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In mathematics, the modulo gives you the remainder in the division. To calculate the remainder in the division in JavaScript, use the modulo operator (%).

For example:

const r = 10 % 3 console.log(r)

Output:

1

You can interpret this as sharing 10 slices of pizza with 3 eaters. As a result of a fair share, there will be one leftover slice. This is the result of the modulo.

In JavaScript, the modulo has many practical use cases. The most common use cases include checking if a number is odd/even, or checking if a number is a prime number.

This guide teaches you all you need to know about the modulo operator in JavaScript.

Before jumping into calculating modulo in JavaScript, let’s take a look at modulos in maths.

Modulo in Mathematics

In mathematics, modulo describes the remainder in the division. In math, the modulo is commonly denoted with mod.

a mod b

Where:

a is called the dividend.

b is called the divisor.

The modulo returns the remainder in the division.

For example:

7 mod 3 = 1

To see why it works this way, think about sharing 7 apples with 3 persons fairly. In other words, each person should get the same number of apples.

To make this possible, you should share 2 apples with each person. This means you have shared 6 apples. Thus, there is one leftover apple. This is the remainder in the division.

Another example of modulos is a 12-hour clock. When you count the time, you count up to 12 and go back to 0.

For example, let’s figure out what time is it exactly 11 hours after 7:00.

To do this, you cannot add 11 to 7:00, because that would give 18:00. Instead, add 11 hours to 7:00 until you reach 12:00. Then the 6 leftover hours are added to the new round to make it to 6:00.

This is exactly how modulo works. In other words, an easier solution to the above example is by calculating 11 + 7 mod 12 which results in 6.

18 mod 12 = 6

So in a 12-hour clock, 18:00 and 6:00 are the same thing.

Mathematically this fact is denoted by:

18 ≡ 6 (mod 12)

Generally, in modular arithmetic, you can express these modular relationships by:

a ≡ b (mod n)

Which means “a and b are congruent to modulo n”.

That’s enough for the theory.

Now you understand what is modular arithmetic. Next, let’s move on to calculating modulos in JavaScript.

Modulo in JavaScript

In JavaScript, you can use the % operator to calculate modulo.

a % b

You can compute modulo with numeric types int and float and negative numbers.

Modulo with Integers in JavaScript

Usually, you calculate the modulo between two integers.

Here are some examples:

console.log(4 % 3) console.log(10 % 7) console.log(78 % 14) console.log(1000 % 10)

As you can see, the result of the modulo can also be 0. But taking a modulo with 0 is meaningless. The result is always NaN.

console.log(1000 % 0)

Now you have the understanding of how to calculate remainders in JavaScript using integers.

Next, let’s see some examples of using negative numbers and modulo.

Modulo with Negative Numbers

Calculating modulos of negative numbers is possible in JavaScript.

But notice that different programming languages calculate negative modulos differently. The reason is that it’s unclear whether the result should have the sign of the dividend or the divisor.

In JavaScript, the result of modulo takes the sign of the dividend (the value on the left).

For example, the result of this calculation is positive, even though the divisor is negative:

console.log(7 % -4)

But in Python, the same calculation yields a different result that has the sign of the divisor:

-1

But why are the results not the same?

It boils down to how the modulo is calculated under the hood.

As it turns out, the modulo is calculated differently in JavaScript as opposed to Python.

Here is how a % b is calculated behind the scenes:

javascript: r = a - (b * trunc(a / b)) python: r = a - (b * floor(a / b))

Take a look at the last term in both of these equations. There is a difference. In JavaScript, the last term is trunc(a / b). In Python, it is floor(a / b).

trunc(a / b) means a truncated division. This rounds a negative number toward 0.

floor(a / b) means floor division. This rounds a negative number away from 0.

Here is an illustration of both of these functions:

But what about positive values?

Both floor() and trunc() round positive values down to the nearest integer value. In other words, they work the same way with positive numbers.

This causes the differences with modulos using negative values.

Let’s use the above equation to manually calculate 7 % -4 in JavaScript and Python.

Here is the JavaScript version:

r = a - (b * trunc(a / b)) a = 7 b = -4 r = 7 - (-4 * trunc(7 / -4)) = 7 - (-4 * trunc(-1.75)) = 7 - (-4 * -1) = 7 - 4 = 3

And here is Python’s version:

r = a - (b * floor(a / b)) a = 7 b = -4 r = 7 - (-4 * floor(7 / -4)) = 7 - (-4 * floor(-1.75)) = 7 - (-4 * -2) = 7 - 8 = -1

As you can see, the JS version gives 3 but Python gives -1.

To recap, negative modulos might give different values in different languages. They are calculated in a different way due to the unclarity of how to handle the negative sign.

Next, let’s take a look at modulos between floating-point numbers.

Modulo with Floats

Similar to how you can use integers to calculate modulos, you can use floats.

Here are some examples:

console.log(10.5 % 4.5) console.log(10 % 1.5) console.log(12.5 % 3.5) console.log(10.0 % 3.0)

Similar to other arithmetic operations in JavaScript, you may encounter floating-point issues with modulos.

For example:

console.log(10.0 % 3.1)

Now you have taken a complete overview of how to calculate remainders in JavaScript.

Next, let’s discuss the operator precedence in calculations that involve other operators.

