|By Roger Strukhoff||
|February 8, 2014 11:31 AM EST||
With the Sochi Winter Olympics opening, it seems a good time to take a look at how Russia does in our research. There is some good news, although the country could certainly do much better.
No serious discussion of Russia today is possible without mention of country President Vladimir Putin. Indeed, this strongman is clearly on a personal mission to go into the history books alongside Peter the Great and Lenin as his country's most influential leaders.
Putin's influence is such that he's considered to be the most powerful person in the world by Time magazine, among other sources. His control over Russia's politics, media, culture, and business seems to be absolute.
Thus it may seem ironic to President Putin that his power is his country's biggest obstacle to progress. A few noteworthy items:
His country is perceived as being very corrupt, according to the Perception of Corruption Index, one of the factors we use in our research. Russia's PCI number ranks it 92nd among the 102 nations we survey - worse than Syria and Pakistan, for example.
A large income disparity that arose during Boris Yeltsin's time as Russia's leader does not seem to be improving under Putin. Russia finishes 68th in this category in our rankings, lower than China, Senegal, and the Ivory Coast, for example. Its ranking here is in dramatic contrast to neighboring Ukraine and several former Soviet satellite nations.
Business leaders who challenge Putin politically can get thrown into prison. This has had a chilling effect on foreign investment. Although Putin touts a recent tripling of foreign direct investment into the country (reaching $55 billion in the first half of 2013), capital outflow has exceeded outside investment in the country for several years. FDI is not one of the factors we measure, a lack of it will show up in the technology factors that we do measure.
In our overall rankings, Russia lags not only globally, but more important, in comparison to many of its neighbors. Russia finishes 80th in our overall rankings, and dead last among the 33 European countries we survey. It badly trails all of the former Soviet satellite states. Within its income tier (countries with per-person incomes between $13,000 and $30,000), Russia finishes 15th among 17 nations we survey, leading only Saudi Arabia and Oman.
Hope Spring Eternal
There is a glimmer of hope in our raw rankings, which de-emphasize the socio-eonomic factors. Here, Russia finishes is actually considered to be one of our "Goldilocks" countries - the dynamics of its ICT infrastructure shows an impact that is neither growing too rapidly (too hot), nor to slowly (too cold), but "just right." Other Goldilocks nations in the region include Latvia, Poland, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, and Slovenia.
Putin has reputedly authorized more than $50 billion to be spent on the Sochi Olympics, an absurd amount that is more than six times the amount spent by Vancouver to hold a perfectly beautiful Olympics in 2010.
The $50 billion is equal to 2.5% of the country's GDP - this is comparable to spending $400 billion in the US. This amount is also enough to build new power plants for about two-thirds of Russia's population, or an entire year's worth of all the new datacenters in the world.
We make no judgements on the form of governments in the nations we survey or on local politics. Our view is that the combination of factors that we integrate into our unique algorithms creates an accurate picture of what a nation's government is doing for its people.
For Russia right now, it's not a pretty picture. Although I stay quite busy, I will take Vladimir Putin's call if he tries to ring me. I doubt he will, as he seems not to listen to many people.
However, I do encourage him to look at his country's resources and people, and ease up a bit on his totalitarian tendencies. Investors would be happy to get excited about Russia again - as they did in 1991 - and work to improve a promising technology infrastructure that will only improve the lives of the country's people if developed more robustly.
The Internet of Things is not new. Historically, smart businesses have used its basic concept of leveraging data to drive better decision making and have capitalized on those insights to realize additional revenue opportunities. So, what has changed to make the Internet of Things one of the hottest topics in tech? In his session at @ThingsExpo, Chris Gray, Director, Embedded and Internet of Things, discussed the underlying factors that are driving the economics of intelligent systems. Discover ...
May. 5, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 5,512
SYS-CON Events announced today the IoT Bootcamp – Jumpstart Your IoT Strategy, being held June 9–10, 2015, in conjunction with 16th Cloud Expo and Internet of @ThingsExpo at the Javits Center in New York City. This is your chance to jumpstart your IoT strategy. Combined with real-world scenarios and use cases, the IoT Bootcamp is not just based on presentations but includes hands-on demos and walkthroughs. We will introduce you to a variety of Do-It-Yourself IoT platforms including Arduino, Ras...
May. 5, 2015 10:00 AM EDT Reads: 3,905
Scott Jenson leads a project called The Physical Web within the Chrome team at Google. Project members are working to take the scalability and openness of the web and use it to talk to the exponentially exploding range of smart devices. Nearly every company today working on the IoT comes up with the same basic solution: use my server and you'll be fine. But if we really believe there will be trillions of these devices, that just can't scale. We need a system that is open a scalable and by using ...
