REPOST: Obama Signs Open Data Executive Order: U.S. Government Data To Be Made Freely Available

The Obama Administration recently approved a policy which makes US government data available for public viewing. Reuven Cohen of Forbes discusses the news:

Interesting news out of The White House this this morning announcing an Open Data Executive Order signed by President Obama. Along with the  order is an accompanying Open Data Policy released by the Office of Management and Budget and Office of Science and  Technology Policy. The order states that “going forward, newly generated  government data shall be made freely available in open, machine-readable formats, while  appropriately safeguarding privacy, confidentiality, and security. This requirement will help the  Federal government achieve the goal of making troves of previously inaccessible or unmanageable data easily available to entrepreneurs, innovators, researchers, and others who can use those data to generate new products and services, build businesses, and create jobs.”

“Today’s actions are the latest manifestation of the Obama Administration’s longstanding commitment to releasing and leveraging data in support of enhanced transparency and accountability, improved government services, and a stronger economy. They build on actions such as the Open Government Directive, the Digital Government Strategy, and, most recently, the Open Data Initiatives project, which is bringing the benefits of open data to a wide range of domains including health, energy, education, public safety, finance, and global development. Examples of data that are already being released in machine-readable form across government.”

Along with the Executive Order and Open Data Policy, the Administration announced a series of complementary actions:

A new Data.Gov.  In the months ahead,, the powerful central hub for open government data, will launch new services that include improved visualization, mapping tools, better context to help locate and understand these data, and robust Application Programming Interface TILE -0.52% (API) access for developers.

New open source tools to make data more open and accessible.  The US Chief Information Officer and the US Chief Technology Officer are releasing free, open source tools on Github, a site that allows communities of developers to collaboratively develop solutions.  This effort, known as Project Open Data, can accelerate the adoption of open data practices by providing plug-and-play tools and best practices to help agencies improve the management and release of open data.  For example, one tool released today automatically converts simple spreadsheets and databases into APIs for easier consumption by developers.  Anyone, from government agencies to private citizens to local governments and for-profit companies, can freely use and adapt these tools starting immediately.

Building a 21st century digital government.  As part of the Administration’s Digital Government Strategy and Open Data Initiatives in health, energy, education, public safety, finance, and global development, agencies have been working to unlock data from the vaults of government, while continuing to protect privacy and national security.  Newly available or improved data sets from these initiatives will be released today and over the coming weeks as part of the one year anniversary of the Digital Government Strategy.

Continued engagement with entrepreneurs and innovators to leverage government data.  The Administration has convened and will continue to bring together companies, organizations, and civil society for a variety of summits to highlight how these innovators use open data to positively impact the public and address important national challenges.  In June, Federal agencies will participate in the fourth annual Health Datapalooza, hosted by the nonprofit Health Data Consortium, which will bring together more than 1,800 entrepreneurs, innovators, clinicians, patient advocates, and policymakers for information sessions, presentations, and “code-a-thons” focused on how the power of data can be harnessed to help save lives and improve healthcare for all Americans.

For more information on open data highlights across government visit:

Infor, headed by Charles Phillips, is a leader in business software and services.  It currently serves 70,000 clients from 194 countries and from different industries, including retail, technology, and healthcare.  Visit the company's website for a complete list of its services.

Tommy Bahama: Celebrating 20 years of making life one long weekend

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Tommy Bahama, a lifestyle brand that captures the island spirit in its wide range of clothing, footwear, and home décor collections, celebrates its 20th anniversary with a year-long campaign called “Paradise Goes Platinum,” where customers can win exclusive access to experiences that reflect the company’s motto: “Make Life One Long Weekend.” The company is currently giving away access to spring escapes that are emblematic of the brand’s island-enthused world. Past offerings were a trip to the 2013 Food and Wine Classic in Aspen, Colorado, and a seven-day trip to Hawaii for two.

Tommy Bahama at a glance

The company started in 1992. A year later, the tropical-printed men’s shirt became men’s favorite shirt, which would soon be found on Kevin Costner in the film Tin Cup. Following the opening of the first Tommy Bahama retail store and restaurant in Naples, Florida, the brand introduced its footwear collection and began international distribution. The brand had expanded into accessories and sportswear until it was acquired by Oxford Industries in 2003.

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Tommy Bahama and Charles Phillips’ Infor

From the single thread of motivation that is to Make Life One Long Weekend, the company has grown to become a foremost name in island-inspired lifestyle. To maintain its standing, the brand has tapped into the power of technology courtesy of Charles Phillips’ Infor. Infor Epiphany provided the company with the analytical capabilities needed to enhance its customer relationship management and, in particular, develop an effective customer outreach. Rob Goldberg, SVP of operations, says that the CRM technology has also guided them in the decision-making process and has been consequential in increasing sales.

