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Critics say the age of AI is still far off, or even that the term “AI” is a fraud. The truth is, AI is already radically transforming our world behind the scenes. To be sure, no business has managed to replicate true human intelligence in a machine just yet. But that doesn’t mean AI isn’t already playing a pivotal role in business today. AI disruption is already here, even if we don’t notice it

The growth of AI adoption

In fact, many businesses are facing a key turning point in AI adoption. IBM’s report on the state of AI, the IBM Global AI Adoption Index 2022, highlights that nearly 80% of businesses are either using AI in their business today or are exploring its usage. That leaves only 20% of businesses that are not using or planning to use AI.

In countries like China, adoption is even higher, with 58% of businesses currently using AI, and another 30% planning to do so.

Moreover, IBM’s report shows that “AI adoption is growing steadily, up four points from 2021.” Already, the vast majority of businesses are reaping the benefits of AI, and trends suggest that AI will only become more ubiquitous in business in the years to come. They are using it to glean actionable insights, Boost operational efficiency, decipher customer behaviors, reduce costs and more.

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The report goes on to indicate that the top barriers to AI adoption are lack of technical skills (cited by 34% of respondents) and price concerns (cited by 29% of respondents). Further, project complexity (24%) and data complexity (24%) are also holding some organizations back from fully realizing the potential of AI.

These barriers will undoubtedly fall in time as businesses gain more experience with AI and mature in their understanding of how to use it effectively. In the meantime, those businesses which do embrace AI will be the ones that reap the rewards and reach new heights.

The rising need to adopt AI

Further, the importance of AI adoption is surging in the aftermath of COVID-19. The pandemic has forced businesses to rapidly find new ways to operate, and AI has been a key enabler in that transition. Businesses that were already using AI were able to quickly pivot and adapt to the new landscape, while those that weren’t using AI struggled.

This is likely to lead to an acceleration in AI adoption in the coming years as businesses realize the importance of being able to quickly adapt and change course in the face of unforeseen circumstances.

For one, safety has become a key concern in the post-COVID world, and AI can play a vital role in ensuring safety in a range of environments. Businesses are using AI-powered cameras and sensors to help improve driver safety, fight malware and more.

On the health front, AI is also being used to monitor face masks and social distancing. As with a driver safety use case, these solutions use AI-powered cameras and sensors to detect when people are not wearing face masks or are not socially distant. This helps businesses ensure a safe environment for their employees, customers, and other stakeholders.

Beyond pandemic-related safety concerns, AI can also help businesses improve workplace safety, particularly in industries like construction, manufacturing and more. For example, AI can be used to track employee safety compliance, monitor equipment for maintenance needs, and more.

You’ve already adopted AI

Most AI adoption happens behind the scenes, which is why many people are surprised to find out that they’re already using AI in their everyday lives. 

Google, for instance, uses AI to Boost search engine results, enable smart advertisement bidding, power Google Maps’ navigation, ensure safe content on YouTube, provide sharing suggestions in Google Photos, increase Google Translate’s accuracy, and far more.

Meanwhile, Facebook deploys AI to match users with advertisers, rank search results, translate posts, and even flag messages indicating that a user is struggling with suicidal thoughts.

Amazon, too, relies on AI for a host of tasks, from improving product recommendations to improving forecasting efforts. In addition, initiatives like Amazon Alexa and Amazon Go, the cashier-less store, are powered by AI.

These products and services are used by billions of people around the world every day, yet few realize that AI is powering them.

The takeaway? The age of AI disruption is already here, even if we don’t always notice it. Businesses that embrace AI will be the ones that reap the rewards and reach new heights.

Valerias Bangert is a strategy and innovation consultant, founder of three media outlets and published author.

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Sun, 17 Jul 2022 10:20:00 -0500 Valerias Bangert en-US text/html https://venturebeat.com/2022/07/17/ai-disruption-is-already-here-even-if-we-dont-notice-it/
Killexams : IBM Expands Its Power10 Portfolio For Mission Critical Applications

It is sometimes difficult to understand the true value of IBM's Power-based CPUs and associated server platforms. And the company has written a lot about it over the past few years. Even for IT professionals that deploy and manage servers. As an industry, we have become accustomed to using x86 as a baseline for comparison. If an x86 CPU has 64 cores, that becomes what we used to measure relative value in other CPUs.

But this is a flawed way of measuring CPUs and a broken system for measuring server platforms. An x86 core is different than an Arm core which is different than a Power core. While Arm has achieved parity with x86 for some cloud-native workloads, the Power architecture is different. Multi-threading, encryption, AI enablement – many functions are designed into Power that don’t impact performance like other architectures.

I write all this as a set-up for IBM's announced expanded support for its Power10 architecture. In the following paragraphs, I will provide the details of IBM's announcement and provide some thoughts on what this could mean for enterprise IT.

What was announced

Before discussing what was announced, it is a good idea to do a quick overview of Power10.

IBM introduced the Power10 CPU architecture at the Hot Chips conference in August 2020. Moor Insights & Strategy chief analyst Patrick Moorhead wrote about it here. Power10 is developed on the opensource Power ISA. Power10 comes in two variants – 15x SMT8 cores and 30x SMT4 cores. For those familiar with x86, SMT8 (8 threads/core seems extreme, as does SMT4. But this is where the Power ISA is fundamentally different from x86. Power is a highly performant ISA, and the Power10 cores are designed for the most demanding workloads.

One last note on Power10. SMT8 is optimized for higher throughput and lower computation. SMT4 attacks the compute-intensive space with lower throughput.

IBM introduced the Power E1080 in September of 2021. Moor Insights & Strategy chief analyst Patrick Moorhead wrote about it here. The E1080 is a system designed for mission and business-critical workloads and has been strongly adopted by IBM's loyal Power customer base.

Because of this success, IBM has expanded the breadth of the Power10 portfolio and how customers consume these resources.

The big reveal in IBM’s accurate announcement is the availability of four new servers built on the Power10 architecture. These servers are designed to address customers' full range of workload needs in the enterprise datacenter.

The Power S1014 is the traditional enterprise workhorse that runs the modern business. For x86 IT folks, think of the S1014 equivalent to the two-socket workhorses that run virtualized infrastructure. One of the things that IBM points out about the S1014 is that this server was designed with lower technical requirements. This statement leads me to believe that the company is perhaps softening the barrier for the S1014 in data centers that are not traditional IBM shops. Or maybe for environments that use Power for higher-end workloads but non-Power for traditional infrastructure needs.

The Power S1022 is IBM's scale-out server. Organizations embracing cloud-native, containerized environments will find the S1022 an ideal match. Again, for the x86 crowd – think of the traditional scale-out servers that are perhaps an AMD single socket or Intel dual-socket – the S1022 would be IBM's equivalent.

Finally, the S1024 targets the data analytics space. With lots of high-performing cores and a big memory footprint – this server plays in the area where IBM has done so well.

In addition, to these platforms, IBM also introduced the Power E1050. The E1050 seems designed for big data and workloads with significant memory throughput requirements.

