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Lucy Sherriff

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The Office

Six things you should know before you roll out Office 365

Let’s discuss some of the reasons for embarking on an Office 365 project. You might have found yourself at that particular point in your Microsoft upgrade cycle. Or maybe you want to allow staff to work just as efficiently away from the office as at their desks and like the collaboration tools offered by SharePoint. Regardless …
Lucy Sherriff, 21 May 2013

Windows Server 2012 kicks ass: discuss

A little experiment from us: we are rounding up comments on a couple of articles - and turning them into articles. Some might call this stretching the material - social media types might call it amplification. But we think that not all of our commentards are mad - and many have very interesting insights to share. Yesterday we …
Lucy Sherriff, 01 Feb 2013
DVD-Ram disc

Commentards Ahoy! How about a Petabyte of storage?

A little experiment from us: we are rounding up comments on a couple of articles - and turning them into articles. Some might call this stretching the material - social media types might call it amplification. But we think that not all of our commentards are mad - and many have very interesting insights to share. Today, we mine …
Lucy Sherriff, 31 Jan 2013
Rihanna in Battleship

Want your social media to swing? First, get the staff onboard

Social networking clearly has the potential to totally change the way we work, especially in large or widely dispersed organisations. It might actually allow companies to see our natural inclination to share information (the technical term is “gossip”) as a business tool, rather than a drain on company time. However, more so …
Lucy Sherriff, 19 Dec 2012
Fujitsu's social robot teddy bears

So, you want to get closer to the workers with social media?

We often hear how social networking has the potential to revolutionise the way we communicate and collaborate in business. People like to gossip, to share information, to argue and to chat, and will use whichever media are available to do so. For proof, we need only consider the inexorable rise of services such as Facebook and …
Lucy Sherriff, 18 Dec 2012
The Register breaking news

How do you measure up at the Olympics?

In Rome in 1960, a very strange thing happened in the men’s 100m freestyle Olympic swimming final: the man who recorded the fastest time was given the silver medal. In the absence of touch pads to record a swimmer’s finishing time, the method of determining the winner was complex in the extreme. Firstly, there were finishing …
Lucy Sherriff, 27 Jul 2012
The Register breaking news

Oiling the big wheels that keep the Paralympics moving

The Olympic Games: just saying it conjures up images of top athletes straining for the finishing line, the crowd roaring during the 100 metres final, the heartbreak of a relay team dropping their baton, the sudden spurt in public expertise on sports such as shooting or three-day eventing as the medal tally highlights their …
Lucy Sherriff, 13 Jul 2012
The Register breaking news

Just how do you build the perfect Olympic stadium?

London Olympics On 27 July, London will be transformed as the biggest celebration of sports in the world kicks off in the newly built Olympic Stadium in Stratford. The stadium has been designed to hold 80,000 people, and the Olympic Village will certainly hold many more. On a normal day, Stratford tube station handles somewhere between 220,000 …
Lucy Sherriff, 29 Jun 2012
Mark's Millinut payload, snapped just after launch from Dave's Cloud 7

What you should know about migrating to the cloud

Small businesses account for roughly half the UK economy. The technology requirements for a one-man band are wildly different from those of a 250-seat tech support service company, yet both fall under the SME banner. So what is the general advice that will work for everyone and anyone who is considering moving some IT into the …
Lucy Sherriff, 14 May 2012
The Register breaking news

Clouds of Sushi?

When the on-site tin comes creaking and wheezing to the end of its life, overburdened by inboxes that were never supposed to get that big, its the IT department that has to decide what to do next. Upgrade? Outsource? Go into the cloud? Billy Waters, who is the whole of the IT function at the YoSushi restaurant chain, had to make …
Lucy Sherriff, 04 May 2012
Rui in the pit, levelling the first tube

What smaller businesses should look for in cloud software

Cloud services – particularly software as a service, or SaaS – ought to be an obvious option for a smaller business. Who wouldn’t want to cut their hardware costs? Isn’t it a good idea to gain instant access to a range of otherwise unaffordable enterprise grade software, get better security systems and shift the IT budget from …
Lucy Sherriff, 30 Apr 2012
The Register breaking news

SaaS brings software to the masses

Unless you’ve been living in a cave even less well equipped for the modern age than Fred Flintstone’s, you will have noticed the buzz about something called cloud computing. It comes with a menagerie of buzzwords: software as a service (SaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), infrastructure on demand, hosted apps … We could go on. …
The Register breaking news

