Posts tagged ‘Business Video Hosting’

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Live Streaming Conferences and Meetings

December 7, 2015 7:30 am

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Want a few reasons you should be live webcasting your conference or live broadcasting your event?

  • Stream key parts of sold out venues to extra viewers
  • Provide a more complete and added value service to companies and presenters
  • Show past events and presentations for on demand viewing to supplement live broadcasting
  • Increase event importance through broadening and globalizing audience
  • Broadcast preshow material to help build interest
  • Create sample videos to generate interest and lead to premium content spending
  • Highlight sponsors’ products in videos or interview exhibitors’ executives
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Shot Sequences Add Variety and Texture to your Video Production

January 1, 2015 2:33 pm

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Shot sequences are useful jumping-off points for beginner (and experienced) videographers.

Most often, a video is made up of several shot sequences, similar to how this blog post is made up of several paragraphs. Within each paragraph (or shot sequence), there are multiple sentences (or shots) that work together to create distinct sets.

Let’s review this thrilling metaphor, shall we?

– Blog Post = Video.
– Paragraph = Shot Sequence.
– Sentence = Shot.

While taking a course in photo and video journalism at the Harvard Extension School, I learned some tried and true sequences that I still use to this day. These priceless gems have helped me to diversify my shots and create more dynamic videos.

Here are *five* of my favorite shot sequences. Try ’em out in your next video!

### 1. Medium. Close. Wide.

This is a great one to start with because it can be used in pretty much any type of video, and it requires minimal effort. It’s like the Meryl Streep of shot sequences: always a solid choice.

First: Capture a medium shot to establish a focus for your sequence.

Second: Take a close-up shot to highlight an interesting detail. This shot will serve as the sriracha for your sequence! Bam! Instant spice!

Third: Shoot a wide shot that includes more of the environment.

In general, close-ups are really useful when you’re trying to split up shots in an otherwise static video. If all my sentences were the same length and style, my paragraphs would become quite boring. Hooray for variety!

### 2. Close-up Collage

While we’re on the topic of close-ups, you can shoot a whole collection of them to create a portrait of a setting or a subject. Pair this with a caramel-smooth voice-over, and you’re on your way to creating video magic.

Imagine a scene with a woman reading a newspaper. As a videographer tasked with capturing this, you could use a nice, long medium shot of her reading away and call it a day. Or, you could take multiple brief close-up shots featuring her focused eyes, the headlines of the paper, the steaming mug of coffee, her purple nails, and any other interesting pieces that make up the whole. Talk about sriracha! Now we’re getting spicy!

### 3. The Reveal (my favorite!)

This shot sequence is analogous to a surprise birthday party in terms of the sheer joy it brings. First, think of something fun that you want to reveal in the last shot of your sequence. Maybe it turns out that your subject is standing among a colony of small penguins. Maybe someone behind him is actually talking, and he’s just mouthing the words. Maybe he’s wearing metallic leggings.

The possibilities are endless! In your first shot (or shots), be sure to hide the surprise, then “jump out,” or make the big reveal, in the last shot! So fun!

### 4. Match on Action

Some people call this method “cutting on action.” To build this sequence, you take multiple shots from different angles while preserving the continuity of the subject’s action.

Each new shot should pick up the subject’s action from the previous shot:

When done well, this sequence can make your video look seamless and professional, like a tuxedo unitard. Actions that your subject can repeat work best for this sequence.

### 5. Action. Reaction.

For this shot sequence, you will need at least two subjects, an “actor” and a “reactor.” When casting, it’s helpful to find subjects who are comfortable with expressing themselves on camera. As you can see in our video example above, Dave is quite comfortable with being a drama queen. Perfect.

Since I love anthropomorphized animals, I couldn’t help but provide you with another quick example. Let’s say one penguin, Randy, is surprising another penguin, Karen, with flowers.

– First shot: Karen is typing away with her penguin flippers at her desk.
– Second shot: Randy waddles over to Karen’s desk and pulls a bouquet of flowers out from behind his back. This is somewhat difficult because he has no hands.
– Third shot: Karen’s face is surprised and excited. She can’t believe Randy remembered her birthday!
– Fourth shot: Randy smiles and nods.

Once you begin shooting this sequence, the spatial relationship between the two subjects needs to remain consistent. In other words, if Karen begins on one side of the frame opposite Randy, she sure as heck needs to stay on that side. Otherwise, you risk creating cognitive dissonance, and penguins hate cognitive dissonance.

### It’s Go Time!

When I went out to shoot my first video assignment, I brought a whole list of shot sequences in my back pocket and experimented with them constantly. You can, too!

It’s important to keep in mind that you can alter and expand upon these models; think of them as starter logs for your creative fire. You feel that steam heat? It’s even more important to stay true to your own unique style. Maybe you are a close-up collage Craig, or an action-reaction Antonia. Maybe you want to squeeze three close-ups in between a medium and a wide shot! Go crazy! There are no rules! Go get ’em tiger!

Have you tried any of these shot sequences before? How would you expand on these templates? Do you have your own favorite sequence(s)?

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Times, WSJ Share Online Video Engagement Tips

December 7, 2014 1:33 am

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Though legacy organisations may be well practiced in producing newspapers and online stories, it is “much more difficult to integrate new considerations into that system,” noted Lucia Adams, deputy
head of digital at The Times and The Sunday Times. Doing so takes “extra time and extra expertise,” she added. Here are five pieces of advice.

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Top Video Hosting Service Providers: Best Video Hosting, Best Video Host Service

November 13, 2014 4:07 am

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Welcome to our monthly Best Hosting Providers   Brought to you by Gravitylab Video Hosting Services   Tired of mulling through endless hosting plans and packages, trying to...

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Best Practices For Video Hosting For Businesses

October 23, 2014 6:30 am

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Best Practices For Video Hosting For Businesses Video hosting for businesses can be a lucrative and pivotal marketing tool for your firm. Business video hosting is used for a number...

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September 15, 2014 3:09 am

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Ooyala releases Q2 2014 Global Video Index

AMSTERDAM – At last week’s Super Mobility Conference in Las Vegas, ESPN and Hulu said their mobile video audience was expanding rapidly, and said having mobile video was a critical component of their business strategy.

With good reason; both have seen huge growth in the popularity of their programming on mobile platforms.

They are not alone. Ooyala today released its Q2 2014 Global Video Index Report that shows mobile consumption exceeding 25% of all online viewing in the second quarter, and the trend is accelerating, accounting for 27% of online viewing in June. Over the past two years, mobile views increased more than 400%.

That growth isn’t expected to slow.

Cisco recently forecast that video traffic could make up 69% of all mobile video traffic by 2018; Ooyala predicts mobile to make up 50% of all online viewing by 2016.

It’s not just short-form content that’s popular with mobile users, long form, premium and live mobile video views all increased.

While mobile devices see plenty of snacking — viewers spent 45% of their time watching videos of six minutes or less in length – tablet viewers spent 23% of their time watching video of 30-60 minutes in length, more than on any other device.

At IBC this week, mobile has been center stage for a number of vendors, broadcasters and operators.

Increasingly, user interface and branding on mobile devices is being seen as a key part of the solution, a nod to the increasing amount of time being spent on devices other than traditional TV, and to the growing role operators expect those device to play.

Equally as topical at the conference has been the role that search, discovery and recommendation will play, not only across devices, but across premium and OTT service as well. More vendors are offering electronic programing guides that include not only pay-TV listings, but listings and recommendations from SVOD, TVOD and AVOD, along with other OTT services.

Ooyala’s Quarterly Index also found viewers use connected TVs for a big piece of their entertainment, saying viewers of connected TVs spent 81% of their time watching videos longer than 10 minutes.

Ooyala also said viewers spent 65% of their time watching videos 30 minutes or longer on connected TVs, and 54% of that time watching content longer than 60 minutes.

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

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September 12, 2014 11:31 pm

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A fascinating piece in Techcrunch this week, titled Big Data Analytics vs The Gut Check raises the most important question in today’s data-heavy world: can we really turn a stunning amount of statistics into something useful?

