Saturday, April 14, 2012


Prawn Fried Rice

Prawn fried rice is a very popular dish found on the menus of all chinese restaurants and takeaways - Special fried rice. this recipe doesn't include eggs or pork;insted it contains prawns and an assortment of vegetables


4 cups of cooked (cold) rice (long grain variety)
1/4 cup spring onions, finely chopped
1 cup finely chopped vegetables (carrots, beans and capsicum)
1 cup sweet and sour prawn stir fry (recipe above)
1 tsp vinegar
pepper pwd as required
salt as required
1 1/2 tbsps sesame oil or peanut oil

Prawn Fried Rice Making Procedure:
  1. 1 Heat sesame oil in a large wok and once the oil is piping hot, add the spring onions and stir fry for 1 mt on high.
  2. 2 Add the rest of the vegetables and toss them on high heat for 3-4 mts.
  3. 3 Add salt and pepper pwd combine. Add the cooked prawns and toss. Cook on high for a mt. Add the cooked cold rice and combine well. Spread it all over the pan and leave on medium high for a mt. Combine again, spread out and leave on medium high for another mt.
  4. 4 Add vinegar and toss all the contents on high heat for a few seconds. Turn off flame. Garnish with chopped spring onion greens and serve hot.

Beat those wrinkles in 30 minutes!

Wrinkles are less noticeable after 30 minutes in a room with 70% relative humidity (RH) than in a room with 40% RH, reports a Japanese study


So on a dry day, if your skin feels dull, spend a few minutes before the steam inhaler.


Another study indicates that oxygen can help fight wrinkles by reducing tissue damage by UVB radiation


Seen how we glow on a trip to the hills or in pristine natural surroundings?


If you cannot escape the city, your best sun protection method is to slather on sunscreen.

Healthy Foods that Keep You Full

healthy foods that keep you full

Soups for Midday Meals: Some cultures suggest that soups are appetizers. However, this doesn’t need to be true if you consume more than average amount of soup and that too, the natural variety, consisting of lots of vegetables. Eating or sipping upon soup induces the feeling parallel to having a two-course meal. This helps the brain in perceiving that you are going through a proper meal. Around two bowls of vegetable soup to which some spicy condiments have been added are perfect for keeping you satiated for at least a few hours. The water content of soups ensures that you feel a bit heavy. However, this isn't the kind of heaviness associated with overeating. Fiber-rich soups, like those made from spinach, are particularly good for this cause.

healthy foods that keep you full

Whole Grains for All Major Meals: Eating whole wheat or multi-grain bread or rotis is recommended since complex carbohydrates release glucose slowly. Slower release of glucose means that sugar levels are kept at a constant. Since there are no spikes or dips in sugar levels, there is lesser chance of being hit by a sugar craving. Further, whole grains are among the best sources of various types of Vitamin B.

healthy foods that keep you full

Citrus Fruits: Citrus fruits, like lemon, guavas and grapes, are rich in vitamin C and fiber. While fiber helps to keep the intestines busy for a longer time, the high concentration of vitamin C is used for the body’s fat burning processes. Vitamin C is also required for stimulating formation of critical amino acids like Carnitine. This tends to fasten the body’s metabolism, ensuring that metabolic processes are kept busy, helping to overcome the hunger pangs. The high water content in most citrus fruits induces that typical, feeling of being quenched, which delays feeling hungry, again.

healthy foods that keep you full

Low-Fat Yogurt Anytime of the Day:Yogurt or the humble Dahi, made from low-fat milk, is the perfect, around-the-clock kind of food. For starters, the low-fat variety too has a certain degree of creaminess to it. This tends to coat your tonsils, inducing the feeling of having eaten something substantial. Yogurt also induces a unique kind of aftertaste that turns-off the temptation to eat something else for some time. Further, yogurt provides the much needed dosage of healthy bacteria for better digestion and calcium for stronger bones.