The E1050 is where I believe the difference in the Power architecture becomes obvious. The E1050 is where midrange starts to bump into high performance, and IBM claims 8-socket performance in this four-socket socket configuration. IBM says it can deliver performance for those running big data environments, larger data warehouses, and high-performance workloads. Maybe, more importantly, the company claims to provide considerable cost savings for workloads that generally require a significant financial investment.

One benchmark that IBM showed was the two-tier SAP Standard app benchmark. In this test, the E1050 beat an x86, 8-socket server handily, showing a 2.6x per-core performance advantage. We at Moor Insights & Strategy didn’t run the benchmark or certify it, but the company has been conservative in its disclosures, and I have no reason to dispute it.

But the performance and cost savings are not just associated with these higher-end workloads with narrow applicability. In another comparison, IBM showed the Power S1022 performs 3.6x better than its x86 equivalent for running a containerized environment in Red Hat OpenShift. When all was added up, the S1022 was shown to lower TCO by 53%.

What makes Power-based servers perform so well in SAP and OpenShift?

The value of Power is derived both from the CPU architecture and the value IBM puts into the system and server design. The company is not afraid to design and deploy enhancements it believes will deliver better performance, higher security, and greater reliability for its customers. In the case of Power10, I believe there are a few design factors that have contributed to the performance and price//performance advantages the company claims, including

  • Use Differential DIMM technology to increase memory bandwidth, allowing for better performance from memory-intensive workloads such as in-memory database environments.
  • Built-in AI inferencing engines that increase performance by up to 5x.
  • Transparent memory encryption performs this function with no performance tax (note: AMD has had this technology for years, and Intel introduced about a year ago).

These seemingly minor differences can add up to deliver significant performance benefits for workloads running in the datacenter. But some of this comes down to a very powerful (pardon the redundancy) core design. While x86 dominates the datacenter in unit share, IBM has maintained a loyal customer base because the Power CPUs are workhorses, and Power servers are performant, secure, and reliable for mission critical applications.

Consumption-based offerings

Like other server vendors, IBM sees the writing on the wall and has opened up its offerings to be consumed in a way that is most beneficial to its customers. Traditional acquisition model? Check. Pay as you go with hardware in your datacenter? Also, check. Cloud-based offerings? One more check.

While there is nothing revolutionary about what IBM is doing with how customers consume its technology, it is important to note that IBM is the only server vendor that also runs a global cloud service (IBM Cloud). This should enable the company to pass on savings to its customers while providing greater security and manageability.

Closing thoughts

I like what IBM is doing to maintain and potentially grow its market presence. The new Power10 lineup is designed to meet customers' entire range of performance and cost requirements without sacrificing any of the differentiated design and development that the company puts into its mission critical platforms.

Will this announcement move x86 IT organizations to transition to IBM? Unlikely. Nor do I believe this is IBM's goal. However, I can see how businesses concerned with performance, security, and TCO of their mission and business-critical workloads can find a strong argument for Power. And this can be the beginning of a more substantial Power presence in the datacenter.

Note: This analysis contains insights from Moor Insights & Strategy Founder and Chief Analyst, Patrick Moorhead.

Moor Insights & Strategy, like all research and tech industry analyst firms, provides or has provided paid services to technology companies. These services include research, analysis, advising, consulting, benchmarking, acquisition matchmaking, and speaking sponsorships. The company has had or currently has paid business relationships with 8×8, Accenture, A10 Networks, Advanced Micro Devices, Amazon, Amazon Web Services, Ambient Scientific, Anuta Networks, Applied Brain Research, Applied Micro, Apstra, Arm, Aruba Networks (now HPE), Atom Computing, AT&T, Aura, Automation Anywhere, AWS, A-10 Strategies, Bitfusion, Blaize, Box, Broadcom, C3.AI, Calix, Campfire, Cisco Systems, Clear Software, Cloudera, Clumio, Cognitive Systems, CompuCom, Cradlepoint, CyberArk, Dell, Dell EMC, Dell Technologies, Diablo Technologies, Dialogue Group, Digital Optics, Dreamium Labs, D-Wave, Echelon, Ericsson, Extreme Networks, Five9, Flex, Foundries.io, Foxconn, Frame (now VMware), Fujitsu, Gen Z Consortium, Glue Networks, GlobalFoundries, Revolve (now Google), Google Cloud, Graphcore, Groq, Hiregenics, Hotwire Global, HP Inc., Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Honeywell, Huawei Technologies, IBM, Infinidat, Infosys, Inseego, IonQ, IonVR, Inseego, Infosys, Infiot, Intel, Interdigital, Jabil Circuit, Keysight, Konica Minolta, Lattice Semiconductor, Lenovo, Linux Foundation, Lightbits Labs, LogicMonitor, Luminar, MapBox, Marvell Technology, Mavenir, Marseille Inc, Mayfair Equity, Meraki (Cisco), Merck KGaA, Mesophere, Micron Technology, Microsoft, MiTEL, Mojo Networks, MongoDB, MulteFire Alliance, National Instruments, Neat, NetApp, Nightwatch, NOKIA (Alcatel-Lucent), Nortek, Novumind, NVIDIA, Nutanix, Nuvia (now Qualcomm), onsemi, ONUG, OpenStack Foundation, Oracle, Palo Alto Networks, Panasas, Peraso, Pexip, Pixelworks, Plume Design, PlusAI, Poly (formerly Plantronics), Portworx, Pure Storage, Qualcomm, Quantinuum, Rackspace, Rambus, Rayvolt E-Bikes, Red Hat, Renesas, Residio, Samsung Electronics, Samsung Semi, SAP, SAS, Scale Computing, Schneider Electric, SiFive, Silver Peak (now Aruba-HPE), SkyWorks, SONY Optical Storage, Splunk, Springpath (now Cisco), Spirent, Splunk, Sprint (now T-Mobile), Stratus Technologies, Symantec, Synaptics, Syniverse, Synopsys, Tanium, Telesign,TE Connectivity, TensTorrent, Tobii Technology, Teradata,T-Mobile, Treasure Data, Twitter, Unity Technologies, UiPath, Verizon Communications, VAST Data, Ventana Micro Systems, Vidyo, VMware, Wave Computing, Wellsmith, Xilinx, Zayo, Zebra, Zededa, Zendesk, Zoho, Zoom, and Zscaler. Moor Insights & Strategy founder, CEO, and Chief Analyst Patrick Moorhead is an investor in dMY Technology Group Inc. VI, Dreamium Labs, Groq, Luminar Technologies, MemryX, and Movandi.

Thu, 14 Jul 2022 01:00:00 -0500 Matt Kimball en text/html https://www.forbes.com/sites/moorinsights/2022/07/14/ibm-expands-its-power10-portfolio-for-mission-critical-applications/
Killexams : IBM Announces Novel Advancement in 3D Wafer Stacking
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At this point we’re all familiar with the global chip shortage. It’s affected every single industry in the world, it seems. Now IBM has come up with a new way to manufacture silicon wafers that it says could ease the strain a bit. It partnered with Tokyo Electron (TEL) on creating a new method for stacking silicon wafers vertically. Although IBM’s most advanced research node is currently 2nm, it doesn’t state which process it’s using for this technique. It only mentions it’s using it to stack 300mm (12-inch) wafers.

