Zombies in Arizona, Killer Bots on the Moon, eSports in Boston…

first_imgDell Brings a Universe of Experiences to PAX East and Best Buy StoresSure, colonial Boston was one hub of the American Revolution, but in a few days, it will be Dell with our Alienware and Inspiron Gaming systems leading the way as PAX East takes over the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center, from March 10-12.While early March is still chilly in Boston, We’re bringing the hottest products to not one, but two booths so fans can check out the latest innovation from both Alienware as well as Dell’s new Inspiron Gaming line, which offers gaming systems for the demographic who loves to game and wants to game well, but is more conservative in how much they can invest.The booths at PAX East will feature industry-leading desktops and laptops built specifically for 4K gaming, virtual reality and the fiercest demands of the latest PC games.Alienware (Booth #13043) What’s the best way to test our Alienware rigs? How about by playing four extraordinary mixed reality experiences at our booth:John Wick Chronicles – Become the legendary assassin himself in two different VR experiences, and play with his best-known weapons, in this recently released first-person-shooter where you explore the iconic Continental Hotel and must assassinate targets that only John Wick could handle. Intense combat gameplay and two game modes, Arcade and Simulation.Arizona Sunshine – Step into the midst of a zombie apocalypse in a blistering hot Arizona, and shoot, snipe and blast your way through hordes of undead, hungry for your brain and close enough to touch. This heart-pounding battle for survival is built and optimized for VR, with motion-controlled weapon handling.ROM: Extraction – Role-play as an Extractor aiming to mine valuable-yet-volatile energy matter orbs from chambers on the moon, and shoot, throw, even slow down time, as you decimate alien-built defensive robots. Addictively fun, this is a fast-paced homage to the classic arcade shooter, featuring an unprecedented style of VR gameplay.With numerous other “walk-up and play” demos on all our desktops and laptops, including Rock Band VR on the Alienware 15, fans can also round-out their Alienware collection with must-have apparel and swag, and participate in a social media scavenger hunt for a chance to win a daily Alienware gift pack. For those who can’t make it to Boston, all three days at PAX East will be streamed live on Alienware TV and Twitch.tv/Alienware.Dell Gaming (Booth #15043)Dell gaming will host its own booth featuring the Inspiron 15 Gaming laptop for your perusal. While Alienware has long focused on high-end rigs for gamers, Dell gaming will be featuring its Inspiron 15 gaming laptop for main stream, price-conscious gamers, delivering strong performance with available 7th Gen Intel Quad Core processors and NVIDIA’s Pascal graphics. At the booth, you can roll up your sleeves and take part in Rocket League competitions for a chance to win prizes throughout the day, a Gears of War 4 augmented reality photo/GIF booth, and a daily raffle for the opportunity to win an Inspiron 15 gaming laptop.All Eyes on eSports – PAX East PanelWhen you’re exhausted from being a PAX warrior, join us in the Albatross theater when Alienware presents “All Eyes on eSports,” on Friday, March 10 at 3 p.m. Industry leaders from Eleague, Team Dignitas and Team Liquid will discuss the growth trends, opportunities and challenges of eSports. Panelists will include Bryan de Zayas, Global Gaming Director, Dell gaming; Steve Arhancet, Co-CEO, Team Liquid; Jonathan Kemp, CEO, Team Dignitas; and Christina Alejandre, General Manager, Eleague. Stick around for a special giveaway exclusive to panel attendees!Alienware Best Buy Experiences NationwideCan’t make it to PAX East? Not a problem. We’re also incredibly excited to announce that, as of today, Best Buy will feature a special Alienware shop-in-shop section in select retail locations nationwide. Showcasing all our systems and the high-end PC gaming experiences that define us, the shop-in-shop will spotlight Alienware 13, 15 and 17 laptops, the Alpha, Aurora and our flagship Area 51 desktops, as well as our Graphics Amplifier. The shop-in-shop will reflect Alienware’s iconic design, with oversized displays, provide hands on demo opportunities and provide a detailed glimpse inside the iconic Area 51, and a brag list of our best features like overclocking, liquid cooling, VR ready and CPU advanced (the Intel Core i7 series). Check out this list and find the Alienware Experience in a Best Buy near you!Keep abreast of all the news! Sign up and become a member of Alienware Arena. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter @Alienware. You can also join us on Alienware.tv, or sign on and watch our Twitch stream for the latest updates and information.last_img read more