healthy foods that keep you full

The Anytime Wonder—Oatmeal: Oatmeal is among the most recommended of complex carbohydrate options that helps to keep you fuller without inducing a calorie overload. It can be eaten for breakfast or lunch. It takes the digestive system much longer to break down the complex fiber present within oatmeal. This helps to regulate the insulin levels, keeping you satiated for a longer time. Boiled oatmeal mixed with yogurt is the perfect, low-calorie choice that can keep you fuller for many hours.

healthy foods that keep you full

Eggs for Breakfast: Eggs are the perfect breakfast time. For starters, eggs are loaded with protein which needs a longer time to get fully digested. Two eggs, when eaten in the boiled or omelet form, comprise a healthy breakfast, of course, along with a few slices of whole grain bread. This combination of protein and complex carbohydrates helps to prevent spikes in blood sugar levels and keeps the digestive system engaged for a longer period, preventing you from feeling hungry soon.

healthy foods that keep you full

Green Veggies: Some veggies have a very high concentration of soluble and insoluble fiber along with having a thermic effect. This refers to the overall effort exerted by the body in digesting foods. While proteins have a very high thermic effect, veggies like Spinach too have a high thermic value. When the metabolic processes are busy, trying to digest such foods, the tendency to feel hungry is automatically reduced. Further, more calories are burned in digesting such foods, which means they contribute to your weight-management goals! The idea is here to use Food itself as a tool for eating lesser, burning more calories and remaining healthier

Friday, April 13, 2012

Wavii aims to challenge Facebooks news feed

Engineers who had previously worked for respected tech firms Amazon and Microsoft, have now created a new personalised news stream service that would challenge social networking giant Facebook's 'news feed' feature.

The new service named Wavii, which is offered via the web or as a smartphone app, searches the internet, including tweets, news stories and blogs, to offer a customised feed.

According to The BBC, the new service is likely to compete with Facebook's news feed, prompting speculation that it could become a takeover target.

While Facebook's feed is mainly based on status updates and content shared by users, Wavii highlights what's happening in the world at large by creating personalised news streams based on data taken from across the web.

Adrian Aoun, Wavii's founder and chief executive, said that his service offers a more complete experience.

"Facebook is aggregating all this structured data about your friends, and we are aggregating all this structured data about the world - the other half that Facebook doesn't have," the report quoted him, as saying.

"We are looking at everything and mapping it into story types. We try to look for patterns," he added.

According to the report, Wavii detects users' likes and interests based on their previous Facebook activity and by asking them to select at least 12 topics or people of interest.

These range from celebrities and politicians to business acquisitions and gadgets.

How to secure a wireless network

Just as you don't allow complete strangers to help themselves to your gas, electricity, water, telephone or cable TV for free, by the same token you should also stop freeloaders accessing your wireless network. Why? Well, there are a number of reasons. They could gain access to your private data on your network, simply steal bandwidth thus slowing down your connection, use up your data allowance or they might be using your internet connection for nefarious reasons, such as downloading copyright material.
Likewise, if you connect to an open network, you might be exposing your PC to security risks. To put it bluntly, an open WiFi network is nothing more than another channel for anyone wanting to get access to your precious data.
So while WiFi might be the perfect partner for your iPad, tablet, smartphone or, indeed, computer, you should never lose sight of the fact that WiFi is by default inherently insecure – it's tantamount to dangling a network cable out of your window with a prominent 'Help Yourself' label attached to it.
Unfortunately, the earliest attempt at WiFi security, Wired Equivalent Protocol, or WEP, proved deeply flawed and very easy to hack. WiFi Protected Access (WPA) and in particular WPA2 (which features tough AES encryption) has gone a long way to rectifying this glaring defect. Even so, too many wireless networks (WLANs) remain unprotected and open to intruders.

Larry Page Google+ is really about two experiences

Google CEO Larry Page delivered some updates on Google+ during Thursday’s conference call, saying that over 170 million Google users have now upgraded to Google+, which presumably means that they have activated their Google+ profile.