For a successful digital video provider, the sheer quantity of data can be literally dizzying. For every ‘play’ selected by a viewer, there’s the basic information, like when it was loaded, when an ad ran, when the video itself started and what quality it was running at. But then there’s the moment-to-moment tracking, which helps us see which elements of a particular asset were captivating, and which got scanned right past. One play can deliver dozens of data points; multiply that by a few hundred (or a few thousand, or a few million) plays, and pretty soon it can get hard to see the forest for the trees.

This is why, when it comes to Big Data, the genius is not really in getting answers to questions – it’s in formulating the questions in the first place. In the Techcrunch piece, they identify a situation where a real, live person saw a pattern among some bank customers which led her to ask: are these really individuals, or are they small businesses who aren’t getting the best possible service because they’re using the wrong products?

When we’re looking at video, there are often way more variables than we can work out by just looking at reports. Sure, we can see which videos are playing most frequently, and which elements within them go viral. But to build a differentiated business, with a sustainable business model, there is no substitute for the human brain and the creativity it hauls along with it. “OK,” we say, “this video seems light on viewers, but we feel like we get a lot of positive anecdotal feedback – how do those things reconcile?”

With so many potential perspectives, the winners are going to be those who take a pile of data and ask the right questions. If an anecdotally-popular show doesn’t seem to have the view, let’s ask: is it more of a niche, where we can identify that, say, iPhone viewers in the UK really love it? If so, it’s way more valuable than we thought: although it won’t have the raw volume of views, its demographic is well-defined and can command a higher CPM from advertisers.

For Big Data and human intuition to come together, we’re going to need the tools that allow us to combine all the perspectives and build tangible answers to complex, multi-dimensional questions. It’s the meeting of left brain, right brain, and silicon brain, and it’s the future.

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High power density data centers: 3 essential design elements

September 12, 2014 1:56 pm

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High-power-density-data-center

When it comes to high power density data centers, all are not created equal. Many customers, particularly those focused on ad tech and big data analytics, are specifically looking for colocation space that can support high power densities of 12+kW per rack. Here at Internap, we have several customers that need at least 17kW per rack, which requires significant air flow management, temperature control and electricity. To put this in perspective, 17kW equates to about 60,000 BTUs, and a gas grill with 60,000 BTUs can cook a pretty good steak in about five minutes.

Delivering super high power density that meets customer demands and ensures tolerable working conditions requires careful planning. When designing high power density data centers, there are three essential elements to consider.

1. Hot aisle vs. cold aisle containment.
To effectively separate hot and cold air and keep equipment cool, data centers use either hot aisle or cold aisle containment. With cold aisle containment, all the space outside the enclosed cold aisle is considered hot aisle, and enough cold air must be pumped across the front side of the servers to keep them cool. However, the hot aisles can become too hot – over 90 degrees – which creates intolerable working conditions for customers who need to access their equipment.

As power densities rise, temperature control becomes even more important. Using true hot aisle containment instead of cold aisle containment creates better working conditions for customers and maintains a reasonable temperature across the entire data center floor. With hot aisle containment, there’s still heat coming from the racks, but you only have to deal with the heat coming from the rack you’re working on at the time, instead of getting roasted by all of them at once. This approach helps avoid the “walking up into the attic” effect for data center technicians.

2. Super resilient cooling systems.
In a typical data center, if the computer room air conditioning (CRAC) units go offline, you have about 10-15 minutes to get the chillers restarted before temperatures start to rise significantly. But when equipment is putting off 36,000 BTUs, you don’t have that luxury. To avoid an oven-like atmosphere, cooling systems must be ultra-resilient and designed with concurrent maintainability, including +1 chillers and separate loops for the entire cooling infrastructure.

Hot aisle containment also makes a cooling outage less painful because the entire data center floor becomes a cool air pocket that can be sucked through the machines, giving you a few extra minutes before things start getting – well, sweaty.

3. Electrical distribution.
Data centers must be designed to support high density power from day one. We have a mobile analytics customer that uses nine breaker positions in a single footprint. You can’t simply add more breaker panels when customers need them; you have to plan ahead to accommodate future breaker requests from the start. Also, breaker positions are used for primary and redundant circuits – more customers than ever are requesting redundant power, so this should also be taken into consideration.

The flexibility of modular design
Internap’s high density data centers are flexible enough to work with custom cabinets if the customer prefers to use their own. As long as the cabinet can be attached to the ceiling and connected to the return air plenum, we can meet the customers’ power density requirements.

Data centers designed to support high power density allow companies to get more out of their colocation footprint. The ability to use rack space more efficiently and avoid wasted space can help address changing needs and save money in the long run. But be sure to choose a data center originally designed to accommodate high power density – otherwise you and your equipment may have trouble keeping cool.

Download the white paper, Future-Proofing Your Data Center Investment with Scalable Density, to learn more about the benefits of high power density data centers.

The post High power density data centers: 3 essential design elements appeared first on Internap.

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Verizon set to offer virtual pay-TV play by mid-2015

September 12, 2014 1:14 am

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Verizon will soon offer a virtual pay-TV play

Verizon’s acquisition of Intel’s OnCue Internet TV unit looks like it’s a bet that’ll pay off after all. CEO Lowell McAdam yesterday told an audience at the Goldman Sach’s Communicopia Conference that the telecom plans to introduce a virtual pay-TV play by the middle of next year.

“Over-the-top video is right around the corner,” McAdam said. “We’ve got the assets in place, and I don’t feel we need an awful lot more.”

McAdam said there would be an on-demand component to the new service, a la Netflix and Amazon, but said Verizon also would multicast live channels from broadcasters as well as major sporting events.

In addition to having most of the technology nearly ready to roll, McAdams also said the carrier had been successfully negotiating with studios to license content, something that has been seen as a stumbling block in the past. Discussions with content owners, he said, have “moved from almost a stiff arm to much more of an embrace,” adding that “over the last six months to a year, that dialogue is changing dramatically.”

And, he said, the service likely would offer smaller, consumer-managed packages of channels, a bow to a la carte programming that also has been much discussed.

“No one wants to have 300 channels on your wireless device,” he said. “I think everyone understands that it will go to a la carte. The question is what does that transition look like.”

The market is changing rapidly, he said, and it’s crucial that operators respond now.

“I don’t think there is anyone that would stand up here and say the only way (TV) is going to be offered five years from now is linear and it’s going to be tied to your TV set,” McAdam said. “Because, frankly, they will miss the market and they will be the ones left behind.”

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

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Hitting Climate Change Hard, Hack4Good Style

September 11, 2014 8:00 pm

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Rackspace is so excited, once again, to sponsor Geeklist’s Hack4Good this weekend. This time around, the Hack4Good hackathon will focus on projects and prototypes that address global climate change.

“As Rackers we’re all about treating other people well, like friends and family, and the environment we live in has a huge impact on people’s lives around the world, so our involvement is a part of helping each other out,” said Lucy Mendel, Rackspace Software Developer.

It is awesome to be able to partner with an organization that tackles two amazing desires in one: complex problem-solving and contributing to the greater good, and we would love for more developers to join.

From Abuja, Nigeria to San Francisco, Calif. to Baguio, Philippines, 3,000-plus planet-conscious hackers are expected to join forces this weekend to harness the power of technology to create solutions to help protect our planet from climate change at Geeklist’s Hack4Good 0.6 Global Climate Change Hackathon.

Technologists, designers, environmentalists, thought leaders and more will convene in over 40 cities to work on one of 15 global climate change challenges, which will be integrated for long term impact into partner non-government organizations and government organizations. The 15 challenges are: Public Awareness, Personal Impact, Digital Activism, Compelling Visualization, International Negotiations, Resilient Communities, Extreme Water Impacts, Intense Heat Impacts, Ecosystems and Nature, Collaboration, Consumer Behavior, Energy Production, Responsible Finance, Sustainable Business and Energy Efficiency and Reforestation.

As a Hack4Good sponsor, Rackspace is inviting developers to take advantage of $600 of free Rackspace cloud credits through the developer+ program.

“I am excited about Hack4Good because I have volunteered with 350.org and I think climate change is something that a lot of people are not fully aware of, but we need to take notice because it is affecting to our global brothers and sisters,” said Whitney Hofacker, a Racker at Geekdom San Francisco and participant in Hack4Good.