Influence is a Synonym for Leadership

first_imgYay! You’re Not Dead!Those were the ever so sweet words Steve Lawton heard on March 9, 2015 as his family celebrated his “Alive Day.” The day exactly a year following his near fatal skiing accident.When Lawton arrived at the hospital the day of his accident after coming out of his skis and plowing straight into a tree at 45mph, he had a Glascow Coma Score of three, the lowest possible score.  To give you an idea, 87 percent of patients arriving at the hospital with a GCS of three either do not survive or remain in a vegetative state permanently.In addition to the head trauma, he had collapsed lungs, eleven total broken bones including 6 broken vertebrae and a myriad of other injuries. The doctors told his wife on the day of the accident that they weren’t sure if he would survive. “He’s as sick as he can be and still be alive, and he is going to get worse before he gets better,” they said.So the fact that one year from that fateful day, Lawton is eating cake and celebrating life with family is nothing short of a miracle. As he puts it, “To simply survive was remarkable—to recover was miraculous.”So how did Lawton beat the odds? In addition to the great care from doctors and the support from his family, friends and co-workers at Dell, he claims that his attitude literally saved his life. His amazing story is an example of how important our attitude is in everything we do. Lawton has always been a glass half full kind of guy. That didn’t change even after his world was turned upside down by a very unforgiving tree. He maintained a positive outlook throughout his recovery. Even though he knew it would involve a lot of misery and hard work, failure simply wasn’t an option.  His undying optimism that led to his recovery is what psychologists called a positivity offset. In Lawton’s case, he had been unknowingly building up his positivity offset throughout his life through a process in the brain called Neuroplasticity.Neuroplasticity is a process where you can reorganize your brain’s neural connections – literally changing the structure and function of your brain, based solely on thoughts.  Ever notice that when you do the same thing over and over, it gets easier? That’s neuroplasticity at work. This process also works for our attitude.  When we choose our thoughts to be positive, when we choose our glasses to be half full; we control and actively participate in the wiring of our brains to be more positive.  Just like the old adage says, “You are what you think.”Attitude reflects leadershipThe added benefit to the positivity offset is it can have a direct effect on the people we live with and work with day in and day out. It’s no mistake that when you enter “Positive Leadership” into Amazon, over 1,600 book titles appear. Effective leaders, like Lawton, continually practice positivity in the workplace. They recognize that attitudes are contagious and the attitude of the company starts with them. By promoting a positive work environment, leaders benefit from a more productive and collaborative workforce.Lawton continues to share his inspirational story and the lessons he learned in his recovery in his talks with organizations across Dell. Because of the great feedback he’s received, he turned it into a book: Head First: A Crash Course in Positivity.  In it he tells the story of his recovery and gives eight practical ways to increase positivity in your personal and professional life. Here are a couple of those principles.“My story isn’t about my accident at all. It is about my recovery and overcoming obstacles.  It is about attitude and positivity, which provides the foundation of leadership.ShareFocus on what you can controlLawton learned early in his recovery to let go of the things he could not control. He had no control over his doctors, he learned to trust their abilities fully. He had no control over what was happening back at work, he trusted his team to pick up his responsibilities and that when he was ready, his job would be waiting for him.As Lawton remembers, “I was worried Dell was going to forget all about me, give my job away. My manager assured me that there would be plenty of work for me to return to and that I should just focus on getting better.”With that assurance, Lawton was able to focus on what he could control – his recovery and doing it with a relentlessly positive attitude. Once he was able to narrow his focus to what he did have control over, his progress was exponential.Often times leaders are overwhelmed by internal and external factors affecting their teams and businesses. When you feel