Here are five resources for start-ups who want to join the Cloud bandwagon.
1. Amazon Web Services (AWS). As one of the first Cloud platforms, AWS is the preferred platform for many start-ups across the world. It’s very common to see start-ups spin a couple of EC2 instances to launch their minimal viable products. But to make it more attractive for start-ups, Amazon has a programme called AWS Activate, which offers a slew of benefits. For a start-up that is a member of one of the accelerators, seed funds or other start-up organisations, Amazon offers free credits ranging between $1,000 and $15,000, along with technical training programmes and free business level support.
2. IBM. SoftLayer, an IBM company, has a start-up incubator called Catalyst. With 13 data centres in the US, Asia and Europe, it is a viable choice for start-ups. Just like its competitors, SoftLayer has partnered with incubators and accelerators around the world to support the start-up ecosystem. Eligible start-ups get $1,000 monthly credit to host their applications on SoftLayer’s infrastructure. Check out here for a list of incubators and accelerators who have partnered with IBM SoftLayer.
3. Google Cloud Platform. Google is not far behind when it comes to luring start-ups to its Cloud platform. With success stories like Snapchat and Rovio behind it, Google App Engine and Compute Engine are becoming the new favourites of start-ups. The Google Cloud Platform Startup Pack offers $20,000 in credits to use any component of its Cloud services platform. Google has also partnered with accelerators and incubators like 10000Startups.com to support the latter’s portfolio companies.
4. Microsoft Azure. Microsoft BizSpark programme is one of the oldest and popular programmes among the technology start-ups. Eligible companies get almost every piece of software that Microsoft ships, including access to Azure, its flagship Cloud platform. As a part of Microsoft Ventures initiative, it has set up exclusive accelerators in 7 cities across the world. With 82% funded start-ups behind it, the Bangalore accelerator has been a very successful one for Microsoft.
5. Rackspace. Rackspace is one of the early Cloud service providers to offer special packages for start-ups. Its start-up programme offers hosting on its public Cloud, private cloud or dedicated infrastructure. Rackspace also offers support from a great set of mentors to guide the participants besides providing architecture guidance on designing and building Cloud-based products.
Twitter’s plans for CardSpring aren’t 100% clear. Onits blog, the company says that the team and technology at CardSpring will be a “great fit” for its approach towards the future of commerce, but actual details relating to whether the company or product will exist in the future aren’t spelled out.
On its website, CardSpring says it will “will continue to grow the adoption of our platform and work with our publisher, financial, and retail partners to create new, innovative commerce experiences for consumers.” Still, it’s not clear if that means that CardSpring as a brand and API will continue, or if it will simply be folded into existing Twitter commerce systems.
Twitter is actively working in the commerce space as a way to promote and deliver deals. In May, the company even introduced a way for users to add items to their Amazon shopping carts with a tweet.
The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
Life changed in many ways for Maninderpal Singh, the winner of the TechGig Code Gladiators 2014. Not only did he update his career status to the best coder in the country, he also won prize money of Rs. 1.5 lakh. Code Gladiators helped to reveal the talent of this small town boy from Muktsar, Punjab.
The journey of Code Gladiators started with 64 companies and 36,000 coders in April 2014 with the aim of finding the best coding talent in the country. Out of these, only 64 coders and 37 companies made it to the finale that was held in Delhi recently.
For Singh, an engineer from IIIT Allahabad, TechGig Code Gladiators was the first contest that gave him recognition amongst his peers and in the industry. Coding happened to him by chance as he was good with numbers, algorithms and problem-solving skills in college. The real learning started for him at Drishti Soft, the company that nominated him to participate in this national inter-company coding competition.
With only 1.5 years of experience at a mid-size company, Singh managed to outperform participants from many leading companies in the contest. He gives all the credit to the time-to-time training sessions provided by his employer, Drishti Soft that continually upgraded his knowledge and skills.
Talking about his experience, Singh said, “Code Gladiator was a great learning experience, personally and professionally. It gave me an opportunity to assess my skills against my peers and it has helped me tremendously to hone my coding skills. Also, I earned accolades from industry leaders and Code Gladiators has opened many new avenues for me.”
The second winner of Code Gladiators also came from Drishti Soft. If the winners of this contest are any indication then it can be concluded that Indian IT start-ups and SMEs are doing all the right things to attract, assess and hire some of the best coding talent in the country.
In its maiden year, TechGig Code Gladiators successfully revealed the best coding talent in the country by bringing coders from start-ups and established giants under one roof to compete and unleash their true potential.
Accepting his Title and the Rs 1.5 Lakh Cash Prize Award, Maninderpal said, “It feels amazing to have won India’s Best Code Gladiator award. It was an awesome feeling watching CTO’s of famous IT companies and hundreds of coders come together with varied experience to compete. I would like to thank my company Drishti Soft and praise TechGig for organizing such a well-managed event that helped coders realize their potential and gain exposure in the IT industry.”
DUBAI: Tata Group’s flagship Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) unit is developing much smarter cars that will offer a completely personalized driving experience and help prevent accidents by reducing driver distraction.
Using the latest machine learning and artificial intelligence techniques, JLR’s proposed car will offer a comprehensive array of services to the driver, owing to a new learning algorithm that recognizes who the driver is and learns their preferences and driving style.
The software then applies this learning by using a range of variables including your calendar, the time of day, traffic conditions and the weather to predict driver behaviour and take over many of the daily driving ‘chores’, allowing the driver to concentrate on the road ahead.