Page also said that there are two parts to the Google+ experience: The Google+ service, which is available on the web as well as on mobile devices, and the integration of Google+ data into other Google products – something he called the “social spine” of Google. One example he mentioned were app and content recommendations of friends that are shown on Google Play. “You don’t think of that as Google+, it just comes from that infrastructure,” he said. Page added that the company has seen “some impressive growth” for the social networking part of Google+ as well.

China removes 2.10 lakh online posts shuts down 42 websites

China has removed 2.10 lakh online posts and shut down 42 websites as part of a massive crackdown on the country's 300 million-strong microbloggers following coup rumours as a major political scandal rocked the nation. 

An announcement to this effect in state-run media today comes close on the heels of the nation's biggest political crisis after a top leader was sacked from the Communist Party and his wife detained on suspicion of murder. 

"Actions of creating and spreading rumours via the Internet disrupt public order and undermine social stability, and will never be tolerated," Liu Zhengrong, a senior official with the State Internet Information Office ( SIIO), said. 

Such behaviour will be handled seriously and rumourmongers held accountable in accordance with the law, he said, according to state-run Xinhua news agency. 

To stop rumours from being disseminated via microblogging service websites, Liu said both government agencies and the internet service providers should play an appropriate role, while Internet users themselves should remain vigilant against rumours and report them to the authorities in a timely manner. 

The crackdown intensified since last month after rumours floated on the microblog media about an impending coup with post-dated pictures of army tanks moving on the streets of Beijing speculating a factional fighting with the ruling Communist Party. 

Following this, two major Chinese microblogging sites, and, known as Chinese Twitters with about 300 million microbloggers subscribers, suspended comment functions from March 31 to April 3 as punishment. 

Also they have been told to increase supervision of the content and initiate legal proceedings against the rumour- mongers. 

The speculation went viral with the rumours of infighting in the party leadership following action against Bo Xilai, a hardline leader who became famous with his crackdown on mafia in Chongqing city. He was sacked from the party two days ago for indiscipline, and his wife and an orderly held for alleged role in murder of a British national. 

References to his name on the microblogs were reportedly blocked by firewalls.

Facebook lets users take more data home

Facebook on Thursday began letting members of the world's leading online community take more of their pictures, posts, messages and other data home with them. 

Facebook expanded the types of information its approximately 845 million members could download from their personal account histories to include data such as friend requests and IP addresses of computers used to log-in. 

"This feature will be rolling out gradually to all users and more categories of information will be available for download in the future," Facebook said in a message at its Public Policy Europe page. 

The move comes as the California-based Internet star works to reassure regulators, members and advocacy groups concerned about how much privacy and control of personal information people have at Facebook. 

The "Download Your Information" tool was launched in 2010 to allow Facebook members to keep copies of what they share with friends at the social network. 

Facebook is expected to make a much-anticipated debut next month on the technology-heavy NASDAQ exchange. Facebook in February filed to go public and could raise as much as $10 billion in the largest flotation ever by an Internet company on Wall Street. 

Facebook, which is shifting operations to a former Sun Microsystems campus in the California city of Menlo Park, had a reported net income of $668 million last year. 

Revenue nearly doubled to $3.7 billion in 2011, with most of it coming from targeted advertising gleaned from personal information shared by the platform's hundreds of millions of users. 

Facebook's value has been estimated at between $75 billion and $100 billion.

Who is Watching You On Facebook?