May. 5, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 5,873
17th Cloud Expo, taking place Nov 3-5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA, will feature technical sessions from a rock star conference faculty and the leading industry players in the world. Cloud computing is now being embraced by a majority of enterprises of all sizes. Yesterday's debate about public vs. private has transformed into the reality of hybrid cloud: a recent survey shows that 74% of enterprises have a hybrid cloud strategy. Meanwhile, 94% of enterprises a...
May. 5, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 580
SYS-CON Media announced today that @WebRTCSummit Blog, the largest WebRTC resource in the world, has been launched. @WebRTCSummit Blog offers top articles, news stories, and blog posts from the world's well-known experts and guarantees better exposure for its authors than any other publication. @WebRTCSummit Blog can be bookmarked ▸ Here @WebRTCSummit conference site can be bookmarked ▸ Here
May. 5, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 3,398
Database apps on mobile devices shouldn't stop working when there's limited or no network connectivity. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, a Developer Advocate for IBM Cloudant, will discuss how to bring data stored in a cloud database to the edge of the network (and back again), whenever an Internet connection is available. He will demonstrate techniques for replicating cloud databases with mobile devices in order to build offline-enabled mobile apps that can provide a better,...
May. 5, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 998
SYS-CON Events announced today that Secure Infrastructure & Services will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Secure Infrastructure & Services (SIAS) is a managed services provider of cloud computing solutions for the IBM Power Systems market. The company...
May. 5, 2015 09:45 AM EDT Reads: 1,066
In his session at WebRTC Summit, Peter Dunkley, Technical Director at Acision, will look at creating interactive communications via the web by adding messaging, file transfer, and group communication (group chat and audio/video conferencing) into the web experience. He will also discuss potential applications of this technology in areas including B2B, B2C, P2P, and gaming. Peter Dunkley is Technical Director at Acision. He graduated from The University of Edinburgh in 2000 with a BSc (Hons) in ...
May. 5, 2015 09:39 AM EDT Reads: 171
The cloud has transformed how we think about software quality. Instead of preventing failures, we must focus on automatic recovery from failure. In other words, resilience trumps traditional quality measures. Continuous delivery models further squeeze traditional notions of quality. Remember the venerable project management Iron Triangle? Among time, scope, and cost, you can only fix two or quality will suffer. Only in today's DevOps world, continuous testing, integration, and deployment upend...
May. 5, 2015 09:30 AM EDT Reads: 3,426
What exactly is a cognitive application? In her session at 16th Cloud Expo, Ashley Hathaway, Product Manager at IBM Watson, will look at the services being offered by the IBM Watson Developer Cloud and what that means for developers and Big Data. She'll explore how IBM Watson and its partnerships will continue to grow and help define what it means to be a cognitive service, as well as take a look at the offerings on Bluemix. She will also check out how Watson and the Alchemy API team up to off...
May. 5, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 2,131
ScriptRock has been included in the list of "Cool Vendors" in the "Cool Vendors in DevOps 2015" report by Gartner, Inc.* ScriptRock provides visibility into the configuration state of an organization's IT environments, enabling the continuous delivery of mission critical services. For enterprises where downtime is not an option, ScriptRock's system-wide overwatch offers the assurance that misconfigurations and anomalies are caught before they affect the business. By satisfying this fundamental ...
May. 5, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 366
Cloud and Big Data present unique dilemmas: embracing the benefits of these new technologies while maintaining the security of your organization's assets. When an outside party owns, controls and manages your infrastructure and computational resources, how can you be assured that sensitive data remains private and secure? How do you best protect data in mixed use cloud and big data infrastructure sets? Can you still satisfy the full range of reporting, compliance and regulatory requirements? In...
May. 5, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 3,713
It's time to put the "Thing" back in IoT. Whether it’s drones, robots, self-driving cars, ... There are multiple incredible examples of the power of IoT nowadays that are shadowed by announcements of yet another twist on statistics, databases, .... Sorry, I meant, Big Data(TM), tiered storage(TM), complex systems(TM), smart nations(TM), .... In his session at WebRTC Summit, Dr Alex Gouaillard, CTO and Co-Founder of Temasys, will discuss the concrete, cool, examples of IoT already happening tod...
May. 5, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 578
SYS-CON Events announced today that Site24x7, the cloud infrastructure monitoring service, will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Site24x7 is a cloud infrastructure monitoring service that helps monitor the uptime and performance of websites, online applications, servers, mobile websites and custom APIs. The monitoring is done from 50+ locations across the world and from various wireless carr...
May. 5, 2015 09:15 AM EDT Reads: 2,462
Between the compelling mockups and specs produced by your analysts and designers, and the resulting application built by your developers, there is a gulf where projects fail, costs spiral out of control, and applications fall short of requirements. In his session at DevOps Summit, Charles Kendrick, CTO and Chief Architect at Isomorphic Software, will present a new approach where business and development users collaborate – each using tools appropriate to their goals and expertise – to build mo...
May. 5, 2015 09:00 AM EDT Reads: 4,033