We hope you take notice, and participate in this awesome weekend of collaboration, care and climate change.

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New Research Proves Customers Rank Video as Trusted and Most Personable Brand Marketing Experience

September 11, 2014 2:12 pm

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Image:

We have been long-time believers in the power of video, and as consumers become more and more tech savvy, it’s increasingly important for marketers to understand the influence of video in the marketing mix. To better illustrate how consumers feel about video, we embarked on a research study that questioned 2,000 consumers globally.

The research showed that a better video experience leads to more action, higher loyalty, and more social sharing. Not only do 79% of consumers favor digital content over traditional, but more than one in ten (12%) prefer to consume content from brands on their smartphone, tablet or mobile application. Almost a quarter (24%) of the consumers surveyed said video is their ‘most trusted’ source of brand content. Explaining their choice, 44% said video was more ‘appealing’ to them, while engaging (28%), authentic (29%) and sharable (10%) were also cited as reasons for trusting video content over other forms of brand communication.

The power of better video
In addition, over a third of consumers (35%) cited brand video content as more memorable if it is of high quality. The research found that when consumers had a good video experience:

  • Almost four in ten (39%) were more likely to research the brand or product further
  • A similar amount (36%) were more likely to tell friends and family about the brand
  • Three in ten (30%) said they were more likely to become brand loyal
  • Just under a fifth (19%) said they were more likely to share content from that brand on social media

But there’s still work to do
When asked how their branded video experience could be improved, three of the top four consumer responses related to video delivery – better quality streaming (32%), faster launch times (31%) and less buffering (30%) — showcasing that consumers are really now focused on the experience that is being delivered to them, end-to-end.

It’s clear video creates an opportunity for engagement and should be viewed as an integral part of a marketing strategy and not just an add-on. By delivering a high quality, relevant and engaging video experience to end users, marketers can benefit from increased loyalty, higher brand engagement, more content sharing, and higher referral rates.

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Rackspace::Solve New York: Docker Examines The Future Of Applications

September 11, 2014 1:00 pm

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The time has come to change the way we create, develop and ship applications. At Docker, we believe it should be quick and painless to ship application workloads across environments (dev, test and production) and hosts (laptops, data centers and clouds). Docker container technology is quickly pushing us toward that reality.

Docker eliminates the friction between environments to provide faster app delivery, infinite deployment flexibility and improved service levels.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAMWyLQUCwM]

Before Docker, developers and sysadmins needed to take an application, combine it with an operating system and emulate the entire server to make it portable. Now, there’s a simpler way: dockerizing the app. Docker leverages underlying container technology to ensure containers are simple to use, portable between environments and accessible to developers and sysadmins. To provide tools and resources for increased collaboration, Docker recently established a cloud-based registry known as Docker Hub. With Docker containers and the work we’re doing with our partners, like Rackspace, we’re making it possible to build, ship and run any app, anywhere.

Want to hear more about how Docker is changing the way we build, ship and run apps? Ken Cochrane, Engineering Manager at Docker, will present “The Future of Applications” at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like Docker about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York.

And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.

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Please Excuse My Tardiness…

September 11, 2014 12:06 pm

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This post is part of our Non Sequitur Fridays series, which will feature a different Wistia team member’s take on a non-Wistia-related topic each week. It’s like our “employee of the month” but less “of the month”-y. Liat Werber is a designer at Wistia. Her last post was about the perfect analogy.

Dear Early-Riser,

Please excuse my tardiness to our 10 AM meeting. I know you were up at the crack of dawn, lifting weights, drinking protein shakes, and whatever else one does before the ungodly hour of 7 AM. But I’d like to take a moment out of your extended morning to account for my tardiness, to express the plight of the late-sleeper, and to explain all of the very legitimate reasons that it’s 9 o’clock and I am still searching for my other shoe.

You see, it was all because I woke up before my alarm. This threw my morning into complete disarray because when my alarm finally did go off, I had wasted ten minutes of necessary sleep-time waiting for that to happen. So I took a quick, well-deserved snooze. Of course, I had to hit the snooze button twice because, as we all know, the default snooze is only seven minutes, which didn’t make up for the full ten minutes lost. So that put me at 8:14. I rolled out of bed and brushed my teeth briefly but masterfully, with quick, short strokes. This left me with some extra time to collapse back onto my bed for a moment and lazily click, while my computer warmed my stomach.

A GIF of Mrs. Doubtfire dance-vacuuming the floor sailed onto my screen and brought back a fuzzy memory of Alex Kornetsky quoting a line from the movie in carpool. I couldn’t remember the exact words, just the sing-songy voice he used to say it in… something like “doo the shaka lady.” Of course, that couldn’t be right. This called for a new tab, and a quick Googling of “Mrs. Doubtfire vacuum” revealed that the line was “dude looks like a lady.” All of a sudden, it was 8:45.

There was no time to fiddle around with composing an outfit at this point, so I pulled on my jeans, still crumpled up on the floor from yesterday, and my most reliable Wistia shirt. Then, I moved on to my sock drawer to begin the undertaking of mining for socks.

This may sound like an innocuous task, but my sock drawer is cavernous and chaotic, and to find two that match-ish and don’t have holes is more difficult than you would think. I should ball them together with their mates, like an upstanding citizen, but after being apart for so long, I’m afraid they’ve grown up in different directions and don’t have exact matches anymore. I would be better off just throwing them all out and starting again. I found two with the same Adidas symbol at the top, just different colors. Mazel tov! Perhaps not a traditional match, but who am I to judge?

So here I stand at 9:00 AM, albeit lopsided, in one sneaker, surveying the room for the other. It can’t have gone too far from this one. There it is — under the bed! I spend about a minute trying to make the the shoelaces more evenly distributed so that one of the loops doesn’t drag on the ground, before relenting and double-knotting. Another minute is spent putting my hair up and then taking it down. Leaving me with just a few more seconds to check an urgent email confirming that Meryl is “in” for bowling next week. I shut my computer. Stick it in my bag. And I have one foot out the door, when I realize that my wallet and keys are not in the front pocket. Ooph, I forgot to transfer them from purse to backpack last night. If only I were male or marsupial, I would have proper pockets and this would never be a problem. I locate the purse, make the transfer, and at 9:15 I am back on my way.

Not too bad. Barring any train drama, I will arrive a few minutes before my 10 o’clock meeting, with just enough time to grab a banana, a coffee, and some quick kitchen banter. Okay, I may be a little late to the meeting, but only because my neighbor might come out of his house at the exact same time as me and we might make polite conversation about our socially awkward landlord. But this will take five minutes, tops. And 10:05 is a nicer time for a meeting anyway. Although, 10:10 has a nice echo to it. And how can we disregard the lovely flexibility of good ‘ol 10:15?

In any case, you should feel free to start without me!

Yours truly,
Perfectly Forgivable Snoozer

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Search and Interact With Your Streaming Data Using the Kinesis Connector to Elasticsearch

September 11, 2014 11:08 am

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My colleague
Rahul Patil
wrote a guest post to show you how to build an application that loads streaming data
from Kinesis into an Elasticsearch cluster in real-time.

Jeff;


The Amazon Kinesis team is excited to release the Kinesis connector to Elasticsearch!
Using the connector, developers can easily write an application that loads streaming data from Kinesis into an
Elasticsearch cluster in real-time and reliably at scale.

Elasticsearch is an open-source search and analytics engine. It
indexes structured and unstructured data in real-time.
Kibana is
Elasticsearch’s data visualization engine; it is used by dev-ops and
business analysts to setup interactive dashboards. Data in an
Elasticsearch cluster can also be accessed programmatically using
RESTful API or application SDKs. You can use the CloudFormation
template in our
sample to quickly create an
Elasticsearch cluster on Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), fully managed by Auto Scaling.

Wiring Kinesis, Elasticsearch, and Kibana
Here’s a block diagram to help you see how the pieces fit together:

Using the new Kinesis Connector to Elasticsearch, you author an
application to consume data from Kinesis Stream and index the data
into an Elasticsearch cluster. You can transform, filter, and buffer
records before emitting them to Elasticsearch. You can also finely
tune Elasticsearch specific indexing operations to add fields like
time to live, version number,
type, and id on a per record
basis. The flow of records is as illustrated in the diagram below.