overwhelmed, break down the situation into three categories:What you control,What you can influence, andWhat is out of your control.If we can’t control it or change it, then why worry about it? That just diverts our energy away from progress. Start by narrowing your focus on the issues you can control and fix, and make an immediate impact.Learn to laugh in the midst of painFive days after Lawton’s accident, in the midst of some pretty grim times in his recovery process, he received a package from a friend. Included was Henrietta, a three foot tall rubber chicken wearing a purple polka-dot bikini and too much rouge. Henrietta quickly became a source of smiles and laughter, lessening the fear and angst of Lawton’s visitors as it was near impossible not to be distracted by the giant rubber chicken in the room.Using humor as a detractor from pain dates back to surgeons of the 13th century. Studies have proven that laughter really is the best medicine as it can relax muscles throughout the body, balance blood pressure, improve mental functions (i.e., alertness, memory, creativity), reduce stress, and strengthen social bonds as well as a host of other beneficial results.Understanding the power laughter can have on the healing process and the mindset, Lawton to this day uses laughter in his meetings at Dell:“I have found there is a marked difference in the productivity of meetings that start on a positive note. We still talk about the problems we face, but the tone of the conversation is much more productive, and there is increased collaboration focused on solving the problems.”Know when and where to push yourself and othersFour months after Lawton’s accident he returned to Dell part-time with a newfound appreciation for positivity.“I was literally giddy to go back to work, I can guarantee I was the happiest person at Dell that day. It was such a milestone for me in my recovery,” he shares.However, Lawton couldn’t help but be a little anxious. Was he going to be able to keep up? Was he as sharp as he used to be? He didn’t want to ruin his professional brand that he had spent years establishing.As Lawton remembers, “My leaders were patient with me as I eased back into work. They respected my limitations and let me manage my hours and workload. I will always be grateful to have been working for Dell when the accident happened. I know that the environment and leaders at Dell made my transition to work not only possible, but also the best it could be.”Had Lawton’s leadership team set unrealistic expectations on his recovery and return to work, he might not have made the full recovery he did. He was given the full support and the control to manage his workload and hours, setting him on a course for a successful transition back.By supporting and encouraging, we get much more production out of our teams. If pushed too hard, people have the tendency to push back or flee. The key is to find that perfect balance between driving our teams to their full capabilities and providing autonomy for them manage their own progress.Learn from your strugglesSometimes things don’t go right. In those low times, it is more important than ever to step back and evaluate the situation. Don’t get consumed by “Why me?” Recognize those obstacles for what they are and formulate a strategy to overcome. By keeping a positive attitude, you are less likely to fall into self-pity mode.Lawton relates this mindset to a bobber. The goal is to keep your bobber floating on the surface. If your bobber is pulled under, recognize that challenge as a learning and growing opportunity for yourself. Acknowledge it, learn from it, and then use your practice in positivity to lift your bobber and your attitude back to the surface. As Lawton puts it, “through neuroplasticity, you can increase the buoyancy force of your bobber…you can increase your bobber’s potential so that when you inevitably experience a challenge, you can overcome it.”If leaders allow themselves to be pulled under by unfortunate circumstances, they will pull their team down with them. The chain reaction can be a kiss of death for any forward progress. As Steve has proven, your attitude directly affects your outcomes and directly affects those around you. So why not take the high road, lead with positivity, keep your bobber and those bobbers around you afloat.Mahatma Gandhi eloquently stated:Your thoughts become your words,Your words become your actions,Your actions become your habits,Your habits become your values,Your values become your destiny.To learn more about Steve Lawton or request a speaking engagement, visit www.stevehlawton.comlast_img read more