Glad to be hybrid: Office 365 flits from cloud to cloud

Interview “The hybrid cloud environment is a great place for Office 365,” evangelises Simon May, appropriately enough a tech evangelist at Microsoft UK. May began his professional life with an eight-year stint at a global financial institution where he covered plenty of tech ground, from desktop and server support through to IT project …
Lucy Sherriff, 08 Feb 2012

Forecasting logon storms with desktop virtualisation

You the Expert For an IT manager, desktop virtualization is no bad thing, if only because it limits how badly a user can mess up his or her own settings. So if you are thinking that you could slim down your desktop hardware requirements and maybe keep track of everyone’s software upgrades more simply are there any downsides consequences it …
Lucy Sherriff, 14 Dec 2011

National Air Traffic Services lands desktop virtualisation

Interview You think you have a stressful job? Try Gavin Walker. He’s the man in charge of the tech and comms infrastructure (Head of Information Solutions) at NATS, the artist formerly know as National Air Traffic Service Control Services. Yes, the people who know where all the planes are over the Atlantic and the UK. We went to the NATS …
Lucy Sherriff, 01 Dec 2011

We need to talk about desktop virt

Sometimes we are forced to acknowledge that there is a group of people even more knowledgeable and informed than even Register journalists: you, our beloved readers. So we turn to you for help with a question that bears proper scrutiny. All this talk of cloud (and let’s face it, there has been a fair bit) has prompted some more …
Lucy Sherriff, 09 Nov 2011
The Register breaking news

Data retention, FOI and the storage budget

You the Expert We set you a challenge. How do you resolve the conflicting requirements of data retention rules, the Freedom of Information Act and managing a storage budget? Email, as you know, clogs up your storage boxes like nothing else. And if your policy is “hang on to it, you never know when you might need it” you could find yourself …
Lucy Sherriff, 09 Nov 2011
The Register breaking news

Data retention, compliance and the storage budget

Experts Compliance. Was there ever a word to strike such terror into the heart of the average techie? (OK, “Audit”. But don’t blame us, we didn’t want to say it…) Juggling the often conflicting requirements of your budget and compliance is enough to give anyone a headache. So help us out with a question, if you would be so good. Email …
Lucy Sherriff, 24 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

The road to Office 2010

Office 2010 is something of a conundrum. First the good news: it is the fastest selling version of Office in history, according to US analyst Forrester. Half of the businesses the firm surveyed in March had started the migration process, and the “vast majority” of the rest planned to upgrade in the future. According to Gartner, …
Lucy Sherriff, 20 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

Self Service BI: Would you, should you?

Expert Clinic We asked last week for your expert views on the state of self-service business intelligence. Let us set the scene: Analysts at Gartner (and Forrester, and elsewhere) have predicted that 2011 will be the year of self service business intelligence, as users demand tools to help them access and understand company data. The users’ …
Lucy Sherriff, 17 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

Pick the right tools for your Office 2010 migration

Microsoft reports the take-up of Office 2010 is the fastest for a software product in the company’s history. All well and good, but some doubters remain. Microsoft is keen to mop up migration and has assembled a bag of tools to smooth the process. The company’s in-house tech evangelist, Simon May, refers to Office 2010 …
Lucy Sherriff, 12 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

Email and compliance: How not to blow the storage budget?

Compliance. Was there ever a word to strike such terror into the heart of the average techie? (OK, “Audit”. But don’t blame us, we didn’t want to say it…) Juggling the often conflicting requirements of your budget and compliance is enough to give anyone a headache. So help us out with a question, if you would be so good. Email …
Lucy Sherriff, 10 Oct 2011
The Register breaking news

Can a user really do BI from the desktop?

Analysts at Gartner (and Forrester, and elsewhere) have predicted that 2011 will be the year of self service business intelligence, as users demand tools to help them access and understand company data. The users’ motives are easy to understand: identifying and responding quickly to trends and patterns in business data is vital …
Lucy Sherriff, 05 Oct 2011

Cloud Security Alliance crosses the Pond

“The cloud agenda has to move beyond the security field and into business,” says Jacqui Taylor, freshly minted director of communications for the UK and Ireland wing of the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA). “There is an education process that has to be done, and it needs an independent voice. That is where we come in.” A not-for- …
Lucy Sherriff, 04 Sep 2011
The Register breaking news

SaaS for speedy relief of licence headaches

Managing software licensing has to be one of the least fun aspects of an IT professional’s life. For one thing, it is medically proven* that there is no better means of inducing a headache than trying to read the whole of a software licence. And that is before you get to the logistics of managing the things: making sure they are …
Lucy Sherriff, 21 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

Are your secrets safe with SaaS providers?