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Learn how technology has reshaped Tommy Bahama by checking the updates posted on this Facebook page.

The F&B sector needs CRM, too

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The food and beverage industry is one of the longest-standing sectors in modern enterprise. Catering to a basic human need, companies in the F&B sector are practically assured of longevity. Still, food and beverage makers compete in their own arena, vying against hundreds of similar-tasting, similarly packaged goods on rows and rows of shelving. And while the aid of technology has allowed food and beverage makers to provide a growing population with sustenance of better quality, cheaper price, and faster preparation time, companies still have to exhaust all avenues to remain top of mind.

With the Internet being the best channel for reaching out to customers, companies in the F&B sector have one by one claimed their virtual spaces. All major food and beverage makers now have official websites, Facebook pages, Twitter accounts, and Pinterest boards, in addition to the microsites and corresponding social network profiles for each brand under the umbrella. While some marketers question the necessity of these– seeing as F&B companies ultimately do not generate income from the Internet– recent events have made the benefit clear.

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The much-hyped Oreo Twitter campaign, a simple tweet that contained a clever message during the Super Bowl blackout, demonstrates how a food product can benefit from effective CRM. Tweeted at the right time, with the right message, the understated message quickly grabbed consumer attention and had been a main topic for days even after the games.

Regulations for food and beverage products are constantly changing, disrupting the distribution chain and ultimately affecting profit. The CEO of a leading CRM provider, Charles Phillips talks about how digital systems track these rule changes and design ways to adjust production and delivery. Read more about his work on this Facebook page.

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At the forefront of industry specialization
There is no blanket formula for customer relationship management. All companies’ markets differ, and as such, the way to maintain relationships with them must be tailored. In addition to being customized, CRM strategies must also be flexible, modifiable according to unforeseen changes in the industry or consumer perception. With such high demands, a company’s CRM provider must be versed and creative enough to keep up.

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One story regarding flexible CRM is ERP ingénue Infor’s reliance on an “interaction hub,” which allows client companies to select or combine solutions. Providing a comparative bird’s eye view of the CRM campaign, the hub allows clients to maintain streamlined strategy implementation across all channels and implement quick, real-time changes when necessary. The service also features an integrated resource management, marketing, sales, and customer engagement service to help clients maximize profitability.

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With Infor’s CRM system, CEO Charles Phillips and team enable companies to plan, test, and execute their CRM strategies in half the time it takes the average vendor. Demonstrating industry expertise, Infor’s CRM can be specialized by sector: clients in hospitality can personalize guest communications, retail stores can keep tabs on emerging trends among their market, telecom companies can obtain customer feedback to help retention and sales, and manufacturing companies can automate entire processes like tracking orders and marketing programs.

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Customer Relationship Management is vital in building and maintaining company-to-consumer relationships. Infor customizes enterprise software for client communication needs. Headed by Charles Phillips, the company holds one of the largest shares of the enterprise software sector. Read more about its capabilities on this website.

REPOST: For Autodesk, a Step Into a Nanoscale World
From the rise of AutoCAD in the '80s, design software today shrinks further, albeit positively, till it reaches molecular ultraprecision. John Markoff from the desk of New York Times delves into this nanoscale world.

Autodesk, a quirky software start-up in Marin County, north of San Francisco, rose to prominence in the early 1980s because of AutoCAD, its computer-aided design program that was intended for use on personal computers. Over the next decade, AutoCAD became the standard design tool for architects and engineers.

This week at the TED conference in Long Beach, Calif., the company will take the first public step toward translating its computer design approach, which has since spilled over from Hollywood to the Maker movement, into the emerging nanoscale world of synthetic biology and materials.

For the last two years, a small group of software engineers and molecular biologists have been developing a software system for designing at the molecular level at the company’s research laboratory in downtown San Francisco. At the TED conference, Autodesk will introduce “Project Cyborg,” a Web-based software platform for delivering a range of services like molecular modeling and simulation.

The company has quietly begun working with a small group of molecular biologists in the last year. It has not announced when it will commercialize the technology, but it envisions that scientists, engineers and even students and “citizen scientists” will soon be able to use the system on individual projects.

There are still many open questions that nanotechnology needs to surmount, ranging from viability to safety. Autodesk executives and the designers of Project Cyborg believe, however, that they can recreate the thriving commercial ecosystems that the company has now evolved in engineering design at a Lilliputian scale. They foresee nanorobots that will be able to attack cancers and other diseases and a new world of molecular materials, as well as a visualization system for an entire universe beyond the range of the unaided human eye.

