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Administering HP Converged Infrastructure Solutions
HP Infrastructure test
Killexams : HP Infrastructure test - BingNews Search results Killexams : HP Infrastructure test - BingNews Killexams : Hewlett-Packard: A tale of three cities

Sixty years after Hewlett-Packard Co. employees first began moving into Building A on the company’s new Loveland campus in October 1962, the company that once grew to employ more than 9,000 workers in Loveland, Fort Collins and Greeley does not have the presence that it once did.

Today, HP’s successor companies — Hewlett-Packard Enterprise Co. (NYSE: HPE) and HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ) — occupy 580,000 square feet in Fort Collins, with HPE employing 800 people. (HP Inc. did not respond to requests for information.)

But HP’s legacy extends far beyond that footprint, from spinoff companies that continue to employ thousands of workers to the real estate that HP left behind. 

Much of the Fort Collins campus is now owned by Broadcom, which essentially is a spinoff of a spinoff, i.e. HP’s spinoff of Agilent Technologies Inc., which then sold its Semiconductor Products Group to an investment group, creating Avago Technologies Inc., which acquired Broadcom in 2015.

No HP employees remain at the Loveland site, where it all started, but another spinoff of a spinoff — Keysight Technologies Inc. (NYSE: KEYS), which grew out of Agilent in 2014 — maintains an operation there.

In Greeley, nothing remains of an HP operation that was once the center of the city’s nascent tech sector.

HP’s three Northern Colorado campuses have witnessed far different fates since the company began divesting local operations, and selling local properties, with tech remaining the driving force in Fort Collins, and tech and manufacturing enjoying a resurgence at what was the Loveland campus. Greeley, however, has seen demolition of the long-vacant HP building, with the bulk of the acreage transformed for residential, retail and other uses.


Hewlett-Packard Co.’s history in Northern Colorado began in Loveland, but it almost didn’t start that way. Loveland had to compete with Boulder for an HP expansion, but problems with potential Boulder sites — and a strong pitch from Loveland civic and business leaders — prompted Colorado native David Packard and other HP executives to select Loveland instead, according to an HP Computer Museum post on the history of the Loveland plant.

The plant — with a temporary building opening in 1960 and the first permanent building in 1962 — initially produced power supplies but eventually began producing desktop computers and calculators. HP’s Loveland operation also produced a variety of computer peripherals, including printers and instruments, such as voltmeters.

The campus — on the northeast corner of South Taft Avenue and 14th Street Southwest — remained a bastion for HP’s global operations for decades, but change began in the late 1990s.

HP spun off Agilent in 1998, and by 2005 only 500 people remained at the Loveland site, according to the HP Computer Museum. 

Thompson School District
The Thompson School District purchased the former Hewlett-Packard Co. building that once housed Colorado Memory Systems. Christopher Wood/BizWest

The Thompson School District acquired one building on the former HP/Agilent campus in 2004, an 88,000-square-foot building at 800 S. Taft Ave. that was formerly home to Colorado Memory Systems Inc., which built the structure in 1984. Colorado Memory Systems was founded by former HP employee Bill Bierwaltes. The company manufactured computer tape backup systems and was acquired by HP in 1992.

The school district purchased the building for $4.7 million and now uses it for its headquarters.

Just to the east is Keysight Technologies, at 900 S. Taft Ave. Keysight spun off from Agilent in 2014, developing test and measurement equipment.

Keysight’s Loveland building encompasses more than 139,000 square feet.

Kari Fauber, vice president of Keysight’s global partner sales and ecommerce, told BizWest in an email that the Loveland facility is “primarily a research and development site, but also hosts teams from legal, sales, marketing, finance, logistics and services.

“Keysight delivers advanced design and validation solutions that help accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world,” she said. “Keysight’s dedication to speed and precision extends to software-driven insights and analytics that bring tomorrow’s technology products to market faster across the development lifecycle, in design simulation, prototype validation, automated software testing, manufacturing analysis, and network performance optimization and visibility in enterprise, service provider and cloud environments.”

Keysight Technologies, Loveland
Keysight Technologies Inc., which manufactures electronics test and measurement equipment and software, represents the last vestige of what was once Hewlett-Packard Co. in Loveland. Christopher Wood/BizWest

Keysight’s customers span the worldwide communications and industrial ecosystems, aerospace and defense, automotive, energy, semiconductor and general electronics markets, Fauber said.

Keysight also maintains operations in Colorado Springs and Boulder. It acquired Eggplant Software Inc., with U.S. headquarters in Boulder, in 2020 for $330 million.

Keysight employs 14,300 worldwide and employed about 300 people in Loveland at the time of the spinoff from Agilent. The company recorded revenue of $4.94 billion in 2021.

With Agilent’s retrenchment in Loveland, the company negotiated a deal in May 2011 to sell the bulk of the Loveland campus to the city for $5.8 million. 

Plans to revitalize the campus were ambitious, with the Colorado Association of Manufacturing and Technology eventually selecting the site in June 2011 for an Aerospace and Clean Energy Manufacturing and Innovation Park, known as ACE. The project was touted as creating up to 10,000 jobs.

But the proposal faltered early on, with developer United Properties withdrawing from the project in August 2011, citing unattainable timelines.

Loveland then selected Bowling Green, Kentucky-based developer Cumberland and Western to develop the property, with the city selling the property to the company for $5 million.

Plans for the ACE park formally ended in March, when CAMT withdrew from the project.

Even before that, Cumberland and Western had rebranded the site as the Rocky Mountain Center for Innovation and Technology.

Cumberland and Western invested in upgrades to the property, including some tenant finishes, and successfully lured Lightning eMotors Inc. (NYSE: ZEV)  as a tenant. In April 2016, Cumberland and Western announced that EWI, a Columbus, Ohio-based organization that promotes manufacturing technologies, would open an applied research center at RMCIT.

But it all wasn’t enough, and Cumberland and Western opted through commercial brokerage CBRE to put the property on the market for $22.8 million in October 2020.

Loveland site sells, rebrands

Cumberland and Western eventually found its buyer, although not for the full asking price. In late October 2020, a group of local business owners, led by Jay Dokter and Dan Kamrath, purchased the 811,000-square-foot property for $15.5 million under the entity RMCIT LLC. 

Dokter, CEO of Loveland-based Vergent Products Inc., and his partners began working to increase occupancy from an anemic 16%.

The new owners quickly got to work, rebranding the property as the Forge Campus in March 2021.

“We just observed all of the potential that didn’t happen and thought, ‘We could do that,’” Dokter said. “What we saw was 40 to 50 companies in here, collocated, creating an innovative tech environment. And the price was right, too. So we knew that it wasn’t as risky. We also saw building prices were going up for a lot of commercial.”

Cumberland and Western’s initial approach to the property was to secure a single, large occupant, Dokter said.

Jay Dokter, Forge Campus
Jay Dokter and other investors acquired most of the former Hewlett-Packard Co. campus in Loveland for $15.5 million and are breathing new life into the facility. Christopher Wood/BizWest

“I think there was a fair amount of activity. They seemed to be going more for the grand slam, one occupant, and that market is extremely limited,” he said, adding that Cumberland did refocus to allow smaller companies in.

The vision of Dokter and his partners was clear from the beginning: Create an environment in which occupants would build an innovation ecosystem, interacting and feeding off of one another.

The owners moved one of their own companies into the Forge — Bongo, which provides video-assessment solutions for experiential learning. The investors also plan to relocate another of their companies, Vergent Products, a contract design and manufacturing company, into the facility within a couple of years.

Dan Kamrath and Jay Dokter, Bongo
Dan Kamrath and Jay Dokter, in the headquarters of one of their companies, Bongo, which has renovated space in the Forge Campus. Christopher Wood/BizWest

Dokter said one of the key advantages of the Loveland property was the maintenance that Cumberland and Western provided for almost a decade.

Often, vacant properties are allowed to decay, with damage by weather, vandalism and neglect. Not so with the Loveland site. Cumberland and Western continued to employ a team of one part-time worker and three full-time workers to maintain the property and conduct real estate tours.

“The cool thing with Cumberland and Western is that they spent a lot of money maintaining the property,” Dokter said. “I never forget, the first time I came here to get a tour … there was a nice man waxing the floor over here in an empty building — one of those machines that go back and forth in an empty building. That impressed me that it was quite preserved.”

“Big buildings like this, you don’t just shut the lights off and walk away,” said Rob Blauvelt, property manager for the Forge and one of the full-time workers who maintained the property during the Cumberland and Western years.

Cumberland and Western maintained a contract for upkeep of the 22 acres of roof. Landscaping was maintained, although at a lower level than when the property was occupied. Cracks in parking lots were filled. HVAC systems were maintained.

“It was three and a half people watching an empty building for 11 years,” Dokter said.

The property’s 16% occupancy at the time of purchase included 12 tenants, but that number has doubled to 24. Another five tenants are housed on-site in The Warehouse accelerator, a nonprofit organization that occupies 48,000 square feet of donated space.

Allison Seabeck, executive director of The Warehouse, said the organization has three alumni members and three off-site members, along with the five onsite members.

A capital campaign has raised $1.1 million out of a $4.8 million capital raise, allowing the organization to add a staff member and proceed through Phase I of its construction plan, creating space for nine companies.

Phase II of the capital campaign entails raising another $1.25 millon, including $750,000 to create space for 15 more companies, including installation of a series of “garage pods” in the accelerator space, providing turnkey manufacturing space for startups that need access to manufacturing floor space, equipment, ample power, compressed air and other features.

Future expansions will include further buildout, including community space, a training room, additional equipment, a share marketing studio and other amenities.

Including The Warehouse, occupancy at the Forge stands at 54%, Dokter said, with other leases pending.

One accurate addition is Veloce Energy Inc., a Los Angeles-based company that produces modular devices to make electrification easier.

Veloce moved its Colorado location from north Fort Collins into the Forge campus in May. The company employs 12 people locally.

Additionally, E.I. Medical Imaging, a trade name for OrcaWest Holdings Inc., will move into the Forge. E.I. Medical Imaging develops real-time ultrasound devices for use by veterinarians and livestock producers.

Lightning eMotors, which Cumberland and Western first brought to the site, has expanded rapidly, growing from 142,386 square feet when Dokter and his team acquired the property to 250,000 square feet and 260 employees. The company provides commercial electric vehicles for fleets and went public in 2021.

The Forge thus far has a mix of large clean-tech and other manufacturing companies.

“They’re more complimentary than you would think,” Dokter said of the tenant mix. “That is the whole idea. We want to do more and more mixing and explaining who does what.”

With Vergent Products, Dokter already has two clients within the Forge, with another three potential clients. That cross-pollination can be seen among other tenants as well, he said.

One additional amenity will foster even more interaction: The Forge soon will reopen the old HP cafeteria, bringing a variety of local restaurant and catering companies in to provide a mix of dining options. 

Blauvelt stressed the quality of the construction that is attractive for potential manufacturers.

“What you have here are structurally sound buildings with solid floors, with a massive amount of power, a massive amount of heating and cooling water, a good amount of compressed air, infrastructure for process vacuum … and you have a campus that’s just inviting as a workplace,” Blauvelt said.