The Case for Keeping Our Waters Plastic-Free

first_imgIntroduction – the declining health of our oceanBy Adrian Grenier, actor, entrepreneur and Dell social good advocateThe ocean is a common pool resource, which means it is owned by all yet its destruction belongs to no one. But we are not free from blame or from consequence. No, the destruction of our ocean means the destruction of our own humanity.https://youtu.be/hgieHvpD4EMThe global ocean crisis is concerning, but it also presents an opportunity for businesses to rethink their practices. While our man-made weapons of ocean destruction are varied, there is one weapon that we as consumers and business leaders wield power over every day. That weapon is plastic.I firmly believe that companies have a responsibility to take ownership over the full lifecycle of their plastic products so they never see their name wash up on the beach against the feet of children in countries worlds over. If more business leaders commit to holding themselves accountable and challenge one another, together we will build a more resilient and more profitable global ocean.Turning ocean plastics into a valuable resourcePlastics are the workhorse material of the modern economy, but they are also likely to be used just once and then discarded. In places that lack recycling infrastructure, the plastic eventually makes its way to our ocean. As floating trash, plastic photodegrades into toxic micro plastic, noxious particles that will outlast marine life for centuries and eventually contaminate further up the food chain.As Adrian Grenier notes, the scale of the problem is almost inconceivable. Each year, at least eight million tons of plastics find their way into the ocean. Our team at Dell has become incredibly passionate about the issue. As we’ve spent time researching and experimenting over the last two years, we think we have a scalable solution to put this material to use. This spring we switched to recycled ocean plastics in our packaging, a first for our industry. And we believe, that with sufficient intervention and collaboration across sectors, we can stem the plastic tide.This week, Dell and Grenier are participating in the United Nations’ Ocean Conference. We are making a public commitment to UN Sustainable Development Goal 14. The commitment is to scale our use of ocean plastic and to open source our supply chain model to encourage broad usage.Speaking candidly, we don’t care if no one remembers who shipped the first ocean plastics packaging – only that there was a 100th, 1,000th or 10,000th company to do so. We will only make a real difference if other companies join the cause to reduce ocean plastics.Scaling solutions through open collaboration No company, country, non-governmental organization or individual can fix this issue alone. We will have to work together to find the resources and invest in the solutions that can bring the ocean plastics back into the economy. As such, we’re openly looking for committed partners to join us to help define a socially and environmentally sound supply chain that reduces ocean bound plastic pollution at scale while meeting the requirements of the business community.We are all stakeholders in the health of our ocean. If more business leaders commit to holding themselves accountable, and challenge one another, together we can reverse the plastic tide and save our oceans. We hope you will join us.Adrian Grenier is an actor, producer, director, musician and sustainability activist. In 2015, he became Dell’s first Social Good Advocate to advance the company’s 2020 Legacy of Good goals.Kevin Brown is the Chief Supply Chain Officer at Dell.  Together they are trying to improve ocean health and find innovative new sustainable solutions to our everyday supply chain needs.last_img read more

Is Dual-Socket Server Performance Possible in a Single-Socket Server? Gartner Says Yes.

first_imgImagine you are a small cafe owner who brews 20 gallons of tea every day for your customers. Your cafe has recently seen an influx of business, so you are going to invest in some new pots. Would you choose to buy a 100-gallon pot for your 20-gallon tea needs? Probably not. You would most likely purchase a 30 or 50-gallon pot that would not only help you grow, but would also be cheaper.The same goes for IT. In many cases, businesses often purchase dual-socket servers without thinking about the workload requirement. Why should you spend more money for capacity that will be underutilized?According to a Gartner analysis, “By 2021, dedicated x86 single-socket servers will be able to address 80% of the workloads in use in enterprise data centers, up from 20% in 2018”. The common cause is the limitations on memory and input/output (I/O) capacity of individual CPUs. To ensure applications run effectively, businesses are forced to over purchase processing capacity. On older CPU generations, it often requires two CPUs to meet the core counts and the memory requirements.With advances in processor technology, a single-socket server can achieve the right performance for the right price. This is one of the reasons why we believe Gartner recommends using a dedicated single-socket server for specific workloads.The EPYC™ CPU from AMD, for example, delivers greatly increased CPU core count, large memory capacity, and 128 PCIe lanes for bandwidth. Prior to the introduction of this architecture, users would have had to purchase two CPUs to gain these capabilities.Budget is always limited, but don’t compromise performance. The Dell EMC PowerEdge R6415 is designed with customers in mind for two simple reasons. Boost CPU Utilization with Lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).The Dell EMC PowerEdge R6415 is equipped with one AMD EPYC processor with up to 32 cores. It can easily process more workloads faster than your old dual-socket system.Besides saving on the CPU cost, you will also accrue savings from reductions in heat sinks, fans and other related commodities.The potential savings on software license and subscription fees can be substantial. Take VMware vSan as an example, the licensing cost of a single-socket server compared to a dual socket server can save you up to $11,760 per socket, per node.[1] Faster memory and increased capacity. The Dell EMC PowerEdge R6415 can support up to 16 DIMMs and up to 10 NVMe drives. It reduces latency and helps fully utilize the high CPU core counts. This enables your organization to process more workloads faster.ConclusionThe new Dell EMC PowerEdge single-socket servers aim to provide a cost-effective solution for users to simplify their IT, improve productivity and increase efficiency.Dell EMC has a full portfolio of single-socket servers to meet your needs. Visit PowerEdge Servers on the Dell EMC website to learn more about the full portfolio, including Intel-based single-socket servers and their different form factors (in both tower, and rack form factors).Contact a Dell EMC business advisor today to find out how our single-socket platforms can help you boost your IT efficiency.[1] Tony Harvey, “Use Single-Socket Servers to Reduce Costs in the Data Center”, December 5thlast_img read more