Note that you can also run the entire connector pipeline from within your Elasticsearch
cluster using River.

Getting Started
Your code has the following duties:

  1. Set application specific configurations.
  2. Create and configure a KinesisConnectorPipeline with a Transformer, a Filter, a Buffer, and an Emitter.
  3. Create a KinesisConnectorExecutor that runs the pipeline continuously.

All the above components come with a default implementation, which can easily be
replaced with your custom logic.

Configure the Connector Properties
The sample comes with a .properties file and a configurator. There are many settings and you can leave most
of them set to their default values. For example, the following settings will:

  1. Configure the connector to bulk load data into Elasticsearch only after you’ve
    collect at least 1000 records.
  2. Use the local Elasticsearch cluster endpoint for testing.
bufferRecordCountLimit = 1000
elasticSearchEndpoint = localhost

Implementing Pipeline Components
In order to wire the Transformer, Filter, Buffer, and Emitter, your
code must implement the IKinesisConnectorPipeline interface.

public class ElasticSearchPipeline implements
    IKinesisConnectorPipeline<String,ElasticSearchObject> 

public IEmitter<ElasticSearchObject> getEmitter
    (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) {
    return new ElasticSearchEmitter(configuration);
}

public IBuffer<String> getBuffer(
    KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) {
    return new BasicMemoryBuffer<String>(configuration);
}

public ITransformerBase <String, ElasticSearchObject> getTransformer 
    (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) {
    return new StringToElasticSearchTransformer();
}

public IFilter<String> getFilter
    (KinesisConnectorConfiguration configuration) {
    return new AllPassFilter<String>();
}

The following snippet implements the abstract factory method, indicating the pipeline you wish to use:

public KinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory<String,ElasticSearchObject> 
    getKinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory() {
         return new KinesisConnectorRecordProcessorFactory<String, 
             ElasticSearchObject>(new ElasticSearchPipeline(), config);
    }

Defining an Executor
The following snippet defines a pipeline where the incoming Kinesis records are strings and outgoing records are an
ElasticSearchObject:

public class ElasticSearchExecutor extends 
    KinesisConnectorExecutor<String,ElasticSearchObject>

The following snippet implements the main method, creates the Executor and starts running it:

public static void main(String[] args) {
    KinesisConnectorExecutor<String, ElasticSearchObject> executor 
        = new ElasticSearchExecutor(configFile);
    executor.run();
}


From here, make sure your
AWS Credentials are provided correctly. Setup the project dependencies using
ant setup. To run the app, use ant run and watch it go!
All of the code is on GitHub, so you can get
started immediately. Please post your questions and suggestions on the
Kinesis Forum.

Kinesis Client Library and Kinesis Connector Library

When we
launched Kinesis
in November of 2013, we also introduced the
Kinesis Client Library.

You can use the client library to build applications that
process streaming data. It will handle complex issues such as
load-balancing of streaming data, coordination of distributed
services, while adapting to changes in stream volume, all in a
fault-tolerant manner.

We know that many developers want to consume and process incoming
streams using a variety of other AWS and non-AWS services. In order
to meet this need, we released the
Kinesis Connector Library late
last year with support for Amazon DynamodB, Amazon Redshift, and
Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3). We then followed up that with a
Kinesis Storm Spout
and
Amazon
EMR connector

earlier this year. Today we are expanding the
Kinesis Connector Library with support for Elasticsearch.

— Rahul

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Commando.io: A Geekdom Startup That Simplifies Server Management

September 11, 2014 8:00 am

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DropBox simplified online storage. GitHub simplified revision control. And Commando.io, member of the Rackspace Startup Program, is looking to simplify server management.

Using the Rackspace Managed Cloud, Commando.io offers its customers a simpler way to manage servers online by making it easy to execute commands on groups of servers from a beautiful web interface. The mantra inside Commando.io is simplicity. Commando.io empowers everybody in a company to interact with servers via an easy to use web interface; including less technical employees such as support and marketing.

“Others in the DevOps space are focused on ever increasing complexity and command line systems,” explains Justin Keller, founder of Commando.io. “Our approach is a beautiful web interface with no external dependencies (agents). ?”

Keller says that other solutions in the space often have a steep learning curve.

“Going with Chef or Puppet require a large time investment, and companies have to send developers off to Chef School for two weeks to learn their systems,” he says. “We don’t ask our users to go to school. They can sign up and start managing servers instantly with their existing stack and scripts.”

[vimeo 73097569 w=500 h=281]

Commando.io walkthrough from Commando.io on Vimeo.

The genesis for Commando.io came from solving a pain point at Keller’s previous startup, NodeSocket, a Platform as a Service (PaaS) for hosting node.js applications.

“Commando.io was the pivot for NodeSocket. We now have thousands of accounts created in over 80 different countries, and, by the end of 2014 our goal is to be profitable.” notes Keller.

With the Commando.io poised for growth, the team takes up headquarters inside Rackspace’s Geekdom San Francisco, a collaborative workspace bringing great people together south of Market Street.

“We really enjoy the relationships with other companies in the space, since they all tend to focus on developer tools or infrastructure,” says Keller. “The office space is also conveniently located in SOMA, and offers great amenities. Finally, they host great events usually a few times a week, from Docker, to tech talks, to investor pitches.”

The Rackspace Startup Program was there to help Commando.io use the Rackspace Managed Cloud to simplify server management. Drop the Startup Team a note and let us know if you need help building your startup.

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Brightcove Launches Perform to Redefine Video Playback

September 11, 2014 3:36 am

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Today at the annual IBC conference, we are excited to announce the launch of our newest product, Perform, a high performance service for creating and managing video player experiences that redefines video playback across devices. A groundbreaking innovation, Perform enables video publishers to improve their speed to market and create high-quality, immersive video experiences across devices.

Perform powers cross-platform video playback with a full set of management APIs, the fastest performance optimization services, and the leading HTML5-first Brightcove Player. It supports HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) video playback across devices, along with analytics integrations, content protection, and both server-side and client-side ad insertion. Additionally, Perform’s plugin architecture allows for control and management of playback features in a discrete and extensible manner.

Loading up to 70% faster than competitive players, including YouTube’s, the underlying Brightcove video player in Perform is the fastest loading player on the market today, according to head-to-head comparisons. The player supports HLS across all major mobile and desktop platforms for simplified workflows and uniform, high quality, cross-platform user experiences. The new Brightcove video player will also be available soon as part of Brightcove’s flagship Video Cloud online video platform.

Developer-friendly and built for the future, Perform is designed to serve the needs of the world’s leading video publishers by plugging into bespoke workflows and working seamlessly with other modular services from Brightcove, such as the Zencoder cloud transcoding and Once server-side ad insertion platforms. Additionally, Perform integrates with the Brightcove Once UX product to provide a powerful hybrid ad solution that combines the advantages of a comprehensive server-side solution with a rich client-side user experience. Utilizing the two products in conjunction enables publishers to optimize monetization of ad-supported video and generate more views and more ad completions while avoiding the challenge posed by the growing popularity of ad blockers.

As the first truly enterprise-grade player available as a standalone service, Perform is a powerful addition to the Brightcove family of products and a key driver in our ongoing mission to revolutionize the way video is experienced on every screen. Visit the website for more information!

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September 11, 2014 12:53 am

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AMSTERDAM — The job of running a broadcast network today, David Abraham, CEO of U.K. broadcaster Ch. 4 told an audience at IBC2014, hinges on innovation.

And the pubic broadcaster is backing up those words with a big move in 2015: Merging its live linear and on-demand programming into a single entity: All 4.

“For decade, broadcasters have applied technology gradually…” he said. “Today, technology innovation is continual and pervasive. It has to be as central a concern as the creation of great content.

Technology, he said, is no longer just invisible plumbing. And, he said, broadcasters that don’t take advantage of it are missing a big opportunity, especially if they put linear and online into different silos.

“Broadcasters are at a disadvantage if they separate their online brands from their channel brand,” he said. “We think its about blending the two and using the strengths of both, putting the entire channel and digital estate into one universe at the same time.”

