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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

ICT Happenings Week 4 of Apr 2014

News for Week 2 of Apr 2014; the biggest news was the launching of MOLPay - cash payment for e-commerce.

For this week / last week, here are / were the biggest news.
  • Telegraph - Apr 24, 2014 - Apple returns $130bn to shareholders
  • PR - MILPITAS, CA., April 23, 2014 — ProphetStor Establishes New Office in China and Gains Bigger Footprint in Asia
  • PR - KL - Apr 23, 2014 - Mobile banking increases but many feel apathy towards adoption
  • PR - KL - Apr 23, 2014 - Asia Pacific University of Technology and Innovation (APU) joins EMC Academic Alliance
  • PR -SG - Apr 23, 2014 - Viber Releases New Design for iPhone and Comes to Blackberry 10
  • PR - Apr 23, 2014 - Violin Launches Windows All-Flash Array for Next-Generation Enterprise and Cloud Deployments
  • PR - SG – Apr, 22, 2014 - Cloud-based, social collaboration and communication platform Unified Inbox expands, launches HQ in Singapore
  • PR - KL - Apr 22, 2014 - Brocade Names Gabriel Breeman as OEM Director for Asia-Pacific
  • PR - KL, Apr 18, 2014 - Set To Boost the E-commerce Industry with Search Intent Mobile Ads
  • PR - KL - Apr 17, 2014 - Tan Yen Yen joins SAS as regional head for South Asia
  • PR - SG – Apr 16, 2014 - Fusion-io Unlocks Performance for SQL Server 2014
  • PR - KL, Apr 16, 2014 - Frost & Sullivan Awards “Data Centre Services Provider of the Year” to AIMS Group
  • PR - BEDFORD, Mass., Apr 16, 2014 - Flytxt Partners with VoltDB for Real-time Streaming Analysis of Mobile Communication Data Service Provider
  • PR - Apr 16, 2014 - Oracle Offers New Mobile Capabilities for Enterprise Performance Management
  • PR - Apr 16, 2014 - How Singapore app Muslim reached 10 million downloads across 200 countries
  • PR - SG- Apr 16, 2014 - Tata Comm. expands its global data centre footprint in Australia, Germany, Austria and Malaysia

Sunday, April 20, 2014

What's in the storage for Built 2014

Built 2014,the Microsoft’s developer conference was really a big event spanning days and multiple sessions, with too many details to cover.

To cut things short, check out the highlighted keynotes and key takeaways from official press release.

In a nutshell, Built 2014 made the following key announcements:
  • Windows Phone 8.1 - Cortana (powered by BING search), S/MIME for encrypted mail, VPN support
  • Windows 8.1 Updates - Key features of the update include user interface improvements for mouse and keyboard users and performance and compatibility enhancements to Internet Explorer 11
  • $0 royalty licensing program for OEM and ODM partners developing smartphones and tablets with screens under nine inches
  • Three new Lumia smartphones for Windows Phone 8.1
  • Visual Studio 2013 Update 2 Release - Universal projects allow developers to use approximately 90 percent of the same code, a single packaging system, and a common user interface to target apps for phones, tablets and PCs

Built 2014 was held at the Moscone Center, San Francisco, CA,April 2 – 4

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Developers Updates Week 4 of Apr 2014

In the last updates series (Week 4 of Feb 2014), the most interesting update was the offering of paid apps on Google play for Malaysian developers.

