Microsoft and Real Madrid: Can passion improve the future?

Over the past three years, Microsoft has held a strong partnership with Real Madrid Foundation, in partnership with our corporate citizenship programs. Working with the Foundation to support its work globally, we donate software for Foundation employees, volunteers and eligible local partners who use the Office 365 Platform to boost productivity and increase effectiveness through better collaboration. The use of Yammer in the past year has created a community among these groups for sharing of experiences and knowledge. Empowered with this connected set of apps and services designed for modern working, collaboration and teamwork, those working with the Foundation can be more efficient and effective.

It’s no understatement to say that soccer is a game of passion all over the world. In our four-year technology partnership with Real Madrid C.F., our headline is “Passion Powers Passion,” because we have a shared belief that passion can move the world, and sport can be more than just a game. For youth, especially in underserved communities worldwide, sport can be a tremendous outlet for social integration and economic empowerment.

Empowering youth through passion for sport is not a unique concept. Indeed, several national and global organizations such as Right to Play and Hoops4Hope have recognized that participation in sport can serve as a catalyst for social development as well as personal development both physically and emotionally. The International Olympic Committee has recognized sports’ ability to promote a more peaceful and prosperous society in different geographical, cultural and political contexts.

In parallel, exposure to technology and IT skills can enable access to a better future and a path to economic empowerment, particularly in our highly connected, mobile-first, cloud-first world. Coupled with the values, skills and leadership one learns from sport, technology and sport can be a powerful partnership to empower and bring about social change. As in a team sport, work for social good requires partnership and a deliberate pacing. Our ambitious goals cannot be achieved in one year or even five, but by taking a long term view, we can measure change not on one goal or one game, but over many seasons.

Supporting nonprofits has and will always be a cornerstone of our Microsoft company culture. The company and our employees collectively give thousands of hours, and donate more than $1 billion a year, to more than 86,000 nonprofits around the world. As in our latest campaign to kick off Windows 10 with $10 million dollars for charity, software donation and helping nonprofits find technology solutions enable a catalyst effect in supporting their work in local communities. To date, the Microsoft YouthSpark initiative has created opportunities for more than 227 million youth worldwide, including 124 million just last year.

Over 40,000 children at risk of social exclusion in several countries have participated in our project. These children are learning more than just skills, they are also learning through play that goals aren’t celebrated individually, and that a true win comes through great team work. We put together a short video, above, so you can witness the impact this work has had on the lives of youth.

At Microsoft and Real Madrid, we share in the belief of a future with greater possibilities for everyone, and we are committed to changing it through our shared values. Our passion is to empower people through passion for sport, and provide the tools that heighten their natural talents. In time, these well-paced efforts will inspire youth, who go on to take the lead in changing not only their lives, but also the lives of others around them, inspiring with passion real impact in their local and global communities.

Orlando

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A New Way for Tech Firms to Fight Orders to Unlock Devices

A New Way for Tech Firms to Fight Orders to Unlock Devices

A federal magistrate in New York declined to fall in step with the government’s demand to access an Apple device seized by investigators, fanning the flames of a national debate.

The post A New Way for Tech Firms to Fight Orders to Unlock Devices appeared first on WIRED.

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Upgrade your way to a modern data platform – End of support for SQL Server 2005 less than 6 months away

Data has become increasingly critical to businesses, so it’s more important than ever for every organization to be utilizing a modern data platform that drives innovation, delivers business value and provides quick insight. In just under six months—on April 12, 2016, to be exact—extended support for SQL Server 2005 ends. That means an end to supportability updates, and perhaps more importantly, security updates.

