Staying informed is a constant challenge. There’s so much to do, and so little time. But we have you covered. Grab a coffee and take five while you nibble on these tidbits.
Welcome to the first Channel Bytes of 2024. All of us at CDN wish you a happy and prosperous year!
Intel taps former HPE exec to head its data centre and AI group
Intel has announced that it has appointed former Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) executive Justin Hotard to the post of executive vice president and general manager of its data centre and AI group, effective Feb. 1. He will report to Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger.
Hotard will be responsible for Intel’s suite of data centre products spanning enterprise and cloud, including its Xeon processor family, graphics processing units (GPUs), and accelerators.
He replaces Sandra Rivera, who has assumed the role of the chief executive officer of Programmable Solutions Group, a new standalone unit within Intel focused on FPGAs (Field Programmable Gate Arrays).
IBM to acquire technologies from Software AG
IBM has announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Software AG to purchase StreamSets and webMethods, Software AG’s Super iPaaS (integration platform-as-a-service) enterprise technology platforms, for €2.13 billion (approximately C$3.11 billion) in cash.
The acquisition of StreamSets and webMethods is, IBM said in a release, “further evidence of IBM’s deep focus and investment in AI and hybrid cloud. StreamSets will add data ingestion capabilities to watsonx, IBM’s AI and data platform, while webMethods will give clients and partners additional integration and API management tools for their hybrid multi-cloud environments.”
The pending acquisition follows a more than 20-year relationship between IBM and Software AG, with both StreamSets and webMethods expected to drive synergy with IBM’s current portfolio, including watsonx, Red Hat, the company’s IT automation products, as well as IBM Consulting. Additionally, StreamSets and webMethods are expected to benefit from IBM’s global scale, operating in more than 175 countries, the company said.
The acquisition will be completed using available cash on hand. It is subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals, and is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2024.
Tech pioneer Niklaus Wirth passes away
Niklaus Wirth, a Swiss computer scientist who was chief designer of nine programming languages, including Pascal, Delphi, and Modula/Modula-2, and was a software engineering visionary who advocated for lean software, died on Jan. 1, six weeks short of his 90th birthday.
In 1995, he popularized what is now known as Wirth’s Law, which states that software is getting slower more rapidly than hardware becomes faster.
Wirth received the industry’s most prestigious accolade, the Turing Award, in 1984.
CGI selected as partner by U.K. air traffic controller for DX project
CGI has been selected to partner with NATS, a provider of air traffic control services, to help transform and modernize the company’s digital infrastructure and evolve its services for air traffic operations in the U.K..
The seven-year agreement, which, according to a release, is the culmination of a year of the two working together, will see CGI deliver “data centre and hosting services to further increase the resilience, flexibility, and scalability of NATS’ critical digital infrastructure.
“CGI’s support will include transitioning NATS to a hybrid cloud model using an agile delivery approach. In addition, CGI will provide NATS with consulting services, frameworks, and practices for transforming and managing its complex IT portfolio.”
NATS provides air traffic services at 14 U.K. airports and manages all U.K. airspace from two air traffic control centres, located at Swanwick in Hampshire, and Prestwick in Ayrshire, Scotland.
Microsoft adds Copilot key to keyboard
In what it describes as the first big change to keyboards in nearly 30 years, Microsoft has announced that it is making a change to the keyboard on new Windows machines. A new Copilot key that invokes the Windows 11 Copilot AI assistant will replace the application (menu) key below the right shift key.
“Over the coming days leading up to and at CES, you will start to see the Copilot key on many of the new Windows 11 PCs from our ecosystem partners, with availability beginning later this month through spring, including on upcoming Surface devices,” wrote Yusuf Mehdi, executive vice president, and consumer chief marketing officer, in a blog post.
SonicWall accelerates SASE offerings; acquires Banyan Security
Cybersecurity vendor SonicWall this week announced the acquisition of Banyan Security, a provider of security service edge (SSE) offerings for the modern workforce. This acquisition, it said, strengthens the SonicWall portfolio by “adding zero trust security relied on by leading Fortune 100 companies to small businesses who are replacing legacy architectures for SSE solutions, including Zero Trust Network Access (ZTNA).”
Bob Vankirk, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of SonicWall, said, “cybersecurity’s focus is shifting to more dynamic solutions that can adapt to the ever-evolving landscape of threats in the cloud age.
“For years, firewalls have been the cornerstone of cybersecurity defenses. However, with the rise of cloud computing and secure access service edge (SASE), the industry is shifting its focus to more comprehensive and flexible approaches that include SSE and ZTNA as a necessity.”
The announcement comes on the heels of SonicWall’s recent acquisition of Solutions Granted, Inc. (SGI) which the company said “helped arm the channel with the latest managed detection and response services tailor-made for Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and Managed Security Service Providers (MSSPs).”
Enghouse Systems signs agreement to acquire Mediasite
Markham, Ont.-based Enghouse Systems Ltd. and Sonic Foundry Inc. jointly announced on Thursday that they have entered into a definitive agreement in which Enghouse will acquire the firm’s Mediasite business.
Under the terms of the agreement, Sonic Foundry will sell the assets of its Mediasite business, including its Japanese and Dutch subsidiaries, for US$15.5 million in cash (subject to certain price adjustments).
“Closing of the transaction is subject to approval by Sonic Foundry shareholders and certain customary closing conditions,” a release stated.
“The Sonic Foundry board of directors, executive officers, and a major shareholder (collectively owning approximately 48 per cent of the outstanding common stock) have entered into support agreements with Enghouse, committing to vote in favour of the transaction. It is currently expected that the acquisition will be completed during the first quarter of 2024.”
Enghouse provides vertically focused enterprise software offerings that target contact centres, video communications, healthcare, telecommunications, public safety and the transit markets.
Headquartered in Madison, Wis., Sonic Foundry specializes in developing video recording and streaming offerings for corporations, health organizations and government entities.