There can't be many Internet users who haven't heard of Facebook – the social network site, brainchild of U.S. college student Mark Zuckerberg. But worryingly, it's not just our friends who are keeping up with what we're doing online. Debt collectors, potential employers and even lawyers could be finding out much more than you'd want them to. Here we examine the worrying trends on the social network site and consider how you can take steps to avoid being spied on.
Debt Collector WatchIt seems that debt collectors have caught on to how difficult it is to hide on Facebook. According to MSN Money, debt collectors are infiltrating social network pages, contacting you, your friends and family through the site to force you to pay what you owe.
One debt collection agent, Michelle Dunn, confirms that this is a strategy used by debt collection agencies today. "If you look like a really good-looking girl, a lot of people would accept a friendship even if they don't really know the person," she explains. Luckily the The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, designed to protect consumers against abusive practices by the debt collection industry, does offer you some protection in this area. Although it is not forbidden for collectors to post on your Facebook wall or ask your contacts of your whereabouts, they cannot post about your debt, because that is a serious breach of privacy. Nevertheless, it should be common practice not to accept friend requests from people you don't know, and of course, if you do owe money, in order to avoid being found and potentially harassed on Facebook, you should answer mail or calls or from collection agencies in the first instance. Ignoring the problem will not make it go away.
Job huntingWhen you're applying for a new job, polishing up your resume may not be enough anymore. Rather, you should check what information is out there about you on the web. Facebook profiles are routinely being checked by your future employers. According to a survey carried out by Careerbuilder in 2009, 45% of employers check your social media presence when hiring, and some 35% of employers reported that they have found content on social networking sites that meant they did not hire the candidate. As social media has only grown over the past few years, we can only imagine that this figure would be much higher today.
More than half of the employers questioned said that provocative photos were the biggest factor contributing to a decision not to hire a potential employee, while 44% of employers pinpointed references to drinking and drug use as no-go areas. While this might seem obvious, you can never know what a company might deem "provocative." It seems wise to keep all content absolutely clean, otherwise who knows what job prospects you are thwarting.
Passwords PleaseIn an even more worrying development in Maryland, a man has recently been asked to hand his Facebook login details over to his employee. He was outraged and made a complaint to the American Civil Liberties Union. As a result the updated policy at the Maryland Department of Corrections states that job candidates won't be asked to share their login or password information, but job applicants will be asked to log into Facebook "voluntarily" as an interviewer looks over their shoulders.
Legal SnoopingBeware what you post on the web, because, as a Staten Island woman recently discovered, the legal profession is snooping too. Dorothy McGurk claimed that she couldn't work, rarely left home and didn't socialize because of injuries from a 1996 car accident. The dancer, on disability, had been seeking lifetime alimony of $850 a month from her husband due to this accident. Unfortunately, Facebook revealed that all was not as it seemed, and showed that she was in fact working as a belly dancer. When the Facebook evidence came to light as evidence in court, the alimony was lost.
The Bottom LineUnfortunately, many of us fail to realize that content we post on the Internet is really out there in the public domain. If you do want to continue using Facebook, what can you do to protect yourself from unwanted prying eyes? Be sure you've checked those privacy settings. It is sensible to keep any personal content away from the public eye. Also, be careful what you are making available to your networks. It might seem safe enough to let people who graduated from the same college as you view your profile, but this will include several thousand – if not tens of thousands of – people who you have never met nor know, and who may have ulterior motives when checking out your profile. Keep it clean and professional. Ask yourself: would you want your future employer to read this? If the answer is no, don't post it. There's really nowhere to hide on the world wide web.

3 tips for a healthy marriage

There is no set answer for a healthy and happy marriage and what works best can vary from couple to couple. But there are some basic tips you can follow to improve your relationship on a day to day basis.

Food of love

A big part of many couples' relationships is eating and enjoying food, but your romantic meals for two can be a great opportunity to have a health dose too. Enjoying plenty of fish, vegetables and sensual fruit such as strawberries and passion fruit will keep you both full of vitality. 

It's nice to enjoy indulgent treats now and then with your partner, such as a chocolate fondue or champagne, but don't let your health and figures slide just because you're married.

Back to basics

Simple activities such as going for a walk with your partner or watching an uplifting film take little time and effort but may bring you closer. Going for a romantic walk is not only a great form of exercise but it gives you the chance to talk and bond - it's important to keep up to date with each other's lives and ask questions. 

Even after years of marriage it is still important to make time for a trip to the cinema or a good chat to stay close.


Exercise is the perfect way to bond with your husband or wife while getting fit and having fun. Why not try a dance class such as salsa or Bollywood dance to release some feel good endorphins, while also having one on one time? 