Operator Precedence with Modulos

Operator precedence describes what operations take place first when combined in the same equation.

In JavaScript, the modulo operator has the same precedence level as:

Multiplication (*)

Division (/)

Floor division (//).

For example, if you multiply first and then take a modulo, the multiplication takes place first.

But if you add two numbers and take a modulo, the modulo precedes.

For instance:

console.log(3 * 4 % 5 - 6)

To better understand how JavaScript calculates this, place parenthesis around the terms.

((3 * 4) % 5) - 6

JavaScript evaluates this as follows:

((3 * 4) % 5) – 6

(12 % 5) – 6

2 – 6

-4

Now you have a good understanding of the modulo in general. Let’s take a look at some common applications next.

Common Use Cases of Modulo in JavaScript

There are many use cases for modulo in JavaScript.

A common example is to check whether a number is odd or even. Another popular task is to check if a number is a prime number.

Let’s see these and a couple of more examples next.

Use Modulo to Deal with Periodicity

Modulo helps you when there is periodicity in your code.

Think about a game character. It runs out of the screen on the right side and pops back in on the left side. The code that makes this possible defines the player’s x-position modulo screen width.

In layman’s terms, when the player’s x position exceeds the screen width, the modulo operation turns it back to 0.

x_pos = x_pos % screen_width

Let’s see another example using the 12-hour clock we talked about earlier.

Even though there are 24 hours in a day, a 12-hour clock wraps around itself 12 hours before the day is over.

But it is still a perfectly valid way to track time.

This is possible because for example 15:00 on a 24-hour clock is 3:00. The only problem is the time points same spot twice a day. But because we can clearly distinguish day from night, this is not an issue.

Let’s simulate a 12-hour clock in JavaScript.

To display the hours of the day in a 12-hour clock, take a modulo between the hour of the day and 12.

Here is how it looks in code:

function wallclock(hour) { const result = hour % 12 console.log(`${hour}:00 is ${result}:00 on a 12-hour clock`) } const hours = [...Array(25).keys()] for (hour of hours) { wallclock(hour) }

Output:

0:00 is 0:00 on a 12-hour clock 1:00 is 1:00 on a 12-hour clock 2:00 is 2:00 on a 12-hour clock 3:00 is 3:00 on a 12-hour clock 4:00 is 4:00 on a 12-hour clock 5:00 is 5:00 on a 12-hour clock 6:00 is 6:00 on a 12-hour clock 7:00 is 7:00 on a 12-hour clock 8:00 is 8:00 on a 12-hour clock 9:00 is 9:00 on a 12-hour clock 10:00 is 10:00 on a 12-hour clock 11:00 is 11:00 on a 12-hour clock 12:00 is 0:00 on a 12-hour clock 13:00 is 1:00 on a 12-hour clock 14:00 is 2:00 on a 12-hour clock 15:00 is 3:00 on a 12-hour clock 16:00 is 4:00 on a 12-hour clock 17:00 is 5:00 on a 12-hour clock 18:00 is 6:00 on a 12-hour clock 19:00 is 7:00 on a 12-hour clock 20:00 is 8:00 on a 12-hour clock 21:00 is 9:00 on a 12-hour clock 22:00 is 10:00 on a 12-hour clock 23:00 is 11:00 on a 12-hour clock 24:00 is 0:00 on a 12-hour clock Odd or Even?

To check if a number is odd or even, use the modulo.

If the number is even, it is evenly divisible by 2. In other words, number mod 2 yields 0.

If the number is not even, it is odd.

For instance:

function isEven(number) { return number % 2 == 0 } console.log(isEven(10)) console.log(isEven(7))

Output:

true false

Similarly, to find out if a number is odd, you can either use the isEven() function with negation:

function isOdd(number) { return !isEven(number) }

Or you can use the fact that any odd number modulo 2 gives a remainder of division of 1:

function isOdd(number) { return number % 2 == 1 } Repeat Code in Intervals

Sometimes, when running a loop, you don’t want to run code at each iteration. Instead, you specify an interval on how often a code should be run.

To run code in intervals, check if the current iteration index is evenly divisible by the interval. In other words, use modulo.

For example, let’s print every 3rd number in an array of numbers:

const numbers = [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13] var i = 0 const interval = 3 while (i < numbers.length) { if (i % interval == 0) { console.log(i) } i += 1 }

Output:

0 3 6 9 12 Conclusion

Today you learned how to calculate remainders in JavaScript.

To recap, in maths, a mod b calculates the remainder in the division between a and b. In other words, it calculates what is left after an even division.

For example, 7 mod 3 represents sharing 7 apples with 3 workers evenly. The result is 1. In other words, 1 apple is left over after sharing 7 apples with 3 persons evenly.

To calculate modulo in JavaScript, use the modulo operator %.

Modulos also work for negative numbers in JavaScript. But the way negative modulos are calculated differs among programming languages.

There are many use cases for modulo in JavaScript.

Thanks for reading.

Happy coding!

You're reading Javascript % Operator: An Ultimate Guide To Modulos

The Ultimate Guide To Customer Engagement

Customer engagement refers to the level of enthusiasm your business generates among its customers.

Customer engagement is critical for driving repeat business and maintaining a strong brand reputation.

Maintaining customer engagement is an ongoing process that continues long after a lead converts into a paying customer.

This article is for small business owners who want to learn how to retain customers and encourage repeat business by improving engagement.