IBM’s announcement claims it’s the first of its kind for a wafer of this size. The goal is to advance Moore’s Law by making wafer stacking a simpler process. This will allow IBM to add more transistors to a given volume via stacking. It notes that traditionally 3D stacking has only been used in “high end operations” such as with High-Bandwidth Memory (HBM). AMD has notably also done it recently with the L3 cache on its Ryzen 7 5800X3D CPU. It also was the first GPU company to employe HBM on a GPU with its Fiji and Fury families, back in 2015.

(Image: IBM)

IBM’s new process is essentially a novel way to join silicon wafers together. Traditional chip-stacking requires through-silicon vias (TSVs) between the layers. This allows electricity to flow upwards into the stack, and for both layers to work in tandem. This requires the backside of the layer to be thinned to reveal the TSVs for the other layer to connect to them. The layers in a stack are very thin, measuring less than 100 microns. Due to their fragility, they require a carrier wafer to support them.

Typically these carrier wafers are made of glass. The carrier wafer is bonded to the wafer to make sure it can go through production without being damaged. Once it’s finished production, the carrier is removed with a UV laser. In some cases a silicon carrier can be used too, but separating it from the layer requires a mechanical force. This can be dangerous for the integrity of the wafer it’s supposed to be protecting. This is where IBM’s new invention comes into play, as it’s figured out a way to debond two silicon wafers that’s transparent to silicon. It has achieved this by using an infrared laser to decouple the wafers.

This will allow two silicon wafers to be stacked without the use of glass carriers. Instead manufactures can just skip that step and go straight to silicon-to-silicon. IBM says in addition to simplifying the process by no longer requiring this extra step, there are other advantages as well. As an example it says it will help in eliminating tool compatibility and chucking issues, introduce fewer defects, and allow for inline testing of thinned wafers. These benefits will enable “advanced chiplet production” according to IBM. It also says its technology can scale very well.

IBM and TEL have been working on this technology since 2018, so it’s been in the hopper for a little while. This could be a crucial development for the industry given where things are headed in silicon fabrication. As node sizes shrink down to sub-2nm, packaging and stacking technologies will become a crucial advantage for companies looking to increase performance when “moving to a smaller node” is no longer an option.

Intel is already looking to begin advanced 3D stacking with Meteor Lake, using its Foveros technology. AMD is way ahead of the game on that front, as mentioned previously. However, so far it’s only stacking L3 cache on its CPUs with Zen 3. However, there are rumors it will repeat that with Zen 4 as well with so-called Raphael-X products. It remains unclear if stacking will also be employed in its upcoming RDNA3 GPUs.

IBM says it’s built a beta tooling facility in Albany, NY to work on its new technology. In the future it will be expanding its work. Its goal is to eventually create a full 3D chip stack using this technology. The company says this advancement will help with supply chain issues, while also allowing for performance benefits too. “We hope our work will help cut down on the number of products needed in the semiconductor supply chain, while also helping drive processing power improvements for years to come,” it stated.

Now Read:

Tue, 12 Jul 2022 05:49:00 -0500 Josh Norem en-US text/html https://www.extremetech.com/extreme/337853-ibm-announces-novel-advancement-in-3d-wafer-stacking
Killexams : The Total Economic Impact™ Of IBM FlashSystem

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Wed, 06 Jul 2022 03:52:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.itpro.co.uk/server-storage/flash-storage/368464/the-total-economic-impacttm-of-ibm-flashsystem
Killexams : The Retiree's Dividend Portfolio - Jane's June Update: Record Dividends
Oil Refinery, Chemical & Petrochemical Plant

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Background

For those who are interested in John and Jane's full background, please click the following link here for the last time I published their full story. The details below are updated for 2022.

  • This is a real portfolio with actual shares being traded.
  • I am not a financial advisor and merely provide guidance based on a relationship that goes back several years.
  • John retired in January 2018 and now only collects Social Security income as his regular source of income.
  • Jane officially retired at the beginning of 2021, and she is collecting Social Security as her only regular source of income.
  • John and Jane have decided to start taking draws from the Taxable Account and John's Traditional IRA to the tune of $1,000/month each. These draws are currently covered in full by the dividends generated in each account.
  • John and Jane have other investments outside of what I manage. These investments primarily consist of minimal-risk bonds and low-yield certificates.
  • John and Jane have no debt and no monthly payments other than basic recurring bills such as water, power, property taxes, etc.

I started helping John and Jane with their retirement accounts because I was infuriated by the fees their previous financial advisor was charging them. I do not charge John and Jane for anything that I do, and all I have asked of them is that they allow me to write about their portfolio anonymously in order to help spread knowledge and to make me a better investor in the process.

Generating a stable and growing dividend income is the primary focus of this portfolio, and capital appreciation is the least important characteristic. My primary goal was to provide John and Jane as much certainty in their retirement as I possibly can because this has been a constant point of stress over the last decade.

Dividend Decreases

No stocks in Jane's Traditional or Roth IRA paid a decreased dividend during the month of June.

Dividend And Distribution Increases

Three companies paid increased dividends/distributions or a special dividend during the month of June in the Traditional and Roth IRAs.

  • International Business Machines (IBM)
  • LyondellBasell (LYB)
  • Main Street Capital (MAIN).

International Business Machines

IBM continues to be the dividend stock that investors love to hate. For years the concern has been a slow but steady drop off in revenue which has resulted in pressure on corporate earnings and ultimately limited the ability to grow its dividend. The most accurate increase is a perfect example of the problem that this has created with the average three-year dividend growth rate coming in at less than 2.5% while the 10-year average dividend growth rate comes in at 8.17%. This is a problem for a tech company like IBM which is why it currently yields a whopping 4.61% and explains why the share price has been stagnant for so long. The acquisition of Red Hat ("RHT") appears to have given IBM a new sense of relevance in the hybrid cloud platform. Another positive is that the company has been able to deleverage since the acquisition of RHT with debt levels closing in on the same level prior to the RHT acquisition.

We have sold shares of IBM at $140/share and higher over the last year but view stock as a buy under $130/share (I prefer under $125/share). With the current position carrying an average cost basis of $122/share, we do not plan on selling any shares in the near future.

Chart
Data by YCharts

The dividend was increased from $1.64/share per quarter to $1.65/share per quarter. This represents an increase of .6% and a new full-year payout of $6.60/share compared with the previous $6.56/share. This results in a current yield of 4.61%% based on the current share price of $139.18.