“This thing has awesome bones,” he added, “and it’s really easy to fit a business into here. It’s not very challenging to fit a complex operation into this space.”

And that 22 acres of roofs? Future plans call for installation of solar panels, further emphasizing the site’s focus on clean technologies.

Stability characterizes Fort Collins site

No city in Northern Colorado has maintained as much of HP’s legacy operations as has Fort Collins, a site that opened in 1978 and employed as many as 3,200 HP workers at its peak.

In fact, HP — both Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP Inc. — remain prominent employers on the campus, located on the northeast corner of East Harmony and Ziegler roads — with HP Inc. leasing space within Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s two buildings on 71.5 acres.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s operations there employ 800 workers and are varied.

Hewlett Packard Enterprise/HP
Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP Inc. continue to maintain a significant presence in Fort Collins. Christopher Wood/BizWest

“The Fort Collins site houses a range of business units and functions — from servers to R&D to marketing. It’s a multi-use facility and not dedicated to any specific part of the company,” Adam Bauer, a spokesman for HPE, said in an email to BizWest.

The Fort Collins campus sits on the East Harmony Road corridor, the focal point of a cluster of high-tech companies that includes Broadcom, Intel Corp., Advanced Micro Devices and others. “Certainly, having other tech players with whom we partner and do business in close proximity helps create an ecosystem that is mutually beneficial,” he said. “That’s true in Fort Collins, Silicon Valley, Houston — everywhere we have a large presence.”

Bauer said that Fort Collins “is an important location for HPE, and again, is host to a range of business units and functions that span the company. It remains one of our biggest employment hubs in the U.S. and is an important part of our history. We do not anticipate any change to Fort Collins’ role in the company at this time. We actually are in the process of renovating the site to accommodate our hybrid, Edge-to-Office working model that arose out of the pandemic.”

HPE leases space to HP Inc., which did not respond to BizWest requests for comment. The city of Fort Collins estimates that HP Inc. employs 1,100 local workers, but that number could not be verified.

HPE in April 2019 sold a building on the Fort Collins campus — at 3420 E. Harmony Road — to an entity owned by McWhinney Real Estate Services Inc. of Loveland for $21 million. Bauer declined to speculate on any plans to sell additional properties.

“We continuously evaluate our real estate portfolio based on a variety of criteria including usage, opportunities for cost optimization, and other factors,” he said. “I can’t speculate on future real estate transactions.”

The McWhinney building is largely vacant, although fully leased. Madwire formerly occupied the third floor and a first-floor gym space, but the company has put the space on the sublease market, although it continues to pay rent.

Additionally, Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA) has vacated 80,000 square feet within the building. The company had opened a call center in 2016, with plans to house up to 600 employees.

But those plans changed in September 2019, when the company announced closure of the operation. Comcast’s lease expires in 2027, with the space put up for sublease.

A federal contractor based in Maryland, ASRC, or Arctic Slope Regional Corp., leased 31,000 square feet of the Comcast space in August 2020. The company operates as a contractor to federal intelligence, aerospace and health-care information-technology agencies.

Comcast closed its Fort Collins call center in late 2019. Ken Amundson/BizWest

Micro Focus, a spinoff of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, occupies about 16,000 square feet in the building.

Peter Kast, a broker with CBRE who is listing space in the building for sublease, said the campus and other corners of East Harmony and Ziegler roads benefit from infrastructure put in place to serve HP.

“If you look at it from an infrastructure point of view, it’s one of the few places in town that has redundant fiber and redundant fiber, so people like this that have needs for those kinds of things, there’s not that many choices, so in terms of an infrastructure location, it’s great,” he said.

He noted that HPE, HP, Broadcom, Intel, AMD and other high-tech companies in the area capitalize on a concentration of skilled workers.

“The thing that’s so attractive about Fort Collins for these guys is the intellectual capital, the people who do this kind of work, who are trained to handle, whether it’s software or hardware design,” he said. “We’ve got a ton of people who do chip design in this town.”

The biggest player in that space locally is Broadcom, which has continued to invest in its Fort Collins operation. Although the city of Fort Collins estimates that Broadcom employs 1,150 workers locally, the company told BizWest in 2019 that it employed 1,747, including 1,313 employees and 434 contingent workers.

Broadcom owns a large swathe of the former HP campus, with its predecessor, Avago, completing several major expansions.

Broadcom, Fort Collins
Broadcom Inc. and its predecessors have continued to invest in the Fort Collins location. Christopher Wood/BizWest

The company, in its most-recent quarterly report filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, cited ongoing supply-chain disruptions brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic and highlighted the importance of the Fort Collins operation.

“We have been, and expect to continue, experiencing some disruption to parts of our global semiconductor supply chain, including procuring necessary components and inputs, such as wafers and substrates, in a timely fashion, with suppliers increasing lead times or placing products on allocation and raising prices,” the company reported, noting shutdowns at key suppliers and service providers around the world.

“Any similar disruption at our Fort Collins, Colorado manufacturing facility would severely impact our ability to manufacture our film bulk acoustic resonator (“FBAR”) products and adversely affect our wireless business,” the company said.

Despite those challenges, Broadcom, HP and related companies remain key components of the Fort Collins economy.

Broadcom Inc. property in Fort Collins
Broadcom Inc.’s plant in Fort Collins occupies a large part of former Hewlett-Packard Co. land. The company develops and manufactures microchips for cellphones and other devices. Christopher Wood/BizWest

SeonAh Kendall, senior economic manager for the city of Fort Collins, said Hewlett Packard, Broadcom and other companies in the East Harmony Road corridor are “going strong.”

“We are seeing that they’re kind of staying in the area and growing with spinoffs in there as well,” she said. “I do think that it is a critical piece for us in terms of the employment as well as the contributions that the companies as well as employees have in our community.

“There are opportunities for additional growth in those locations,” she added, “and opportunities for a lot of collaboration. I think one of the greatest strengths is that we’re able to retain the talent here. Sometimes, we have seen folks leave AMD and go to Intel, or leave Intel and go to HP and vice versa.”

She noted that companies in the area work closely with Colorado State University, Front Range Community College and the Poudre School District on issues such as talent and retention.

Greeley facility sees different fate

Greeley’s Hewlett-Packard facility was the last to be built, the first to close and the only one to be torn down — at least most of it.

The facility, opened in 1984, focused on scanners, tape drives and other devices, but HP closed the operation in 2003, shifting what was then 800 workers to other locations. About 640 workers were transferred to Fort Collins, with another 165 shifting to Flextronics International Ltd. Flextronics purchased DII Group Inc., which was buying  HP’s tape-storage manufacturing business.

HP put the property on the market and seemed to attract widespread interest at first, including for a potential expansion of Aims Community College. But that and other deals fell through, prompting HP to sell the building to a group of local investors. HP sold the 355,000-square-foot property on 157 acres in August 2004 to Boomerang Properties LLC, headed by local investors Bruce Deifik and Jeff Bedingfield, a Greeley attorney. The purchase price was $8 million, far lower than HP’s $14 million asking price.

“Up to this point, HP has not been willing to divide the property or divide the facility,” Bedingfield told the Northern Colorado Business Report, a predecessor to BizWest, in August 2004. “Their desire is to sell everything and let the buyer determine how best to use it.”

Boomerang intended to subdivide the HP building to support perhaps four smaller tenants.

“There’s been a lot of talk that you can’t get big blocks leased, that the best thing is to bulldoze the facility,” Bedingfield said in 2004. “It’s too fine of a facility to begin talking about any kind of changes to that place, other than demising it into large blocks.”

But the new owners also envisioned that surrounding acreage would be transformed into residential neighborhoods, retail centers and office uses.

The project soon was taken over by City Center West LP, a Denver development company affiliated with Westside Investment Partners Inc., which acquired the building and adjacent acreage for $8.36 million in 2007. Some holdings were owned and developed under the umbrella of BV Retail Land Holdings LLP.

City Center West began selling acreage for retail, residential and other uses:

Westside Commons, Greeley
A commercial development now occupies former Hewlett-Packard Co. land at West 10th Street and 71st Avenue. Christopher Wood/BizWest
  • In 2011, the company sold 12 acres to a North Colorado Medical Center/Banner Health entity for $2.34 million. Banner continues to own the vacant land.
  • In 2014, City Center West launched a commercial development on the northeast corner of 71st Avenue and West 10th Street, eventually adding a Bank of Colorado branch, McDonald’s, Breeze Thru Car Wash and a Les Schwab tire center.
  • Developers of a self-storage facility purchased land along 71st Avenue. That property now houses Boomerang Self Storage.
  • A memory-care facility, Windsong at Northridge, was built along 71st Avenue.
  • A chunk of the HP building — the cafeteria and events center — was redeveloped into the West Ridge Academy at 6905 Eighth St.
Windsong at Northridge, Greeley
Windsong at Northridge, a memory-care facility, was built on former Hewlett-Packard Co. land in Greeley. Christopher Wood/BizWest
West Ridge Academy, Greeley
West Ridge Academy occupies a part of the former Hewlett-Packard Co. building in Greeley, including what was once the HP cafeteria. Christopher Wood/BizWest

City Center West continues to own residential land on the former HP campus but sold the remaining vacant building and some acreage to LaSalle Investors LLC, a unit of Waltel Cos. Inc. LaSalle demolished the remaining HP building, preparing the site for future development.

But the company faces opposition to plans to rezone the property from Industrial – Low Intensity to Residential – High Density. About 10 neighboring residents voiced opposition to the rezoning request at a June 7 Greeley City Council meeting.

Residents voiced fears that LaSalle planned to build a large apartment complex on the property, which they said could exacerbate existing traffic problems.

Several City Council members also voiced opposition to the R-H zoning, preferring a less-intensive Residential – Medium Density zoning.

“It’s just too intense right now,” Councilman Dale Hall said. “I’m uncomfortable making this R-H. I’m OK with Residential Medium Intensity.”

In the end, LaSalle’s attorney asked that the council continue the discussion to the July 19 City Council meeting.

Greeley HP industrial zoning
A map shows the remaining IL (Industrial — Low Intensity) zoning for the former Hewlett-Packard Co. campus in Greeley. Developers are seeking to rezone the property for Residential — High Density. Courtesy city of Greeley.

Greeley’s westward expansion

Why Greeley’s HP facility faced such a different outcome than campuses in Fort Collins and Loveland can be attributed to a variety of factors.

First, the technology sector in Greeley has never developed to the scale of Fort Collins’ or Loveland, which enjoy closer proximity to Colorado State University. Even before HP’s closure, Greeley had seen the departure of home-grown printed-circuit-board manufacturer EFTC Corp., founded in Greeley as Electronic Fab Technology Corp., which left for the north Denver suburbs.

But the greatest factor seems to be the pattern of Greeley’s residential and commercial growth, which has pushed inexorably westward for several decades.

Ben Snow, director of economic health and housing for the city of Greeley, said the area around “the core of the apple,” meaning the HP building, has transformed.

HP’s Greeley facility was once on the city’s outskirts, with little nearby retail and far less residential development.