Alternatively, make some time to enjoy your favourite music at home and dance in your own living room. As long as you're moving and having fun with each other that's all that matters.

6 Bad Foods That Are Good For You

bad foods

Alcohol Research suggests that resveratrol--found in small quantities in red wine and grapes--may protect against a range of illnesses including heart disease. But moderate consumption of other types of alcohol, such as beer, may also have health benefits, probably by way of increasing HDL ("good") cholesterol. The key is not to overindulge, according to the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). That's because heavy drinking can damage your liver and heart, contribute to depression, and increase the risk of developing some cancers. So women should have no more than one drink per day, and men should have no more than two. Of course, if you don't drink already, you don't need to start. You can get similar cardiovascular benefits from exercise and a healthy diet, the HSPH notes.

bad foods

White potatoes Don't be afraid of this American favorite. White potatoes are the biggest and most affordable sources of potassium when compared to other vegetables and fruits, finds a 2011 study from the University of Washington (and funded by the United States Potato Board). The skins of these spuds are full of fiber, says Cipullo, so keep them on when you cook. (Baking or steaming are great options.) One more hint: Potatoes are best in their natural state, says Cipullo, so avoid the fatty toppings. If you need to whip them up with something, try skim milk or Greek yogurt

bad foods

Pasta Just makes sure it's a whole-grain variety, says Jessica Shapiro, a registered dietitian at Montefiore Medical Center in New York. Whole grains contain the entire grain kernel, while refined grains have been milled, which improves their shelf life but also strips out nutrients. "You're going to be getting the B vitamins from the whole grains and the fiber from the whole grains," Shapiro explains. Plus, you'll be helping yourself meet federal dietary guidelines, which recommend that at least half of the grains you eat each day are whole.

bad foods

Chocolate Dark chocolate contains antioxidants, and it's been shown in studies to be associated with lower blood pressure and a lower risk of heart disease. Plus, regular chocolate-eaters were shown to be slightly skinnier than those who ate the sweet treat less often, according to 2012 research published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. That study doesn't mean that chocolate consumption can help you lose weight, but it does mean that you shouldn't feel guilty about small indulgences. If you have a healthy diet, eating about 20 grams of chocolate (about half of a regular-size bar) is okay, says Monica Bearden, a registered dietitian and author of Chocolate--A Healthy Passion. And as long as the chocolate is at least 60 percent cocoa, as little as 5 grams (the size of one Hershey's kiss) can be beneficial. "It's so important to eat those foods that you enjoy so you don't feel deprived," Bearden says. Just don't overdo it.

bad foods

Popcorn Yep, this popular snack is good for you. In fact, it contains more healthful antioxidant substances called "polyphenols" than fruits and vegetables, finds 2012 research presented at the American Chemical Society's annual meeting. Just don't pile on the butter or the salt. And be careful with microwave popcorn, as it can pack in trans fats and sodium. "If you buy your own kernels or get your own air popper, you can have a healthy snack," says Cipullo. Try topping popcorn with almonds, which promote fullness.

bad foods
Eggs This breakfast staple gets a bad rap because of the cholesterol content in yolks. But eggs--and yolks in particular--are a good source of protein and vitamins and minerals (such as vitamin A and iron), says Laura Cipullo, a New York-based registered dietitian and certified diabetes educator. Plus, a 2011 study from the University of Alberta found that eggs' antioxidant properties may help prevent cardiovascular disease and cancer. If you're generally healthy, and don't have high cholesterol, there's no need to only eat egg-whites--or to avoid eggs altogether. "My suggestion is always to have one whole egg and then add an egg white," Cipullo says. That way you're getting the nutrient-rich yolk but not overdoing the cholesterol.