LyondellBasell

It’s not every day that a company raises its dividend and offers a massive special dividend payout at the same time. The awesome announcement was accompanied by the following statement:

"LyondellBasell established new records for cash generation in 2021 and we have a strong outlook for our company. Capital returns have always been an important component of LyondellBasell's value proposition for shareholders. 2022 will mark our 12th consecutive year of regular dividend growth. The combination of today's special and quarterly dividends returns $2.1 billion to shareholders. As the incoming CEO, I would like to make it very clear that I support the continuation of our balanced and disciplined capital allocation strategy with both dividends and share repurchases playing a central role."

We sold shares prior to the dividend announcement as the stock pushed its 52-week-high. The 25 shares we sold were at $108.35/share and were used to reduce the exposure the position had to high-cost shares that had been purchased at around $115/share. We have since added 20 shares back at a major discount and plan to add more. Analyst downgrades have been common in the news but I see a Strong Buy under $90/share and enjoy locking in the 5%+ yield in the meantime.

LyondellBasell - FastGraphs - July

LyondellBasell - FastGraphs - July (FastGraphs)

The dividend was increased from $1.13/share per quarter to $1.19/share per quarter. This represents an increase of 5.3% and a new full-year payout of $4.76/share compared with the previous $4.52/share. This results in a current yield of 5.29% based on the current share price of $85.93.

LYB paid a special dividend of $5.20/share which was paid on June 13th, 2022.

Main Street Capital

Q2-2022 earnings will be coming out in less than a month and I expect it will demonstrate many of the strengths that made Q1-2022 push record levels in multiple metrics. Q1-2022 recorded interest income of $59.4 million compared to $43.5 million in Q1-2021 and we expect this number to continue improving due to the fact that most of MAIN’s portfolio is variable rate and therefore increases its income when the Federal Reserve raises rates. Another important indicator is the net asset value per share of $25.89/share and is up from $25.59/share in the previous quarter. MAIN’s management is top-notch and has always been consistently shareholder friendly and focused on long-term results.

Although the NAV continues to climb, shares are not cheap by any means. The accurate pullback into the $34/share range represented a buying opportunity and we nibbled a little too early when it dropped below $40/share. We a hesitant to add too much more exposure to MAIN so we will be looking for a price under $35/share. For those who prefer to follow the dividend yield metric I would say a yield close to 7% would be the best/most opportunistic entry point. Other than COVID, this does not happen often so buyers need to be prepared to act when the opportunity arises.

Chart
Data by YCharts

MAIN paid a special dividend of $.075/share which was paid on June 30th, 2022.

Retirement Account Positions

There are currently 39 different positions in Jane's Traditional IRA and 23 different positions in Jane's Roth IRA. While this may seem like a lot, it is important to remember that many of these stocks cross over in both accounts and are also held in the Taxable Portfolio.

Below is a list of the trades that took place in the Traditional IRA during the month of June.

Traditional IRA - June - Trades

Traditional IRA - June - Trades (Charles Schwab)

Below is a list of the trades that took place in the Roth IRA during the month of June.

Roth IRA - June - Trades

Roth IRA - June - Trades (Charles Schwab)

Agree Realty Preferred Series A

This awesome monthly dividend payer has a current share price that is too high for us to consider adding more. I really like Agree Realty's (ADC) portfolio but again its share price is too high to justify adding common shares at this point in time. Funny enough, the reason that I found out about the company’s preferred shares was due to comments that was left on a previous portfolio update for John’s retirement accounts. At a PAR price of $25, ADC.PRA trades at a yield of 4.25% which isn’t compelling in the current rate environment at the time of purchase shares, we were able to buy all portions of the position for less than $18/share or a yield close to 6%. Additionally, if the shares are held to term and they are called for the PAR price of $25 this will result in a gain of seven dollars/share or a total of $700 in capital gains. We plan to continue adding to this position as long as shares remain attractive.

Alexandria Realty

Alexandria Realty (ARE) is another new position in Jane’s Traditional IRA that was entered into at $136/share and is off its high of $225/share in January 2022. ARE’s 10-year average P/AFFO is approximately 25.5X and currently trades at a P/AFFO of 23.2X. The last time ARE treated at a discount to its average P/AFFO was during COVID and then for only a brief period of time at the end of 2018/early 2019. For those looking for a compelling article reviewing ARE’s situation I would recommend reading Dane Bowler’s article Alexandria Is Life Science Growth At An Office Discount.

Alexandria Real Estate - July

Alexandria Real Estate - July (FastGraphs)

Kyndryl Holdings

We originally held on to Kyndryl Holdings (KD) after it was spun off from IBM. Simply put, the stock has performed terribly and with a whopping total of 18 shares we felt it was time to say goodbye to this company. KD does not provide any dividends and with its speculative growth potential it doesn’t have a place in Jane’s portfolio over the long-term.

Chart
Data by YCharts

Lexington Preferred Series C

LXP.PC typically trades above its PAR value of $50/share. Whenever the stock drops to (or in some cases below) $50/share I try to purchase some because it is a solid income investment with a 6.5% yield. These shares are what we refer to as non-callable preferred shares which provide all the benefits of preferred stock with no set redemption date. The price of these shares have been steady even when LXP’s business model was in question (the company has made a significant transition over the last five years and now focuses on industrial real estate).

If anyone has questions about the other traits that took place in either of the Traditional IRA or Roth IRA feel free to ask in the comment section and I will be happy to discuss those trades.

June Income Tracker - 2021 Vs. 2022

Income for the month of June was up significantly year-over-year for Jane's Traditional IRA and up considerably for the Roth IRA. The average monthly income for the Traditional IRA in 2022 is expected to be up about 11.3% based on current estimates (this is up from 5.3% in May due to LYB's special dividend) and the Roth IRA is looking to grow by 5.3%. This means the Traditional IRA would generate an average monthly income of $1,543.26/month and the Roth IRA would generate an average income of $623.97/month. This compares with 2021 figures that were $1,386.13/month and $592.61/month, respectively.

SNLH = Stocks No Longer Held - Dividends in this row represent the dividends collected on stocks that are no longer held in that portfolio. We still count the dividend income that comes from stocks no longer held in the portfolio even though it is non-recurring.

All images below come from Consistent Dividend Investor, LLC. (Abbreviated to CDI).

Traditional IRA - 2021 V 2022 - June Dividends

Traditional IRA - 2021 V 2022 - June Dividends (CDI)

Roth IRA - 2021 V 2022 - June Dividends

Roth IRA - 2021 V 2022 - June Dividends (CDI)

Here is a graphical illustration of the dividends received on a monthly basis for the Traditional and Roth IRAs.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Monthly Dividends (Bar Graph)

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Monthly Dividends (Bar Graph) (CDI)

The table below represents the actual full-year results for 2022 and the prior year.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June (CDI)

Below is an expanded table that shows the full dividend history since inception for both the Traditional IRA and Roth IRA.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - 5 YR History

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - 5 YR History (CDI)

I have included line graphs that better represent the trends associated with Jane's monthly dividend income generated by her retirement accounts. The images below represent the Traditional IRA and Roth IRA, respectively.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Monthly Dividends

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Monthly Dividends (CDI)

Here is a table to show how the account balances stack up year over year (I previously used a graph but believe the table is more informative).