“When you look at what’s happened over the last 10 years out there, it has sort of defaulted to what I would describe as typical suburban growth,” Snow said, pointing to the King Soopers and other retail development across 10th Street, as well as retail and residential projects on former HP land surrounding the building.

He noted that for years, he and his predecessors in the economic-development community sought to preserve the industrial zoning for the building as a way to balance the city’s housing stock with a solid employment center.

“It just never took,” he said. “We never could get a secondary use in there … At some point, you have to listen to the market signals.”

Although many potential users toured the facility, one obstacle, he said, was that the building had fallen into disrepair.

“Once people went in, because that building essentially had been neglected and abandoned for so long … it was kind of a magnet for that kind of vandalism. There was evidence that people were inside the building at different times.”

“Greeley has tried for 20 years to get some industrial users to reinhabit, to reanimate that building, to no avail,” he said.
Additional reading: “HP in Colorado,” Measure (HP’s inhouse publication), November-December, 1982.

Sun, 17 Jul 2022 02:55:00 -0500 Christopher Wood en-US text/html
Killexams : How HP Designers Think About Sustainable PCs

A visit to HP’s Design Studio, where the team takes creative leaps and deliberate steps in the quest for good-looking and eco-positive products.

Northampton, MA --News Direct-- HP Inc.

Stacy Wolff outside the CMF (colors, materials, fabric) library.

In a conference room at HP’s Silicon Valley campus, a cornucopia of materials is placed all around. On the table and walls are swatches in fashion-forward colors (teal green, scarlet, rose gold) and novel textures (mycelium foam, crushed seashells, recycled rubber from running tracks, fabric from recycled jeans). Even more unexpected: pairs of high-end athletic shoes, and lots of them; luggage and backpacks, teapots and totes; stacks of gorgeous coffee-table books on courses ranging from furniture to architecture — all to inspire the look and feel of devices that HP has yet to imagine.

Being able to touch, test, and debate about these items in person is part of the process, a creative collaboration Global Head of Design & Sustainability Stacy Wolff and his talented team of designers are grateful to be able to do side by side again inside their light-filled studio in Palo Alto. With each iteration of an HP laptop, desktop, or gaming rig, they endeavor to push the bounds of sustainable design while offering consumers a device that they’re proud to use each day.

For the last few years, HP’s design work has gained recognition, evidenced by the studio’s gleaming rows of awards. But there’s not a single name listed on any of them. “Everything we do is by collective effort. We win as a group, and we lose as a group,” says Wolff. “If you won an award, someone else had to do maybe a less glamorous job to deliver you the freedom to do that.”

The team of 73 creatives in California, Houston, and Taipei are from backgrounds as varied as design, engineering, graphics, anthropology, poetry, ergonomics, and sports journalism. There’s one thing they have in common, though. Disagreements are dealt with by amping up their communication and doubling down on what they know to be their source of truth. “If we let the customer be the North Star, it tends to resolve almost all conflict,” Wolff says.

HP’s head of design has led a massive shift in how HP approaches design since its split from HPE in 2015, steering the company toward a more unified, yet distinct, visual identity, and a willingness to experiment with both luxury and mass-market trends. Wolff’s team is responsible for delivering the award-winning HP Spectre and ENVY lines, including the HP Spectre 13 (at the time of launch, hailed as the world’s thinnest laptop); the HP Spectre Folio (the first laptop with a leather chassis); the HP ENVY Wood series (made with sustainably-sourced, genuine wood inlays); and the HP Elite Dragonfly (the world’s first notebook to use ocean-bound plastic). Among the honors: In 2021, HP received seven Green Good Design Awards from the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies and the Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design.

Today, Wolff and his team are in their recently outfitted studio, which opened late last year in HP’s Palo Alto headquarters. In the common areas, there is an inviting atmosphere of warm wood and soft, textured surfaces. Designers are tapping away at their keyboards, breaking off to share quick sketches and notes in an informal huddle around a digital whiteboard. In the gallery — an airy space that looks a lot like an upscale retail store — foam models, proof-of concept designs, and an array of laptop parts, keycaps, speakers, and circuit boards are splayed out on stark white countertops. Light from the courtyard pours in from the floor-to-ceiling windows.

“The studio has become a home,” says Wolff, who’s been with the company for 27 years. “When you think about a house, where does everybody go? Where is the love, and creation, and the stories being told? All that is shared in the kitchen.”

Granted this kitchen also has a really, really nice espresso maker.

The new space, like the kitchen, bubbles with energy and fuels the collaborative process, which was somewhat stifled when everyone was working remotely. “Creativity is a magical thing,” Wolff says. “That’s why it’s so important to design in a common space. We took for granted the process of organic product development. When you work from home, it becomes almost serial development. There’s no serendipity.”

After months of improvising the tools they needed to work together, the team finds that being back in the office is where they can be most creative and efficient. “Designers are very hands-on,” says Kevin Massaro, vice president of consumer design. “Everything in the studio is tactile.”

Yet, the time spent working remotely produced valuable insights that are informing future products, such as a PC camera disaggregated from the monitor so it can be manipulated to capture something on a person’s desk (like a sketch); super-wide-screen displays with integrated light bars that offer a soft backlight for people working late at night; and monitors that adjust to taller heights, to better accommodate a standing desk.

In accurate years, the team has also turned its sights toward defining — and redefining — what sustainable design means for HP. In 2021 HP announced some of the most aggressive and comprehensive climate goals in the technology industry, bringing new complexity — and new gravitas — to what Wolff and his team are aiming to accomplish.

“You’re no longer just a company that’s manufacturing technology, you’re a company that’s helping to better people’s lives,” Wolff says. Working toward HP’s goal to become the most sustainable and just technology company is less about integrating greater percentages of recycled materials into new products, and more about an accounting of the entire life cycle of a device, from the electricity used over its lifetime and the minerals mined for its batteries, to the chemicals used in its painted powder coating and what exactly happens to a product when returned for recycling.

When a customer opens a box made of 100% recycled molded fiber packaging to reveal the premium Elite Dragonfly PC, which made waves for being the first notebook with ocean-bound plastic, that’s where this team’s efforts become tangible.

The Dragonfly isn’t only a triumph of design, it proved that circularity can be an integral part of mass-manufacturing for personal electronics. The third generation of that same device, released in March (see “How the HP Elite Dragonfly Took Flight,” page 36), raised the bar for battery life and weight with a new process that fuses aluminum and magnesium in the chassis, the latter of which is both lightweight and 100% recyclable.

This was a feat of engineering alchemy, says Chad Paris, Global Senior Design Manager. “Not only do you have different properties of how these metals work together, it was a challenge to make sure that it’s seamless,” he says. The team innovated and came up with a thermofusion process that lends a premium feel to the Dragonfly while keeping its weight at just a kilogram.

This inventiveness dovetails with Wolff’s pragmatic approach to sustainability. Not only does each change have to scale for a manufacturer the size of HP, it has to strike the right balance between brand integrity and forward-leaning design. “We can take waste and make great things,” Wolff says, gesturing at a pile of uniform plastic pellets that used to be a discarded bottle. “But ultimately, we want our products to live longer, so we’re designing them to have second lives.”

A sustainable HP notebook, no matter what materials it’s made from, needs to look and feel like HP made it, says Sandie Cheng, Global CMF Director. The CMF (colors, materials, finishes) library holds thousands of fabric swatches, colored tiles, and paint chips and samples, which Cheng uses as inspiration for the look and feel of fine details such as the touch pad on a laptop, the smooth glide of a hinge, or the sparkle of the HP logo peeking through a laser-etched cutout.

Cheng and her team head out on scouting trips to gather objects from a variety of places and bring them back to the studio, composing their own ever-changing mood board. In the CMF library, there are Zen-like ceramic-and-bamboo vessels picked up from an upscale housewares boutique in San Francisco alongside scores of upholstery samples in chic color palettes, hunks of charred wood, and Nike’s Space Hippie trainers.

Most of these materials will never make it to production, but they offer up a rich playground for the team’s collective imagination. Foam made from mycelium (i.e., fungi threads) is an organic material that can be grown in just two weeks. Perhaps one day it could be used as material to cover the Dragonfly chassis, even if right now it couldn’t survive the daily wear and tear we put on our PCs. Or its spongy, earthy texture might inspire a new textile that lends a softer feel to an otherwise hard-edged device on your desk.

“We as designers have to think outside the box to stay creative and inspired, but we also have to develop materials that can be used for production,” Cheng says. “It’s a balance of staying creative and also being realistic.”

The same holds true for how the materials are made. Manufacturing with fabric is notorious for producing massive amounts of waste because of the way patterns are cut, but HP wants to change that with its own soft goods, such as the HP Renew Sleeve. It’s made with 96% recycled plastic bottle material, and importantly, the 3D knitting process used to make the laptop sleeve leaves virtually zero waste, generating only a few stray threads.

Earlier this month, Cheng and her team went to Milan, Italy, for fresh inspiration. They attended Salone del Mobile 2022, one of the industry’s largest textile, furniture, and home design trade shows, to get a sense of the big design trends of the next few years, including what Cheng calls “the centered home,” which evokes feelings of comfort, coziness, and calm.

She explains that the blurring of work and life means that what consumers want in their next device, whether it’s one issued by their company or selected from a store shelf, is something that looks and feels like it fits into their personal spaces. “Your PC should be really versatile and adapt to whichever environment you’re in and how you want to use it,” she says.

Consumers also want to feel good about their purchase, which increasingly means choosing brands that care for the finite resources on our shared planet. A 2021 report by research firm IDC found that 43% of 1,000 decision-makers said sustainability was a critical factor in their tech-buying choices.

As the Personal Systems designers charge ahead into a sustainable future — whatever it brings — they’ll surely do it in their iterative, measured, and collaborative way.

“When it comes to sustainability, it’s all about forward progress, and everyone’s job is a sustainability job,” Wolff says. “As founder Dave Packard said, ‘The betterment of our society is not a job to be left to the few. It’s a responsibility to be shared by all.’”

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Wed, 06 Jul 2022 03:20:00 -0500 en-US text/html
Killexams : Testing in a Continuous Delivery world

Software development went and got itself in a big damn hurry. Agile practices combined with continuous integration and delivery practices have dramatically sped up the development life cycle, reducing project sprints from months to weeks to even days.

Testing, on the other hand, is not quick. Manual testing is a time-consuming and labor-intensive process to ensure a piece of software does what it’s supposed to, no matter how fast it was developed. The challenge for both developers and testers in a landscape increasingly dominated by agile is figuring out how to bring testing in line with the pace of development and delivery without sacrificing quality.

“When that bottleneck around deployment was taken away and all of a sudden code could truly flow naturally and smoothly into production, there was a step back in terms of quality,” said Matt Johnston, chief marketing and strategy officer of Applause (formerly uTest). “[Customers] would come to us and say we want to test one build per week. Then all of a sudden between the shift to agile and continuous integration, suddenly they had 10 builds a week. Dev and DevOps could move faster and QA wasn’t able to keep up, so organizations just decided to launch and see how it goes.”

