E-mail is permanent, therefore others can read, Sony Hack reminds non-technical crowd

One lesson learned from Microsoft's Monopoly trials is what you write in e-mail can haunt you.  This lesson has been repeated through multiple trials and discoveries.  I always write in a style that my e-mails could get to a broader audience than just the addressed.

Sony's hack has revealed how executives haven't learned this lesson that most of my technology friends know.

Bonnie Hill, a director of Yum Brands Inc. and California Water Service Group , echoed that point, saying the attack on Sony got everyone’s attention and is a reminder “that you don’t use your email for general, chatty conversations.’’ She said she expects boards to start asking more questions about what kind of information is being kept and how safe it is.

“A sufficiently skilled, motivated and funded attacker will get in, period,” Co3’s Mr. Schneier said. Companies must continually improve security with layers of defense that include intrusion prevention, detection and incident response, he said.

“This is going to take years to unwrap,” Mr. Schneier added. “Now every company is thinking, ‘What would it be like if everything in our company was made public?’ ”
— http://www.wsj.com/articles/fears-spread-of-sony-style-hack-1418863212?mod=WSJ_hp_LEFTTopStories

Whenever I have something extremely confidential to discuss I reach for the phone or switch to other means of communication, but not e-mail.  Using something like encrypted iMessage is an option.

We take a very different view of this than a lot of other companies have. Our view is, when we design a new service, we try not to collect data. So we’re not reading your email. We’re not reading your iMessage. If the government laid a subpoena to get iMessages, we can’t provide it. It’s encrypted and we don’t have a key. And so it’s sort of, the door is closed. But our business Charlie, is based on selling these [pointing to devices]. Our business is not based on having information about you. You’re not our product. Our product are these, and this watch, and Macs and so forth. And so we run a very different company. I think everyone has to ask, how do companies make their money? Follow the money. And if they’re making money mainly by collecting gobs of personal data, I think you have a right to be worried. And you should really understand what’s happening to that data. And companies I think should be very transparent about it.
— Tim Cook


Developing your Data Center Relationships - Chinese Guanxi

Relationships is a complex topic.  Some think it is about exchanging business cards, LinkedIn connections, and business dinners.  But, I think what so many miss is are your friends in the data center industry.  Do you have laughs, share perspectives, and talk about things outside the data center industry.  Are you social?  Do you have Guanxi?

BBC has an article that explains an application of Guanxi that I think many will find familiar.

He points out that the Chinese generally tend to be less private and socialise more with their colleagues than their Western counterparts, and doing deals this way is a natural extension of that.
...
Yet guanxi’s roots are tightly bound in history, with the notions of obligation and loyalty going back thousands of years.
— http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29524701


Relationship between Power and Fresh Water, Desalination Plant scenario

MIT's Technology Review has an article on San Diego's current state of the art desalination plant.

Desalination out of Desperation
Severe droughts are forcing researchers to rethink how technology can increase the supply of fresh water.
By David Talbot on December 16, 2014

One of the graphics shown is the amount of power used to produce a cubic meter (264 gals) of water.

What the article doesn't mention is the amount of water consumed to generate power in San Diego.  The DOE has a paper you can check out on water use in thermoelectric power generation.  67% of SD power comes for natural gas plants.  24% renewable

Each kWh of thermoelectric generation requires approximately 25 gallons of waterd, primarily used for cooling purposes – a 500 MW power plant would use approximately 300 million gallons of water per day. However, power plants also use water for operation of pollution control devices such as flue gas desulfurization (FGD) technology as well as for ash handling, wastewater treatment, and wash water. When discussing water and thermoelectric generation, it is important to distinguish between water use and water consumption. Water use represents the total water withdrawal from a source and water consumption represents the amount of that withdrawal that is not returned to the source.
— http://www.netl.doe.gov/File%20Library/Research/Energy%20Analysis/Publications/PowerPlantWaterMgtR-D-Final-1.pdf

Here is a graphic to show the areas of water use in thermoelectric power plant.

For an example of thinking about water use in the data center check out this Google video on the use of gray water.


WSJ has nice graphic of Big DC Players in a Range of US States

WSJ has a post on tax incentives for Facebook in Iowa, but the coolest thing is this graphic showing data centers in a range of states which supports the story on state tax incentives.

This quote captures one of the main reasons why states compete for the big players to build.

‘There is a certain ‘wow’ factor when people say you’ve got Google, Microsoft and Facebook.’
—Debi Durham, Iowa Economic Development Authority
— http://www.wsj.com/articles/why-data-centers-collect-big-tax-breaks-1416000057


Where will Spanish Language News grow as Google News shuts down in Spain?