It is worth noting that with John and Jane Retired, there will be no additional contributions to these accounts. In fact, they have already begun to take regular distributions from the Taxable Account and John's Traditional IRA.

Retirement Account Balances - 2022 - June

Retirement Account Balances - 2022 - June (CDI)

The next images are the tables that indicate how much cash Jane had in her Traditional and Roth IRA Accounts at the end of the month as indicated on their Charles Schwab statements.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Cash Balances

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Cash Balances (CDI)

The next image provides a history of the unrealized gain/loss at the end of each month in the Traditional and Roth IRAs going back to the beginning in January of 2018.

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Unrealized Gain-Loss

Retirement Projections - 2022 - June - Unrealized Gain-Loss (CDI)

I like to show readers the actual unrealized gain/loss associated with each position in the portfolio because it is important to consider that in order to become a proper dividend investor, it is necessary to learn how to live with volatility. The market value and cost basis below are accurate at the market close on July 13th.

Here is the unrealized gain/loss associated with Jane's Traditional and Roth IRAs.

Traditional IRA - 2022 - June - Gain-Loss

Traditional IRA - 2022 - June - Gain-Loss (CDI)

Roth IRA - 2022 - June - Gain-Loss

Roth IRA - 2022 - June - Gain-Loss (CDI)

The last two graphs show how dividend income has increased, stayed the same, or decreased in each respective month on an annualized basis. I believe that the graph will continue to become more valuable as more years of data become available (with the fifth year of data being added, we can really see the trajectory of the income change for each month).

Traditional IRA - 2022 - June - Monthly Year-Over-Year Comparison

Traditional IRA - 2022 - June - Monthly Year-Over-Year Comparison (CDI)

Roth IRA - 2022 - June - Monthly Year-Over-Year Comparison

Roth IRA - 2022 - June - Monthly Year-Over-Year Comparison (CDI)

Conclusion

June was a rough month for account balances but the special dividends and increases were more than enough to compensate for this temporary drop in account value. In addition to this, readers can see a significant amount of trades which has allowed us to rotate capital from certain sectors and reduce exposure to certain positions while building positions in other positions that we consider to be undervalued.

June Articles

I have provided the link to the June 2022 Taxable Account below.

The Retirees' Dividend Portfolio: John And Jane's June Taxable Account Update

In Jane's Traditional and Roth IRAs, she is currently long the following mentioned in this article: AbbVie (NYSE:ABBV), Agree Realty (NYSE:ADC), Agree Realty Preferred Series A (ADC.PRA), Archer-Daniels-Midland (NYSE:ADM), Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO), Avient (NYSE:AVNT), Broadcom Preferred Series A (NASDAQ:AVGOP), Boeing (NYSE:BA), Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Black Hills Corp. (NYSE:BKH), BlackRock Health Sciences Trust (NYSE:BME), Bank of Montreal (NYSE:BMO), Bank of Nova Scotia (NYSE:BNS), BP (NYSE:BP), British American Tobacco (NYSE:BTI), Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (NYSE:CM), Cummins (NYSE:CMI), Concentrix (NASDAQ:CNXC), Digital Realty (NYSE:DLR), Eaton Vance Floating-Rate Advantage Fund A (MUTF:EAFAX), Enbridge (NYSE:ENB), EPR Properties Preferred Series E (NYSE:EPR.PE), Eaton Corporation (NYSE:ETN), Emera Inc. (OTCPK:EMRAF), East West Bancorp (NASDAQ:EWBC), General Mills (NYSE:GIS), GasLog Partners Preferred C (NYSE:GLOP.PC), Honeywell (NASDAQ:HON), International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM), Iron Mountain (NYSE:IRM), Lexington Realty Preferred Series C (NYSE:LXP.PC), Lumen Technologies (NYSE:LUMN), LyondellBasell (NYSE:LYB), Main Street Capital (NYSE:MAIN), McGrath RentCorp (NASDAQ:MGRC), 3M (NYSE:MMM), Altria (NYSE:MO), Annaly Capital Preferred Series G (NYSE:NLY.PG), NextEra Energy (NYSE:NEE), NetApp (NASDAQ:NTAP), Realty Income (NYSE:O), OGE Energy Corp. (NYSE:OGE), Oxford Lane Capital Corp. 6.75% Cum Red Pdf Shares Series 2024 (NASDAQ:OXLCM), Philip Morris (NYSE:PM), PPG Industries (NYSE:PPG), PIMCO Corporate & Income Opportunity Fund (PTY), Cohen & Steers REIT & Preferred Income Fund (NYSE:RNP), Royal Bank of Canada (NYSE:RY), TD SYNNEX Corp. (NYSE:SNX), STORE Capital (NYSE:STOR), Toronto-Dominion Bank (NYSE:TD), Unilever (NYSE:UL), UMH Properties (UMH), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), Williams Companies (NYSE:WMB), W. P. Carey (NYSE:WPC).

Sat, 16 Jul 2022 01:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://seekingalpha.com/article/4523372-the-retirees-dividend-portfolio-janes-june-update-record-dividends
Killexams : 7 Quantum Computing Stocks to Buy for the Next 10 Years

[Editor’s note: “7 Quantum Computing Stocks to Buy for the Next 10 Years” was previously published in August 2020. It has since been updated to include the most relevant information available.]

Quantum computing has long been a concept stuck in the theory phase. Using quantum mechanics to create a class of next-generation quantum computers with nearly unlimited computing power remained out of reach.

But quantum computing is starting to hit its stride. accurate breakthroughs in this emerging field — such as IBM’s (IBM) progressive 100-qubit quantum chip – are powering quantum computing forward. Over the next several years, this space will go from theory to reality. And this transition will spark huge growth in the global quantum computing market.

The investment implication?

It’s time to buy quantum computing stocks.

Quantum Computing’s Transformational Power

At scale, quantum computing will disrupt every industry in the world, from finance to biotechnology, cybersecurity and everything in between.

It will Boost the way medicines are developed by simulating molecular processes. It will reduce energy loss in batteries via optimized routing and design, thereby allowing for hyper-efficient electric car batteries. In finance, it will speed up and augment portfolio optimization, risk modeling and derivatives creation. In cybersecurity, it will disrupt the way we go about encryption. It will create superior weather forecasting models, unlock advancements in autonomous vehicle technology and help humans fight climate change.

I’m not kidding when I say quantum computing will change everything.

And as this next-gen computing transforms the world, quantum computing stocks will be big winners over the next decade.

So, with that in mind, here are seven of those stocks to buy for the next 10 years:

Quantum Computing Stocks to Buy: Alphabet

Among the various quantum computing stocks to buy for the next 10 years, the best is probably Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) stock.

Its Google AI Quantum is built on the back of a state-of-the-art 54-qubit processor dubbed Sycamore. And many consider this to be the leading quantum computing project in the world. Why? This thinking is bolstered mostly by the fact that, in late 2019, Sycamore performed a calculation in 200 seconds that would have taken the world’s most powerful supercomputers 10,000 years to perform.