The result, he said, are that linear brands are seamlessly reinforced.

“We believe All 4 will deliver the most advanced broadcaster response” to the changing viewer landscape.

“All in one place, designed from the ground up.”

Abraham said multiplatform delivery has become “integral to our creative process.”

He also pointed out that the connected environment gives broadcasters new ways to connect with audiences, something Ch. 4 has taken advantage of.

The broadcaster has offered users the opportunity to register for its online product and get access to additional content, and to receive personalized recommendations, among other perks.

It’s paid off to the tune of more than 11 million registered users, a number increasing by 10,000 new users daily.

“It has created a new viewer relationship platform,” he said, one that has been well received by advertisers who can use data from users to create targeted ad packages.

The dynamic elasticity of the cloud, he said, is allowing Ch. 4 to scale, while at the same time keeping costs under control.

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

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DLNA launches certification program for devices supporting subscription TV

September 10, 2014 11:22 pm

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AMSTERDAM — The Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) at IBC2014 today launched its VidiPath certification program for retail products supporting subscription TV.

The VidiPath Certification program draws on expertise from more than a decade of interoperability testing that the organization has performed on more than 25,000 device models, enabling more than 3 billion devices to share personal content on many types of devices in the home.

The guidelines were developed through a close collaboration between service providers and consumer electronics (CE) product manufacturers, and more than 15 companies have already begun pre-testing their products to prepare for certification.

We are extremely pleased to be launching the VidiPath Certification Program, and applaud service provider and CE members for developing the consumer-friendly VidiPath brand name that will simplify product shopping and selection as Certified devices become available later this year,” said Scott Lofgren, chairman and president of DLNA. “Consumers will know that VidiPath Certified products can stream and play subscription TV content on multiple, interoperable home devices, and their providers will use the VidiPath brand name to identify services that can be enjoyed on these Certified devices.”

One of the key issues here is that the new program helps establish a standard for delivering TV services to an array of devices, something the FCC has focused on.

“With their choice of a consumer brand for devices that successfully complete the certification process, North American cable operators have signaled their intent to quickly adopt VidiPath,” said Brett Sappington, director of research for Parks Associates. “They have also shown their interest in working with consumer electronics manufacturers to create a vibrant ecosystem of interoperable products for subscription TV viewing in the home.”

As part of the program, subscribers will be encouraged to look for the new brand name, VidiPath, when shopping for retail devices that deliver service providers’ full viewing experience on many different screens in home.

DLNA is demonstrating products supporting its VidiPath Guidelines and will be sharing more details about its certification and branding programs during IBC in Booth #L22, Content Everywhere Hall at the Amsterdam RAI Exhibition & Convention Centre.

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

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What Should the Frame Rate be for Ultra HD Sports Content?

September 10, 2014 3:58 pm

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Opinions are divided on what frame rate to use for Ultra HD sports content. There are a number of issues at play. UHDTV is slowly pulling itself away from 4K movies, which have set the expectation for a low frame rate of 24Hz. While this might be acceptable for artistic content shot carefully for the movie market, it is way too low for premium sports offerings! Panning and complex content frequently result in closing speeds that far exceed a 24Hz refresh when viewed on a UHDTV screen.

This has been recognized in the latest iteration of the HDMI specification, which allows for 50/60Hz progressive refresh, greatly expanding the scope of content that can genuinely offer an improvement over current HD services. Yet this is where frame rate starts to get complicated. Many have cited that 50/60Hz is the same rate that is currently used for HD. However, this is not true; not many current HD services are 1080p, with most harking back to the early days of TV and using interlace scanning, often at a reduced resolution.

UHDTV does offer the potential to double the effective frame rate used for UHDTV when compared to HD, but is this enough? To the purists, probably not since the screen sizes typically used are so large that motion portrayal cannot be tracked without significant blur. However, this is where reality strikes in the form of two compelling arguments. First, from a technical standpoint, even leveraging the latest HEVC compression standard, a bit rate of 20-25Mbps would be needed to do justice to 100/120Hz UHDTV material. This presents us with a significant bandwidth and interface issue given the current HD infrastructure currently in place. Second, from a cost perspective, with HD services gaining widespread adoption, springing a UHDTV refresh cycle onto broadcasters and operators isn’t going to go down well. Thus, it’s no surprise that 4K streaming services are the vehicle of choice for those wishing to pioneer this format.

One solution could be to temporally upscale. Harmonic and Sigma Designs have been working together since CES 2014 on a E/E solution where the content is encoded at 3840×2160 50/60Hz, passed though HDMI 2.0 to the UHDTV set and upconverted in the TV set by Sigma Designs’ FRCX 8000 video processor to provide a pristine UHDTV video quality at 100/120 Hz. This is accomplished using an advanced motion adaptive frame rate conversion algorithm.

At our stand 1.B20 during IBC2014, you will be able to see the video quality improvement on a 100 Hz Loewe UHDTV set equipped with Sigma Designs’ FRCX 8000 video processor showing video content from a soccer competition. The main objective here is to demonstrate that on existing infrastructure (e.g., caption, production, playout, encoder, network, decoder, connectivity), it is possible to have a 100/120Hz experience without breaking the entire UHD ecosystem, and at a modest increase cost, as all 100/120Hz processing is done inside the UHDTV set.

– Ian Trow, Senior Director, Emerging Technology and Strategy

– Thierry Fautier, Vice President, Solutions and Strategy

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Designing a More Delightful Wistia Account Dashboard

September 10, 2014 2:20 pm

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If you’ve been updating your Wistia settings in the Account Dashboard lately, you might have noticed it got a little facelift. Well, it’s been a while in the making.

When I joined the Wistia design team in February, one of our customers’ nagging frustrations was making simple account updates. It was such a bummer to hear! So, the account dashboard was one of the very first things I took on.

Aaron Walter describes a Maslow-inspired hierarchy of user needs in which a design should be functional, then reliable, then usable, and then finally pleasurable, or, as we Wistians like to say, delightful.

Looking at our old dashboard, I felt that it was functional, reliable, and *mostly* usable. I mean, the settings displayed and updated as they should, but couldn’t we make this experience more usable? Delightful, even?

First, I had to familiarize myself with our customers’ needs and the current design. This was tough in itself. I was redesigning an interface that was very new to me, for customers I was still getting to know. We spent about two months iterating, discussing, and scribbling. Finally, we reached a final design for the entire account dashboard. It was a complete overhaul: totally new from the styles to the structure to the interactions.

And then… nothing happened. My designs began to collect dust in Adobe Illustrator. We started talking about this overhaul, or “Cleansweep” as we were calling it, in the hushed tones normally reserved for more taboo topics like “people who don’t recycle.”

Looking back, it makes sense. We had created a project that seemed technically insurmountable. When I’d glance over the chasm between the current and ideal designs, the leap seemed enormous. Where would we even begin? Finally, Jeff, who had apparently had enough of our shoegazing, got us back on track. He suggested we snap out of our paralysis by simply taking a step.

### Enter Operation Cleansweep, Phase One

Over several cups of coffee and lots of whiteboard marker, Jeff and I came up with a plan to build and implement Cleansweep in phases. It wasn’t too hard to identify and bucket changes that belonged in the same “phase”—style changes should happen all at once, but a re-organization could wait for later. Totally new functionality? That should be separately scoped and built on its own timeline, instead of holding up the show.

### Building in delight

One thing we refused to sacrifice in this phased approach was creating a delightful experience. Delight goes beyond adding Easter eggs to make people smile (although we do love that, too!). Creating a delightful experience means starting from the users’ perspective, and giving them exactly what they need intentionally and efficiently. It’s an intricate balance between creating expected interactions and surpassing expectations with pleasant surprises.

How do you make an account settings page more delightful? By speeding it up and reducing the amount of time it takes to complete a task.

Phase One introduces a new style paradigm that makes it easier to scan and find the settings you are looking for (because we hope you won’t have to change these settings often).

We added sidebar navigation to speed up clicking between the settings sections. An overview landing page allows you to easily see your most important account information at a glance. A greeting by name commends you for your video wins with some just-for-fun stats—as well as an exploration of how many adjectives we can apply to the word “videos” (hint: refresh your overview page!). And that is just the beginning.