In this shift to continuously integrated and delivered software, in which developers integrate code into a shared repository several times a day (enabling a change or version to be safely deployed at any time), testing is shifting toward a continuous model as well. Through a combination of test automation and the merging of development and testing processes under a Dev/Test philosophy, testing providers and QA teams are beginning to implement practices to test software builds as rapidly as they’re being churned out.

“In today’s world, it’s just too slow to be in this sequential process of dev, test, deploy and manage,” said Tom Lounibos, CEO of SOASTA. “Developers have always tested; they’ve always done unit testing, application development testing, but then they throw it over the wall to the QA guys who would do functional, load and other testing. Testing is now starting to be done by developers far more frequently. QA professionals are still very much there, but they’re trying to automate the process as well. That’s the big shift around continuous integration and continuous testing, so that speed can be improved without rushing software out the door.”

Automating the conveyor belt
Continuous testing doesn’t happen without automation. In traditional manual testing, a developer checks in a change and it goes through a build process that may take hours or days to produce feedback. Automation accelerates the cycle, checking the code and providing feedback in a matter of minutes. By no means does this signal an end to manual testing—which remains essential in exploratory and regression testing at the Web, UI and mobile level—but automation frameworks and tools are proliferating throughout the process.

“If there’s one overarching principle, it’s to automate everything,” said Steve Brodie, CEO of Electric Cloud. “That means you have to automate all the types of testing you’re doing. The key is orchestrating the pipeline: It’s one thing to have these silos of automation doing automated load or regression testing, automating builds or even deployments. But what you need to do is automate that whole end-to-end pipeline, from the time the developer checks the code, all the way through to production and deployment.”

Automation requires much effort on the part of the organization to do correctly. Machines need to be provisioned and configured, manually or virtually, and testing environments need to be spun up and deployed for each application. Yet Brodie believes a misconception exists around automated testing and the quality of those tests.

“You’re only as fast as the slowest element, the slowest phase in your software delivery pipeline,” he said. “You’ve got to automate the QA environment and the systems integration testing environment. You’ve got to deploy into the performance-testing environment. If you have user acceptance tests, you’ve got to deploy it there too. But a lot of people think that by deploying faster with Continuous Delivery, quality will suffer. But what’s fascinating is that the inverse is often true, particularly if people are releasing more quickly because the batch size is changing. The magnitude of changes you’re deploying is much smaller.”

Once deployed, an automation solution is not without its kinks. Automated tools are still relatively new, and the process can result in inconsistent reporting, false positives and botched execution. Hung Nguyen, CEO of LogiGear, said the idea is there, but the biggest challenge to automation is smoothing out the release process.

“Think of your entire development cycle as an automated assembly line,” he said. “Once you turn on the conveyor belt, you don’t have to worry about what’s going to come out the other side. But when you get to the system level of testing, thousands and thousands of test cases are running against these virtual machines, and it tends to have some timing problems. Open-source and commercial tools used in combination are just not robust enough yet, so you end up with a lot of so-called false positives and end up debugging.”

The rise of Dev/Testers
The ripple effects of Continuous Delivery are changing the way developers and testers work together, blurring the lines between the two roles and skill sets. As a consequence, developers are learning how to test, and testers are becoming entrenched in the development process. It’s the manifestation of a Dev/Test philosophy.

“Testers are moving in closer to the development side, embedded into teams with developers,” said Tim Hinds, product marketing manager at Neotys. “You see this a lot in Scrum and other agile development teams. The testers are well informed about what PaaS developers are working on proactively to design their test scripts accordingly. So that whenever the code has been written and needs to be tested, they’re familiar with what’s occurring and not just getting something thrown over the wall to them.”

Dev/Testers are upending the way organizations approach testing while adopting agile and Continuous Delivery practices. Organizations that in the past have invested in independent centers of excellence for testing best practices are transitioning to have testing resources sitting alongside development resources, and as a result, the role and skill sets of testers need to evolve to fill that Dev/Tester role of ensuring code quality within an agile team.

“There’s a lot more of a need for testers to understand the application architecture, understand the APIs,” said Kelly Emo, director of applications product marketing HP Software. “If you’re doing API testing, you’ve got to understand that API and that programming model, the underlying architecture. You may need to understand its interdependency with other components of that composite app.

“There’s this new hierarchy of testing, where you have testers sitting alongside developers doing more API testing or functional testing at the application level. Downstream you’re still going to have testers managing the regression sets or doing exploratory testing. They can be more of what people think of traditionally as a black box or manual tester. Those rules still exist, but now you have both.”#!A tester’s skepticism
In the shuffle of bringing testing up to speed with development, there is a danger of losing sight of what testing was originally intended to do. Magdy Hanna, CEO of Rommana Software and chairman of the International Institute for Software Testing, implored organizations to not so easily dismiss manual testing or discount the importance of practices such as regression testing in the rush to deliver software.

“With agile, Continuous Delivery and continuous integration, I get very concerned about overlooking the value of regression testing, which guarantees that things work,” he said. “Some projects and teams thought continuous integration would be a good way to eliminate or at least minimize their regression testing, which is always a stumbling block. Sometimes, in order to push the release to production faster, we overlook or undermine the value of regression testing. I’ve seen projects that actually deliver software faster by cutting down on how much final system, acceptance and regression testing they do.

“Let me make this clear: Continuous integration will never replace regression testing—regression testing by qualified testers, not by the developers, who understand the behavior of all the features supported in the previous iteration or sprint. As a developer, I only understand the feature I wrote and implemented. Don’t expect me to do a very good job in making sure that all the other features I don’t really understand are still working.”

Hanna is also wary of relying on automation tools driving continuous testing efforts. While manual testing requires a physical tester, scripts govern automation. In this push toward a faster life cycle, he is concerned about developers and testers losing sight of a project’s ultimate goals.

“In order for Continuous Delivery and integration to succeed, they rely heavily on individuals writing scripts for tools,” he said. “The scripts need to be written not only to test the feature being implemented or the feature you are implementing, but the feature we delivered a year ago still has to work.

“There’s always trade-off. Delivering high-quality systems fast means cutting corners, and cutting corners in Continuous Delivery has affected the most critical aspects of the projects: the requirements. I can get developers to write code very fast and push code into production, but what does the code do? Why are we forgetting that we’re only writing code to implement a feature, a requirement or a behavior that the customer wanted?”

The first inning
While the growth of agile and the rise of Continuous Delivery and integration are tangible, continuous testing is still in its infancy. Organizations are still figuring out what it is, and both developers and testers are still in the process of grappling with not only how accelerated testing affects them, but also how to automate it effectively.

“From the standpoint of implementation versus awareness, we’re in the first inning of a nine-inning game,” said SOASTA’s Lounibos. “Awareness is pretty strong. It feels a little bit little 2009 and 2010 in cloud computing. Everyone was talking about it, but there weren’t that many people implementing. Early adopters are out there, but people have to get familiar with what continuous testing even means: How do they implement it? What are the best practices?”

The early adopters are the ones who, according to Applause’s Johnston, are phasing out things like centers of excellence and large outsourcing contracts—the equivalent of a large standing army—for a nimble Special Forces unit, the integrated developer and tester teams implementing automated continuous testing.

“The companies that are trotting out the same playbook of mainframe to desktop and desktop to Web applications are in the tall grass, completely lost in the weeds,” he said. “That’s what it takes: Wiping the whiteboard clean and saying ‘Okay, all the muscles we’ve built in the past 15 years from Web, a lot of those don’t really apply. The big investment we made with this vendor or that longtime outsourcing relationship or that Center of Excellence we thought we’d be using for 30 years, that’s either not going to be a part of the solution as we go forward, or just a part.’ ”

As adoption climbs, testing in a continuously delivered environment is also moving away from a development and testing process partitioned into silos. Think of the developer cliché where someone slides a pizza under the door and out comes code. As developers and testers hop the fence, testing is moving toward a more integrated and virtualized process aligned with a continuous ALM solution.

“Instead of people talking about wanting to automate tests, about hooking virtualization capabilities into a development tool, you’ll see much more of a hub that can deploy and take advantage of what happens when you put automation and virtualization together,” said HP Software’s Emo. It’ll enable automatic provisioning of virtual services you’ve discovered from your application architecture and make it available for your tester. Once the defect is found, you can automatically roll up that defect combined with a virtual service so your developer has a single environment to work with the next day.”

Automation. Virtualization. The amalgamation of developers and testers in a more fluid, concurrent software development life cycle. They’re all elements in the shift to continuous testing, which if SOASTA’s Tom Lounibos’ vision comes to fruition, may resemble something like “The Matrix.”

“Picture that concept of living in a world that’s actually a computer program, and if we’re in a meeting of 10 people, only two are real and the rest are computer generated,” he said. “That’s how we see testing in the future: a test matrix. There’ll be real people on your website or application, but there will be a constant flow of fake users anticipating problems of the real ones. Imagine virtual users trying to get ahead of real users’ real experiences. That’s where continuous testing is going.”#!Best practices for continuous testing
As organizations and testing providers transition from manual to continuous testing, a new set of best practices is vital in keeping testing teams on track, optimizing resources and delivering a working application at the speed of agile.

• Daily, targeted testing: Gigantic, exhaustive tests are ineffective. Daily load tests in low volumes of concurrent users can help uncover smaller scaling issues, and targeted demo testing of software on various OSes, devices, carriers and applications is more effective and cheaper than running through thousands of test cases in every single environment.

• Test in production: Rather than testing in a controlled lab setting, testing in production (while real users browse a website or application) gives the most accurate indication of how a piece of software will perform.

• Scale test volume: Break a test suite into smaller chunks of tasks running in parallel to the automated deployment. This makes the code easier to execute and debug without human intervention.

• Diagnose the root cause: A test passing, failing, or producing a critical bug report is less important than finding the root cause of the failure in the code. Testers diagnosing the root cause stop engineers and testers from wasting time and resources tracing symptoms.

• Don’t lose sight of SLAs: Putting service-level agreements on a task board or list of constraints (so that every time a test or build is run, testers know what SLAs the new application, features or functionality have to pass) will keep application quality up while maintaining development speed.

• Nightly and end-of-sprint testing: Continuously integrated builds undergo automated testing whenever a developer pushes code to a repository, but running larger tests at specific times is still valuable. During a nightly build, run a full site or application load test for whatever you expect the user base to be at any given time. Then, toward the end of an iteration or sprint, stress the application to its breaking point to set a new bar for how many concurrent users it can handle.

• Hybrid Tester/Architect: A test architect aligned with the application architect can help determine, based on the application footprint, what the next automated components and test assets should be, to better manage the overlying test framework and promote use of reusable automated assets whenever possible.

• Don’t sleep on metrics: Metrics ingrained within the automation process can create quality gates to maintain a well-defined quality state. Without measuring how automated tests are performing to make actionable improvements, testers run the risk of promoting defects faster through the testing pipeline.

• Practice, practice, practice: Virtualization is the testing equivalent of a flight simulator, allowing simulation of every possible user experience. The better understanding developers and testers have of where problems may occur, the more prepared they’ll be.