This achievement led Alphabet to claim that Sycamore had reached quantum supremacy. What does this mean? Well, that’s the point when a quantum computer can perform a task in a relatively short amount of time that no other supercomputer could in any reasonable amount of time.

Many have since debated whether or not Alphabet has indeed reached quantum supremacy.

But that’s somewhat of a moot point.

The reality is that Alphabet has built the world’s leading quantum computer. The engineering surrounding it will only get better. And so will Sycamore’s computing power. And through its Google Cloud business, Alphabet can turn Sycamore into a market-leading quantum-computing-as-a-service business with huge revenues at scale.

To that end, GOOG stock is one of the best quantum computing stocks to buy today for the next 10 years.

International Business Machines

The other “big dog” that closely rivals Alphabet in the quantum computing space is IBM.

IBM has been big in the quantum computing space for years. But Big Blue has attacked this space in a fundamentally different way than its peers.

That is, other quantum computing players like Alphabet have chased quantum supremacy. But IBM has shunned that idea in favor of building on something the company calls the “quantum advantage.”

Ostensibly, the quantum advantage really isn’t too different from quantum supremacy. The former deals with a continuum focused on making quantum computers perform certain tasks faster than traditional computers. The latter deals with a moment focused on making quantum computers permanently faster at all things than traditional computers.

But it’s a philosophical difference with huge implications. By focusing on building the quantum advantage, IBM is specializing its efforts into making quantum computing measurably useful and economic in certain industry verticals for certain tasks.

In so doing, IBM is creating a fairly straightforward go-to-market strategy for its quantum computing services in the long run.

IBM’s realizable, simple, tangible approach makes it one of the most sure-fire quantum computing stocks to buy today for the next 10 years.

Quantum Computing Stocks: Microsoft

Another big tech player in the quantum computing space with promising long-term potential is Microsoft (MSFT).

Microsoft already has a huge infrastructure cloud business, Azure. Building on that foundation, Microsoft has launched Azure Quantum. It’s a quantum computing business with potential to turn into a huge QCaaS business at scale.

Azure Quantum is a secure, stable and open ecosystem, serving as a one-stop shop for quantum computing software and hardware.

The bull thesis here is that Microsoft will lean into its already-huge Azure customer base to cross-sell Azure Quantum. Doing so will provide Azure Quantum a big and long runway for widespread early adoption. And that’s the first step in turning Azure Quantum into a huge QCaaS business.

And it helps that Microsoft’s core Azure business is absolutely on fire right now.

Putting it all together, quantum computing is simply one facet of the much broader Microsoft enterprise cloud growth narrative. That narrative will remain robust for the next several years. And it will continue to support further gains in MSFT stock.

Quantum Computing

The most interesting, smallest and potentially most explosive quantum computing stock on this list is Quantum Computing (QUBT).

And the bull thesis is fairly simple.

Quantum computing will change everything over the next several years. But the hardware is expensive. It likely won’t be ready to deliver measurable benefits at reasonable costs to average customers for several years. So, Quantum Computing is building a portfolio of affordable quantum computing software and apps that deliver quantum computing power. And they can be run on traditional legacy supercomputers.

In so doing, Quantum Computing is hoping to fill the affordability gaps. It aims to become the widespread, low-cost provider of accessible quantum computing software for companies that can’t afford full-scale hardware.

Quantum Computing has begun to commercialize this software, namely with QAmplify, its suite of powerful QPU-expansion software technologies. through three products currently in beta mode. According to William McGann, the company’s chief operating and technology officer:

“The use of our QAmplify algorithm in the 2021 BMW Group Quantum Computing Challenge for vehicle sensor optimization provided proof of performance by expanding the effective capability of the annealer by 20-fold, to 2,888 qubits.”

Quantum Computing’s products will likely start signing up automaker, financial, healthcare and government customers to long-term contracts. Those early signups could be the beginning of thousands for Quantum’s services over the next five to 10 years.

You could really see this company go from zero to several hundred million dollars in revenue in the foreseeable future.

If that happens, QUBT stock — which has a market capitalization of $78 million today — could soar.

Quantum Computing Stocks: Alibaba

Like others in this space, Alibaba’s (BABA) focused on creating a robust QCaaS arm to complement its already-huge infrastructure-as-a-service business.

In short, Alibaba is the leading public cloud provider in China. Indeed, Alibaba Cloud owns about 10% of the global IaaS market. Alibaba intends to leverage this leadership position to cross-sell quantum computing services to its huge existing client base. And eventually, it hopes to become the largest QCaaS player in China, too.

Will it work?

Probably.

The Great Tech Wall of China will prevent many on this list from participating in or reaching scale in China. Alibaba does have some in-country quantum computing competition. But this isn’t a winner-take-all market. And given Alibaba’s enormous resource advantages, it’s highly likely that it becomes a top player in China’s quantum computing market.

That’s just another reason to buy and hold BABA stock for the long haul.

Baidu

The other big Chinese tech company diving head-first into quantum computing is Baidu (BIDU).

The company launched its own quantum computing research center in 2018. According to its website, the goal of this research center is to integrate quantum computing into Baidu’s core businesses.

If so, that means Baidu’s goal for quantum computing diverges from the norm. Others in this space want to build out quantum computing power to sell it as a service to third parties. Baidu wants to build out quantum computing power to, at least initially, Boost its own operations.

Doing so will pay off in a big way for the company.

Baidu’s core search and advertising businesses could markedly Boost with quantum computing. Advancements in computing power could dramatically Boost its search algorithms and ad-targeting techniques and power its profits higher.

And thanks to its early research into quantum computing, BIDU stock does have healthy upside.

Quantum Computing Stocks: Intel

Last — but not least — on this list of quantum computing stocks to buy is Intel (INTC).

Intel may be falling behind competitors — namely Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) — on the traditional CPU front. But the semiconductor giant is on the cutting edge of creating potential quantum CPU candidates.

Intel’s newly announced Horse Ridge cryogenic control chip is widely considered the market’s best quantum CPU candidate out there today. The chip includes four radio frequency channels that can control 128 qubits. That’s more than double Tangle Lake, Intel’s predecessor quantum CPU.

The big idea, of course, is that when quantum computers are built at scale, they will likely be built on Intel’s quantum CPUs.

Therefore, potentially explosive growth in the quantum computing hardware market over the next five to 10 years represents a huge, albeit speculative, growth catalyst for both Intel and INTC stock.

On the date of publication, Luke Lango did not have (either directly or indirectly) any positions in the securities mentioned in this article.

Fri, 08 Jul 2022 00:45:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://investorplace.com/hypergrowthinvesting/2022/07/7-quantum-computing-stocks-to-buy-for-the-next-10-years/
Killexams : Long story short: Clear the way for women in the workplace

Women have been disproportionately saddled with the impact COVID has had on their families and careers. 

