Visibility Blog

What is IoT and How it Affects ERP

Posted by Katie Foley on Aug 28, 2017 2:05:00 PM

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a term I’ve heard a lot in recent years and never took the time to fully understand it’s meaning. So what is IoT? IoT is a network of physical objects that are embedded with software, sensors, and other network connected technology that allows the physical objects to collect and communicate data.

It's not as complicated as it sounds. You’ve probably experienced some IoT enabled devices already. Some common consumer product examples of IoT:

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Topics: Technology

What Is Industry 4.0?

Posted by Jaclyn Aldrich on Apr 27, 2017 10:00:52 AM

One topic that was discussed during this year’s conference is Industry 4.0. This is one blog post in a series of several that will discuss Industry 4.0 – what it is, how you can achieve it, and how an ERP solution such as Visibility helps you achieve it. Our first post will discuss Industry 4.0 at a high level so you understand where it came from and the principles behind it.

So what exactly is Industry 4.0? Industry 4.0 is defined as having visibility into the real-time status of your company’s manufacturing processes. It has also been described as the “fourth industrial revolution”. This idea originated from a project in the high-tech strategy of the German Government, which promoted the computerization of manufacturing.

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Topics: Technology

The Horrors of Old Hardware Failure

Posted by Katie Foley on Oct 28, 2016 10:00:00 AM

Since Halloween is right around the corner, it’s only fitting that we discuss the horrors of an ERP system running on old hardware. Yes, it’s something that you should definitely be frightened of if your business is depending on very old hardware!

Are you clinging to your old server that is quickly becoming more and more obsolete? Are you still running enterprise applications on your old server because it still works “just fine”? Like an old car that keeps starting, you hesitate to replace it because it gets you where you need to go. But clinging on to old hardware just like driving around an old car, puts you at risk for catastrophic problems to hit at any moment. Loss of hardware can leave you with loss of productivity during the down time, and even worse, can leave you with loss of critical data that may not be possible to recover. 

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Topics: Technology

Hardware Risk Mitigation

Posted by Jack Saint on Sep 15, 2016 10:05:00 AM

ERP systems can last for 25 years or more.   This means that there are companies out there still running ERP software on hardware and operating systems that date back to the early 1990s.  Dot Matrix printers,  green screen technology, old HPUX boxes.  Yes, they all still exist and in many cases are being used in mission critical operations to run a business.  They are not just as displays in a history of technology museum.

We often sell our modern web based ERP system into companies running on very old systems.  A factor in the sale can sometimes be old hardware risk mitigation.  The risk that the old hardware breaks down and repairs are slow in coming, or non-existent, can be devastating to the operation of the business.  Data loss, productivity loss, financial and operational disruption can all contribute to risk.  Finding repair shops or replacement hardware for 25 year old devices is like looking to fix antiques – sort of like fixing an 8-track player or an old rotary dial phone.  And when your entire financial and operation day to day business is running on such old devices, the level of risk can become overwhelming.  The business itself is at risk if they break down.

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Topics: Technology

Hybrids: The Next Generation Technology

Posted by Jack Saint on May 26, 2016 10:30:00 AM

Smartphones have only been around for about a decade. Today there are over three billion smartphone devices in the world.  More than one billion tablets including Androids, iPads, and Kindles are out there. Over 400 million laptops are project to ship in 2017 creating an industry with close to 10 billion hardware devices have shipped in the last decade.

So where is this all leading? It seems convergence and hybrids will be the next generation. Smartphone devices which can include applications such as an actual phone (!), text, facetime, camera, GPS, weather,  email,  music, facebook, banking, calendar, news, alarm clock, fitness monitoring, radio, tracking of sunrise and sunset, dating sites, youtube, shopping sites, web browsing, bill payments and even applications which vibrate when the surf is up at the local beach. Tablets and laptops have large screens which allow for reading and the use of business applications such as Word, Excel.

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Topics: Technology

Introducing VISIBILITY 11

Posted by Jack Saint on Apr 13, 2016 3:53:47 PM

At the annual customer conference we unveiled a sneak peek at VISIBILITY 11, which we will be releasing in late May.  It is a completely new look front end for us, with modern metro look portals and style GUI, mobile friendly swipe menus, easy to use personal portal setup utility, and a new wiki online help system which will allow customers to submit suggested additions.

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Topics: Technology

This Valentine’s Day, show love to your PC ...by improving your computer’s performance!

Posted by Vince Benenati on Feb 11, 2016 9:58:18 AM

#ThrowbackThursday to the days when we would turn on our computer and it would function at top speed! We all sure miss when we first purchased a new PC with barely any programs on it and everything we want to do and search for was faster than ever experienced! We were in love with new technology! And then after a few months, or years, of usage those butterflies started to fade away with the computer starting to bog down in some type of way.

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Topics: Technology

Front-End Web Development for Beginners

Posted by Katie Foley on Oct 1, 2015 10:21:00 AM

Have you ever wondered how you can learn to build your own website? Well you came to the right place!

Just a few months ago, I took an introductory front-end web development class and learned how to use html, css, javascript, and jquery to build a website. I went from not even knowing what html meant, to building a beautiful website of my own. Although I am many hours of practice away from building more sophisticated websites, it was a step in the right direction and I was surprised how learnable the material was to someone who had no computer programming background.

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Topics: Technology

Disaster Recovery Plans: We Are Not In Kansas Anymore

Posted by Jack Saint on Aug 19, 2015 3:00:00 PM

I just walked outside to a sauna – it is about 95 degrees in Boston today and much of the country is in the middle of a severe heat wave.  Just about five months ago, we were buried in a record setting snowfall with about ten feet of snow, mostly during one month - February!

 

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Topics: Technology

The New IT Manager: Life In the Clouds

Posted by Jack Saint on Aug 4, 2015 11:30:00 AM

With more and more companies moving to the Cloud for more IT needs, the IT manager’s job is quickly evolving.  The IT manager now needs to manage the cloud configuration and deployment and this can be every bit as challenging as managing an internal network.  Their job function is not necessarily going away but changing. Less about hardware, more about configuration management.

For software companies like Visibility, we provide cloud hosting as well as cloud management as part of our offering. So we remove the burden of cloud infrastructure management from our customers.  This task can be a big one.  Database servers, application servers, block storage backup units, gigabytes of memory and terabytes of disk space all come into play. Load balancing, backup routines, server monitoring, etc, all are now managed remotely on tier one data centers’ machines and virtual machines.

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Topics: Technology

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