Subtle benefits and hidden obstacles
Everyone knows Continuous Delivery and testing speed up the development cycle. Everyone knows you need to automate. Neotys’ Hinds and HP Software’s Emo laid out a few of the advantages people wouldn’t immediately associate with continuous testing, and some of the more subtle challenges to doing it right.

Benefit: Avoiding late performance problems: “It’s always cheaper to make changes earlier in development than to have something deployed to production and going back to add a hotfix. It also allows people to make sure that whenever you’re releasing new features into production, you’re not allowing any sort of performance regression; not allowing old bugs to creep their way back in.” —Hinds

Benefit: Mitigating technical debt: “If you’re seeing load, performance or security issues early on, you’re likely not to let them propagate or let them get consumed in other composite applications. It also creates an interesting conversation between your tester, your developer and your product manager really pushing on those user story functions, really pushing on the requirements.” —Emo

Shorter development cycles: “When moving performance testing to continuous environments, testers need to adapt. You’re getting a new build way more often than you are in a more traditional waterfall environment, though you’ve got to do basically the same number of tests you were doing before, except now you’ve got them every two weeks or less.” —Hinds

Challenge: Skill set: “Making sure you have the folks with the level of understanding needed to be able to do this kind of testing, but also to engineer the process, the infrastructure. There is a special skill in being a really good tester. They need to put in place the continuous integration process connected to your test automation suite and connect it back into your ALM system so you know the results the next morning and you’re able to act on it.” —Emo

Wed, 29 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en-US text/html
Killexams : CompTIA Certification Guide: Overview and Career Paths

Headquartered near Chicago, CompTIA is a nonprofit trade association made up of more than 2,000 member organizations and 3,000 business partners. Although the organization focuses on educating and certifying IT professionals, CompTIA also figures prominently in philanthropy and public policy advocacy.

CompTIA certification program overview

CompTIA’s vendor-neutral certification program is one of the best recognized in the IT industry. Since CompTIA developed its A+ credential in 1993, it has issued more than two million certifications.

In early 2018, CompTIA introduced its CompTIA Infrastructure Career Pathway. While you’ll still see the same familiar certifications that form the bedrock of the CompTIA certification portfolio, this new career pathway program more closely aligns CompTIA certifications to the real-world skills that IT professionals need to ensure success when managing and supporting IT infrastructures.

CompTIA certifications are grouped by skill set. Currently, CompTIA certs fall info four areas: Core, Infrastructure, Cybersecurity and Additional Professional certifications.

  • Core Certifications: Designed to build core foundational skills, CompTIA offers four Core certifications: IT Fundamentals+ (a pre-career certification focused on IT foundation framework), CompTIA A+ (focused on user support and device connectivity), CompTIA Network+ (targeting core system connections with endpoint devices), and CompTIA Security+ (focused on entry level cybersecurity skills).
  • Infrastructure Certifications: Designed to complement the Network+ credential, you’ll find three Infrastructure certifications: CompTIA Server+ (focused on issues related to server support and administration), CompTIA Cloud+ (covering hybrid cloud, virtual system administration and deploying network storage resources), and CompTIA Linux+ (focused on Linux operating system administration and management).
  • Cybersecurity Certifications: CompTIA offers three cybersecurity credentials: CompTIA CySA+ (CySA stands for Cyber Security Analyst, and targets IT security behavioral analysts), CASP+ (CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner; focuses on professionals who design and implement security solutions), and the CompTIA PenTest+ (Penetration testing, targets professionals who conduct penetration and vulnerability testing).
  • Additional Professional Certifications: This category includes several credentials which don’t readily fit into any of the foregoing CompTIA career paths, including: CompTIA Project+, CompTIA CTT+ and CompTIA Cloud Essentials.

CompTIA Core Certifications

CompTIA IT Fundamentals+

CompTIA IT Fundamentals+ is ideal for beginners with a basic understanding of PC functionality and compatibility as well as familiarity with technology topics, such as hardware basics, software installation, security risks and prevention, and basic networking. It’s also ideal as a career planning or development tool for individuals beginning their IT careers or those seeking to make a career change. A single test is required to earn the credential. CompTIA launched a new IT Fundamentals+ test (Exam FC0-U61) in September 2018. This new test focuses on computing basics, database use, software development and IT infrastructure. The English version of the prior test (Exam FC0-U510) retires on July 15, 2019. Exams in other languages retire on December 1, 2019.

CompTIA A+

The CompTIA A+ certification has been described as an “entry-level rite of passage for IT technicians,” and for a good reason. This certification is designed for folks seeking a career as a help desk, support, service center or networking technician. It covers PC and laptop hardware, software installation, and configuration of computer and mobile operating systems. A+ also tests a candidate’s understanding of basic networking, troubleshooting and security skills, which serve as a springboard for CompTIA networking or security certifications or those offered by other organizations.

According to CompTIA, more than one million IT professionals hold the A+ certification. The A+ is required for Dell, Intel and HP service technicians and is recognized by the U.S. Department of Defense. CompTIA released new “Core” exams for the CompTIA A+ credential on January 15, 2019. These new exams provide additional focus on operational procedure competency and baseline security topics. Candidates must pass the Core 1 (exam 220-1001) and Core 2 (Exam 220-1002) exams. The Core 1 test targets virtualization, cloud computing, mobile devices, hardware, networking technology and troubleshooting. The Core 2 exams focuses on installation and configuring operating systems, troubleshooting software, operational procedures and security.

CompTIA Network+

Many IT professionals start with the A+ certification. While the A+ credential is recommended, if you have the experience and don’t feel a need for the A+, you can move directly to the CompTIA Network+ certification. It’s geared toward professionals who have at least nine months of networking experience. A candidate must be familiar with networking technologies, media, topologies, security, installation and configuration, and troubleshooting of common wired and wireless network devices. The Network+ certification is recommended or required by Dell, HP and Intel, and is also an accepted entry-point certification for the Apple Consultants Network. The Network+ credential meets the ISO 17024 standard and just like the A+, it is recognized by the U.S. DoD. A single test is required to earn the certification.

CompTIA Security+

CompTIA Security+ covers network security concepts, threats and vulnerabilities, access control, identity management, cryptography, and much more. Although CompTIA does not impose any prerequisites, the organization recommends that cert candidates obtain the Network+ credential and have at least two years of IT administration experience with a security focus. To obtain the Security+ certification candidates must pass on exam, SY0-501.

Infrastructure Certifications

CompTIA Linux+

The CompTIA Linux+ Powered by LPI certification is aimed at Linux network administrators with at least 12 months of Linux administration experience. Such experience should include installation, package management, GNU and Unix commands, shells, scripting, security and more. The A+ and Network+ certifications are recommended as a preamble to this certification but are not mandatory. Candidates must pass two exams (LX0-103 and LX0-104) to earn this credential. The exams must be taken in order, and candidates must pass test LX0-103 before attempting LX0-104. In 2018, CompTIA began testing a new beta test (XK1-004). The beta test offering ended October 22, 2018. New exams generally follow beta test tests so interested candidates should check the Linux+ web page for updates.

CompTIA Cloud+

As the cloud computing market continues to grow by leaps and bounds, the CompTIA Cloud+ certification has been keeping pace. This certification targets IT professionals with two to three years of experience in storage, networking or data center administration. A single exam, CV0-002, is required. It tests candidates’ knowledge of cloud technologies, hybrid and multicloud solutions, cloud markets, and incorporating cloud-based technology solutions into system operations.

CompTIA Server+

CompTIA Server+ aims at server administrators with 18 to 24 months of experience with server hardware and software technologies, and the A+ certification is recommended. The Server+ credential is recommended or required by HP, Intel and Lenovo for their server technicians. It is also recognized by Microsoft and the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD). A single exam, SK0-004, is required to achieve this credential.

CompTIA Cybersecurity Certifications

CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+)

As cybercrime increases, the requirement for highly skilled information security analysts will continue to increase as well. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports anticipated growth of 28 percent for information security analysts between 2016 and 2026, the fastest rate of growth for all occupations. One of the newer additions to the CompTIA certification portfolio is the Cybersecurity Analyst (CySA+) certification. The CySA+ credential is specifically designed to meet the ever-growing need for experienced, qualified information security analysts.

CySA+ credential holders are well versed in the use of system threat-detection tools, as well as the use of data and behavioral analytics to secure applications and systems from risks, threats and other vulnerabilities. CySA+ certification holders are not only able to monitor network behavior, but analyze results and create solutions to better protect against advanced persistent threats (APTs), intrusions, malware and the like.

CompTIA describes CySA+ as a bridge cert between the Security+ credential (requiring two years’ experience) and the master-level Advanced Security Practitioner Certification (CASP), which requires 10 years of experience. To earn a CySA+, candidates must pass a performance-based exam.

CompTIA Advanced Security Practitioner+ (CASP+)

While CompTIA no longer uses the “master” designation, the highly sought-after CASP+ certification is most certainly a master-level credential. Targeting practitioners, CASP is the only performance-based, hands-on certification currently available from CompTIA. This certification is designed for seasoned IT security professionals who plan, design and implement security solutions in an enterprise environment.

Although this certification doesn’t impose any explicit prerequisites, it’s not a bad idea to earn the Network+ and Security+ certifications before tackling the CASP exam. You should also have 10 years of IT administration experience plus a minimum of five years of technical security experience (thus securing this certification’s place as a “master” credential).

Booz Allen Hamilton, Network Solutions and Verizon Connect, among other companies, require CASP+ certification for certain positions. The U.S. Army and U.S. Navy also accept CASP+ as an industry-based certification required by employees and contractors who perform IT work in DoD data centers. The CASP+ certification requires that candidates pass the CAS-003 exam, which consists of 90 multiple-choice and performance-based questions.

CompTIA PenTest+

The latest additional to the CompTIA certification family is the CompTIA PenTest+. An intermediate-level credential, PenTest+ is designed to complement the CySA+. While CySA+ is defensive in nature (focusing on threat detection and response), the PenTest+ credential is offensive, focusing on using penetration testing to identify and manage network vulnerabilities across multiple spectra.

There are no mandatory prerequisites, but the Network+ and Security+ (or equivalent skills) are highly recommended, along with a minimum of two years of information security experience. Candidates pursuing the cybersecurity career path may take the PenTest+ or CySA+ credential in any order.

The test was released in July 2018, and is focused on communicating and reporting results, analyzing data, conducting penetration testing and scanning, and planning assessments. The test also tests a candidate’s knowledge of legal and compliance requirements.

Additional Professional Certifications

CompTIA Project+

The CompTIA Project+ certification focuses exclusively on project management and is ideal for project managers who are familiar with project lifecycles from planning to completion, who can finish a project on time and under budget. Project managers interested in this certification should have at least one year of project management experience overseeing small- to medium-sized projects. The Project+ credential requires that candidates pass a multiple-choice exam, PK0-004.

CompTIA Cloud Essentials

The CompTIA Cloud Essentials certification is geared toward individuals who understand the business aspects of cloud computing and how to move from in-house to cloud storage. In addition, they should be familiar with the impacts, risks and consequences of implementing a cloud-based solution. A single test is required to earn the credential.