There are plenty of opportunities for people to disclose, steal or sell sensitive company data. After all, anyone who really wants to swipe information needs only the intent and a USB stick. Admittedly, truly nefarious types are in fairly short supply. But the every day threat to any company’s data comes from the unintentional …
Lucy Sherriff, 20 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

Cloud changes shape in a crystal ball

“The mark of a successful technology,” says Simon May, tech evangelist at Microsoft, “is that it vanishes.” By that measure, cloud computing has a way to go, as it is surely the most visible technology out there – if you are counting headlines, at least. So it is interesting to speculate when it will fade from our discussions, …
Lucy Sherriff, 19 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

The cloud and the incredible shrinking office

Those in the know say that cloud computing will fundamentally change the way we office creatures work. “I am slightly too young to remember the workplace before the arrival of the PC,” says Jacqui Thomas, director of Comms at the UK and Ireland chapter of the Cloud Security Alliance. “But cloud is the same kind of game changer …
Lucy Sherriff, 15 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

Data ownership becomes fuzzy in the cloud

If Facebook has taught us nothing else, it is that people can be cavalier about protecting their data. The social networking giant has forced consumers to think differently about their data: have I just handed over the rights to the photos of my kids? Am I going to appear on my friends' pages endorsing fashion leggings thanks to …
Lucy Sherriff, 13 Jul 2011
The Register breaking news

Software as a service: Separating the bells from the whistles

The most obvious attraction of software as a service (SaaS) is that it gives small firms access to software they could not otherwise afford. In exchange for handing their data over to the care of someone with a huge data centre, they also benefit from economies of scale. But since there is no such thing as a free lunch, these …
Lucy Sherriff, 24 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Make sure your data finds a safe harbour

The drive to buy local is very much in vogue, even though the note of nationalism in the Buy British slogan may not sit comfortably with some. And despite the many good reasons to support one’s local economy, there are limits: this writer is not buying local bananas until well into retirement on Mustique. Outsourcing is also a …
Lucy Sherriff, 23 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Be happy in the cloud with the right SLA

Cloud services are not perfect. They are run on computers, by technical people, for customers: a triumvirate of imperfection. It is easy to get very excited by the possibilities of the cloud, so when Flickr accidentally deletes 4,000 photographs, or hotmail and gmail vanish email data, it serves as a useful reminder of the …
Lucy Sherriff, 16 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

DeepZoom rises to royal occasion

To celebrate a recent Royal Event you might have heard of, developers at Shoothill were asked to build an application that would add to the red-white-and-blue fun. The idea was that people could upload pictures of themselves to be stored in a giant photo montage portraying the faces of Prince William and his bride. Unreasonable …
Lucy Sherriff, 13 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Can cloud save the NHS?

As the scope of cuts to the UK public sector becomes clearer, the holy grail becomes finding places where money can be saved with no impact on frontline services. No one wants fewer hospital beds, cuts to school meals or mothballed paramedic crews if we can make do with fewer email servers and fat terminals. Socitm logo The …
Lucy Sherriff, 10 Jun 2011
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Mind the GAP: Alert system saves lives

Case study Some time in the not-too-distant future, a brave, if chilly, soul will send the following tweet: “on #K2 summit. v tired. awesome view. cu @ basecamp”. You will have the UK firm Active Web Solutions (AWS) to thank for it. AWS has developed a Global Alerting Platform (GAP) based on Microsoft’s Azure cloud service that will allow …
Lucy Sherriff, 09 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Data encryption and the Cloud

Survey after survey finds that IT professionals’ number one concern about cloud services is security. Some may say that concerns are overblown and that IT managers are more worried by loss of control than by real security risks. In some cases, the argument goes, security may even be better with a cloud deployment. That may be …
Lucy Sherriff, 02 Jun 2011
The Register breaking news

Cloud in 2011: A bright new dawn...

