Microsoft identified as a Leader in Forrester Wave
Microsoft was identified in the Leader ripple the in the Forrester Research, Inc. report: “The Forrester Wave™: Self-Service Business Intelligence Platforms, Q2 2012”, written by vice president and principal analyst Boris Evelson, published on June 12. Evelson wrote that business users don't need to look any further than Excel for self-service BI, and that PowerPivot and Power View are like "Excel on steroids." The report also stated that Microsoft has a very strong cost/benefits ratio.

The report is available at Forrester's website (login required). Evelson also published a blog arguing the importance of self-service BI.

Open Management Infrastructure Now Available
Microsoft and The Open Group have introduced a new, free open source technology called Open Management Infrastructure (OMI).  Available now through The Open Group, OMI makes it easier to implement standards-based management in today’s data centers.  Microsoft’s goal with OMI is to spur a rich ecosystem of management solutions that address the diversity of devices and the need for greater automation in cloud computing.

For an in-depth overview of the new Open Management Infrastructure, check out the Windows Server blog.

Windows Azure Customer Spotlight: City of Regina
Windows Azure recently announced a new international customer, the City of Regina, which has adopted Windows Azure to scale costs and drive business growth. The local Canadian government selected Windows Azure for its Open Data Portal – a website that gives citizens a view of data sets such as ward boundaries, points of interest, solid waste collection and land use. The new portal has allowed the city to work more efficiently, leading to better use of funds and improved public services.

To learn about other companies who have adopted Windows Azure, visit the case studies site.

Microsoft Helps Put Non-Profits on the Map Using Windows Azure
Today, Microsoft made available the Local Impact Map, a new way for non-profits to showcase the impact of their programs in a compelling way. Originally developed to help showcase the impact of Microsoft Citizenship programs in over 100 countries around the world, Microsoft is now offering the application to non-profits and commercial organizations who want to showcase their CSR efforts. The application is powered by Windows Azure and Bing Maps and includes a flexible content management system that makes it simple for non-profits to manage and publish their stories.

To learn about the Local Impact Map, visit the Microsoft Citizenship blog and Microsoft News Center.

Microsoft Rated as a Leader in Gartner’s 2012 Magic Quadrant for x86 Server Virtualization Infrastructure
In Brad Anderson’s new post ‘Moving Beyond Server Virtualization: Common Technologies for Your Move to Cloud Computing,’ he discusses new industry analyst validation for Microsoft as a leader in server virtualization infrastructure.