The CompTIA Certified Technical Trainer (CTT+) certification is perfect for anyone interested in technical training. It covers instructor skills, such as preparation, presentation, communication, facilitation and evaluation, in vendor-neutral fashion. Adobe, Cisco, Dell, IBM, Microsoft and Ricoh all recommend CTT+ to their trainers and accept it in lieu of their own in-house trainer certifications.

Two exams are required for the CTT+ credential: CompTIA CTT+ Essentials (TK0-201) and either CTT+ Classroom Performance Trainer (TK0-202) or CTT+ Virtual Classroom Trainer (TK0-203).

The CTT+ Classroom Performance Trainer and CTT+ Virtual Classroom Trainer are performance-based exams. In this case, you must submit a video or recording of your classroom (or virtual classroom sessions), and complete a form that documents your training preparation, delivery and student evaluations.

In addition to certification levels, CompTIA groups its certifications into several career paths:

  • Information security
  • Network and cloud technologies
  • Hardware, services and infrastructure
  • IT management and strategy
  • Web and mobile
  • Software development
  • Training
  • Office productivity

The CompTIA Certifications page lets you pick a certification level and/or a career path and then returns a list of certifications to focus on. For example, one of the most popular career paths in IT is network administration. CompTIA’s Network and Cloud Technologies career path offers numerous certifications that can help you advance your network administration career, such as IT Fundamentals+, A+ and Network+ (Core certs), along with Cloud+ and Linux+ (Infrastructure certifications) and Cloud Essentials.

Those interested in network security (one of the fastest growing fields in IT) should consider the certifications in CompTIA’s Information Security career path. This includes all four of the Core credentials (IT Fundamentals, A+, Network+ and Security+) along with all cybersecurity certifications (CySA+, PenTest+ and CASP+).

CompTIA provides a comprehensive IT certification roadmap that encompasses certifications from CompTIA as well as a variety of other organizations, including Cisco, EC-Council, Microsoft, (ISC)2, ISACA, Mile2 and more.

Because CompTIA credentials do not focus on a single skill (such as networking or virtualization), CompTIA credential holders may find themselves in a variety of job roles depending on their experience, skill levels and areas of interest. Here are just a few of the possible careers that CompTIA credential holders may find themselves engaged in:

  • A+: Typically, A+ credential holders find work in support roles, such as support administrators, support technicians or support specialists.
  • Network+: Network+ professionals primarily work in network-related roles, such as network analysts, administrators or support specialists. Credential holders may also work as network engineers, field technicians or network help desk technicians.
  • CySA+ Security Analyst: Common roles for professionals interested in cybersecurity, information security and risk analysis may engage in roles that include security engineers, cybersecurity analysts or specialists, threat or vulnerability analysts, or analysts for security operations centers (SOCs).
  • Security+: Security spans a variety of jobs, such as network, system or security administrators, security managers, certified or administrators, and security consultants.
  • Server+: Roles for server professionals include storage and server administrators, as well as server support or IT/server technicians.
  • Linux+: Linux professionals often work in roles such as Linux database administrators, network administrators or web administrators.
  • Cloud+/Cloud Essentials: Cloud+ credential holders typically work as cloud specialists, developers or system and network administrators. Cloud Essentials professionals tend to work in areas related to cloud technical sales or business development.
  • CASP+: Common roles for CASP+ credential holders include cybersecurity specialists, InfoSec specialists, information security professionals and security architects.
  • Project+: Project+ credential holders typically engage in project leadership roles, such as project managers, coordinators and directors, or team leads.

While the examples above are by no means exhaustive, they provide an overview of some available careers. Your career choices are limited only by your interests, imagination and determination to achieve your personal goals.

CompTIA training and resources

CompTIA provides various and extensive training options, including classroom training, study materials and e-learning. A wide range of CompTIA Authorized Training Provider Partners (CAPPs), such as Global Knowledge, Learning Tree International and more, operate all over the world. Classroom and online/e-learning offerings range in cost from $2,000 to $4,000, depending on the particulars. Visit the CompTIA Training page for more details.

CompTIA works with third parties to offer self-study materials (the search tool is available here). Content that has been through a vetting process is branded with the CompTIA Approved Quality Content (CAQC) logo. Other materials that allow you to study at your own pace, such as audio segments, lesson activities and additional resources, are available through the CompTIA Marketplace.

Finally, every CompTIA A+, Linux+, Network+, Server+, Security+ and IT Fundamentals+ certification candidates must check out CertMaster, CompTIA’s online test prep tool. CertMaster helps you determine which courses you know well and those you need to brush up on, and suggests training to help you fill in the gaps.

Tue, 28 Jun 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : HP Unveils Business Notebooks Designed with Precision Engineering

HP today revamped its business notebook PC lineup with new technology aimed at boosting performance and productivity, while offering an enriched and sophisticated industrial design that improves notebook quality and reliability.

The company’s new “FORGE” design framework ensures HP business notebooks embody a timeless construction, with precision-engineered durability features that are designed for maximum reliability and with the environment in mind. Precision aluminum-alloy hinges, cast titanium-alloy display latches and the HP DisplaySafe frame are a few of the design highlights behind the approach.

New products and services include:

HP EliteBook 8460p and 8560p notebook PCs feature an aerospace-inspired HP DuraCase that meets the MIL-STD 810G military-standard testing specifications,(1) enabling it to withstand wear and tear while still sporting an attractive, professional-looking platinum color tone finish. The EliteBook 8460p also provides industry-leading battery life of up to 32 hours.(2)

HP ProBook 6360b6460b and 6560b notebook PCs offer configuration flexibility in areas such as processor, graphics and battery technology. Boasting an all-new 13.3-inch diagonal display option, the ProBook b-series also features a new smudge-resistant and wear-resistant tungsten-colored design.

HP ProBook s-series 4230s, 4330s, 4430s, 4530s and 4730s notebook PCs are available in an array of sizes – from ultra-light to desktop replacement – making them an excellent, affordable choice for small and midsize businesses.

“HP is the market leader in business notebooks and we have raised the bar with a completely revamped line of business-grade notebooks,” said Dan Forlenza, vice president, Business Notebooks, Personal Systems Group, HP. “Our all-metal EliteBooks meet military standards and will surpass customer expectations in durability.”

Rugged, optimized design for premium business performance

Bold, confident and modern, the HP EliteBook 8460p and HP EliteBook 8560p are the culmination of creative design and precision engineering. Starting at only 4.56 pounds and 6.10 pounds, respectively, the HP EliteBook 8460p and 8560p offer 14- and 15.6-inch diagonal high-definition (HD) LED-backlit displays(3) that deliver incredible portability without sacrificing screen legibility.

The EliteBook p-series delivers optimum business performance with second-generation Intel® Core™ i7 quad-core processors and Core i7, i5 and i3 dual-core processors,(4) while offering flexible choices of UMA or high-performance AMD Radeon HD 6470M discrete graphics with responsive performance and rich media capabilities. The notebooks also feature new USB 3.0 ports and a USB 2.0 charging port, in addition to a range of wireless connectivity options, choice of multiple operating systems, and either hard disk drive or solid-state disk drive options.

The HP EliteBook p-series also offers 3-, 6- and 9-cell options for lightweight and extended battery run time, and an HP Long Life Battery option(5) for the highest-achieving notebook battery lifespan on the market. The notebooks also are compatible with the new HP Extended Life Notebook Battery and HP Ultra-Capacity Notebook Battery. With the new HP Ultra-Capacity Notebook battery, the HP EliteBook 8460p can achieve up to 32 hours of battery life.(2)

The new HP EliteBook p-series easily connects to the HP 90W Docking Station or the HP 120W Advanced Docking Station(5) for use with peripherals like a monitor and keyboard, enabling users to have a desktop experience without needing to plug and unplug accessories. In addition, the HP EliteBook p-series offers SRS Premium Sound, which delivers optimized audio settings for voice and multimedia applications.

Smartly designed, productivity-enhancing notebook series

The new HP ProBook 6360bHP ProBook 6460b and HP ProBook 6560b are ideal choices when smart design, ultimate configurability and business-critical attributes are top priorities.

The HP ProBook b-series sports bead-blast aluminum display enclosures, a magnesium-reinforced ABS chassis and a bottom-case drain that helps protect against accidental minor spills on the keyboard. Other new features include an HP DisplaySafe frame for added panel protection, precision display latches for a more secure fit and a spill-resistant keyboard set in a full aluminum deck for a better look and feel.

Available with 13.3-inch (6360b), 14-inch (6460b) and 15.6-inch (6560b) diagonal HD LED backlit displays,(3) the HP ProBook b-series offers a range of processing options, including second-generation Intel Core i7, i5 and i3 dual-core processors or an Intel Celeron® processor.(4) For businesses looking for simple multimedia functionality, the ProBook b-series offers an optional HD webcam(3,5) and features a standard Media Card Reader, SRS Premium Sound, discrete launch buttons and a touchpad on/off button.

Stylish with affordable enhanced security for small businesses

The HP ProBook s-series balances business functionality with style and affordability. Designed with small business needs in mind, the HP ProBook 4230s (12.1-inch diagonal), ProBook 4330s (13.3-inch diagonal), ProBook 4430s (14-inch diagonal), ProBook 4530s (15.6-inch diagonal) and ProBook 4730s (17.3-inch diagonal) are available in a stylish yet durable brushed-aluminum finish in metallic gray color. The HP ProBook s-series offers second-generation Intel Core i7, i5 and i3 processors for high performance and advanced processing speed or an Intel Celeron processor.(4)

Additionally, HP ProBook s-series notebooks are optimized for business and home multimedia usage. The ProBook s-series includes a spill-resistant keyboard set in a full aluminum deck, touchpad with gestures supported, integrated HD webcam(3) with optional dual-array microphones(5) and SRS Premium Sound. The series also includes a choice between Power Express Switchable Graphics(6)and Integrated Graphics, and it offers a productivity suite including USB 3.0, standard media card reader and a fingerprint reader.

HP Professional Innovations

HP is focused on innovations that enhance productivity and simplify how people use technology.

The latest version of HP QuickWeb(7) builds on the premise that users have a need to get online fast – without waiting for long boot times ­– whether they are browsing the web or using applications such as email and conferencing. The latest version of HP QuickWeb now includes web browser, offline email, video conferencing via Skype and multiple widgets such as weather, stocks and social media apps.

The updated HP Connection Manager is a single software application that manages integrated mobile broadband connections, as well as reports the status of Ethernet and Wi-Fi connections. It now supports 3G/4G,(8) Wi-Fi(9) and Ethernet for most networks across Windows® 7, Vista® and XP and has been redesigned to integrate with HP Client Automation. IT managers can now centrally manage and view mobile broadband usage for client machines with HP mobile broadband modules on their networks. Bluetooth® wireless on a user’s mobile phone, paired with face recognition authentication, delivers robust user access to Windows and websites.(10)

HP Power Assistant(11) software extends battery run time while reducing energy consumption through a simple, new user interface. It is an integrated solution that measures and logs reported energy usage by the PC and up to four HP connected monitors (for a total of five screens).(12) Users can now create custom power plans and track energy consumption to meet specific computing needs around the clock.

