensure that Americans would have equal access to the Internet. If you’re reading this, chances are you’re already interested in the topic. Still, some quick background: Renamed “Open Internet” a while back, net neutrality provided a regulatory framework that specifically prohibited: Blocking: Broadband providers may not block access to lawful content, applications, services or non-harmful devices. Throttling: Broadband providers may not deliberately target some lawful In... (more)

Sia Could Disrupt the Cloud Market | @CloudExpo #AI #DX #Siacoin #FinTech #Blockchain

Blockchain technology is taking over the world. It is an ingenious invention by a person or a group of people known by the pseudonym, Satoshi Nakamoto. Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past 8 years, you have heard of Bitcoin. The underlying technology behind Bitcoin is called blockchain, a public ledger of all the Bitcoin transactions that ever happened on its network. However, the use of blockchain is not limited to Bitcoin. There have been numerous projects that are making use of blockchain technology. The most famous of these is Ethereum, which is a simplified platform to let developers build apps (dApps) on the blockchain. Another prominent project using blockchain technology is Sia, a distributed cloud storage platform. The idea for Sia was conceived back in 2013 at HackMIT, a hackathon hosted at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The ide... (more)

Chatbots, AI and #FinTech | @CloudExpo #AI #ML #DX #DigitalTransformation

FinTech is a lucrative, yet quite saturated market. In order to stay competitive, businesses should keep track of the emerging trends and be able to capitalize on them before their competitors do. Artificial Intelligence is currently among the most promising FinTech trends. Leading financial brands such as Capital One, MasterCard, as well as hundreds of startups have set the pace for the adoption of virtual financial advisors. If you want to stay ahead of your competition or simply explore the opportunities for AI in fintech, this article is for you. Here is a brief overview of the existing AI-powered personal finance apps as well as some useful tips on how to develop one. AI and Chatbots: The hottest topics of 2017 The recent shift in consumer behavior triggered a new wave of innovation across major industries. Traditional business models and strategies are being re... (more)

Improve Your UX and You’re Bound to See eCommerce Success | @DevOpsSummit #DevOp #WebPerfs

Improve Your UX and You're Bound to See eCommerce Success By Scott Davis Commerce has become both digital and global: Online sales are expected to exceed $1.6 trillion dollars by 2020. As a customer preferred way of doing business, ecommerce offers increased selection, value, and convenience. Online shopping also offers merchants increased access to customer data and opportunities to capitalize on that information. If your business isn’t keeping pace with best practices in ecommerce UX—not to mention leveraging mobile to capture even more opportunities—you’ll miss out on the continuously growing percentage of consumer online spending. In 2016, for instance, shoppers made 51 percent of their purchases online (compared to 48 percent in 2015 and 47 percent in 2014). Regardless of the path of innovation you choose in the ecommerce space, your online presence should be o... (more)

Digital Commerce Innovation Demands Agility | @CloudExpo @FujitsuAmerica #Cloud

Fujitsu and Grid Dynamics have teamed up to create the Cloud Commerce Platform to empower retailers with best-of-breed hardware, software and services for faster digital innovation. Retailers are under immense pressure to innovate faster. Working with them over the years, we have come to intimately understand their challenges. With the explosion of digital touch points and the expectation of a unified experience throughout a shopper's journey across the channels, retailers must innovate at an unprecedented pace while performing flawlessly even as traffic peaks. To maintain their edge, retailers must experiment with new ideas by deploying new apps and features 24/7. Industry leaders, like Amazon, Staples, Walmart and Zappos are already developing features faster than web startups do. However, most retailers are still hampered by the complexity of Information Techno... (more)

What Digital Transformation Means to Retailers | @ThingsExpo #DX #IoT #M2M

A recent BusinessWeek article titled “America’s Retailers Are Closing Stores Faster Than Ever” summarizes the epidemic that retailers are facing today (see Figure 1). Figure 1:  Growing Epidemic of Store Closures Retailers are closing stores at a record path and the driving force behind the acceleration in store closings is Amazon, who now accounts for over 50% of all on-line retail sales (see Figure 2). Figure 2:  Amazon’s Growing Dominance of e-commerce; source:  “Competitors Can’t Keep Up With Amazon’s Growth” What are retailers to do when the tricks and techniques that worked in the past just don’t work in today’s real-time data and analytics driven business world?  Business models that worked in a world that valued size and location quickly fall apart in a world where retailers are leveraging customer, product and operational data and analytics to provide a h... (more)

How the Cloud Aids Supply Chain Recalls

This week brought an excellent example of how cloud-based services can meet business goals better than traditional IT and process management approaches. In conjunction with GS1 Canada, HP announced a product recall process Monday that straddles many participants across global supply chains. The pressures in such multi-player process ecologies can mount past the breaking point for such change management nightmares as rapid food or product recalls. You may remember recent food recalls that hurt customers, sellers, suppliers and manufacturers -- potentially irreparably. There have been similar issues with products or public health outbreaks. The only way to protect users is to identify the risks, warn the communities and public, and remove the hazards. It demands a tremendous amount of coordination and adjustment, often without an initial control source or authority. The k... (more)