“People are only now being introduced to the fact that this form of science is in fact design, and it has the same paradigms and patterns as designing a factory or designing a car, with different nouns and verbs,” said Jeff Kowalski, Autodesk’s chief technology officer. “That’s our objective – to understand how to take 30 years of technology to transform how design is done in the inert world and empower those who are designing in the living world.”

The company will introduce its new nanodesign software vision in two talks to be given by scientists who have been working with the Autodesk research lab. One will be delivered by Skylar Tibbits, an M.I.T. architect and computer scientist who is to discuss biomolecular self-assembly on Tuesday. Jessica Green, a University of Oregon ecologist, is to speak on Thursday about design at the molecular scale.

Autodesk took its first commercial step into biological design last year with a partnership with Organovo Holdings, a San Diego start-up that aims to manufacture human tissues and organs. Autodesk software will be used to control a so-called bioprinter being developed by Organovo. It will initially have pharmaceutical testing applications.

Autodesk is not alone in seeking to build nanoscale design tools, nor the first to try to commercialize molecular design.

Thomas Knight, an M.I.T electrical engineer, introduced the concept of biobricks in 2003. The idea has been to create a library of standard biological parts derived from specific DNA sequences. Ideally they would share a common “interface,” making it possible to use them to construct new biological systems.

A striking example of the potential of molecular design was announced in February 2012 by the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering at Harvard. Two scientists at the institute designed a robotic device from DNA that was intended to seek out specific cells and deliver anticancer therapeutics with remarkable precision. The nanoscale robot is shaped like a clamshell and designed to open when it reaches its target, releasing a specific molecule.

The Autodesk researchers acknowledge they are far from being able to sell commercially robust engineering tools for the nano world. “Right now we don’t even have the notion of digital prototyping in any mature way in biology,” said Carlos Olguin, head of the Autodesk Bio/Nano/Programmable Matter Group. “People really do all of this by trial and error.”

But the company is placing a significant bet that that will not always be the case. If Autodesk is right, it will be a tremendous vindication for K. Eric Drexler, an M.I.T.-trained engineer who in the 1970s began forecasting the emergence of a world engineered by nanoscale machines.

Infor, with Charles Phillips at the helm, uses the same compass for ultraprecision in creating software suites for the ERP market. Learn the company's macros and micros here.

Enterprise software in mobile applications
Executives and managers on-the-go have armed themselves with mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets to keep timely tracks on their operations. InfoWorld reports that enterprise software are making the migration to mobile devices, indicating a need for developers to streamline their suites further. As always, mobile devices can only do so much, and with touchscreen limitations, the sacrifice of computing power is a major concern.

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As a momentary updater, though, mobile devices are powerful tools for inserting small input into tracking systems, managing simple work flows, and getting overviews of a small array of figures. Infor, headed by CEO Charles Phillips has already launched a mobile application for asset management. The Infor EAM Mobile was especially customized for the Apple TM iPad, and allows real-time data exchange for remote workers.

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An exciting part of this development involves the new available devices that will specialize in enterprise applications. The configurations of these are informed by the urgent functions of on-site business monitoring and decision-making. Data exchange between devices is key, so are simple measuring and computing tools that could also appeal to the demands of high technology.

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It’s no surprise that majority of the enterprise software industry are looking to follow suit. In fact, developing mobile applications for business processes has been the focus for quite number of developers, who are aware of the growing exigencies for mobile workers in industries such as engineering, manufacturing, and high-technology construction. And portable data are a cake to bring into business meetings.

For more information on enterprise software, visit this blog.

Charles Phillips: Planning your way to the top
Infor CEO Charles Phillips would consider workforce planning an all-encompassing blueprint for sustained success. A great companion to workforce planning is the Infor10 WFM Workforce Planning [Workbrain], a multifunctional ERP solution that automates and standardizes labor planning to achieve a delicate balance between long-term labor strategy and short-term workforce deployment. Infor10 WFM Workforce Planning [Workbrain], helps organizations weave a definite planning process that aligns success drivers such as people, skills, budget, and goals, in order to meet their service and profit goals.

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Business leaders can act with confidence when they know where the organization is going. Thus, closing the gap between long-term workforce strategy and short-term workforce deployment can make a difference in the leaders’ ability to execute a business strategy. A business leader himself, Charles Phillips would know that a sure-fire way to succeed on this pursuit is to organize and make the labor management as economically flexible as possible, and the Infor10 WFM Workforce Planning [Workbrain] does just that and more. The software is designed to synchronize labor processes by:

• Optimizing labor allocation;
• Reducing budget cycle times;
• Determining the type of operation suited for corporate goals; and
• Decreasing customizations with the software’s built-in expertise.