Creating Human-Centered Technology Experiences to Boost Productivity

first_imgFolks have a lot of feelings about technology this year. Since March, it’s been a binding force as we reshape how we work. We face video conferencing fatigue, dropped connections, and the missed human contact that we individually and collectively need.With technology experiences in mind, we began a study at the beginning of this year, when work was still a physical place we went. Our first-ever Brain on Tech study captures the relationship between technology, our productivity at work and how we feel.So how do you measure the impact of technology on people? With technology, of course! This first-ever neuroscientific research experiment by Dell used brain sensing headsets to monitor the brainwaves of participants. By monitoring activity and responses to specific situations, we could measure how technology affects our ability to work and its impact on our overall well-being.Insights from the study show where companies can take immediate action to help employees be more effective – that’s what I call happy and productive – and reduce employee burn out. From planning employee onboarding with HR, to IT saving the day in emergent situations – our customers work hard to get the right experiences to their people, and we want to help with that.Be Effective at WorkToday employees navigate multiple places of work, with different experiences and protocols according to their location and connectivity. In these situations, failing technology can quickly escalate a stressful situation, especially without easy face-to-face access to IT. Our research revealed:Having challenging technology was more than twice as stressful as using good tech to achieve an equivalent task. The increased stress level was even higher than an unwilling person being asked to sing an unfamiliar song in public.However, the study also discovered significant decreases in stress once participants received and used better functioning technology.It seems obvious that good is good and bad is bad, but when you’re making choices about technology, there are very specific things that haunt employees on an ongoing basis. These include password changes, system lockouts and network connectivity. Unifying the end-user experience can help. Centralized reporting and administration across a variety of devices – corporate and user owned – can help.“…when you’re making choices about technology, there are very specific things that haunt employees on an ongoing basis”ShareAt Dell, we do this by delivering solutions that work best in mixed ecosystems and enable secure and productive work from anywhere. Our approach to employee-centric IT begins with Workforce Persona Consulting Services, where we match employees with stress-free devices, peripherals, apps and experiences that best fit their roles and workstyles. With Dell Technologies Unified Workspace, IT managers can deploy, secure, manage and support those devices regardless of where the employee chooses to work. We can provision devices and deliver new hardware right to an employee’s door, providing them with a seamless technology experience before they even power up.Even Little Experiences MatterHigh and low points in technology use have an extended impact on how employees feel.In Brain on Tech, we studied the password log-in experience to gauge the specific impact of the universal “I cannot log in and work” experience. What we found:Password log-in malfunctions to access the computer under time pressure increased stress by 31 percent within five seconds. This stress seemed to carry over into tasks that the user performed afterwards, preventing users from calming down.How do you keep it simple with passwords? To ensure employees have seamless and frictionless experiences during log-in attempts, Dell created Express Sign-In, a feature that will lock your device when you’re away from the computer, and then unlock it automatically when you come back to it – all using biometric technology. Marry that to contextual access and simplified password resets via Dell Technologies Unified Workspace, and your end-user computing experience just got a whole lot more end-user friendly.Stay Fresh to Ensure the BestAn age-old deliberation among IT folks is Total Cost of Ownership (TCO). We know today that increased management and security capabilities help IT make the case for refreshing hardware more often than not; but how do you quantify employee productivity and happiness?Companies that invest and provide good technology to their workforces reap benefits that give them a competitive edge. This marriage of productivity and happiness can be yielded via good technology. The Brain on Tech research revealed:Another word about security: Beyond the impact