For this updates series, the followings had emerged.
  • PR - KL, Apr 21, 2014 - Doodle 4 Malaysia, and Get Featured on Malaysia Day
  • PR - KL, Apr 18, 2014 - offers mobile deep linking for new ads format: search Intent Ads
  • PR - KL - Apr 18, 2014 - Malaysia’s Brightest And Most Innovative Youths To Represent Nation At Microsoft Imagine Cup 2014
  • PR - KL - Apr 17, 2014 - Malaysian Celebrities Support Code for Malaysia Campaign to Empower Future Generation through Computer Science
  • PR - Apr 17, 2014 - KUIMB And NAAM MOU(ed) to create training opportunities for Enterpreneurs
  • TheStar - Apr 4, 2014 - MyTeksi set for more funding
  • PR - Apr 2, 2014 - Microsoft showcases latest updates to Windows, opportunities for developer@ Built 2014
  • PR - Apr 2, 2014 - Oracle Announces Oracle NoSQL Database 3.0
  • PR - SANTA CLARA, Calif. - March. 26, 2014 - Intel and Broad Institute Dramatically Improve Speed of Analytics for Genome Analysis Toolkit
  • PR - Mar 26, 2014 - Oracle Announces Java 8
  • PR - PALO ALTO, Calif. - March. 18, 2014 - HP Expands Testing for Mobile and Cloud-based Application Delivery
  • Channel 9 - Mar 18, 2014 - Leslie Lamport Selected as 2013 ACM A.M. Turing Award Winner
  • Channel 9 - Mar 5, 2014 - Microsoft .NET is now 'open' source
  • PR - Mar 3, 2014 - Microsoft showcased new innovations for end users, developers and IT for upcoming Office 365@SharePoint Conference 2014

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Social Intelligence Quotient (SQ) Emerges as Newest Measurement for Organisational Workforce Readiness

Press release - Apr 14, 2014

Today, Kelly Outsourcing & Consulting Group (‘KellyOCG’) announces that ‘Social Intelligence’ (SQ) has emerged strongly as the latest quotient for dynamism, competitiveness and growth of businesses.

According to its survey findings of ASEAN’s Executive Outlook Survey 2014, Malaysian SMEs are perceived as ranked amongst the highest in terms of being Socially Intelligent Organisations, even as compared to other ASEAN countries. Malaysian SMEs also surprisingly revealed themselves to be the most highly SQ-driven, as compared to larger multinational companies, conglomerates and government agencies.

KellyOCG further highlights that this is a direct result of:- a) more Gen-Y hires that make up the SMEs’ workforce and thus driving them to be more highly ranked as SIOs, and b) the higher level of entrepreneurial spirit and agility that drives SQ in Malaysian SMEs. Furthermore, there are more than 23% of the organisations who consider themselves SIOs are predicting significant growth for their businesses.

Details, infographic.

Monday, April 14, 2014

ESI : Communication and Project Leadership Skills after project management

Press release - Singapore - 7 Apr 2014:

ESI International, the world's leading project management training company, today announced the key findings of its inaugural Asia Pacific Project Management Salary Survey, which was conducted with over 600 project management managers across multiple industry sectors in Asia Pacific, spanning China, Hong Kong, India, Australia and New Zealand, as well as Southeast Asia nations including Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.

In addition to uncovering salary trends across countries, the study also aims to examine the factors impacting salary improvement, employment outlook, and critical competencies hiring managers look for when recruiting project management professionals.
  • Countries with the highest and lowest mean monthly salary recorded: Across all industries, roles, and experience levels, Australia emerged as the country with the highest mean monthly salary registered within the project management profession (USD11,350), followed by New Zealand (USD9,161), Hong Kong (USD7,500), Singapore (USD7,033), Malaysia (USD4,316), China (USD3,663), India (USD3,453) and Indonesia (USD3,428).
  • Only 9 per cent of respondents were specialised in Agile project management: Project management professionals across Asia Pacific have the most experience in programme management (24 per cent), traditional or Waterfall project management (20 per cent), and project portfolio management (19 per cent), regardless of the industries they are in. While only 9 per cent of survey respondents were specialised in Agile, organisations in regulated industries, such as the financial services sector, are increasingly turning to Agile to align business needs with IT and meet regulatory compliance.


SourceFire: Securing SCADA from Cyber-attacks

Based on the contributed Securing SCADA from Cyber-attacks by By Ammar Hindi, Managing Director, Sourcefire APAC (now part of Cisco Systems).