Engaging your customers is a critical element of running a successful business. Selling products or services isn’t enough to attract and retain loyal customers. It requires ongoing effort to genuinely connect with your audience and build lasting business relationships. 

Customer engagement marketing isn’t a one-and-done process or a one-size-fits-all approach. We’ll explore tips for creating a unique customer engagement strategy and share tools for building and tracking audience engagement.

What is customer engagement?

Customer engagement means improving the customer experience through positive customer interactions and company efforts. You can engage customers through various channels, including social media business accounts and your company blog. However, engagement extends beyond attracting customers to build your brand; you must continuously maintain and strengthen customer relationships to cultivate a loyal, engaged audience.

Even though they might be the driving factor in the beginning, your products and services shouldn’t be the only value you offer customers. To improve customer satisfaction and loyalty, ensure you develop a content strategy that produces unique, quality materials that customers can freely access. 

Tip

To improve communication with customers, address unhappy customers’ issues directly, always reply to customer queries promptly, and take responsibility for mistakes.

10 tips to improve customer engagement

Keep these points in mind when you’re developing your customer engagement strategy.

1. Maintain the customer life cycle.

A customer life cycle is the length and nature of a customer’s relationship with a brand or company. Marketers should aim to make the customer’s life cycle as long and prosperous as possible. 

To cultivate a healthy customer life cycle, maintain and continuously improve the customer journey. Maintaining the cycle involves the following:

Acquiring customers.

Employing customer retention strategies to keep them interested.

Extending the relationship beyond a single purchase. 

Key Takeaway

The best CRM software solutions include customer life cycle support. For example, Zendesk manages post-sale activities and renewals and is our pick for the best CRM for the complete customer life cycle. Read our Zendesk review to learn more.

Benefits of building a customer engagement strategy

Building a customer engagement marketing strategy is crucial for creating lasting relationships with your audience. Here are some of the benefits of building a customer engagement strategy: 

You create deeper customer relationships. A customer engagement strategy helps create dedicated, loyal customers to support your brand. “Customer engagement aims to improve the customer experience to create a deep, personal relationship with the brand,” Rom said. “Customers need to feel appreciated and valued for more than just the money they spend. Brands who show they are dedicated to their customers’ needs will be rewarded with engaged, loyal customers.”

You set your business apart. Additionally, customer engagement helps differentiate your business from others in your industry. “Building a customer engagement strategy is of immense importance because this is what gives your brand the edge over the competitors,” Brenchley said. “You have to remember that your brand has a life of its own, and if it has a positive impact on your customers, then you’re likely to gain more business. For small companies, a positive customer engagement strategy can lead to higher referrals through word of mouth.”

Customer engagement examples

Consider the following examples of successful customer engagement campaigns. Use them as inspiration when you’re building your customer engagement strategy. 

IKEA Kreativ. IKEA’s mixed-reality Kreativ tool lets customers use their iPhones to scan their living space and insert IKEA pieces into the image at scale. It’s a near-real-life, 3D picture of how IKEA furnishings look anywhere. This tool helps customers achieve a custom look and fit before they purchase an item, haul it home and assemble it. Kreativ can inspire customers to purchase and prevent returns (and ill will) while creating a seamless process for adding items to a cart or shopping list. And, of course, customers will share their results on social media.

Major League Baseball theme nights. MLB teams host Community Nights and Theme Nights, often with themes unrelated to baseball. Community Nights recognize community contributors such as teachers, veterans and first responders. Other Community Nights highlight current or past baseball stars. Theme Nights have included Shakespeare, boy bands, Margaritaville, Star Wars and other themes that draw diverse fans to the ballpark. These promotions often include giveaways that feature the team name and theme. They also sometimes include a postgame concert or other events. MLB’s promotions attract fans who may not otherwise attend a game, and they provide yet another chance for customers to post about a product and an experience.

Share a Coke. Who doesn’t remember #ShareACoke? This campaign replaced logos on Coke bottles with 250 names. Because the campaign felt so personalized to customers, it attracted the attention of people across the country. Customers bought bottles for their friends and loved ones, took photos to share online, and purchased drinks with their names to join the fun. 

Key Takeaway

Big brands create customer engagement campaigns frequently. Although they don’t always directly drive sales, they usually build customer loyalty.

The Ultimate Guide To Intent Data: Benefits And How

What is intent data? 

Intent data covers the purchasing intent of individuals or companies. This intent is determined by individuals’ or companies’ online or offline behavior. It allows vendors to determine which potential customers to reach and what messages to communicate to them. 

Intent data can cover users’ interests and could predict users’ intent to complete actions other than buying (e.g. signing up to a newsletter etc.). However, the most common use of intent data is to estimate buyer intent, and therefore buyer intent data and intent data are used to mean the same thing in most cases.

What is B2B intent data?

Intent data is a fresh concept for B2B sales. In B2B organizations, intent data is mainly used to identify potential customers. Companies can use intent data also for sales enablement, ABM, and digital marketing assistance. For example, most B2B companies do some form of cold outreach via email or Linkedin. Using intent data makes this outreach more targeted, increasing conversion rates.

Where do companies get intent data from?