### Moving forward

As a relatively new web designer, this whole phase-planning idea was a bit foreign to me. Bringing a pixel-perfect vision to life was what I was trained to do! But as my first-phase design began to fall into place, I realized why this phased approach was what building for the web was like. Having a web prototype to interact with exposed situations I hadn’t planned for, and it made it much easier to share my vision for things like interactions.

What was perfect yesterday will be in need of work by tomorrow. This dance of staggered refinement keeps us always moving forward, never stagnant. One step is more attainable than a giant leap, allowing for quick iteration and improvements between steps. Besides, rolling out smaller changes incrementally provides an easier transition for users, mitigating the risk of disorienting them. That’s a win-win in my book!

I’m pleased to present this first phase to all our customers. You’ll see that the settings you know and love are where they’ve always been, just in a slightly more intuitive layout and a more delightful look. We’ve made some fun changes under the hood, but I’ll let you discover them (or even better, be blissfully unaware of their positive impact!).

### What’s next?

Phase Two of Cleansweep aims to make the account section even more usable and delightful. We’re working on more intuitive organization, smoother interactions, better billing notifications, expanded API controls, celebrating your Wisti-anniversaries, and applying all of these new styles to the rest of the account section.

We’ve got a few more planks to lay down on this bridge, but we’re a whole step closer to a more usable and delightful dashboard for all.

**How do you approach projects that feel insurmountable at first? What changes would you like to see in your Wistia account dashboard?**

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September 10, 2014 12:11 pm

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FIFA World Cup 2014 was one of the largest multimedia sporting events in history . In-person attendance was estimated at more than three and a half million while hundreds of millions of viewers tuned in via TV, Internet, and radio. Akamai’s online traffic statistics estimate this year’s event to be ten times larger than the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, and two and a half times larger than the Sochi Winter Olympics. In my role as Akamai’s Senior Director of Environmental Sustainability I was curious about the carbon footprint of such a large event, and how digital and analog attendance compared.

Figure 1. Relative amount of traffic that was delivered for four major sporting events with global appeal. Source: Akamai Technologies.


Turns out, FIFA has a green side beyond it soccer fields. In a concerted effort to reduce the environmental impact of staging the World Cup it developed the 2014 FIFA World CupTM Sustainability Strategy. As part of that strategy FIFA calculated the carbon footprint of the six weeks-long tournament including construction and operations of the match stadiums and FIFA Fan Fest venues, and team and spectator travel and accommodations. It was estimated at 2.5 million metric tons CO2 equivalent. That’s the equivalent of driving a U.S. car 7.4 billion miles or flying 9.2 billion miles, a fit analogy since international and inter-/intra-city transportation represented 84% of the 2.5 million.

Figure 2. 2014 FIFA World Cup GHG emissions by activity type.
Source: Summary of the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil Carbon Footprint

Certainly there would be no World Cup without stadiums to play in and teams to compete. And it wouldn’t be nearly as exhilarating without the frenzied fans cheering from the stands. But what is the carbon impact of bringing the World Cup to more than one hundred million online viewers around the world, tuning in using all manner of connected devices such as smart phones and tablets? Akamai supported live streaming for all 64 matches for more than 50 rights-holding customers reaching over 80 countries, providing us with unique insight into online activity. By tracking the fraction of our network used to stream the matches in each geographic region and overlaying the associated energy consumption and carbon emissions, we were able to estimate the carbon footprint of the server and data center component of online viewing at a lean 100 metric tons CO2 equivalent.

Achieving these impressive results for such a long-term and broadly viewed event is a testament to Akamai’s commitment to reducing our operational impacts. As a result of our efforts to innovate around network productivity and efficiency, our absolute energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions have decoupled from our network traffic growth, flattening even as our traffic continues to grow exponentially. Although, the digital story doesn’t end here.

WCCarbonFootprint 3.png

Figure 3. Plot of normalized absolute energy and GHG versus peak traffic from January Q1 2009 through Q2 2014. [Monthly data plotted here as quarterly average/sum.]

A recent study by researchers at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Northwestern University assessed that the server and data center portion of streaming represents only an astonishing 1% of the total energy and carbon footprint. The balance is attributed to end user last mile and devices, e.g., cable/DSL, modem, wireless router, tablet, computer and monitor, bringing the World Cup’s total digital footprint to 100,000 metric tons CO2e. If we compare just the World Cup attendee portion of the footprint , accounting for travel and accommodations, digital spectatorship is about twenty times more carbon-efficient than being there. And, you get the added benefit of the best seat in the house for every match!

The news is good all around. The Internet, with Akamai’s help, has broadened the accessibility of popular sporting events to people anywhere with Internet connectivity, on any device. Online viewing is much more carbon-efficient than attending in person. And with Akamai’s high-definition anywhere on-any-device streaming, you can enjoy players-in-your-living-room-quality coverage every game.

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4 Reference Architectures To Optimize Your Ecommerce

September 10, 2014 12:00 pm

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“46 percent of ecommerce retailers report difficulty managing their platform, keeping up with market demands and running their underlying infrastructure”*

Retailers know that the online store is a window to the world. And when it comes to ecommerce, the specialists at Rackspace have pretty much seen it all. As the No. 1 hosting provider for the Retailer™ Top 1,000*, we can help ensure that your online stores are always available, and running at peak performance. That’s why our Rackspace Digital application specialists put together four reference architectures that optimize the right mix of price, performance and control for most businesses to help you make the most out of your ecommerce platform.

Cost Effective
A cost effective configuration is ideal for small to medium business ecommerce platforms needing over 99 percent uptime while keeping costs at a minimum. It offers business-class features like monitoring, managed databases with backup and content delivery networks (CDN). It also includes future-proof features like cloud load balancing, so you can be prepared for unexpected events.

It relies on a two-tier cloud based architecture, in which the catalog display logic and the shopping cart logic are kept together in the same server. It’s also configured so that customer credit card information is stored in a third-party payment gateway rather than in a Rackspace data center, which is often less expensive when transaction volumes are relatively low.

Intermediate
This reference architecture was designed for small to medium businesses and mid-market customers who need scaling ability and have higher security. It’s ideal for organizations that need enterprise features like VLANs and API access, but also need the flexibility that the cloud provides.

With the Intermediate setup, you get 99.99 percent uptime that relies on a utility-based model. It’s a three-tier cloud-based architecture, meaning that the catalog display logic and shopping cart logic are kept in different servers. Credit card information is stored in third-party payment gateway, reducing costs.

Advanced
This configuration is ideal for mid-market and enterprise customers that want to leverage cloud scaling but have specific compliance needs, legacy software or need the performance of a dedicated environment. A good example of this is a company that needs to run a high-performance database, but would like to connect it to a farm of elastic application servers that run in the cloud.

The Advanced setup offers 99.99 percent uptime, and is built as a three-tier hybrid system that includes both cloud and dedicated servers. The application tier for this architecture is built on cloud servers and it stores both the shopping cart and the checkout logic. And while customer credit card data is stored in third-party applications, transactional data is stored in dedicated servers.

Premier
This system is a step beyond the Advanced architecture, and is designed for organizations that need 99.999 percent uptime or better. In addition to a hybrid configuration with dedicated and cloud servers, this offers a high-redundancy solution that is run by Rackspace Critical Application Engineers.

Because of high uptime and security needs, this configuration stores customer credit card information and transaction data in dedicated servers, along with the application tier. The web tier that contains the product catalog logic is also built on dedicated servers, but can still scale by bursting into cloud servers when demand is high.

Ecommerce hosting backed by Fanatical Support®. Rackspace Digital provides specialized hosting for ecommerce and offers expertise to help you find the solution that best fits your needs. We’re dedicated to helping you succeed, so please feel free to reach out to our digital specialists if you have any questions.

* Source: Understanding TCO When Evaluating Ecommerce Platforms, 2012, Forrester Research.
* Source: Internet Retailer’s newsletter “Introducing the Top Vendors to the Top 1,000.”