In the decade since SQL Server 2005 launched, businesses technology needs have changed dramatically. Microsoft has responded with advancements in technology to meet and exceed the expectations of organizations large and small. Our current version, SQL Server 2014, opens the door to new scenarios with:

  • Improved performance. SQL Server 2014 has benchmarked 13x faster performance than SQL Server 2005 and set a new world record for SAP performance for 16 processors on an HP Superdome X.
  • In-memory across workloads for up to 30x transactional performance gains and over 100x faster queries to work with larger quantities of data and get the fast answers you need.
  • High availability using AlwaysOn availability groups for mission-critical uptime and disaster recovery to the cloud for improved business continuity.
  • Tools to manage data across the enterprise such as master data services, data quality services, and enhanced integration services.
  • Support for unstructured, complex and streaming data to help with tasks like collecting and managing manufacturing sensor data or analyzing social media activity.
  • Faster time to insight using Microsoft Excel and Power BI to meet demands for quick reporting and mobile insights.

In short, SQL Server 2014 delivers a high-performing, advanced data platform that keeps up with modern business needs. Let me share with you one customer’s story – TPP – and how they have benefitted from SQL Server 2014.

SQL Server 2014 boosts performance for clinical software company

The story is a real-world example of how SQL Server 2014 solved a number of issues for this clinical software provider. When TPP needed to increase its application’s scalability and performance to prepare for ambitious global expansion, they began planning for an upgrade that would support the company’s SystmOne clinical software application. SystmOne manages more than 30 million patient records and is used by physicians and other health professionals across England to accurately and securely document every appointment, medication, allergy and physician contact a patient has ever had.

A feature that became a critical component of the application’s success is the in-memory online transaction processing (OLTP) solution in SQL Server 2014. This high-performance, memory-optimized solution relies on no-locking/no-latching concurrency control, which serves to eliminate system bottlenecks resulting from scaling needs to handle additional users.

Using in-memory OLTP in SQL Server 2014 in testing, TPP saw seven times faster processing performance for SystmOne and the ability to scale to handle hundreds of thousands of additional users. The company expects to save time and money by not having to create its own database system. Plus, the doctors using the apps will be better equipped to serve patients with a more modern data platform supporting the critical health data being collected.

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Immediate cost and security benefits

According to a July 2014 Microsoft-commissioned study with Forrester on the Total Economic Impact of SQL Server 2012 and 2014, customers realize a 9.5 month payback period when deploying a new SQL Server database. If you are running Windows Server 2003 as well as SQL Server 2005, an investment in both your infrastructure and your database technology will ensure you realize the maximum benefits of a truly modern platform by taking advantage of new security features like Windows Server Core support or the ability to scale up to 640 logical processors on Windows Server 2012 R2.

Continuing to operate SQL Server 2005 without security updates and hotfixes from Microsoft may put your organization at risk for business disruptions, security and compliance issues, and increased maintenance costs. Upgrading to SQL Server 2014 before extended support ends next April is not only a necessary security and compliance decision, but a sound business decision as well.

Watch for upcoming posts on the SQL Server blog where we’ll dive deeper into the process for planning your upgrade and offer tips and tools to ease the process. In the meantime, please visit the Microsoft SQL Server 2005 upgrade website for helpful evaluation and planning resources. We also have a worldwide team of partners and Microsoft services offerings designed to help you with your migration.

Finally, I hope you’ll also check out the Top 10 reasons to upgrade from SQL Server 2005 blog as a further resource for understanding how modernizing your data platform on SQL Server 2014 will help drive innovation, deliver business value and provide quick insight.

-Takeshi

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Cops Don’t Need a Crypto Backdoor to Get Into Your iPhone

Cops Don’t Need a Crypto Backdoor to Get Into Your iPhone

The White House has denied the FBI’s pleas for an encryption backdoor. But don’t forget that feds can still sneak in through the window.

The post Cops Don’t Need a Crypto Backdoor to Get Into Your iPhone appeared first on WIRED.

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Matthew Keys’ Hacking Conviction May Not Survive an Appeal

Matthew Keys’ Hacking Conviction May Not Survive an Appeal

The conviction of Matthew Keys on hacking charges this week has renewed focus on a controversial law that many say prosecutors are using incorrectly to inflate cases.