Companies’ own digital properties generate data on buyer intent but there are other sources as well and they can be used to improve a company’s intent estimates:

First-party intent data is generated on a company’s own digital properties. It can be detailed but it is limited to a company’s existing audience

Second-party intent data is first-party intent data obtained via a third-party provider. For example, a media company can shares its first-party intent data with other companies. From the perspective of other companies, this would be second-party intent data

Third-party intent data represents a global dataset purchased from data providers

Why is intent data important?

It drives sales and businesses are seeing benefits. As a result, most businesses are investing in intent data.

Gartner claims that more than 70% of B2B buyers will increase their use of third-party intent data by the end of 2023. As companies aim to expand their audience, they need to rely on second and third-party intent data for better targeting.

Source: Gartner

According to a study conducted by intent data provider TrustRadius in 2023, these companies are leveraging intent data:

40% of software companies

47% of midsize businesses

Gartner’s prediction and TrustRadius’ survey have quite different results but all agree that at least a significant share of companies are benefitting from intent data.

How do businesses collect intent data?

Websites record their user’s activities and it can generate intent data at the IP level as well as through user registration and cookies. IP databases are used to identify the company of the user in case of B2B intent data. Example recorded activities can be:

Intent data providers analyze this data and prepare a report or a list of firms you may target. These reports are reviewed by marketing and sales departments so they can be used for:

Preventing churn: If your customers are regularly checking out your competitors’ websites then it may be good idea to talk to them to understand why they are doing such research

Upselling: When different divisions or geographic units in one of your customers are researching your category, you can reach out to them to understand if they would like to try your solution. Providing their colleagues as a reference can shorten the sales cycle.

Improving targeting for outreach efforts/outbound sales

What is outbound sales?

Outbound sales is done via sales reps directly reaching out to potential buyers via email, cold calls or Linkedin et. to promote your brand, product, or service. Outbound sales has a very low success rate because it is hard to determine which companies are suitable for your product and whether they are ready to buy.

B2B Intent data helps vendors determine which companies are ready to buy

Firmographics and technographics help vendors determine which companies are suitable for their products.

Who are intent data providers?

There are 2 types of intent data providers:

Companies that have access to buyer intent information. This includes companies like us or review platforms like TrustRadius

Companies that aggregate intent data from brands like media companies and industry analysts. Companies like Bombora bring together intent data from many media companies.

The followings are the most frequent activities carried out by intent data providers: 

Gathering of intent data

Data cleaning & quality assurance

Prediction of intent with machine learning models or rules based approaches

Integration of intent data to ABM or CRM tools

To explore the intent data landscape, feel free to check our data-driven lists for

Cem regularly speaks at international technology conferences. He graduated from Bogazici University as a computer engineer and holds an MBA from Columbia Business School.

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How To Use Siri On Apple Watch (The Ultimate Guide)

Apple Watch is an excellent health and fitness device. Alongside, it’s a great companion to your iPhone, and one of the reasons for that is Siri. Siri keeps improving with every watchOS update, giving tough competition to Google Assistant, Alexa, and Cortana.

If you’re still not using Siri on your Apple Watch, you’re missing out on a lot of possibilities on the Apple Watch. That said, here’s how you can use Siri on Apple Watch.

How to set up Siri on Apple Watch

You can invoke Siri on Apple Watch by saying the “Hey Siri” phrase. If you cannot bring it up using the “Hey Siri” phrase, head over here to know how you can set up and activate Hey Siri on Apple Watch.

How to use the Siri watch face on Apple Watch

The best way to get started with Siri on your Apple Watch is to use the Siri watch face. It fetches all the events and everything you need and displays that information when required throughout the day. You can scroll the Digital Crown to view upcoming events. 

If you don’t know how to set up the Siri watch face on your Apple Watch, check out the reference and customize the watch face to your preference.

Choose when Siri speaks on Apple Watch

Siri can speak the responses on your Apple Watch by default. However, you can change when Siri speaks out the responses. To change Siri’s voice feedback settings on Apple Watch:

Press the Digital Crown and open Settings on your Apple Watch.

Scroll down and select Siri from the list.

Tap the Siri Responses option.

You can select from the following three options:

Always On: Siri speaks even when the Apple Watch is in silent mode.

Control With Silent Mode: Siri only speaks when your Apple Watch isn’t in silent mode, and Siri stops dictating the responses when you put your Apple Watch in silent mode.

Select the one according to your preferences, and you’re good to go.

Let Siri announce calls and notifications

If you’re in a situation where you can’t check your Apple Watch, Siri can announce notifications and calls on supported AirPods or Beats headphones.

Siri won’t interrupt you when you’re listening to the notification content and only starts listening for the Hey Siri phrase once it finishes reading. Follow the instructions to announce calls and notifications via Siri:

Open Settings on your Apple Watch.

Tap on the Siri option.

Scroll down and enable the Announce calls option.

Siri will now announce calls and notifications to the connected Bluetooth headphones. Alternatively, you can also enable it by opening Settings on your iPhone → Siri & Search, enabling Announce Calls, and then Announce Notifications.

Reply to messages with Siri

Siri on Apple Watch can be handy when you can’t reach your iPhone. If you receive a text message on your Apple Watch and want to reply, you don’t have to get to your iPhone or type the text on Apple Watch.

Raise your wrist with your Apple Watch and say, “Hey Siri, reply” to wake up Siri whenever you receive a message.

Speak out your message to the Apple Watch.