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Influxis vs Amazon Web Services (AWS)

September 10, 2014 10:44 am

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Have you ever wondered how Influxis services compare to Amazon Web Services (AWS)? So did we – and we took the challenge. We compare services, hardware, speeds, pricing and more. Results? Check out this below comparison and see the difference … Continued

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Does A Hosted Virtualized Environment Require New Tools?

September 10, 2014 8:00 am

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Many enterprises have invested millions of dollars over the years in IT management, monitoring and automation solutions for their data centers. So a natural question that arises when considering migration of workloads to hosted environments is around management tools. What new capabilities will be required? What new skills will our organization need? Is our existing toolset extensible at all?

The reality is that with the right environment and service provider, workloads and virtual machines in hosted environments can be managed with the same tools being used in the on-premise customer data center. This is particularly true for enterprises that are running virtualized workloads in a VMware environment. In fact, with the right service provider, no new applications or automation tools are required to manage hosted workloads.

Enterprises running VMware workloads that want to leverage their existing toolsets need to look for a service provider that offers the following capabilities:

  1. Hosted VMware environments – first, the service provider must offer customers the ability to run VMware virtualized workloads in their hosted environments.
  2. VMware vCenter Services – next, the service provider must offer the ability to manage hosted virtualized workloads using the VMware vCenter Server Management Console.
  3. Access to VMware vSphere APIs – finally the service provider must also expose the native VMware vSphere APIs to the customer to allow the connection of any compatible VMware or third party tools.

By leveraging the VMware vCenter Server management console across on-premise and hosted VMware environments, enterprises are able to enjoy benefits in the following areas:

Resource Management and Performance Monitoring – by leveraging hosted vCenter services enterprises can manage and schedule resources as if the hosted environment were an extension of the customer data center. Host profiles and configurations and settings can be used across on-premise and hosted environments. In addition, resource allocation rules for CPU, memory, disk and network can be applied across both environments, and common alerts and notifications can be configured.

Process and Workflow Automation – by leveraging hosted VMware vSphere APIs, organizations that currently use VMware vCenter Orchestrator can extend their existing workflows and scripts to workloads running in a hosted VMware environment. This applies not just to out-of-the-box VMware workflows, but also custom scripts and workflows developed by IT administrators.

Extensibility of Existing Applications – with access to hosted vCenter APIs, existing third party and custom applications and scripts can be used with workloads in the hosted VMware environment. Many enterprises rely on third party applications in the VMware partner ecosystem that integrate with vCenter for capacity management, business continuity, performance monitoring and other capabilities. By exposing the same APIs used to manage on-premise virtualized workloads, these same applications can be used for hosted workloads as well. For example, businesses are able to connect third party tools like VMware vCenter Operations Manager (vCOps) to increase visibility into the environment through analytics, as well as assist in capacity and configurations management.

Because no new tools or capabilities are required to manage the hosted VMware environment, enterprises will also find that they can continue to leverage existing IT operations and management skills. By using the right service provider and hosted vCenter services, enterprises can seamlessly manage their on-premise and hosted VMware environments through their existing tools, solutions, processes and people.

This is the third in a series of posts exploring the IT governance and management implications of migration to hosted VMware environments. Stay tuned for our next post featuring a case study on one enterprise that decided to migrate to a hosted virtualized environment.

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Yahoo7 Delivers Catch-up TV on Xbox One

September 10, 2014 6:41 am

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Game consoles aren’t just for gaming anymore. In fact, game consoles have seen tremendous growth and consumer adoption for streaming video over the years. According to Business Insider, streaming-capable video game consoles account for 54% of the global installed base of TV streaming devices worldwide. Internet-connected smart TVs (with a 38% share), and dedicated streaming devices (like Apple TV and Roku, with an 8% share) are still in the minority.

This opens up monetisation opportunities outside of desktop and laptop environments for media companies. Particularly with the growing amount of content choice on the Xbox platform, as well as the growing number of devices in market – with over 80 million Xbox owners around the world Xbox is a platform that media brands can’t afford to ignore.

It is only fitting that Yahoo7, a Brightcove customer and one of the most comprehensive and engaging online destinations for Australian consumers and advertisers, has made their PLUS7 catch-up TV service available as a dedicated application on Xbox One now. Xbox One owners using PLUS7 will be able to access their favourite Channel 7 programs like X-Factor, My Kitchen Rules and Home & Away via the console.

Yahoo7 already leverages Brightcove Video Cloud to power its catch-up product PLUS7 service to deliver high-quality video on demand content to audiences across desktop, mobile and tablets (iOS and Android). By adding the Xbox One app Yahoo7 is now able to reach a new audience.

With the Video Cloud studio grade DRM solutions, Yahoo7 can ensure delivery of premium video content across devices including Xbox One while preventing unauthorized access and distribution.

Thanks to Brightcove’s support of Microsoft PlayReady, Yahoo7 has been able to deliver the PLUS7 service to the Xbox community in Australia.

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Security Kahuna Podcast, Episode 3

September 10, 2014 4:02 am

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Akamai’s Bill Brenner, Dave Lewis and Martin McKeay discuss the pros and cons of Google Glass Detector, software designed to detect Google Glass and boot it from any local Wi-Fi network. They also discuss the iCloud/4Chan controversy and look ahead to upcoming security conferences.

  • Listen to the full episode

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Join Vimeo in supporting net neutrality

September 10, 2014 4:00 am

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In July, we asked you to help us protect an open Internet. Today, we’re joining forces with our digital brethren including Etsy, Reddit, and Kickstarter, to once again ask that you help us fight the FCC’s proposed rule — one that would bring an end to the net neutrality we know and love.

This time, we’re asking you to call your Senators and tell them you’re against the FCC’s proposal. We’ve made it easy to do — enter your phone number and we’ll give you a call and share some talking points about the proposal. Then, you’ll be automatically connected to your Senator to say you want net neutrality. This will only take a few minutes, and will go a long way toward saving our open Internet.

To refresh your memory:
The FCC proposal would allow broadband providers to charge online companies like Vimeo to deliver traffic (like video uploads and plays) to their customers in a timely manner. We think this will create a two-tiered Internet — fast tubes for those who can afford to pay a hefty toll and slow tubes for everyone else — and will ultimately harm innovation and creative expression. As a result, we’re calling on the FCC to demand “net neutrality” — rules that prevent broadband providers from discriminating against content that runs through their pipes.

Independent creators and their audiences would also suffer from this two-tiered Internet world. If you, like us, want to keep a free and open Internet, please click the button above and let your voice be heard.

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Rackspace::Solve New York: How CloudMine Solves For High Mobile Performance In Regulated Environments

September 9, 2014 2:00 pm

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Mobility adds an interesting new wrinkle to the management of sensitive data, especially in highly regulated industries like healthcare. Mobility makes data portable and enables that data to travel anywhere at any time, which means ensuring the security of data accessed from mobile devices is paramount to all mobile initiatives.

At CloudMine, we provide an enterprise-grade mobile gateway that ensures the app you build will keep sensitive data behind the firewall when it needs to be kept there, and is available for consumption from mobile devices in a secure and mobile-optimized manner. Our software sits between large enterprise systems like Oracle DB and SAP and bridges that data securely to mobile devices over the public Internet. That’s increasingly important in the mobile health arena, where wireless devices are used to manage health conditions, collect health data, monitor vital signs, provide clinical decision support and access personal health information.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKk8zWhVSW0]

Mobile health data is all around us. It’s on consumer medical devices, FDA approved medial devices, apps on our smartphones and in electronic health records. Think about it: FitBit, Healthbook, MyChart, VitalScore, iHealth BP and VSee all touch mobile health information. With all these mobile initiatives comes the challenge of data security and compliance, including regulations like HIPAA and HITECH.

The CloudMine platform enables our customers in healthcare and related fields to easily develop apps that comply with strict regulations regarding personally identifiable information (PII) and electronic protected health information (ePHI). Our customers can use our suite of web services, mobile and web SDKs, and dataset integration technology to quickly and cost-efficiently build, deploy, maintain and secure applications.

We rely on the Rackspace Managed Cloud to help us design the optimal architecture for our software – it’s like having our own at scale DevOps and engineering team to do the hard work for us. The cloud alone isn’t secure enough for what we do, so we rely on a hybrid cloud deployment – a mix of bare metal dedicated servers and the cloud.