First of all, it is interesting to take note that insurers such as Lloyd's of London are insuring companies with cyber-security risks. I have read this some times ago, yet, this trend is still no common especially in Malaysia and APAC.

The article tells that a recent study has shown that insurance companies are unwilling to cover energy firms from cyber-attacks and damages, even after thorough assessment by these firms have made such as ensuring the software are up to date and how these firms oversee their networks.
Ammar Hindi, MD, Cisco APAC.

The study further discovered that majority of these applicants were rejected by insurers due to insufficient cyber-defences on their Supervisory control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems. These are a few factors that make the networks vulnerable.

SCADA is the main network for industrial processes such as utilities, transportation, logistic, manufacturing and pharmaceuticals.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

How to Save Directions for Google Maps on Android 4.4.2

The major problem with consumer (free) apps is that they get updated as the suppliers see fit and users (consumers) just have to keep up with it - sometimes you just hope the older versions will come back.

For instance, recently I found that Google Maps changes so much with new features and hidden old features that I almost found it not helpful.

However, Google Maps keeps bringing me back the attention due to its ability to detect traffic congestion on my usual driving routes (and timing) - thanks to integration with Waze - and I found it to be very helpful.

Note: In order to enjoy this feature, you have to install the Google Search (Google Now) app from Google Play - it works almost like an information aggregation - another cool feature is the ability to send you updates on your search patterns, and it will also indicate current and weather forecasts.

Today, I am trying to figure out a way to save directions for Google Maps as preparation of traveling to an outstation location - I wanted to save money not to buy a dedicated GPS device.

I found that most information from the Internet are outdated; those information are based on older versions of Google Maps and Android - for instance:
  • 'Save to My Map' feature is only available in older version of Google Map.
  • Layers button is missing from Google Maps in Android 

Friday, April 11, 2014

ICT Happenings Week 2 of Apr 2014

News for Week 1 of Apr 2014; the biggest news was the upcoming IPO of Alibaba.

For this week / last week, here are / were the biggest news.
  • PR - Apr 11, 2014 - WeChat Sees Stellar Growth & Successful Campaigns With Astro Gempak, Era FM and Chattime
  • PR - Apr 10, 2014 - Zalora iOS App Gets Updates
  • PR - Kuala Lumpur, Apr 10, 2014 - MOLPay launches cash payment for e-commerce merchants at 7-Eleven stores in Malaysia
  • Ovum - Melbourne - Apr 10, 2014 - A wave of consolidation will occur in social messaging in 2014
  • PR - Singapore - Apr 9, 2014 - Tata Comm. delivers live F1 Feeds to Broadcaster Chello DMC
  • PR - Apr 9, 2014 - WD Introduces First Thunderbolt Powered Portable Dual-Drive
  • PR - Singapore - Apr 7, 2014 - Fusion-io Collaborates with Oracle to Double Usable Capacity for MySQL
  • PR - Kuala Lumpur - Apr 7, 2014 - AMD launches Graphics Card for Next-Gen 4K Resolution Workstations
  • PR - Apr 7, 2014 - EMC Redefines Data Protection for a Software-Defined World
  • Pyramid Research - Apr 7, 2014 - Tablet market in Latin America set to grow
  • PR - Apr 7, 2014 - Fluke Networks Bridges the Ever-Widening Application and Network Performance Visibility Gap with an Integrated Solution
  • PR - Apr 7, 2014 - BuzzCity Strengthens Global Growth Strategy with Cross-device Support Online Display Ads
  • PR - Apr 7, 2014 - HP Streamlines Remote Content Creation, Solves Storage Bottleneck with Industry First Offerings

Ovum and Informa Telecoms & Media Research to merge

Press release - London, 7 April 2014

Ovum and Informa Telecoms and Media (ITM) Research, both divisions of Informa plc, today announce their intention to combine under the Ovum brand, to create the world’s largest telecoms industry research firm. The new company, which will also be the fourth-largest technology analyst house globally, will offer customers unrivalled analysis across the converging IT, media and telecoms industries, and including a suite of new research, market data and consulting capabilities.