Say OK to confirm it, or you can say or tap on Don’t Send to abort it.

For more such interesting tips and tricks on making the most of your Apple Watch, check out these 45 Helpful Apple Watch tips and tricks

Useful Siri phrases to try on your Apple Watch

Siri can execute all the basic commands that you can throw at it. Here are a few uncommon phrases to make the most of Siri on your Apple Watch. You’ll have to say “Hey Siri” to wake up Siri and then follow up with a command phrase.

Start a Workout: You can ask Siri to start a specific workout by saying, “start a [workout name].” For instance, you can say, “start a 20-minute outdoor run,” to start the outdoor run workout for 20 minutes.

Let Siri calculate for you: Whether it’s a simple calculation or conversion of one unit to another, you can ask Siri to do them for you. Just say, “what’s [your calculation question].” For instance, you can ask, “what’s 29 feet in inches,” and it’ll answer.

Check scores: You can ask Siri for any game’s current or past scores. Ask Siri, “what’s the [game/team name] score,” Siri will provide you the results.

Use Siri for translation: Ask Siri to translate sentences, say the phrase, “translate [sentence] to [language]” or “how do you say [sentence] in [language].” For instance, you can ask, “translate I don’t know Japanese to Japanese”

Use Siri to search Google: Ask Siri some questions, and it’ll Google it for you for the answer. For example, you can ask, “why is the sky blue,” “when was Albert Einstein born,” or “who invented the light bulb.”

Ask Siri what song it is: If there’s a song playing near you, and you don’t know which one it is, Siri can help you with it. Just ask, “what song is this,” Siri will recognize the song and tell you which song is playing.

Check emails on your wrist: Siri can help you check the latest emails on your Apple Watch. You can say, “Show me my emails,” or “Check my emails,” and it’ll get a list of the recent emails from your inbox. However, if you want to check emails from a specific person, you can say, “show me emails from [person name].”

Check your update: If you’re starting your day and want to check the plans you made throughout the day, Siri can do it for you. Invoke Siri and say, “What’s my update,” Siri will show you the weather, reminders, and any other travel plans you made.

Ask Siri what it can do: If you want to know what more Siri can do on your Apple Watch, the best way to find out is by asking Siri itself. Just say, “what kind of things can I ask you,” Siri will tell you a few things or provide you a link where you can find more Siri commands.

How to delete Siri history on Apple Watch

Now that you’re enjoying using Siri on your Apple Watch, some of you might have privacy concerns regarding data sharing. You don’t have to worry about privacy when it comes to Apple. However, you still get the option to delete Siri history on your Apple Watch; here’s how:

Open Settings on your Apple Watch.

Select Siri from the list.

Tap on Siri History and then the Delete Siri History option.

How to disable Siri on Apple Watch

If you don’t like Siri or feel it’s not helpful, you can disable Siri from your Apple Watch. Follow the instructions to learn how you can disable Siri on Apple Watch.

Open Settings on your Apple Watch.

Select Siri settings from the list.

Toggle off the Listen for “Hey Siri,” Raise to speak, and Press Digital Crown options.

Doing this will disable Siri from your Apple Watch, and you can toggle on the three options if you want to enable it in the future.

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Sajid

Sajid is an Electronics and Communications Engineering graduate who loves writing about tech. He’s primarily interested in writing about Android, iOS, Mac, and Windows. You’ll find him watching Anime or Marvel when he’s not writing.

Ultimate Guide To Ssds (Plus Reviews Of 7 New Drives!)

Installing an SSD in your PC, be it a laptop or a desktop, is one of the easiest and most effective ways to boost the machine’s overall performance. The change won’t be merely noticeable—it will startle you. Your system will boot more quickly, windows and menus will jump open, and programs and data will load much, much faster.

To get the skinny on state-of-the-art consumer SSDs, we brought seven drives from five vendors into the PCWorld Labs and put them through the wringer. We tested Corsair’s Neutron and Neutron GTX drives; Kingston’s HyperX 3K; OCZ’s Vertex 4 and Vector drives; Samsung’s 840 Pro; and the SanDisk Extreme. We also retested Intel’s 240GB Series 335 SSD using our new benchmarking procedure (if you’re curious, read our original review). Each drive delivers either 240GB or 256GB of storage, which is the current sweet spot in terms of price and performance. Each drive we tested proved to be a solid performer that will offer a significant boost over whatever conventional drive your machine has now. Some drives, however, are definitely faster than others.

If you’d like to upgrade a computer equipped with an older second-generation SATA interface (which maxes out at 3 gigbits per second), note that we also checked out the Apricorn Velocity Solo x2, an add-in card that upgrades any computer with an available PCIe 2.0 x2 slot to the newer SATA 6-gbps standard.

But before we dive into those reviews, here’s a primer on SSDs that will tell you everything you need to know about this technology.

Controller

The memory/interface controller proved to be a major factor in determining each SSD’s performance. Three of the drives we tested use a SandForce SF-2281 controller: the Kingston HyperX 3K, the SanDisk Extreme, and the Intel Series 335 (the controller firmware on this drive is tweaked to Intel’s specifications). OCZ’s Vector and Vertex 4 drives both use OCZ’s proprietary IndiLinx controllers, namely the Everest 2 in the Vertex 4 and the Barefoot 3 in the Vector. Corsair is blazing a path with its Neutron series drives (the GTX and Neutron) by using Link A Media’s LM87800 controller. Samsung’s 840 Pro utilizes the company’s proprietary MDX controller.