Pricing and availability(13,14)

The HP EliteBook 8460p and 8560p start at $999 and $1,099, respectively, and are expected to be available in the United States on March 15.

The HP ProBook b-series starts at $799 and is expected to be available in the United States on March 15.

The HP ProBook s-series starts at $579 and is expected to be available in the United States on March 15.

More information about the products, including product specifications and images, is available

More information on HP’s activities for small businesses is available via the @HP_SmallBiz Twitter channel, Small Biz Nation LinkedIn group, HP for Small Business Facebook page and at 367 Addison Avenue.

About HP

HP creates new possibilities for technology to have a meaningful impact on people, businesses, governments and society. The world’s largest technology company, HP brings together a portfolio that spans printing, personal computing, software, services and IT infrastructure to solve customer problems. More information about HP (NYSE: HPQ) is available at

(1) Testing was not intended to demonstrate fitness for U.S. Department of Defense contracts requirements or for military use. Test results are not a guarantee of future performance under these test conditions.

(2) Up to 32 hours requires separately purchased HP BB09 Ultra Extended Life Notebook Battery and customer obtain of the latest Intel graphics driver and HP BIOS. Notebook must be configured with Intel graphics, optional Intel 160 GB SSD drive, HP LED HD Display and requires Windows 7 operating system. Battery life will vary depending on the product model, configuration, loaded applications, features, wireless functionality and power management settings. The maximum capacity of the battery will decrease with time and usage.

(3) HD content required to view HD images.

(4) 64-bit computing on Intel architecture requires a computer system with a processor, chipset, BIOS, operating system, device drivers and applications enabled for Intel 64 architecture. Processors will not operate (including 32-bit operation) without an Intel 64 architecture-enabled BIOS. Performance will vary depending on hardware and software configurations. See for more information. Quad Core is designed to Improve performance of multithreaded software products and hardware-aware multitasking operating systems and may require appropriate operating system software for full benefit. Not all customers or software applications will necessarily benefit from use of this technology. Intel’s numbering is not a measurement of higher performance.

(5) Sold separately or purchased as an optional feature.

(6) Power Express Switchable Graphics requires discrete graphics, planned to be available in May 2011. All s-series (except 4730s) ship with UMA graphics. Because the HP ProBook 4730s comes only with discrete graphics, it will be available after initial production.

(7) HP QuickWeb is accessible when the notebook is off in Windows-based systems. Internet access is required. Timing may vary depending on the system configuration. To enable the feature following the removal of the battery, reboot the notebook prior to subsequent use.

(8) Wireless access point and internet service required. Availability of public wireless access points limited.

(9) Wireless use requires separately purchased service contract. Check with local vendor for coverage area and local availability. Connection and speeds will vary due to location, environment, network conditions and other factors.

(10) Requires Microsoft Windows and mobile phone setup.

(11) Power calculations and cost calculations are estimates. Results will vary based on variables, which include information provided by the user, time PC is in different power states (on, standby, hibernate, off), time PC is on battery or AC, hardware configuration, variable electricity rates and utilities provider. HP advises customers to use information reported by HP Power Assistant for reference only and to validate impact in their environment. Environmental calculations were based on U.S. EPA eGrid 2007 data found at Regional results will vary. Microsoft Windows required.

(12) Requires AMD discrete graphics configuration.

(13) Estimated U.S. street prices. real prices may vary.

(14) Not all models available in all regions.

Fri, 27 May 2022 08:30:00 -0500 text/html
Killexams : 2022 Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance First Drive Review: Exactly as Advertised No result found, try new keyword!The Lucid Air's top-level Grand Touring Performance trim stays true to its name with refined luxury, impressive range and a 1,050-horsepower punch. Mon, 18 Jul 2022 01:00:08 -0500 en-us text/html Killexams : BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic yearsKetan Patel, MD, HP India
Image: Madhu Kapparath

It was a different era till 2019. The contrast, though, gets most glaring in the computing world. The outsiders label the period as BC—Before Covid—which was typically characterised as an excessively sedate period of growth where ‘old desktops’ struggled in ICUs, and ‘young laptops’ crawled like infants. Ketan Patel tells us what was right, and not-so-right, in the PC (personal computer) world till 2019. He begins with the plusses. “HP has always been a credible brand,” contends the managing director of HP India. The brand, he underlines, had a huge credibility, vast presence and great performance. As far as the overall market was concerned, PC happened to be a stable business, India was looked upon as a promising country, and the American brand, which entered India in 1990, occupied pole position till 2018. “The journey was still credible, not incredible,” says Patel. On the global front, though, something incredible happened in 2013. Chinese rival Lenovo toppled computing giant Hewlett-Packard (HP) to take the global crown. Six years later, in 2019, the dynamics in India reflected the global reality: HP ceded the top billing to Lenovo, which managed to grab 32 percent market share. HP came second with 26.5 percent, followed by Dell at a distant 19.8 percent. Interestingly, a loss in market share happened at a time when the overall market was stagnating. Desktops were becoming a thing of the past, and laptops were yet to become a necessity. This was the not-so-great reality about the Indian market, underlines Patel. The culprit to a large extent was mobile. Unlike most of the countries, where PC became the first device of internet, in India, smartphones played the lead role.

Cut to March 2020. Offices shuttered, schools shut down, supply chain got disrupted and life started revolving around PCs. The BC era was forced to make a sudden transition to a PC (post-covid) world where having a laptop became a must to ensure that one had roti, kapda and makaan. HP made the most of the pandemic tailwinds. To meet a sudden spike in demand and bypass the infrastructure gaps, charter planes full of PCs were flown to the master warehouse in Chennai, from where distribution across the country was undertaken. “We went all out to ensure that life for consumers, retailers and enterprise users didn’t get disrupted,” says Patel.

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

Airlifting of PCs was not the only heavy lifting done by HP, though. Two months into the pandemic, the computing biggie rolled out over 100 vans across the top 17 cities. The vehicles, Patel shares, were loaded with computing diagnostic equipment, had technicians wearing PPE kits, and the idea was to be accessible to address the repair and servicing needs of the PC users. The company aggressively beefed up its online presence. And lastly, it was nimble enough to roll out a bunch of product innovations and upgrades to the new needs of the users: Quality of camera went up by several notches, additional software was loaded to ensure that the machine worked round-the-clock, eye-safe screen monitors took care of the long visual hours, and audio software was ramped up to kill the surrounding noise. On the business front, a lot of financing options were rolled out for SMEs. The brand also started diversifying from products to a service company by rolling out workplace solutions for a hybrid world. “We used consumer insights to make life better for them,” says Patel, who joined HP in 2005.

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

There were two ‘incredible’ things, though, that happened simultaneously. Binge watching on mobiles gave way to big screen TVs and, yes, laptops. And demand for gaming PCs skyrocketed. Look at the numbers. In 2018, HP sold 24,978 gaming notebooks from offline channels. The next year, the numbers increased to 45,340. Then came the pandemic. In 2020, HP sold 79,780 units, and the numbers leapfrogged to 1.04 lakh in 2021. For a company which had an estimated under 10 percent of sales coming from online channels till 2019, the numbers grew more than 3x over the next two years, touched a peak of 35 percent and have now settled to around 30 percent. Along with the online uptick, what also expanded was the retail footprint. From 450 exclusive retail stores in 2019, the numbers increased to 600 in 2021. In the first six months of this year, it crossed the 700 mark.

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

The efforts seems to have paid off. HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown in 2020 by grabbing a 28.7 percent market share. Lenovo, which had 21.7 percent in 2020, slipped to the third slot the next year. HP, meanwhile, widened the gap with the second player Dell. Patel, though, reckons that what helped HP reclaim the crown and grow its clout is not only what it did over the last two years. “The brand was always credible,” he says. Staying with the consumers during the hard times, he underlines, made it incredible. “We sold products, but consumers bought trust,” he says, adding that this made a world of difference. Having products that suited all kinds of pockets was also an added edge over rivals. “We had something for everybody, whatever the budget was,” he says.  

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

Industry watchers reckon that HP’s strong presence in all the three categories of PCs—desktops, notebooks and workstations—helped it grow at a faster clip than its rivals. The ability to manage supply well both in the consumer and enterprise segments gave it hefty business during the pandemic years, says Bharath Shenoy, principal analyst (personal computing) at IDC India. Even during the first quarter of 2022, the brand has managed to grow. It shipped over 1.4 million units and continued to lead the overall PC market with a share of 33.8 percent. In fact, HP had its biggest ever consumer quarter in January-March this year as it shipped close to 6.5 lakh units with a share of 33.2 percent. It also had a strong commercial quarter with a share of 34.3 percent. “Strong demand for commercial desktops, a clearance of big backlog orders, and continued demand for its consumer notebooks helped HP clock its biggest quarter ever,” says Shenoy.

Having a strong retail presence and brand stores also helped immensely. Premium devices, which includes gaming laptops, get more traction in offline stores as buyers prefer to touch and feel the device before buying, says Shenoy. Brand stores provided more assurance to the end-users, and staying proactive during the pandemic and aggressively providing consumer support helped it win consumer confidence.

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic years

A flurry of global acquisitions also helped the brand to expand its play and reach. In March, HP bought Poly, a leading global provider of workplace collaboration solutions. Poly, the global computing biggie underlined in its media release, will help drive the growth and scale of HP’s peripherals and workforce solutions businesses. Peripherals represent a $110-billion opportunity, is growing by 9 percent annually and are driven by the need for more immersive experiences. Workforce solutions, meanwhile, represent a $120-billion opportunity and are growing at 8 percent annually. As companies invest in digital services to set up, manage and secure more distributed IT ecosystems, Poly’s devices, software and services, combined with HP’s strengths across compute, device management and security would make the company a formidable player in the hybrid solutions’ world, point out industry experts. Another buyout in June 2021—
Hyper X, the gaming division of Kingston Technology—would help HP drive growth in personal systems business, where gaming and peripherals are attractive segments.

BC TO PC: How HP toppled Lenovo to reclaim the PC crown during the pandemic yearsBack in India, marketing and branding experts reckon that HP’s hyper obsession with customers helped it immensely. From rolling out servicing vans to introducing new features in the products to expanding the retail footprint, the brand stayed with consumers. “It is like Maruti, a trusted brand not only for quality product, but for customer after-sales and service,” says Ashita Aggarwal, marketing professor at SP Jain Institute of Management and Research. During the pandemic, most of the laptop players just wanted to sell. HP, on the other hand, was bundling products with trust. “It did magic,” she adds.

But with a waning pandemic and the offline world—schools, colleges and offices—springing back to life, will HP be able to maintain its dream run? Patel stays optimistic. “Though the growth won’t be as heady as over the last year, it won’t go back to the levels before pandemic,” he smiles. The headroom for growth, he underlines, is still massive. As people upgrade their smartphones and move to laptops, the future is promising. And then there are millions who still don’t have laptops. “As the purchasing power increase, sales would follow the path,” he says. Another short-term challenge, though, might be rising inflation.