An awful lot has been written about cloud computing in recent months. Big vendors are climbing over each other to claim an understanding of cloud and 2011 is the year it is supposed to go mainstream. Cloud computing will save us money, it will simplify our IT systems, it will transform the way we interact with government, it …
Lucy Sherriff, 28 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Student books Vegas trip with Twitter mood detection app

Ben Waine, a self described "student ninja” who scooped first prize at the PHP Benelux Azure coding contest on May 21, has announced his victory on Twitter in a fittingly dignified and restrained manner: “Vegas baby yeeeeeeeaaaaaahhhhh!!!! Thanks to the @PHPAzureContest team who gave advice and support. #dpc11” But before we …
Lucy Sherriff, 24 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Read-only nation: can Open Source change the British way?

Workshop We asked if open-source software had a part to play in increasing technological innovation in the UK. It seems that for a nation with such a great engineering heritage, we have too easily passed the tech leadership flag over to the US and to the emerging economies. Steve George from Canonical speculated that open-source software …
Lucy Sherriff, 21 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Desktop Linux: the final frontier

Depending on who you talk to, 40 to 75 per cent of the world’s web servers are Linux-based. That is some serious market penetration. But even in organisations running Linux on their servers the operating system is on just 20 per cent of desktops. Despite its success in the back office, Linux has not yet made such an impact on …
Lucy Sherriff, 20 May 2011
The Register breaking news

Getting data in and out of a cloud service

Two problems with getting data in and out of a cloud service: the technology, meaning bandwidth and networking protocols, and contractual obligations. There are limits to what can be done to download terabytes of data faster, but the right tools can certainly make things simpler. And as usual when taking on contracts, cloud …
Lucy Sherriff, 17 May 2011
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Skilling up the cloud: What it means for infosecurity pros

In its 2011 Global Information Security Workforce Study, Frost and Sullivan argues that cloud computing “illustrates a serious gap between technology implementation and the skills necessary to provide security”. The analyst firm’s survey of more than 10,000 information security professionals worldwide found widespread use of …
Lucy Sherriff, 20 Apr 2011
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Research scientist: Cloud is good for IT pros

“Cloud computing does not mean the end of the IT professional.” So says Professor Marin Litoiu, research professor at York University in Canada, erstwhile IBM research director and now one of the world’s foremost thinkers on cloud. This may seem a strange statement - coming from a man who has predicted that cloud computing will …
Lucy Sherriff, 14 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

Open source and the sluggish UK public sector

Workshop Confronting their rapidly shrinking budgets, public sector bean counters must imagine that someone somewhere has been casting Chinese curses about living in interesting times. Because when money gets tight, things sure do get interesting. You would think that at times like these open-source deployments would be the obvious …
Lucy Sherriff, 13 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

Belt, braces and external security standards

If you are about to hand the day to day running of your company’s technology and handling of data to a third party, you had better be sure they know what they are doing, and that what they are doing matches your requirements. The business case for adopting cloud computing is already clear for many: it can save a lot of money, …
Lucy Sherriff, 08 Apr 2011
The Register breaking news

UK is a closed source 'stronghold'

Workshop The UK lags behind the rest of the world in deployments of open source software. Steve George, vice-president of business development at Canonical, believes this is a mistake that compromises not only our economy but also our global competitiveness. In China rural communities are receiving millions of PCs running Linux. In India …
Lucy Sherriff, 25 Mar 2011
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Let’s get commercial

Workshop IT people already know the benefits of open source software. A fair number of them run Linux at home (not least, according to one chief technical officer, so they can deny all knowledge of recent editions of Windows to friends and family wanting off-duty technical support), and persuading them to use it at work is not a hard …
Lucy Sherriff, 23 Mar 2011
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Cutting the cost of innovation

Workshop Open source software might be free to download, but it ends up costing as much as traditional software because of the complexities of supporting it, or inflexible licensing structures. Or so the argument goes. You would expect to hear this from Steve Ballmer, Larry Ellison or any of the other grand old men of proprietary …
Lucy Sherriff, 22 Mar 2011
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What did happen to all those London mayoral votes?

Last week, the nation turned out in record numbers (45 per cent) to decide who would run their local councils. In London, that meant voting Boris Johnson into what Ken Livingstone probably thought was his office for life. Some time earlier, the Open Rights Group had called for volunteers to be part of an election observation …
Lucy Sherriff, 07 May 2008
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How scanners and PCs will choose London's mayor

Very few politicians are recognisable by their first names only, but next week, two such larger than life characters will face each other in the closest battle for the office of London Mayor since it was re-established in 2000. The polls have the Labour incumbent Ken Livingstone running neck and neck with the Tory contender, …
Lucy Sherriff, 30 Apr 2008