6 tricks to stay out of the firing zone


When it comes to layoffs, the proverbial ax has been falling regularly within several corporations, sending frightened employees scurrying to hide. Wouldn't it be nice to know that you don't have to concern yourself with this frightening prospect? Here are six suggestions that may keep you out of the firing zone


1. Be on time.
Few things will infuriate your boss like constant tardiness. Unless you change your residence or office daily, there is no acceptable reason for always being late to work. Plan ahead: if you've been on your job more than a week, then you should be familiar enough with traffic patterns to know your commute's length.
Your boss has heard every excuse in the book, and even if your supervisor feigns understanding, it's only to get you to your desk and back to work as quickly as possible. The guy who is always breaking the copier stands a better chance than you when it's time to decide who to let go

2. Learn another job.
It's an unfortunate fact that many corporations in the throes of restructuring won't think twice about piling additional work on the employees who survive the layoff rounds. So knowing how to fill more than one position in your office can be a surefire way of getting a survivors' edge


3. Be the go-to guru.
In practically every office, there is that one person everyone turns to when something goes wrong. It's nice to know there is at least one person who is particularly adept at solving computer issues at the next desk, especially if getting someone from your IT department to show up is difficult. Or how about developing extraordinary customer-service skills? You'll be the most indispensable person around once your co-workers know that you can calm an out-of-control client.
These are just two examples, but look around and see what may be missing that could make life easier on those you work with, and then make sure they know you're the one person who can fill that gap.


4. Always steer clear of office politics.
Nothing will put a bigger target on your back than being perceived as a troublemaker. It may seem innocent at first. Maybe you were just trying to express your opinion or show support for another employee. The next thing you know, you find yourself embroiled in a position that can't be defended, and suddenly you're the bad guy. You don't have to be a wallflower or anti-social; it's just a good idea to keep work conversations focused on work-related issues if you want to stay out of trouble.


5. Volunteer for the dirty work.
Don't be afraid to take on the assignments others shun. As hard as it may be at the time, jumping in on these projects guarantees that you gain positive recognition. It may be hard to believe, but most of your co-workers want to just get through the week with minimal stress. Don't be one of them. I promise; you'll be so glad you volunteered when your supervisor starts thinning the herd


6. Always produce quality results.
When work needs to wrap up quickly at the end of a hectic work day, quality often suffers. Be the one who invests that extra 30 minutes, an hour or more on an outstanding deliverable to ensure quality, versus speed, is the priority. Your boss, and your customers, will take note of your tenacity and unflappable attention to world-class results.
So, there you have it. Six ways you could drastically improve your staying power in today's workforce jungle. And if you doubt any of these methods, just ask your boss. She just may tell you that adhering to these ideas is how she got her job.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Microsoft to end Windows XP support in 2 years

Microsoft is counting down the days until it is through with the Windows XP operating system for personal computers. 

The US software titan used a blog post to remind the world that in two years it will no longer support the generations-old operating system that people have clung to despite the releases of successors Vista and Windows 7. 

"We want to acknowledge the two-year countdown to the end of Windows XP and Office 2003 support," said Microsoft marketing director Stella Chernyak. 

"Windows XP and Office 2003 were great software releases for their time, but the technology environment has shifted." 

She advised computer users, particularly businesses, to begin "migrating" machines to the latest versions of the programs well before Microsoft puts XP to rest on April 8, 2014

Apple out to kill widespread Macintosh virus

Apple on Tuesday said it is crafting a weapon to vanquish a Flashback virus from Macintosh computers and working to disrupt the command network being used by hackers behind the infections. 

In its first public admission that the malicious software is vexing machines powered by the California company's Macintosh software, Apple said it had patched the weakness exploited by the virus and was now out to kill it. 

"Apple is developing software that will detect and remove the Flashback malware," the firm said in a message in a support blog on its website. 

The malicious software does its dirty work with directions received from computer servers "hosted by malware authors" and Apple is collaborating with Internet service providers to "disable this command and control network." 

The virus took advantage of a weakness in Java programs, according to Apple. Computer security specialists last week warned that more than a half-million Macintosh computers may have been infected with a virus targeting Apple machines. 

