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  • A new study shows that most data scientists around the world believe a set of ethical standards should exist when it comes to data collection and research.

  • Organizations that go to the front of the line when it comes to new technology investments are positioning themselves for market growth and company expansion, according to a survey from Harvard Business Review Analytic Services and Verizon Enterprise Solutions. The accompanying report, "The Digital Dividend: First Mover Advantage," states that most business and IT executives view technology acquisitions as growth drivers, but a significant number of them think their leadership lacks the IT vision needed to fully exploit the potential of innovation. The survey participants identified their organizations as belonging to one of three categories: pioneers (open to change and the first to move), followers (invest in tech only after others have shown the benefits) or cautious organizations (wait until technology is well-established before making purchase decisions). The follower and cautious companies often find themselves stifled on the adoption of analytics and other technology solutions due to internal cultural resistance. "New technologies can provide a genuine competitive edge, but the organization has to make the commitment to use technology to build new processes and business models," says Angelia Herrin, research and special projects editor of the Harvard Business Review. "Companies need to become more flexible in terms of technology implementation and make innovation part of their culture in order to realize the real business value." More than 670 global business and technology leaders took part in the research.

  • CEOs and business owners are placing more faith in IT leaders and their contributions, but that faith hasn't yet translated into perceived financial impact or valued-advisor status. These are the findings of a recent survey from global staffing and HR services firm Adecco Group. The company polled 500 CEOs and business owners, and the results indicate that IT leaders are rising in stature with top executives, but they still have work to do if they are to have a more powerful voice when it comes to major business decisions. For now, CIOs can take encouragement from the increased recognition and appreciation of their contributions. "One of the striking points of the survey has to be the level of confidence today's CEO is placing in the CIO," says Jack Cullen, president of Modis, Adecco's IT staffing subsidiary, which released a portion of the findings. "This is a ringing endorsement for a company's CIO." Especially encouraging is the healthy outlook on IT spending, which Cullen said is "deemed critical to the company's bottom line." That said, CEOs still aren't equating IT department success with actual bottom-line results to the extent that they do with other departments. And they are not including CIOs among their most trusted advisors.

  • The Internet of things is here, and IT must understand how to deploy the IoT effectively in order to prepare for the next phase of enterprise connectivity.

  • No organization can afford to ignore the potential of a disaster that could shut down operations. The results can be devastating. Consider these statistics: According to published research, 95 percent of companies experience a data outage within a year, and the average cost of downtime is $70,000 per hour. Even worse, seven out of 10 companies that experience a major data loss go out of business within a year. Despite the dangers, nearly three-quarters of organizations surveyed do not backup all of their virtual servers. Clearly, companies face formidable challenges as they pursue seamless business continuity. On the positive side, three out of five large organizations do have a continuity plan in place. Whether they have the right one in place is debatable. To assess whether your IT organization is on the right track, consider the following checklist of essential points of focus for disaster recovery and business continuity. These guidelines were adapted from recommendations posed by Janco Associates, and they cover everything from communications to risk management to social media to mobility.

  • If you want to learn about the hottest programming languages today, don't miss this list from IEEE Spectrum. This respected organization, which has 400,000 members and is considered the world's largest association of technology professionals, enlisted the services of Nick Diakopoulos, a well-known computational journalist and assistant professor at the University of Maryland, to compile the language rankings. Diakopoulos proceeded by weighing and combining 12 metrics from 10 sources, including IEEE Xplore, Google and GitHub. The result is a compilation of languages that cover big data analytics, graphics, system administration, network programming and virtually every other tech-supported function. And if you disagree with Diakopoulos' conclusions—or want to see which language dominates within your particular tech niche (such as mobility)—that's not a problem: IEEE has posted an online, interactive version of the list that enables you to adjust the weight of each metric used to create the customized ranking.

  • IT leaders express overall satisfaction with the adoption of mobile applications within their companies, according to a recent survey from Apperian. And the resulting "2014 Executive Enterprise Mobility Report" reveals that CIOs have high hopes about the positive impact of mobile investments on business processes, employee satisfaction, cost savings and competitive advantage. Security, however, is still a top concern. That's not surprising, especially because the vast majority of IT executives don't know the extent of data and device loss among their mobile users. Another major struggle: Figuring out how to determine the ROI of mobile deployments. Regardless of the current obstacles, a significant number of survey participants said they will be equipping thousands of enterprise users with mobile apps for the immediate and foreseeable future. To ensure success, the report recommends that IT departments avoid making generic decisions, as "users have different needs and talents that must be taken into account. Think like a marketer, and create formal segmentation and improve it over time." An estimated 100 technology executives took part in the research.

  • GE Capital CTO Eric Reed offers insights into how the financial services firm makes various IT systems work together in a streamlined and cost-efficient way.