The post Matthew Keys’ Hacking Conviction May Not Survive an Appeal appeared first on WIRED.

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Microsoft shows the world device paradise, Satya Nadella visits Latin America, and Internet access transforms lives — Weekend Reading: Oct. 8 edition

This week was a gadget-lovers paradise. Let’s discuss amongst ourselves.

In New York Tuesday morning, Microsoft unveiled a new era of Windows 10 devices, including new Surface, Lumia and Band devices.

Among the new devices was Surface Pro 4 (now thinner, lighter and faster), new Lumia Phones (Lumia 950, Lumia 950 XL and Lumia 550), the Microsoft Band 2, and the much-buzzed-about Surface Book (the new, ultimate laptop that brings together best-in-class performance with the versatility of pen and touch).

 

HP and Dell also released some powerful new devices, with Dell joining Windows and Devices Marketing Corporate Vice President Yusuf Mehdi on stage in New York City to showcase several of their newest, all optimized especially for Windows 10.

“It’s been an amazing journey to get to this point, with over a year of deep collaboration on new experiences, the positive early reception of Windows 10 which is now running on over 110 million devices worldwide, and now the chance to introduce the new XPS family to the world,” Mehdi wrote in a Windows Experience Blog post.

Meanwhile Windows and Devices Marketing Executive Vice President Terry Myerson flew to Barcelona to join HP’s unveiling of their Windows 10 consumer devices.

“HP has done a fantastic job helping us deliver Windows 10 – shipping the most Windows 10 devices to date,” Myerson wrote in his Windows Experience post. “We look forward to seeing many more customers take advantage of these wonderful new Windows 10 devices.”

 

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella returned from a visit to Latin America, where he sought to learn and see first-hand how technology is transforming thousands of lives in the region, with new job skills, entrepreneurial opportunities, innovative services and stronger, digitally inclusive societies.

Nadella met with developers, students, startups and community and business leaders in Chile, Brazil, Colombia and Mexico, where he reinforced Microsoft’s commitment to foster innovation, create opportunities and help businesses grow in Latin America.

“Innovation … will come from every corner of the planet, [including] Latin America,” Nadella said during his stop in Chile.

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Technology is transforming lives in other countries, including Kenya, where teacher Livingstone Kegode won the “Most Inspirational Skype Master Teacher” award for getting a Skype in the Classroom program up and running for his students. Skype in the Classroom has brought real-life learning to more than 6 million students all over the world, and Kegode found success with few resources to work with: one computer for 200 students ages 6 to 8; limited electricity and, for a while, no water in his school. He also traveled throughout Kenya and Uganda helping other people get connected and showing them the power of the Internet.

In the Philippines, where only four of every 10 people are connected to the Internet, Microsoft has been partnering with the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Philippine government to extend high-speed, wireless Internet access to remote parts of the Philippines utilizing unused television broadcast frequencies or “TV white space.”

Finally, this week on the Microsoft Instagram account we met Ariela Suster, founder of the SEQUENCE collection, a line of jewelry and accessories that supports non-violence in her native country of El Salvador. After a successful career in fashion publishing in the U.S., Suster returned to El Salvador with the urgent desire to positively influence her home country. She saw an opportunity to disrupt its story of violence by employing – and empowering – a group of at-risk youth to create beautiful, handcrafted products in their own community.​

 

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Thanks for reading! May the Internet access and cool Windows 10 devices be ever in your favor as they were this week.

Jennifer Warnick
Microsoft News Center Staff

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California Now Has the Nation’s Best Digital Privacy Law

California Now Has the Nation’s Best Digital Privacy Law

New law requires state law enforcement get warrant or other court order to obtain digital data held by companies, track GPS location or search mobile devices.

The post California Now Has the Nation’s Best Digital Privacy Law appeared first on WIRED.

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