Spain's government has implemented a Google Tax on Google News and Google on Dec 16th will be shutting down its news.google.es site.

But sadly, as a result of a new Spanish law, we’ll shortly have to close Google News in Spain. Let me explain why. This new legislation requires every Spanish publication to charge services like Google News for showing even the smallest snippet from their publications, whether they want to or not. As Google News itself makes no money (we do not show any advertising on the site) this new approach is simply not sustainable. So it’s with real sadness that on 16 December (before the new law comes into effect in January) we’ll remove Spanish publishers from Google News, and close Google News in Spain.
— http://googlepolicyeurope.blogspot.com/2014/12/an-update-on-google-news-in-spain.html

Media like the Washington Post cover the news of Google News shutting down.

Earlier this year, Spain passed a rather egregious amendment to its copyright law (to take effect in the New Year), purportedly as some kind of anti-piracy move, but more aptly called the “Google tax” by some observers. The law gives Internet publishers a right to compensation for the use of “snippets” of their content by news aggregator sites (like Google News). And not just a right to compensation: an inalienable right to compensation, one that publishers cannot waive or bargain away (in return, say, for being included in the new aggregator listings).
— http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/volokh-conspiracy/wp/2014/12/11/google-news-to-move-out-of-spain/

Out of curiosity I looked up what % of the spanish speaking population is in Spain.  11%.  Mexico has over twice the spanish speaking population than Spain and could take up the slack of Spanish news that disappears from Google News.  Columbia and Argentina are close to Spain.

So it is quite possible that Spain disappearing from Google News will be something that will be a non event to most and the biggest impact is in Spain.  Seems like it would be easy for Spain users who want to still use Google News in Spanish to switch from news.google.es to something like Mexico http://news.google.com.mx/


Mexico De facto[3] 120,286,655 Academia Mexicana de la Lengua Mexican Spanish
Spain De jure[4] 47,737,941 Real Academia Española Peninsular Spanish
Colombia De jure[5] 46,245,297 Academia Colombiana de la Lengua Colombian Spanish
Argentina De facto[6] 43,024,374 Academia Argentina de Letras Rioplatense Spanish
Peru De jure[7] 30,147,935 Academia Peruana de la Lengua Peruvian Coast Spanish
Venezuela De jure[8] 28,868,486 Academia Venezolana de la Lengua Venezuelan Spanish
Chile De facto[9] 17,363,894 Academia Chilena de la Lengua Chilean Spanish
Ecuador De jure[10] 15,654,411 Academia Ecuatoriana de la Lengua Ecuadorian Spanish
Guatemala De jure[11] 14,647,083 Academia Guatemalteca de la Lengua Guatemalan Spanish
Cuba De jure[12] 11,047,251 Academia Cubana de la Lengua Cuban Spanish
— http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_where_Spanish_is_an_official_language


China DC Growth driven by state - Telco and Finance

DatacenterDynamics reports on the China market with referencing a research study.

The report, Research on the Distribution Features and Development Strategy of China’s Data Centers, was published today by CCID Consulting, a consulting and intelligence service provider under China Electronics Information Industry Development Research Institute of MIIT, according to OFweek.

The report explores the development of China’s data center industry in terms of contextual background, influential factors and major trends. It analyzes the distribution features of data centers across the country.
— http://www.datacenterdynamics.com/focus/archive/2014/12/china’s-data-centers-driven-state

Part of what is covered are the three Telcos and four banks that are behind much of the DC growth.

In the telecommunication industry, three large state-owned telecommunication operators (China Telecom, China Mobile and China Unicom) and large IDC service providers are the major players driving data center constructions.

Among them, China Telecom has up to 375 IDC data centers, 320 of which are used to serve external customers; China Unicom has 196 IDC data centers with a total floor space of 184,000 sqm; and China Mobile has a number of data centers totaling 105,000 sqm.

The ‘Big Four’ banks driving data centers
In the financial industry, the ‘Big Four’ state-owned banks (Bank of China, Agricultural Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China and China Construction Bank)

If you are interested in the original research and have Google Chrome you can translate the original document referenced.

REVIEW: CCID Consulting released “Chinese characteristics data center layout and Development Strategy.” In depth analysis of the characteristics of the data center layout and development strategy, from the industrial development environment, influencing factors, and other aspects of the evolution of the trend to explore the development of the data center, and in-depth analysis of the current situation of the layout of the data center.
— http://ee.ofweek.com/2014-12/ART-8420-2817-28908773.html