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Organizations with over 100,000 employees prefer to use the Infor10 WFM [Workbrain], an ERP solution concentrating on improving operations and workforce management. The software runs the Java 2 Enterprise Edition and features integrated modules which help organizations meet complex workforce requirements.

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Formerly of Oracle Corp, Charles Phillips currently heads Infor, the world’s third largest supplier of ERP products and services. Learn more at

Charles Phillips and Infor's northward venture

With Charles Phillips at Infor’s helm, the company saw an increase in the size of its clientele, which was made possible in part by high-quality products and admirable service. Infor currently has over 70,000 customers, and with its expansion to the greater part of North America in the works, the company is bound to have more.

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Infor’s client base spans the globe and includes a wide range of groups and organizations, including governments. Its acquisition of its long-time Canadian partner Le Group Laurier CIM, Inc. or Laurier CIM Group Inc., however, marks the expansion of its services to Canada’s distribution industry. It also signifies an increase in the number of customers who can take advantage of what Charles Phillips calls his company’s core value—the culture of speed.

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The acquisition presents a solid opportunity for Infor to tap into the Canadian market and directly provide it with its software, services, and support. With Group Laurier, Infor can create and manage a direct relationship with Canadian customers and provide them with guidance, value, and direct access to its many innovations.

Group Laurier is a reseller of Infor10 Distribution Business (SX.e). It is based in Montreal and currently has 70 customers and 30 employees. With Infor’s acquisition, Group Laurier’s customers will enjoy no disruption in their product support, and will be given access to the company’s award-winning Infor Xtreme Support service.

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For more information about Charles Phillips, go to this Facebook page.

Charles Phillips, Infor, and how enterprise software is humanity’s remote control
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Charles Phillips, CEO of Infor, one of the fastest-growing global developers of enterprise software, has a habit of stating things simply. Little surprise that the company Phillips heads does the same: ramming business complexity into single and cohesive database systems that guide the slew of information that need to be processed in any enterprise.

It may seem that humanity’s mass consumption of goods and services for survival has made it an unwitting dependent on computing intelligence. This is actually true, but not in the hard-wired, eerie manner of insurgent machines wiping out humanity. In reality, equally important as robotics and artificial intelligence these days for the mass production of goods and services is the information that will be used in production.

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Charles Phillips’ company, Infor, seems to have the unenviable task of organizing millions of ideas in the heads of different geniuses --- financial, engineering, aeronautic, management, etc. By providing enterprise software to companies that engage with billions of consumers every day, Infor becomes the channel that separates real business vision and execution from chaos theory. The difference is that big.

Which is why the company must not be begrudged its round-figured boasts --- its packages of enterprise software have assisted and systematized a variety of industries. In real terms, it has helped produce 95 billion bottles of beer, assisted billions of airline passengers, and managed the payroll of millions of employees.

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For more ideas on what Charles Phillips and Infor do, visit

Charles Phillips: Infor soars in the healthcare industry

When Charles Phillips’ Infor acquired Lawson Software in July last year, critics considered the merger as the event that truly sealed the ERP vendor’s place among software giants like Oracle and SAP. With an extensive mark in HCM technology in industries like healthcare, Lawson was seen as an extremely valuable addition to Infor’s ranks—an expectation that Lawson has fulfilled several times then and now.

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Indeed, the developments over the last few months since Infor’s acquisition of Lawson have proven the latter’s worth. Aside from helping the ERP system provider successfully place itself as one of the most reliable platforms in human capital management (HCM), Lawson also helped expand the industries covered by Charles Phillips’ Infor. Apart from being a leader in the aerospace and automotive sectors, Infor now counts itself among the ERP providers that call the healthcare industry their turf—with recognition to emphasize it.

Charles Phillips Image Credit: Infor

Infor’s Lawson Healthcare placed 29th on the 2012 Healthcare Informatics 100, a listing of leading healthcare IT vendors in terms of revenue in the United States. It was released by Healthcare Informatics, a magazine for healthcare IT leaders, in partnership with market research firms Porter Research and ST Advisors. The rankings were based on revenues from products and services during the fiscal year 2011, back when Lawson was still operating as Infor’s affiliate.

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Lawson Healthcare offers business management solutions that align processes and data across the different aspects of the organization, like the supply chain, human capital, and financials. For more information, visit this website. For updates on Charles Phillips, Infor’s CEO, visit this Facebook page.


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