“The aim of our self-learning technology is to minimize driver distraction, which will help reduce the risk of accidents,” Wolfgang Epple, director of research and technology for JLR, said.
“Presenting the driver with information just at the right time whilst driving will reduce both cognitive distraction and the need for the driver to look away from the road to scroll through phone lists, or adjust mirrors, temperature or seat functions while on the road,” he said.
Epple added that up until now most self-learning car research has only focused on traffic or navigation prediction.
“We want to take this a significant step further and our new learning algorithm means information learnt about you will deliver a completely personalized driving experience and enhance driving pleasure,” he said.
READ ALSO: Apple puts iOS in the car, launches CarPlay
The intelligent car will recognize the driver by the smartphone or other device in their pocket and by the time the driver has opened the car door, the mirrors, steering wheel and seat settings will all be set to the individual’s preferences.
The cabin will be pre-set to the desired temperature — and be intelligent enough to change it if it is snowing or raining.
Windows Phone absolutely set the world on fire when it was announced. Here was Microsoft, the company who unleashed the disaster that was Windows Mobile, bringing an iPhone competitor that had its own unique design. The operating system also had a centralized way for users to post status updates and keep abreast of news about their friends and family.
Slowly, things changed. Today, Windows Phone 8 is still decent. In some ways it’s just as good as the iPhone. In other ways it’s a shell of what it once stood for. It’s a barely living memory to ideas that Microsoft was never able to pull off, or challenges the company hasn’t yet figured out a way to overcome.
Xbox on Windows Phone
Microsoft launched Windows Phone just as mobile gaming was coming into its own. As such, its decision to include an integrated gaming hub that was tied to Xbox Live was a brilliant idea, especially considering that the iPhone and Android still didn’t offer robust mobile gaming systems that allowed users to earn achievements and such.
An exclusive Xbox Live experience is what Windows Phone users were promised, but it’s not what Microsoft delivered. Xbox on Windows Phone games are plentiful, but none of them deliver anything close to the multiplayer experience of Xbox Live. Even worse, Microsoft has removed longtime Xbox on Windows Phone favorites from the Windows Store. When users who’ve purchased those games have to reset their phone, they’ll disappear along with any progress they’ve made.
Hubs, Live Tiles & Metro Design Language
Long before the iPhone had iOS 7 and Android had Material Design, there was Microsoft’s Metro Design Language. Today, the design language has spread across Microsoft, infiltrating Windows and just about everything else Microsoft makes. When it originally launched, Windows Phones was the only smartphone operating system that placed a big emphasis on making content the center of apps and getting rid of useless design flourishes.
Except for adding new Live Tile sizes, which are those squares and rectangles that show notifications on the home screen, Microsoft has failed to deliver a more mature version of the Metro Design Language. Only recently did it add an option for letting users put backgrounds in Live Tiles and Windows Phone apps still feel stark and less feature rich when compared to their counterparts.
Hubs were the answer to the rampant over use of the home button on Apple’s iPhone, plain and simple. Instead of forcing users to switch between different applications, Windows Phone including the Me hub, People hub and Photos hub. These hubs grouped relevant content together.
So, for example, People was the only place users needed to go to see their address book and monitor their friend’s latest status updates. The People App manages that functionality today, but other Hubs — like the Music + Video, have disappeared. That’s a shame.
Hubs were the weapon that Microsoft aimed against iPhone, but it was carrier updates that Microsoft hoped would sway Android users.
Android users have never been able to purchase a phone and say with absolute certainty that they’re sure that device will get updates over two years — well, until the Nexus series of devices came along. Microsoft said that it learned from Google’s mistakes in the space. Originally, updates weren’t something that carriers could block. For hardcore smartphone fans, this was a very big deal.
Today, Windows Phone users wait in limbo for software updates just like everyone else who doesn’t own an iPhone. To their credit, Microsoft created an early upgrade program so that users could upgrade their devices without carrier interface. The problem is that these updates are very much a work-in-progress and don’t include firmware from each hardware maker. Microsoft is leaving users with the choice of downloading buggy early versions of Windows Phone or waiting months to upgrade their device.
Take Windows Phone 8.1 for example. Features included in the update are so good that even iPhone users should think twice before switching. It was announced in April and has been on developers phones ever since. Microsoft still hasn’t started rolling it out to normal users.
Windows Phone isn’t a bad operating system. Aside from some missing apps, it’s perfectly possible that a buyer could pick up a Windows Phone as their first smartphone happily. Where the problem comes in are those millions of users who already own an iPhone or an Android phone. Each of these three things were designed to address the real concerns of users and help Windows Phone stand out. Without them, why wouldn’t someone looking to upgrade not buy another iPhone or Android device?
For this report, UCSD looked at four criteria – “current employment in the field, projected growth in the occupation between 2010 and 2020, median annual salary in the occupation, and workplace environment characteristics.”
The study also looked at “bridgeability factor,” a yes or no decision “based on whether a college graduate could bridge into the career with one or two years of study or reskilling.” Several careers – such as nurse, veterinarian, and pharmacist – scored well on UCSD’s criteria, but would be unobtainable for an untrained college graduate.
Almost half of the careers in the top 10 dealt with computers and technology, including the top two on the list. Although two different types of software developers – applications and systems – tied for the first spot on UCSD’s rankings, we decided to solely designate systems software developers as the number one career, based on its stronger long-term job prospects.