Nearly 5.4 million women have lost or left their jobs since February 2020, according to data from the National Women’s Law Center. Creating more inclusive work cultures, offering family-friendly benefits, and providing support in the form of mentorship and sponsorship can help women stay on track and make up for pandemic-era losses. 

In this week’s top stories, workplace insights platform Comparably recently released its list of top-ranked CEOs, chosen by their female employees. Leaders from Hubspot, IBM, Adobe and others all made the list. For women, it’s not just who they work for, but where: lending firm Clarify Capital ranked the best and worst states for women-owned businesses, based on factors like the percentage of women-owned businesses, the gender pay gap and female unemployment rate in those states. 

Read more: Nominations for EBN’s Excellence in Benefits Awards are now open

Expecting women to make it on their own won’t help close the wage gap or get women back to work. Three leadership experts share why sponsorship is a key component to getting more women into leadership roles. While a mentor helps women with their personal and professional goals, a sponsor takes responsibility for promoting an employee to a higher level position.  

“Coaching is about development. Mentoring is about guidance. Sponsorship is about pulling someone up and advocating for them,” says Rubina F. Malik, a learning and development adviser at Malik Global Solutions. “More CEOs and higher-ups need to be allies for women. Put them in the spotlight and get them opportunities to be seen.” 

Fri, 15 Jul 2022 07:07:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.benefitnews.com/list/helping-women-succeed-at-work
Killexams : Lafayette CO Website Design Agency, The Creative Alliance Offers Insight on UX and ROI in Latest Resource

07/15/2022, Lafayette, CO // KISS PR Brand Story PressWire //

In today’s competitive business environment, it’s harder than ever to set your company apart from the competition. Product and service offerings are so similar in many cases that you’ve got to find an additional way to differentiate your business.

Increasingly, that differentiator is user experience (UX). UX is the feeling a customer or prospective customer has when interacting with your business through your website, products, services, and other means. The ease (or difficulty) of those interactions plays a significant role in shaping their opinion of your company.

When people have a positive experience with your brand, your business benefits in many ways. That includes seeing more website conversions, increased customer satisfaction, and improved customer loyalty and retention. And, of course, these and other improvements increase your revenue.

Being Intentional About Improving UX Through Your UX Strategy

A positive user experience doesn’t happen by accident. To create it, you must have a UX strategy. That plan can address an individual product or service, a group of offerings, or your entire organization.

But regardless of the focus, your strategy is a carefully developed set of steps designed to Boost your UX. Your vision of the improved “future state” of customer and prospect interactions determines these steps. And the plan is laid out with milestones and a deadline for completion of the entire project.

A UX strategy must also define the means for measuring improvement. Understanding the return on investment (ROI) of UX initiatives helps you determine whether and how to proceed with future UX projects. Simply “feeling like” customers and prospects are happier isn’t enough. You must be able to objectively measure your results and assess how successful a project was.

How UX Design Drove Positive Improvement for IBM

You might think a business icon like IBM doesn’t need to worry about user experience. But you don’t become a household name by ignoring what your customers want!

Big Blue uses a concept called “design thinking” to help it identify user pain points and design solutions that solve them effectively. A Forrester report says the company has these goals for design thinking:

  • Delight customers and increase profits by designing solutions that meet user needs
  • Identify and invest in the most impactful projects to reduce risk and Boost outcomes
  • Slash time-to-market to dramatically reduce costs and gain a competitive advantage
  • Discover redundant or wasteful processes to streamline efficiency
  • Energize employees to be creative, collaborate, and do better work

The report includes information on a study Forrester conducted. That study found that: “IBM’s Design Thinking practice has the following three-year financial impact: $48.4 million in benefits versus costs of $12 million, resulting in a net present value (NPV) of $36.3 million and an ROI of 301%.”

There’s no certain that every business will experience an ROI of 301% on their UX initiatives. But that number should spark the imagination of anyone tasked with improving their company’s performance!

UX Research, Strategy, and Design Benefit Companies of All Sizes

Not every business can invest in UX research, strategy, and design to the degree that IBM does. However, there are many budget-friendly tactics that your business can employ to Boost your user experience.

For example, you can assess the experience you’re providing for customers and prospects through activities like:

  • Competitive analyses
  • Customer surveys
  • Heuristic evaluations (i.e., testing to find usability problems)
  • Accessibility audits

And the great thing about starting to focus on UX is that the incremental improvements you make quickly add up. Soon, they’re providing a competitive advantage over competitors that ignore the needs of their customers and prospects.

How to Interpret UX ROI

You can measure the ROI on UX projects in several ways, including:

  • Conversion rates
  • Bounce rates
  • Development costs
  • Time to launch
  • Customer satisfaction

You can even assess ROI by looking at the key performance indicators (KPIs) that your customer service group tracks. But, as with all aspects of UX strategy, a plan is essential. You must know how to measure your UX ROI.

Developing that plan requires that you:

  • Identify your target audience
  • Document the top tasks users want to complete
  • Benchmark the user experience as it stands today
  • Note your company’s overall KPIs
  • Identify relevant UX metrics
  • Map your UX metrics to your KPIs
  • Determine how design changes can Boost those metrics
  • Compute an ROI
  • Conduct regular UX audits
  • Assess the results and take any appropriate actions

That may sound like a great deal of work, especially if you’ve never launched a UX initiative before. However, after you understand the steps and have completed them once, future initiatives are easy to develop and execute.

Getting UX Experts Involved Early

Companies today have a better understanding of how user experience affects business performance. As a result, they’re making an important shift: They’re giving UX experts a “seat at the table” as they start key projects rather than asking for feedback later.

That approach benefits companies in several ways, including that it:

  • Prevents false starts and reduces the need for downstream “course corrections”
  • Saves time and reduces development costs
  • Empowers stakeholders to move forward with confidence that the project will achieve its goals
  • Reduces end-user frustration and disappointment
  • Enhances the company’s reputation for delivering professional, polished products and services
  • Creates new business opportunities

Of course, to achieve those benefits, you must work with experienced UX research, strategy, and design experts.

Anyone can recommend changes to your website, products, or services that they believe will Boost the user experience. But there’s a big difference between believing and knowing from experience what will work and how to confirm, objectively, that a solution is working.

At The Creative Alliance, our award-winning UX experts have decades of collective experience getting to the heart of UX problems, crafting effective solutions, and implementing the changes. And we have a track record for doing so efficiently and cost-effectively.

Because not only do you need to offer the best possible user experience, but you’ve also got to get from project kickoff to UX “go-live” without unnecessary and costly delays.

Learn how we help companies do exactly that. Contact The Creative Alliance today!

About The Creative Alliance, Lafayette, CO

The Creative Alliance is a results-based, digital marketing company with a history of growing successful businesses. www.thecreativealliance.com

Media Contact: Jodee Goodwin | 303-665-8101

Via KISSPR.com Press Release Distribution Service - Media Contact: Az@kisspr.com

Source: Story.KISSPR.com

Release ID: 319789

Original Source of the original story >> Boulder, Colorado Agency, The Creative Alliance Offers Insight on UX and ROI in Latest Resource

This content is published on behalf of the above source. Please contact them directly for any concern related to the above.