Patel, for his part, reckons that the journey from credible to incredible would not be a short one. “We are just getting started,” he says. 

Check out our Monsoon discounts on subscriptions, upto 50% off the website price, free digital access with print. Use coupon code : MON2022P for print and MON2022D for digital. Click here for details.

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Sat, 02 Jul 2022 15:35:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : Siemens and HP Team Up to Advance Additive Manufacturing

Siemens PLM and HP Inc. have created a partnership to advance their 3D printing tools for industrial design and production. Siemens has created an HP-certified additive manufacturing (AM) software module. The module, Siemens NX AM for HP Multi Jet Fusion, is now an extension to Siemens’ solution for additive manufacturing.

Earlier this year, Siemens announced a partnership with Stratasys on 3D print technology. Clearly Siemens wants a major role as 3D printing moves into manufacturing. “To industrialize additive manufacturing technology, we have to become a major vendor in design and manufacturing. We have to manage and distribute 3D print technology in a secure way,” Andreas Saar, VP of manufacturing engineering solutions at Siemens PLM, told Design News. “That’s why we’re intensively investing in it, and that’s why we partner with 3D printing companies. It was clear from the beginning we have to partner with strategic vendors who have the know-how from the technology side.”

The NX AM module will let users develop and manage parts in a single software environment for their HP 3D printing projects. The goal is to avoid costly and time-consuming data conversions and third-party tools while improving design-to-finished-part workflow efficiency. Siemens and HP are also aligning for future technology in order to escape the limitations of traditional manufacturing to produce new products at faster speeds.

Game-Changing Technology

Siemens views additive manufacturing as a technology that will alter the world of design and manufacturing. “This technology will change how products are imagined and designed, and it will change how we tool our factories,” said Saar. “It is having a major impact on how products are designed and manufactured. It’s important that Siemens PLM is heavily involved.”

Saar noted that additive manufacturing has traversed the hurdles that have previously held back 3D printing as a production technology. “In order to bring AM into production, you have to be capable of replacing a previous technology in both time and cost. You have to produce parts in amounts at better or lessor costs, and at greater speed. That’s the advantage of HP’s technology,” he said. “On the plastics side, you can print 30,000 or 40,000 parts cheaper than producing a mold. Also, you can print the same quality. You didn’t have that before. The quality has improved.”

Until recently, 3D printed parts were consider sub-standard in strength. Advances in materials have dramatically changed that equation. “Developments in the materials side is the main difference in part strength,” said Saar. “We’re working with major material vendors to really stabilize the digital package – a combination of material process and printing.”


So far, individual industries are turning to additive manufacturing to solve very different and specific needs. “Each industry has a different focus for additive manufacturing. The goal for aerospace is performance and light-weighting. You can build 3D parts you could not produce before,” said Saar. “This is a major breakthrough in aerospace. You can develop powder combinations to build material recipes that you couldn’t before. On the medical side, the goal is individualization; for consumer products, it’s mass customization.”

Partnership Brings Ease of Use

The Siemens AM software module was designed to let NX users combine design, optimization, simulation, and preparation of print jobs while bringing in the inspection processes for HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D printed parts in a managed environment. Users can load multiple 3D part models into NX, and auto-nest and submit them to an HP 3D printer in a single environment and with a minimum of steps.

Rob Spiegel has covered automation and control for 17 years, 15 of them for Design News. Other courses he has covered include supply chain technology, alternative energy, and cyber security. For 10 years, he was owner and publisher of the food magazine Chile Pepper.

Thu, 07 Jul 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en text/html
Killexams : Four valuable lessons I learned taking a road trip in an electric car No result found, try new keyword!We took one of the market’s least expensive electric cars on a 1,100-mile road trip to get our range anxiety in check. Here's how it went. Sun, 10 Jul 2022 21:00:00 -0500 en-us text/html Killexams : 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum First Test: The Revolution Will Be Quick and Quiet ford f-150-lightning Full Overview


  • Effortless acceleration
  • Impressive handling
  • Authoritative one-pedal driving


  • Bumps and potholes shake the cabin
  • Charging times are unpredictable
  • Long-distance towing is impractical

Remember normcore, the short-lived fad from 2014 when trendsetters ran out of ideas and donned the same blue jeans, khakis, sweats, T-shirts, and plaid button-ups that the rest of us have been wearing for 30 years? The term entered and exited the American lexicon in a single breath, but the idea of trying to stand out by blending in is once again having a moment: The hottest vehicle of 2022 is an electric truck that's practically indistinguishable from America's best-selling new vehicle, the gas-chugging Ford F-Series pickup.

That's the view from the outside, at least. Slide behind the wheel of the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning, though, and the transformation feels as monumental as the idea is simple. When you swap the gas bits for electric parts, a Ford F-150 finally feels like more than a supersized and motorized wheelbarrow. Electrifying this truck has imparted a sense of luxury-car isolation and sport-sedan intensity. One second it's sailing serenely down the freeway, the next it's charging furiously toward triple-digit speeds.

Ford stirred up some 200,000 reservations for the Lightning by touting a $40,000 starting price, up to 320 miles of range, and a 0-60-mph time in the mid-4-second range, but of course you can't have all three of those things in one truck. The cheap model, for example, is the Pro work truck. The version tested here is a top-spec Platinum model, which means it packs the larger battery rated for 300 miles and a heady 580 hp (up from 230 miles and 482 hp in the base truck) at the eye-popping price of $92,669—and that's before accounting for the $940 worth of extras on our test model and any applicable tax rebates or incentives. 

Lightning-Quick Reflexes

The F-150 Lightning's best attributes are the virtues of every EV: It's smooth, it's quiet, and it unleashes a flood of torque with light-switch immediacy. At the test track, the Platinum put down its 775 lb-ft of torque with only a momentary slip of its front tires, blitzing from 0 to 60 mph in 4.0 seconds and pulling relentlessly to its 110-mph speed limiter. That performance makes the modern Lightning more than a second quicker than every F-150 MotorTrend has tested.

It does this despite gaining about 1,400 pounds over a comparable gas F-150, and although we'd normally bristle at the idea of a vehicle getting almost 30 percent heavier, the Lightning is unquestionably better for it. The 131-kWh battery anchors the Platinum with a low center of gravity and balanced weight distribution that presses the General Grabber HTS 60 M+S tires into the pavement with nearly equal pressure. As a result, it can carry speed into a corner much more confidently than a nose-heavy gas truck.

Ford engineers knocked it out of the park when it came to calibrating the braking system, too. The Lightning's one-pedal driving mode slows the truck smoothly and authoritatively all the way to a stop when you lift off the accelerator. And for those who prefer the conventional way of driving, the brake pedal feels so natural most owners will never know there are strings of 1s and 0s translating their inputs into braking forces.  

Big-Truck Vibes

A multilink rear suspension with coil springs replaces the gas F-150's live axle and leaf springs, but the ride quality is still defined by the same jiggles and shudders that plague all pickups built with body-on-frame construction. This is the one area where the Lightning lapses into its agrarian ways. Impacts large and small travel up through the Platinum's 22-inch clodhoppers, along its steel frame, into the aluminum cabin, and into your belly as a regular reminder that you still haven't shed that pandemic weight you put on two years ago. The wrong combination of speed and expansion-joint spacing will also provoke an unpleasant nose-to-tail rocking on the highway. This is normal truck stuff that won't faze current F-150 owners, but anyone trading in a Tesla or a family crossover to ride the Lightning might be surprised that so many vehicle buyers willingly tolerate such abuse on a daily basis.

Your Range May Vary

Hitching a trailer to the Lightning tames some of the busyness, but not for long. We towed travel trailers weighing 3,200, 5,200, and 7,200 pounds at highway speeds and never saw more than 125 miles on a single charge with the lightest camper.

Although the Lightning has ample range for most drivers' daily needs, anyone planning to use the F-150 as a true work truck or even just as the family people hauler needs to understand the reality of the 300-mile range claim. As with all EVs, the Platinum's official range is based on laboratory tests that mimic a combination of city and highway driving. Load up and set out for a cross-country drive or a weekend at the cottage, and you'll likely be stopping sooner than that. MotorTrend's road-trip range test, which measures range at a constant 70 mph, puts the Platinum's real-world reach at 255 miles in ideal conditions.

In MotorTrend testing, the Lightning added 135 miles of range in 30 minutes at a DC fast-charging station, but frustratingly, we couldn't replicate that speed in another half-dozen attempts. That's the unfortunate reality of charging a non-Tesla EV today. Even when the stations work—which isn't a given—you can never predict how much power they'll deliver.

Modernizing the Pickup Truck

The interior is an attractive and comfortable place to spend time, even if it doesn't match the price tag. The Platinum bolsters its tech cred with a 15.5-inch touchscreen and a truly hands-free highway driving system. The former devotes its real estate to function over form with simple graphics and large buttons while the latter still can't match GM's best-in-the-business Super Cruise. Ford's BlueCruise occasionally ping-pongs the truck between the left and right lane markers and is prone to turning into sweeping curves late, dialing in too much steering, then bleating for the driver to intervene as it crosses the inside lane line.

Inside and out, the Lightning is refreshingly gimmick-free, save for the $345 Max Recline driver and passenger seats, which seem more like a satirical commentary on the sorry state of American public charging infrastructure than a feature anyone who doesn't spend 12 hours a day in their truck would actually want to use. When laid flat, they leave an uncomfortable hump under your lower back, and there's nowhere to elevate your legs. But hey, if you find yourself waiting for a charge …

The EV Has Arrived

The F-150 Lightning lands in the automotive mainstream right as other automakers are finding traction with EVs that are anything but ordinary. Hyundai's Ioniq 5 looks like it drove off a 1980s sci-fi film set, and Rivian has designed the friendliest pickup since the brains at Pixar dreamed up Tow Mater, but it's the success of the F-150 Lightning's basic-box styling that proves electric cars aren't a passing fad. (Ford planning electric Maverick and Ranger Lightning models is another point in that column.) If Ford could deliver its entire backlog of orders in a single year—which it definitely cannot—the Lightning would be the fifth most popular vehicle in this country. At this point, Americans aren't waiting for EV technology to mature or the price to come down. They're simply waiting for the EVs they want to be built.

Looks good! More details?
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Platinum Specifications  
BASE PRICE $92,669
VEHICLE LAYOUT Front and rear-motor, AWD, 5-pass, 4-door truck
MOTOR TYPE Permanent-magnet electric
POWER (SAE NET) 580 hp
TORQUE (SAE NET) 775 lb-ft
TRANSMISSIONS 1-speed automatic
CURB WEIGHT (F/R DIST) 6,900 lb (50/50%)
WHEELBASE 145.5 in
LENGTH x WIDTH x HEIGHT 232.7 x 80.0 x 78.3 in
0-60 MPH 4.0 sec
QUARTER MILE 12.7 sec @ 105.9 mph
BRAKING, 60-0 MPH 130 ft
Fri, 15 Jul 2022 02:42:00 -0500 en text/html
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