Flashback Trojan malware tailored to slip past "Mac" defenses is a variation on viruses typically aimed at personal computers (PCs) powered by Microsoft's Windows operating systems. The infections, spotted "in the wild" by Finland-based computer security firm F-Secure and then quantified by Russian anti-virus program vendor Dr. Web, came as hackers increasingly take aim at Apple computers. 

"All the stuff the bad guys have learned for doing attacks in the PC world is now starting to transition to the Mac world," McAfee Labs director of threat intelligence Dave Marcus told AFP. "Mac has said for a long time that they are not vulnerable to PC malware, which is true; they are vulnerable to Mac malware." 

Dr. Web determined that more than 600,000 Mac computers may be infected with Flashback, which is designed to let hackers steal potentially valuable information such as passwords or financial account numbers. Hackers trick Mac users into downloading the virus by disguising it as an update to Adobe Flash video viewing software

Google unveils a more beautiful Google+

Google +
Google has taken the wrapper off of its redesign of Google+, which the search giant reckons makes the social network easier to use.
In a blog post, Google explained its reasoning behind the redesign, which is all part of Google's change throughout its whole portfolio – a change it hopes offers up more of a seamless experience for its users.
"Today we're introducing a more functional and flexible version of Google+. We think you'll find it easier to use and nicer to look at, but most importantly, it accelerates our efforts to create a simpler, more beautiful Google," said Vic Gundotra, Senior Vice President, Google.
The main changes to the site include a dedicated section to Hangouts, better photo and video integration and a new 'navigation ribbon' on the left-hand side of the screen.

Not just a place to Hangout

"Today's Google+ update extends beyond navigation, the stream and hangouts," said Gundotra,
"For instance: there's a new Explore page that shows what's interesting and trending across the network. And a new profile with much bigger photos. And a new chat list that puts your friends front and center. And a whole lot more."
The updates will be rolling out to all Google+'s 75 million members in the next few days

IBM launches IT maintenance product PureSystems

IBM is taking aim at competitors such as Hewlett Packard Co and Oracle Corp with PureSystems, a new product line that helps companies reduce time and money spent on increasingly complex information technology maintenance. 

Data from both IBM and research firm IDC shows that companies spend upwards of 70 per cent of their IT budgets on simple operations and maintenance, leaving little to invest in innovation. Perhaps more alarmingly, two-thirds of corporate IT projects exceed the allotted budget and are delivered behind schedule. 

"PureSystems will help clients to free up time and money to focus on innovation and the urgent to-do's that many businesses cannot address due to ever rising costs and staffing needs in the traditional data center," IBM said in a statement. 

For example, the company said that the time and effort needed to build, procure and deploy the infrastructure needed for a typical Web application currently takes six months or more. But PureSystems, which includes a number of different offerings and will be available this quarter, could reduce that time by a third. 

"Depending on how large the system and application is, it could take days and weeks to set up, with PureSystems it could take less than a day in some cases," said Ron Adkins, head of IBM's systems and technology group. 

PureSystems was developed through acquisitions and $2 billion in research and development over four years.

Jon Rymer, an analyst at research firm Forrester, said that the launch of PureSystems was "hugely important" to IBM because many of the areas in which the company competes have become commoditized. 

"Their added value is in creating higher-performing products," Rymer said, noting that IBM was taking the infrastructure convergence trend further than its competitors. 

Oracle, HP, Cisco Systems Inc and other top IT vendors have been pushing converged infrastructure, which integrates server, storage, networking and other technologies into a single managed architecture. Ideally, this locks customers in while keeping competitors out. 

"IBM is taking that further by layering Websphere and data centers on it," said Rymer, referring to IBM's Websphere, which is a set of tools that allow customers to create and manage business Websites. 

As an impetus for adoption, IBM said it would buy back servers, including those made by HP and Oracle, from those clients migrating to PureSystems. 

But Rymer said he was not sure if IBM's offer to dispose of customers' existing equipment would take off. 

"We'll see if anybody cares," Rymer said