it has on employees, outdated technology is more vulnerable to cyberattacks. We recommend businesses avoid extending the use of technology (hardware/software) beyond a three-year lifecycle to keep up with the rate of innovation, which is consistently providing faster, more secure devices. Businesses can also guard against silent attacks at the BIOS level with Dell SafeBIOS.Intelligence: “Thanks, I didn’t know I needed that.”Do you want to give your end users more options, or do you want to solve problems for them that they didn’t know were solvable? In today’s multitasking world, PCs are filled with applications and software that enable employees to triple-task between responding to emails, working on a project and communicating with colleagues and clients. Failures in the midst of one’s workflow can substantially impact employee performance and attitude.Have you ever freaked out over a lost file? The thought of losing work gives me an elevated heart rate as I type. The pain is real, put into numbers via Our Brain on Tech measurements. For example, employees that suffered a loss of spreadsheet data experienced a 17 percent increase in stress levels in just 8 seconds.In response to the universal problem of balancing application and device performance, Dell created Dell Optimizer, a built-in, AI-based optimization software that learns and responds to the way employees work. Dell Optimizer is designed to automatically improve application performance, battery run time and audio settings in the background — so employees have a seamless experience with fewer disruptions.And continuing in the realm of things that automatically make technology better, Dell also has SupportAssist, our AI-based automated and predictive support technology. SupportAssist can monitor and repair your fleet, proactively alerting you and Dell if an issue is detected so that the resolution processes can begin.Every day we focus on delivering technology for humans, and Our Brain on Tech research gives us new ways of looking at the benefits of improved experiences for you and your people. For our team at Dell, we’ll continue upping our game when it comes to technology experiences and innovations. They matter more than ever before. The Experiment MethodologyIn early 2020, Dell and EMOTIV developed a custom experiment to measure the reactions of users of various ages and computer literacy levels as they completed cognitively challenging tasks under time using both good and bad PC technology. EMOTIV’s EPOC+ wireless Brainwear® headsets were used to collect participants’ brain data in a work environment. Levels of stress, focus, excitement and frustration were assessed in real-time leveraging EMOTIV’s proprietary machine learning algorithms.EMOTIV researchers studied adult users representative of a modern workforce, including mixed gender, ages, computer literacy and familiarity with computerized workplaces. Participants in a work environment were required to complete cognitively challenging tasks under time pressure with the prospect of a reward tied to the level of completion of the tasks.Two conditions were tested in a block design using similar task loads. In the “Bad Computer” experimental condition, users were provided with a unreliable laptop with planted bugs, while during condition “Good Computer”, users were provided with high-performing computers and screens which streamlined the user experience.EMOTIV also recorded brain activity during various baseline, rest and recovery control conditions and provided happy and stressful videos in order to benchmark responses against known experiences and to measure recovery times.***Research participants used identical Dell Latitude systems and accessories; “bad tech” users had bugs introduced which replicate the common system and software failures. These failures included insufficient bandwidth, memory, security failure, OS update failure. All research participants completed a series of including drafting and sending emails, creating documents and spreadsheets, connecting to wireless networks, changing passwords, configuring their SSO and attending virtual meetings.last_img read more

Walgreens taps Starbucks exec Brewer as its new CEO

first_imgWalgreens has tapped Starbucks executive Roz Brewer as its new CEO, which will make her the only Black woman leading a Fortune 500 company. Brewer will take over as Walgreens CEO on March 15 after a little more than three years as Starbucks’ chief operating officer. Brewer succeeds Stefano Pessina, who will transition to executive chairman of Walgreens’ board. Pessina praised Brewer’s expertise in operations, customer relations, talent development and digital innovation. Brewer is also the former president and CEO of Sam’s Club.last_img read more