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Change is hard. NetApp’s Innovation Awards are about recognizing people with the courage to think differently about how IT can drive business. These role models show what is possible, and hopefully they will inspire others to follow.

 

This year, during the 8th annual awards program, we honored organizations from around the globe that are using IT in new and exciting ways no one ever dreamed possible. 

 

Congratulations and thank you to the 7 Innovation Awards winners this year:

Innovators of the YearIowa Workforce Development (USPS); Mercy Healthcare System (Americas); Oxigen Services India (APAC); T-Systems Austria (EMEA)

Efficiency InnovationING Direct

Flexibility InnovationVerizon Communications

Visionary Leadership: Teradata Labs

 

This post was originally published on NetApp 360

 

In the final installment of my reflections on NetApp's 20 years of innovation, I talk about how NetApp continues to evolve to meet the increasingly complex demands of customers. Customers today need an agile infrastructure to meet critical business requirements and huge data needs, and NetApp is prepared to deliver.

 

This post was originally published on NetApp 360

 

In this second installment of a three-part series spotlighting NetApp's 20 years of innovation, I reflect on the evolution of NetApp and unified storage. NetApp led the industry a decade ago in in coining the term "unified storage," but today unified alone is no longer sufficient – and NetApp is once again leading the way forward.

 

This post was originally published on NetApp 360

 

In the first installment of a three-part series, I reflect on NetApp's 20th anniversary and how data has changed over the past two decades. Stay tuned for the next two installments to hear my views on what's beyond Unified Storage and how data continues to evolve.

 

Sometimes a disaster can inspire things that people wouldn’t even consider in normal times. After the earthquake and tsunami last year in Japan, that’s what happened at Softbank, a large telco/Internet provider.

 

Like everyone in Japan, Softbank asked what they could do to help. Companies were shut down, and Softbank realized that virtual desktops could help people get back to work. Japan is not a work-at-home culture, but at this point, public transportation was severely disrupted, and there was no choice. Softbank was one year into a two year project to provide Desktop as a Service (DaaS), and they were far enough along to move fast. Focusing especially on non-profit organizations and the government, they began offering cloud desktops just three days after March 11, when the crisis began.

 

Softbank’s external offering was modeled on an internal DaaS project, and they accelerated that as well. Only one of three business units had converted, but the team reduced the time to create a thousand virtual desktops from a week to a day, and in short order they added 14,000 more. The government had asked all companies to reduce power consumption by 25%, because so many nuclear power plants were shut down, but Softbank managed to cut power at their headquarters by 39%.

 

I freely admit that cloud computing isn’t usually about helping a country get back on its feet after a nationwide disaster, but it is inspiring when it can be used that way, which is why we are highlighting Softbank and their work.

 

Here is a video about Softbank and what they’ve done. Here is a Q&A about Softbank with myself and Ty McConney, who runs our Japanese business. And here is a technical case study.

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