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Whose Test Datacentre Lives Under the Sea?

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Let's talk datacentres, shall we? They take too much space, require constant cooling and use too much power to run. Microsoft reckons it would be better for all if such oversized computers would be put under the sea, where they bother no one. Yes, really.

Project NatickOf course such an idea demands at least some testing-- which is what Microsoft did on August 2015, when it dumped a a datacentre packed inside an experimental vessel in the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. Christened "Leona Philpot" (after a character from the Halo game series), the datacentre operated on the seafloor for 105 days, and is described as a reflection of Microsoft's "ongoing quest for cloud datacenter solutions that offer rapid provisioning, lower costs, high responsiveness, and are more environmentally sustainable."

The idea for underwater datacentres comes from a number of Microsoft employees, including one with experience working on Navy submarines. This makes sense, since submarines are all about running sophisticated electronics under water, and of course we all know of the century-old tradition of lying cables on ocean floors all over the world.

IDC: IT Spending to Reach $2.8tr in 2019

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According to IDC global IT spending is set to grow from $2.46 trillion in 2015 to over $2.8tr by 2019-- with EMEA being the 2nd largest region (following the US) showing a CAGR of 3.3% for the forecast period.

IT spending"With the global economy entering a new and uncertain phase, IT spending will be heavily influenced by economic cycles and wild cards over the next 5 years," the analyst says. "Recent sluggishness in China has caused severe disruption for emerging markets, while the collapse in oil prices continues to challenge energy producers and stock market volatility poses new questions for investment firms. In many industries, business leaders will turn to IT solutions, including data analytics and infrastructure optimisation, to help them navigate the stormy economic waters. For IT vendors, the need is greater than ever for a detailed approach to targeting pockets of growth and opportunity amidst this volatile economy."

Cisco Buys into IoT With Jasper

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Cisco buys cloud-based Internet of Things (IoT) platform developer Jasper Technologies for $1.4 billion in cash and equities--- the networking giant's biggest purchase since 2013.

CiscoThe Jasper product offering allows companies devices ranging from implanted pacemakers to cars and jet engines to the cloud via cellular networks. In addition the platform automates IoT services management across devices, simplifying the shift to new business models making use of connected services.

The company counts 3500 enterprises as customers, and works with 27 service providers across the world. Post-acquisition Jasper will be turned into a Cisco IoT Software Business Unit run by Jasper CEO Jahangir Mohammed under Cisco senior VP Rowan Trollope.

Alibaba Uses Nvidia to Open Cloud

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The Chinese Alibaba is not simply saying "Open Sesame" to gain access to the cloud-- instead the Chinese search giant is betting $1 billion on Nvidia GPUs to power its cloud and artificial intelligence efforts.

Alibaba cloudThe company will also enlist around 1000 developers to work on its big data platform during the next 3 years. Such efforts will be run by Alibaba subsidiary AliCloud, and will be offered from datacentres across the world. According to the South China Morning Post the initial Nvidia-powered AliCloud product offering involves a "Big Data Platform" consisting of 20 solutions covering the data development chain.

VESA Updates Display Stream Compression Standard

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The Video Electronics Association (VESA) releases version 1.2 of the Display Stream Compression (DSC) standard, developed to support a wider range of display applications.

VESAIt is aimed primarily at externally connected displays (such as PC monitors and TVs) and provides native compression of the YCbCr 4:2:0 and 4:2:2 video formats commonly used in digital TVs. It also handles up to 16 bits per colour (DSC 1.1 supports only 8, 10 and 12 bits per colour) and High Dynamic Range (HDR).

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