As you’ll see in our performance chart, drives with the IndiLinx, Link A Media, and Samsung MDX controllers boasted significantly faster write speeds than the SandForce-based competition. In fact, counterintuitively, each of the five drives using those controllers wrote faster than they read. The SandForce-based drives were all good readers, but their comparatively slower write speeds dragged down their overall scores.

On the next page (scroll down past product-reviews for the link), I’ll discuss memory types, interfaces, and how we measured performance.

Memory

Although the controller plays a big role in determining an SSD’s performance, the type of flash memory inside an SSD is also a huge factor. The SSDs in this roundup used either synchronous or toggle-mode NAND.

You might also encounter the terms SLC (single-level cell), MLC (multi-level cell), and TLC (triple-level cell) when researching SSDs. An SLC NAND cell has two states—on or off—so it can store one bit of data. An MLC NAND cell has two states besides off, so it can store two bits of data, while a TLC NAND cell has three states in addition to off and is therefore capable of storing three bits of data.

While MLC and TLC NAND deliver more capacity in the same physical space, they also bring a trade-off in performance and endurance. SLC NAND is faster and more durable than the other two types, but it’s also more expensive; you’ll find it today only in enterprise-level drives. Very few drives use TLC NAND, because it’s not as durable—it can’t handle as many program/erase cycles (which I’ll explain in a moment) as SLC and MLC can. Each of the drives in this roundup uses MLC NAND.

A note about endurance: All types of NAND flash memory have a limited life span. The MLC memory in consumer SSDs is good for 3000 to 10,000 P/E (program/erase) cycles, which is enough to deliver several years of normal usage. Unlike a mechanical hard drive, an SSD cannot simply write (program) data on top of old data that’s no longer needed; once flash memory has been written to, it must be erased before it can be written to again. Newer SSDs running on modern operating systems (including Windows 7, Windows 8, Mac OS X 10.6.8, and Linux kernel 2.6.28) use the TRIM command (it’s not an acronym, despite the caps) to actively inform the SSD controller of memory cells that contain unneeded data, so the controller can proactively erase those cells and make them available for storage once again.

So how long should you expect an SSD to last? The manufacturers’ warranties provide a clue: Both of OCZ’s drives, Corsair’s Neutron drives, and Samsung’s 840 Pro drives carry a five-year warranty; the rest of the drives we reviewed are warrantied for three years.

Interface

While mechanical hard drives don’t come close to saturating the second-generation SATA 3-gbps bus, the latest SSDs are already bumping up the against the limit of third-gen SATA. If you’re adding an SSD to a laptop that has only a SATA 3-gbps interface, save yourself some money and go middle of the road—you’ll get very little benefit out of connecting a SATA 6-gbps drive to the older interface. If you’re upgrading to an SSD on a desktop that has only a SATA 3-gbps interface, buy either a SATA 6-gbps controller card or a SATA 6-gbps piggyback card, such as the Apricorn Velocity Solo x2 (read our review). Under any circumstance, buy a top performer, and in the future you can transfer it into a better system to realize its full potential.

Performance

We evaluated the SSDs with a series of real-world data-transfer tests (by “real world,” we mean a commonplace selection of data). Each drive was required to read and write both a 10GB mix of smaller files and folders and a single large 10GB file. To see just how fast the drives could go, we utilized a 16GB RAM disk to avoid any bottlenecks or interaction issues that a hard drive or second SSD might cause.

Our test bed consisted of an Asus P8Z77-V Pro/Thunderbolt motherboard, an Intel Core i7-2600K CPU, and 32GB of Corsair Vengeance 1600MHz DDR3 memory. The operating system was Microsoft Windows 8 (64-bit).

If you’re not looking for the absolute fastest SSD, any of these models will embarrass a mechanical drive—or even last-year’s SSD crop.

When it came to reading data, every drive we tested turned in good numbers. Oddly enough, the 256MB OCZ Vertex 4, which took fourth place overall with its combined reading and writing, was the slowest reader at 393.5 MBps (file mix and large file combined). The highest combined mark, on the other hand, wasn’t tremendously higher: Samsung’s 240GB 840 Pro delivered 450.8 MBps (about 14 percent faster).

Overall, the aforementioned Samsung 840 Pro and OCZ’s 256MB Vector were the stars of the roundup, finishing first and second respectively. The 840 Pro delivered an overall combined read/write speed of 496.2 MBps, and the Vector delivered 489.1 MBps. The 840 Pro finished first in every test except for writing our mix of smaller files and folders, where the Vector bested it. The Corsair Neutron GTX (240GB) placed third with a speed of 459.1 MBps, the OCZ Vertex 4 took fourth place at 449.4 MBps, and the 240GB Corsair Neutron finished a rather distant fifth at 414.3 MBps.

The Kingston HyperX was the most capable of the SandForce-based drives, posting a combined read/write rate of 407 MBps. The 240GB SanDisk Extreme finished next at 385.8 MBps, followed by the 240GB Intel 335 Series at 368.4 MBps.