Fri, 15 Jul 2022 01:49:00 -0500 en text/html https://apnews.com/press-release/KISSPR/entertainment-fe97a674d840707f83b324e114e59efb
Killexams : DXC Technology Improves Profile But Is Not Structurally Favored
processor chip, tech environment, blockchain concept

blackdovfx/E+ via Getty Images

Published on the Value Lab 3/7/22

DXC Technology (NYSE:DXC) is a tech consulting company that, like its peers, is struggling in some structural respects. The company is focusing on a transformation initiative designed to Boost performance. While the initiatives are bearing fruit, we feel that the benefits are going to go no further than coming from the cost side. While some segments are seeing organic growth at attractive rates, structural issues and the incoming recession make this turnaround story poorly timed. We think it is better to be exposed elsewhere in markets.

Q4 2022 Update

DXC does a combination of tech consulting activities that constitute operations in two segments, the GBS segment, named the same as IBM's (IBM) global business solutions, and the GIS segment, also with an identical name to Big Blue's segment and containing the infrastructure and cloud businesses. Indeed, these core activities resemble somewhat the IBM's businesses minus the high quality Red Hat exposure. Indeed, the consulting services for IBM, previously also named GBS, runs at similar margins.

The situation with DXC is that poorly priced contracts in GIS are dragging on margins, but as were general issues in the company's cost structure. Moreover, the company felt that opportunities were being missed to cross-sell products between the divisions.

dxc profit

Revenue and Profit Evolutions (Q4 2022 Pres)

Cost cutting initiatives have been repairing margins quite meaningfully, moreover the tide of decline has been stemmed by cross-selling efforts as well as incremental work in fixing poorly performing contracts that were running too far below market value. Unfortunately, base effects are not enough to explain the revenue situation for GIS, which has been underperforming for years and giving up the share of the mix to the consulting business, although modern workplace is a function that is adding some meaningful base-affected drag to revenue growth, accounting for about 30% of that segment's revenue. However, while a drag, backlog still built in that segment, and while the contracts are complicated and difficult to liquidate, they will eventually, so the GIS segment is capable of building business, albeit with a hampered turnover.

DXC segments

Segment Evolution (Q4 2022 Pres)

The consulting side has been performing impressively, with growth against strong comps and the growth focused on analytics and engineering applications, which is reassuring. Pre-emptive maintenance and analytics work with manufacturing clients has been a source for organic revenue growth in that segment, and it leads the growth in the GBS segment accounting for about 33% of that segment's revenue, and about 15% of the company's overall revenue. This offset declines in modern workplace derived from base effects and strong 2021 comps.

Outlook

The outlook is reasonable from a margin side, where they expect margins to stay on at about 8.5%. Revenue growth was not provided where there still isn't much clarity on the revenue development at this point.

While the decelerating declines is nice, we can see that the majority of the improvements YoY have come from almost a doubling of the margin, deriving from the cost side. We think that there are structural issues that a tech consulting company like DXC face that make it difficult to take the next step into repairing the growth situation. One of the reasons why GIS is underperforming is also to do with some structural issues in how a consulting company like DXC does business. Consulting services may be bringing in the bread because services from GIS are being packaged together in a comprehensive client offering at discounted prices. While this is a valid approach to maximize the amount of LTV that you get from a lead, it also means that you get a discounting effect on whatever part of the business will become a cost-center for the client, i.e., the more commodified stuff. This was the logic of the Kyndryl (KD) spin-off by IBM, which contained poorly performing technology services that could do better without being packaged by IBM.

Conclusions

The cost side improvements are welcome, and the base-effects on modern workplace are temporary, but structural issues should see GIS being a pretty unexciting area for the indefinite future. While there are engineering teams in the GBS segment that are doing a good job and producing impressive results in analytics, this can at best offset issues in other segments, producing maybe a small overall revenue growth under normal circumstances. The issue is that we are entering a recession, and investment cycles have been at all time highs. With CAPEXing becoming a more disciplined area for clients, the direction for the company is not the best, as is the case for most of the economy. With a stock price that has been steadily creeping up, we think that there is downside already on the basis of trend analysis. More importantly, the difference between the IBM multiple and the DXC multiple isn't so big. IBM is actually growing finally, and the company has more solid cash flows with a more powerful recurring revenue base and some more interesting and mix-relevant engineering platforms to drive organic growth including Red Hat. It also pays a dividend which DXC does not. With the DXC multiple at 8.5x and the IBM multiple at 10x we think the head-start on returns in a depression environment provided by the IBM dividend is important, and that their more solid customer base and technology platforms also deserve a premium. With selectivity in the markets being key due to the macro environment, and with the fact that there isn't a strong relative case for DXC, we think it's a pass.

Wed, 06 Jul 2022 23:00:00 -0500 en text/html https://seekingalpha.com/article/4521555-dxc-technology-improves-profile-not-structurally-favored
Killexams : IBM announces starter platform for blockchain developers

IBM is continuing its effort to democratize blockchain technology for developers. The company announced the availability of the IBM Blockchain Platform Starter Plan designed to provide developers, startups and enterprises the tools for building blockchain proofs-of-concept and an end-to-end developer experience.

“What do you get when you offer easy access to an enterprise blockchain test environment for three months?” Jerry Cuomo, VP of blockchain technology at IBM, wrote in a blog post. “More than 2,000 developers and tens of thousands of transaction blocks, all sprinting toward production readiness.”

RELATED CONTENT: Unlocking the blockchain potential

IBM has been focused on bringing the blockchain to enterprises for years. Earlier this year, the company announced IBM Blockchain Starter Services, Blockchain Acceleration Services and Blockchain Innovation Services.

The platform is powered by the open-source Hyperledger Fabric framework, and features a test environment, suite of education tools and modules, network provisioning, and $500 in credit for starting up a blockchain network. Hyperledger Fabric is an open-source blockchain framework implementation originally developed by Digital Asset and IBM.

According to the company, the Blockchain Platform was initially built for institutions working collectively towards mission-critical business goals. “And while Starter Plan was originally intended as an entry point for developers to test and deploy their first blockchain applications, users also now include larger enterprises creating full applications powered by dozens of smart contracts, eliminating many of the repetitive legacy processes that have traditionally slowed or prevented business success,” Cuomo explained.

Other features include: access to IBM Blockchain Platform Enterprise Plan capabilities, code samples available on GitHub, and Hyperledger Composer open-source technology.

“Starter Plan was introduced as a way for anyone to access the benefits of the IBM Blockchain Platform regardless of their level of blockchain understanding or production readiness. IBM has worked for several years to commercialize blockchain and harden the technology for the enterprise based on experience with hundreds clients across industries,” Cuomo wrote.

Sun, 26 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://sdtimes.com/webdev/ibm-announces-starter-platform-for-blockchain-developers/
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