Together with Rackspace, we solve the challenges of mobility and secure data exchange for our customers.

Want to hear more about how CloudMine solves for high mobile performance in regulated environments? Marc Weil, CTO of CloudMine will present at Rackspace::Solve New York, a one-day summit where you’ll hear directly from companies like CloudMine about how they’re solving tough challenges in their businesses. Rackspace::Solve New York is Thursday, September 18 at Cipriani Wall Street.

Register now for Rackspace::Solve New York.

And stay tuned for details of the next Rackspace::Solve event in Chicago.

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Upgrading To iPhone 6? Setting Up Your Rackspace Email Is A Snap.

September 9, 2014 11:21 am

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The much-anticipated iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus are here! The larger display sizes, better resolution, improved camera and video capture and new features such as Touch ID, Wi-Fi calling, Apple Pay and several more look pretty enticing (As does Apple Watch!). If you’re upgrading to iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus, you can setup your Rackspace Hosted Exchange email in less than two minutes and in only a few clicks – and you don’t need to know any arbitrary passwords or server names. This is extremely helpful if you’re an admin of remote employees!

Here’s a brief look on how it’s done. You can check out more about iPhone integration with Rackspace Hosted Exchange here.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UouEVHnLXpU]

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How to evaluate a DDoS mitigation solution

September 9, 2014 10:00 am

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How fast could your IT team stop a DDoS attack? IDG Research found that it takes an average of 10 hours before a company can even begin to resolve an attack. On average, an attack isn’t detected until 4.5 hours after its commencement and typically an additional 4.9 hours passes before mitigation can commence. With outage costs averaging $100,000 per hour, it means that a DDoS attack can cost an Internet-reliant company $1 million before the company even starts to mitigate the attack.
Today’s online businesses must have mitigation protection in place or risk severe financial loss, damage to brand reputation, as well as the loss of customer and investor confidence. Akamai cautions, however, that cyber-attack mitigation solutions are not one-size-fits-all. Like any web security solution, a mitigation solution must fit your business requirements, as well as protect your IT infrastructure. Chapter 4 in Akamai’s free eBook “Threats and Mitigations: A Guide to Multi-Layered Web Security” discusses some of the key questions you should ask before adopting a mitigation solution. For example:

  • Does the solution absorb all attack traffic?
  • Is the solution always on?
  • Does the solution deliver scalable bandwidth to handle the volume of the attack?
  • Does it stop attacks before they reach your data center?
  • What is the total cost of ownership?

These are just a few of the tough questions you should ask your mitigation provider, and our eBook will give you some guidelines as to why you should ask these questions and what kind of answers you want to hear. We’ve also included guidance from OVUM industry analysts in regard to 10 enterprise criteria for evaluating a DDoS mitigation provider. The bottom line: when it comes to building a strong DDoS mitigation defense you can’t rush into the first solution that is returned by a search engine.

Download our free eBook, “Threats and Mitigations: A Guide to Multi-Layered Web Security,” and learn how to make the best decisions on web security.

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Kick-Start Your Cloud Storage Project With the Riverbed SteelStore Gateway

September 9, 2014 8:39 am

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Many AWS customers begin their journey to the cloud by implementing a
backup and recovery discipline.
Because the cloud can provide any desired amount of durable storage that is
both secured and cost-effective, organizations of all shapes and sizes
are using it to support robust backup and recovery models that eliminate the need
for on-premises infrastructure.

Our friends at Riverbed have launched an
exclusive
promotion
for AWS customers. This promotion is designed to help
qualified enterprise, mid-market, and SMB customers in North America
to kick-start their cloud-storage projects by applying for up to 8
TB of free Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3) usage for six months.

If you qualify for the promotion, you will be invited to download the Riverbed
SteelStore™
software appliance (you will also receive enough AWS credits to
allow you to store 8 TB of data per month for six months). With advanced
compression, deduplication, network acceleration and encryption
features, SteelStore will provide you with enterprise-class levels
of performance, availability, data security, and data
durability. All data is encrypted using AES-256 before leaving your
premises; this gives you protection in transit and at
rest. SteelStore intelligently caches up to 2 TB of recent backups
locally for rapid restoration.

The SteelStore appliance is easy to implement! You can be up and running
in a matter of minutes with the implementation guide, getting started guide, and user guide
that you will receive as part of your download. The appliance is compatible with
over 85% of the backup products on the market, including solutions from
CA, CommVault, Dell, EMC, HP, IBM, Symantec, and Veeam.

To learn more or to apply for this exclusive promotion,
click here!

Jeff;

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Vienna State Opera, FIFA win IBC awards for innovation & engagement

September 9, 2014 7:34 am

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The IBC has recognized the Vienna State Opera for its streaming efforts

With more than 150 years of tradition, “new,” innovative” and “modern” aren’t terms usually associated with an organization like the Vienna State Opera.

But that’s exactly what the legendary opera house – and Ooyala customer — is being feted for by the IBC, which is honoring it with a Special Award this week at the annual broadcaster’s convention in Amsterdam.

The Vienna State Opera – or, Wiener Staatsoper — has embraced multi-platform delivery, with as many as 45 broadcasts of operas and ballets a year.

In addition to HD origination, www.staatsoperlive.com offered a 4k Ultra-HD broadcast of Verdi’s ‘Nabucco’ in May, the first such broadcast to Samsung smart TVs worldwide.

Wiener Staatsoper streams two HD views for each performance, a live cut and a static view of the stage.

The opera also offers additional content including a synchronized score and subtitles, which is designed to help viewers be more engaged with the performance.

Extra video and multimedia content, tailored to specialist audiences, include a discussion of the opera, live rehearsals and backstage views, and more.

“To be rewarded with one of the most renowned awards in this highly innovative industry is a wonderful acknowledgement,” said Dominique Meyer, director of the Vienna State Opera. “It shows how vivid we are, looking from a glorious past into a promising future.”

FIFA also is being honored by the IBC with a Judges Award for its 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

“The global football audience is always hungry for more – for more cameras, for more detail, for more replays and for more analysis,” said Niclas Ericson, FIFA’s director of television. “In Brazil this year we worked together with our partners to provide more engaging multi-platform content and to develop the language to cover football in high resolution formats. It was an exhilarating team effort, and I am proud to recognize all those who contributed.”

Michael Lumley, Chair of the IBC Awards judging panel, said “At first glance there is little in common between the football World Cup and opera. Yet each engender huge passion in their fans, and those fan bases are far larger than can attend a live event. Both FIFA and the Vienna State Opera have built strong, innovative, creative in-house teams to take control of their content, and have worked with leaders in the industry to be on the leading edge of emerging technologies.

The awards will be presented during the IBC Awards Ceremony, at 6:30 p.m., Sunday.

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Report: APAC to add 231 million OTT HH by 2020; SVOD expected to double

September 9, 2014 5:31 am

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SVOD subscribers to double by 2020

More than 706 million households – nearly half the world’s TV HH — will be watching online video globally by 2020, a new report says, up from 374 million forecast for 2014. In 2010, just 197 million households watched online video.

The biggest gains, about 61%, will come in APAC, according to Digital TV Research. The region is expected to add some 231 million over-the-top video households by 2020.

China is expected to add 140 million viewers, giving it an OTT audience of 206 million HH, and is expected to surpass U.S. viewers by the end of this year, making it the largest OTT market in the world.

The report said South Korea will have the highest OTT penetration by 2020, with more than 79% of HH receiving OTT.

Subscription video on demand (SVOD) is expected to more than double to 199 million subscribers, from 83 million in 2014.

While the U.S. is expected to remain the biggest SVOD market at 62 million subscribers, North America’s SVOD share will fall from its 57% slice in 2014 to 34% in 2020 as the rest of the world accelerates its adoption of the business model.

About 6% of the world’s HH currently get an SVOD service like Netflix or Amazon Prime Instant Video. That number is expected to more than double to 13.4% by 2020.

The U.S. at 50% is expected to have the highest SVOD penetration, followed closely by Sweden at 49%. Ten countries will have SVOD penetration in excess of a third of TV households by 2020.

Follow me on Twitter @JimONeillMedia

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