To establish a baseline, we also tested an older SSD (a 90GB Corsair Force Series 3) and two mechanical hard drives: Seagate’s Barracuda 7200.12 and Western Digital’s VelociRaptor, both of which offer capacity that no current SSD can match: 1TB. The WD VelociRaptor is a very fast enterprise-class hard drive that spins its platters at 10,000 rpm. Note, however, that the Corsair and Seagate products do not represent the respective manufacturers’ latest and greatest technology; we selected them as representative of the boot drives that consumers might be upgrading from. The Seagate 7200.12, for instance, has half as much cache as the newer 7200.14 model with the same total capacity. And the Corsair drive uses slower asynchronous NAND paired with a SandForce 2200 controller that predates the SandForce 2281 used in the newer drives we reviewed.

The Corsair Force Series 3 SSD managed an overall read/write rate of only 190.7 MBps. Seagate’s 7200-rpm hard drive delivered 117.7 MBps, while the VelociRaptor achieved 213 MBps. In plain language, the bargain SSD smoked the Seagate hard drive, but it couldn’t keep pace with the VelociRaptor.

On the next page (scroll down past product-reviews for the link), I’ll tackle the issue of pricing, bundles, and the bottom line.

Price

Though you’ll see the manufacturer’s suggested retail price quoted in our charts, it’s not always indicative of how much you’ll pay. Some vendors provide MSRPs that are actually street prices, while other vendors offer loftier MSRPs that end up being heavily discounted at retail. The 240GB SanDisk Extreme, for example, is list priced at $399, but we saw it at several online retailers for much less than half that amount. On the other hand, Intel priced its 335 series model at $184, but that drive was selling for more at several online retailers.

Based on street prices, the price per gigabyte ranged from about 69 cents to $1.08 per gigabyte for the 240/256GB models we reviewed. Although that’s expensive compared with the 6 cents per gigabyte the Seagate hard drive fetches, or the 24 cents per gigabyte that WD’s VelociRaptor commands, so is a Ferrari compared with a Volkswagen.

Bundles

Be aware of what comes in the box with the drive you choose. At a minimum, you should get a bracket and screws that let you adapt the 2.5-inch drive to a 3.5-inch bay. Some manufacturers go further and offer cloning software so that you can easily migrate your operating system and software environment from your old drive to the new one. Some manufacturers sell drives under different SKUs, one with just the drive and others with the drive plus accessories. Be sure to make apples-to-apples comparisons when you’re shopping.

The bottom line

Speed is the primary motivation for upgrading to an SSD, so I recommend skipping over the bargain drives in favor of what you really want. The lone exception to that recommendation is for a laptop that has only a SATA 3-gbps interface. In that case, you should still stay away from bargain-bin drives, but make your choice based on price per gigabyte. If you’re upgrading your laptop, be mindful of drive height: Some drives are 9mm high, and many thin-and-light portables can accommodate only 7mm drives.

We reviewed seven of the very latest SSDs for this roundup. The competition was tight, but one drive managed to outperform the rest of the field. You’ll find links to our reviews below and after the jump!

Corsair Neutron (240GB): The middle of the road

Photograph by Robert Cardin

Corsair’s move to the Link A Media LM87800 controller has been a good thing. The Neutron GTX performs better thanks to its faster toggle-mode NAND, but the Neutron with its synchronous MLC NAND is still a very fast drive—fast enough to take the fifth spot among some very tough competition in our roundup.

Read our entire review.

Corsair Neutron GTX (240GB): A gamble pays off

Photograph by Robert Cardin

Corsair’s move to the Link A Media LM87800 controller has paid dividends. Though not quite as fast as the Samsung 840 Pro or the OCZ Vector, the Neutron GTX beat out the OCZ Vertex 4 to take third place overall.

See our complete hands-on review.

Kingston HyperX 3K (240GB): An excellent buy

Photograph by Robert Cardin

Kingston’s HyperX 3K was the best performer among the SandForce SF-2281 drives in our December 2012 roundup, by a fair margin: It took the sixth spot in overall performance. Kingston somehow managed to squeeze significantly better write performance out of this controller than the other vendors using the same part.

Read the rest of our review.

PHOTOGRAPH BY ROBERT CARDIN

OCZ’s latest drive, the Vector, utilizes the company’s new IndiLinx Barefoot 3 controller in conjunction with synchronous MLC NAND. Said NAND is rated for 550-MBps sequential writing and 530-MBps writing, as well as for 95,000/100,000, 4KB write/read operations per second. Whatever the numbers, the Vector is fast.

Find the entire review.

OCZ Vertex 4 (256GB): Hitting the sweet spot

Photograph by Robert Cardin

While it’s not quite as fast as its OCZ Vector sibling, OCZ’s Vertex 4 is a very speedy SSD. It uses the company’s older IndiLinx Everest 2 controller, but contains the same synchronous MLC NAND used in the Vector. The combination proved fast enough for this drive to take fourth place in overall performance.

Read the entire review.

Samsung 840 Pro (256GB): A screaming-fast SSD

Photograph by Robert Cardin

It’s always easy to write about the best—in this case, the Samsung 840 Pro with its proprietary MDX controller. Samsung also manufactures the toggle-mode MLC memory found in the 840 Pro, and judging from the results of our tests, the company knows what to do with it. The 840 Pro finished first in overall combined reading and writing. It also placed first in three of our four individual read and write tests.

Find all the details in our review.