A multi-million pound investment programme will see all complementary product portfolios merged delivering 23 new or improved services across IT, media and telecoms, including the world’s most comprehensive telecoms research. IT and media research will also be significantly bolstered through the introduction of new channels covering telco IT, customer engagement, enterprise mobility, telco enterprise services, digital media and music. A new state-of-the-art online delivery platform to house all research will also be launched.

The merged business, which will be fully integrated by the end of May, will be led by Steve Hotham, current MD of Ovum, who will become its CEO. Spread across 23 offices, in 6 continents, Ovum will employ 275 staff, including 180 analysts providing a combination of global and local insight.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The pursuit of truth - I don't see many around me

USA Today reported that General Motors put two engineers on leave over connection with the faulty ignition switches that have forced the recall of 2.6 million vehicles worldwide and are linked to 31 crashes and 12 deaths in the U.S., plus one fatal crash in Canada.

I salute these decisions.

4 Ways to Push Your Brand to the World Cup Fans

By Rachel Lee, the resident writer on

Fans of The Beautiful Game are already engaging in pre-World Cup activities to prepare for the biggest sporting event of the world this June.With a viewership of 3.2 billion in the last World Cup, with almost 800 million for the finals alone, it is the perfect avenue for media and brands’ exposure. Unfortunately, above the line methods like halftime commercials can only do so much, as it is limited, and viewers simply switch to other activities during commercial breaks – or watch uninterrupted matches online. However, there are always opportunities that not only increase brand awareness and engagement, but also bring consumers back to traditional media, as listed below:

Reach out to world cup fans

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

VB.NET Form with Background Image Flickers and Slows on Resize

When you set a background image to a form, resizing the form may end up slow and flickers regardless of the image size.

Three suggested solutions found online.

1.) PixelFormat.Format32bppPArgb

Load the background image dynamically (on run-time) whenever the form object is instantiated, do not reference the background image on design-time.

Then, use the technique of rendering a bitmap with PixelFormat.Format32bppPArgb to load the background image.

I do not witness significant performance gain deploying this technique as compared to conventional method and it doesn't solve the flickering issue.

Public Overrides Property BackgroundImage() As System.Drawing.Image
            Return Me.RenderBmp
        End Get
        Set(ByVal value As System.Drawing.Image)
            If Not value Is Nothing Then
                Me.RenderBmp = New Bitmap(Me.Width, Me.Height, _
                Dim g As Graphics = Graphics.FromImage(Me.RenderBmp)
                g.InterpolationMode = Drawing.Drawing2D.InterpolationMode.High
                g.DrawImage(value, New Rectangle(0, 0, Me.RenderBmp.Width, _
            End If 'If Not value Is Nothing
        End Set
    End Property

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Groupon Malaysia Raises RM20,545 for WWF-Malaysia

Press Release - KUALA LUMPUR, 8th April 2014

As a part of its commemoration of Earth Hour 2014, Groupon Malaysia recently collaborated with WWF-Malaysia to raise funds and awareness around the popular annual initiative encouraging sustainable living amongst Malaysians. Raising a total of RM 20,545 via a donation Groupon deal, the full proceeds generated from the initiative will be used to support WWF-Malaysia’s initiatives towards the conservation of the environment.

(L-R:)Arvind Karthi Gunaseharan, Head of Sales (Local) for Groupon Malaysia; Mr. Yeap Chong Wei, General Manager (Marketing) of WWF-Malaysia


GST Updates: TheStar : GST Bill Gaining Momentum in Parliament

Following previous updates, TheStar reported that the parliament voted in favor of the GST bill after two bloc division votes.

Nonetheless, opposition requested another session of voting as reported.

The is ever going to be the best year for financial and accounting software solution providers - all parties are rushing to achieve the deadline of Apr 2015 for the GST bill to go live.