SanDisk Extreme (240GB): Bang for the buck

Photograph by Robert Cardin

SanDisk’s Extreme SSD is a study in extremes, at least pricewise. With the 240GB version carrying a $399 suggested retail price, you might dismiss it out of hand. That would be a mistake: We found the drive selling online for a mere $165 (as of December 18, 2012), which lowers the drive’s price per gigabyte to just 69 cents—the lowest price in the entire roundup.

Read more about this drive in our review.

What Is Managed Detection And Response (Mdr)? Ultimate Guide

Managed detection and response (MDR) adds an additional layer of protection and elevates the security postures of organizations relying on legacy solutions.

Managed detection and response is becoming more popular as organizations look to outsource some elements of their cybersecurity approach. As bad actors become more adept at bypassing traditional network security platforms, managed services like MDR play an important – and growing – role in protecting the enterprise.  

Organizations have varying tolerance levels for cyber risk, which should be reflected in the MDR service agreement. Some enterprises may prefer detailed analytical reports about network traffic, while others feel comfortable with a more hands-off approach.

Ultimately, the goal of MDR is to find and respond to threats before they cause damage. Core MDR functions include:

Offsite MDR partners configure their security platform to apply automated rules to help prioritize which risks are most urgent. Human analysts review alerts according to priority, sorting benign events and false positives from authentic threats.

Threat hunting is the primary function of MDR, through both automated, AI-driven methods and human analysis. An ideal MDR partner company includes cybersecurity experts who are at the top of their field — access to these high levels of expertise are one of the main draws to investing in MDR.

MDR usually includes detailed reporting about security events with additional context to help companies understand and mitigate vulnerabilities. With MDR, enterprises can better understand what happened, when, who was affected, and the extent of infiltration or damage or loss.

Remediation is the recovery support an organization can expect from an MDR provider. Arguably, this is the most critical component of an MDR partnership. After all, if remediation is not handled well, an organization’s entire investment in endpoint protection could be at risk.

MDR partners should be able to help an organization recover to a pre-attack state by removing malware, cleaning the registry, ejecting network intruders, and mitigating vulnerabilities throughout a network.

There are many benefits of MDR, but perhaps the chief benefit is that MDR offers protection that is both preventative and reactionary in nature. Not only does MDR provide insights into network behaviors that might develop into full blown problems, but it is also capable of quickly knocking down attacks that do occur. MDR platforms scan for possible breaches and eliminate issues as soon as they occur to minimize damages.

That’s where humans come in. The expert cybersecurity analysts who manage MDR platforms are experienced in dealing with a wide array of threats in multiple environments. That means they are well-equipped to help organizations bat down sophisticated attacks and to offer insight informed by real world experience. Automation is a must, but expert human analysis adds measurable value.

While MDR providers offer different levels of services, with some focusing more on the “right of boom” scenarios (after an attack has occurred), a comprehensive MDR platform is also proactive.

AI-enhanced MDR is especially well-equipped to monitor potentially problematic network behavior, since these platforms continuously review systems, searching for known threats as well as potential threats.

MDR-provided reports often reveal potential problem areas not only for cybersecurity worries, but compliance issues. Regulatory guidance for data management, especially, often dictates that companies have a comprehensive view of where data is stored, how it is accessed and used, and how it is protected. MDR reports can add insights to help enterprises make proactive decisions about regulatory compliance adherence.

While MDR providers often offer more than one level of service with associated features, these five features are typical to most MDR platforms.

Every MDR platform includes some version of intrusion detection and prevention. Some service providers use MDR platforms in addition to the network security in place at a given organization, while others provide almost complete network protection off-site.

Some MDR platforms can monitor a mix of endpoints, including cloud-based and connections to field sensors and other IoT devices. In any case, intrusion detection and prevention is a must.

As MDR hunts for threats across a network, it gathers data along the way. Information gathered includes insights into network behavior, including how employees are accessing the network; which endpoints are open and closed; where traffic originates and travels; and a whole host of other data points.

MDR providers offer different levels of data analytics as part of their service packages. Not only are these analytical reports helpful for improving an enterprise security posture, but they can help enterprises make more informed operational decisions.

Continuous monitoring is a key feature for MDR and a big reason many enterprises opt for these managed services. An off-site security team is on standby at all times, ready to jump in and tackle issues even when they occur outside normal business hours.

It can be challenging for SOCs to keep every element of a network security approach updated to the latest parameters. New viruses and malware emerge constantly. A managed approach takes away much of this burden, since part of MDR oversight agreements include keeping systems up-to-date.

For more information, also see: Why Firewalls are Important for Network Security

These 10 MDR providers are among the most popular and best rated.

Cynet

SecurityHQ

Rapid7

Cybereason

SentinelOne Vigilance

CrowdStrike

eSentire

Expel

Secureworks

Fidelis Cybersecurity

It’s become the norm that enterprises are dealing with sprawling, complex networks that include a mix of on-premises, cloud-based, IoT endpoints, and more. Outsourcing at least some of the oversight of these networks in terms of cybersecurity can help alleviate staffing concerns, connect enterprises with high-caliber cybersecurity professionals, and greatly increase network security.

A comprehensive MDR solution will include round-the-clock coverage, modern tech enhanced with AI, data analytics, and a mix of features that fit a given enterprise’s unique needs.

For more information, also see: Artificial Intelligence in Cybersecurity

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